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Autism: we are not protecting our children, Autistic incidences skyrocket, EPA Study: Autism boom began in 1988  environmental factors are assumed, Flu vaccine use correlates well

Autism: we are not protecting our children, Autistic incidences skyrocket, EPA Study: Autism boom began in 1988  environmental factors are assumed, Flu vaccine use correlates well

“I’m also a little concerned about how they’re bunched up. My kids had all of their vaccines, and even if the science doesn’t say bunching them up is a problem, I ought to have the right to spread out my vaccines out a little bit at the very least.”…Rand Paul

“it is true that we are probably giving way too many in too short a period of time.”…Ben Carson

“Mercury is a highly toxic element; there is no known safe level of exposure. Ideally, neither children nor adults should have any mercury in their bodies because it provides no physiological benefit.”…National Institute of Health

 

From the Huffington Post June 23, 2010.

“EPA Study: Autism Boom Began in 1988, Environmental Factors Are Assumed

If it seems like most of the people you know with autism are 22 or younger, that’s because most people diagnosed with autism were born after 1987. A recent US EPA studyhas found a distinct “changepoint” year – or spike – in autism in California and elsewhere and concludes that it would be “prudent to assume that at least some portion of this increase is real and results from environmental factors.”

“In the Danish, California, and worldwide data sets, we found that an increase in autism disorder cumulative incidence began about (the birth cohort years) 1988-1989,” wrote the authors Michael E. Mc Donald and John F. Paul, of the EPA’s National Health and Environmental Effects Research Laboratory.

“Although the debate about the nature of increasing autism continues,” they added, “the potential for this increase to be real and involve exogenous (external) environmental stressors exists.”

But it was the distinct timing in the increase of autism – the birth of an epidemic, as many believe – that was most notable, and which “may help in screening for potential candidate environmental stressors.”

“The calculated year was determined to be significant,” the EPA scientists said. The rate of increase before 1988 “was significantly different” than the rate after that year (the “postchangepoint,” in epidemiology parlance). In California, the rate spiked from 5.7-per-10,000 before the changepoint, to 20.8-per 10,000 in its wake, and the worldwide dataset showed a similar jump (from 6.0 to 24.2). In Denmark, the rise was even more dramatic, though total incidence was only a fraction of that in the US: from 0.6 to 6.6.”

“As they wrote:

Although artifacts associated with observed increases in various studies cannot be ruled out, from a precautionary standpoint, it seems prudent to assume that at least some portion of this increase in incidence is real and results from environmental factors interacting with susceptible populations. As such exposure is potentially preventable, identification of relevant candidate environmental factors should be a research priority.

Meanwhile, the scientists were surprised to find such similar changepoint years in California, Denmark and the worldwide dataset, although they conceded the data were consistent with similar studies done in Minnesota and Sweden, and a third US nationwide study which found, “the greatest increase in ASD prevalence occurring in cohorts born between 1987 and 1992.”

There are many external factors that could be associated with autism, the authors said, so knowing when the explosion in cases began should help narrow down the long list of suspects.

“Future studies should examine for novel or increasing exposures to environmental factors from gestation to at least age three for our calculated 1988-1989 birth cohorts,” the authors wrote. “Assuming a dose-response relationship, a candidate factor would have continued to increase in the environment from the late 1980s through at least the mid-1990s.”

But what could it (or they) be? According to the EPA:

  • Any candidate must be a substance or substances whose exposure level dramatically increased in developed countries beginning at the 1988 changepoint.
  • The candidate will likely be something whose exposure level was greater in California than in Denmark between 1988 and 1997.
  • The candidate is likely something that was introduced in developing countries later than California, Japan and Denmark. For example, a recent Hong Kong study “is suggestive of a rise in autism, but beginning more recently than our calculated changepoints.”
  • The candidate “would need to be disruptive to early human neural development.”
  • The candidate would need to have a route of exposure “consistent with bioavailability to fetuses and infants.”
  • The candidate would need to have increasing levels of US exposure between 1988 and at least 1995.
  • The potential for exposure to a variety of environmental factors “acting synergistically on susceptible populations also cannot be ruled out.”

The authors suggested an initial toxicological screening for potential autism-trigger candidates using the CDC’s Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry or similar data sets.”

“Here are just some of the areas where science is looking:”

“VACCINES AND UNDERLYING DISORDERS – In January of this year, the Institute of Medicine’s Committee to Review Adverse Effects of Vaccines issued its “Working list of adverse events to be considered.” Included in the adverse events associated with the DTaP and MMR vaccines were “autism” and “Autism Spectrum Disorders (ASD)/Pervasive Developmental Disorders (PDD).” Interestingly, the IOM Committee said it would consider investigating so-called “Secondary” autism, or “autistic features arising from chronic encephalopathy, mitochondrial disorders and/or other underlying disorders.” In other words, vaccines don’t cause autism, but they might cause brain disease in certain predisposed kids, and that might lead to autism.

VACCINES AND IMMUNE STRESS – As for “Primary” autism, the IOM has been asked by the Federal Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP, or Vaccine Court) to consider reviewing all the medical literature since the 2004 IOM report that found no link. “In particular, VICP is interested in the Committee’s review on more recent theories of ‘neuroinflammation’ and ‘hyperarousal/overexcitation of the immune system via multiple simultaneous antigenic stimulation.” In other words, getting too many shots at once might cause an inappropriate neuro-immune response, such as that sometimes reported in autism.

VACCINES AND VIRAL PARTICLES – A brand new study reported finding pig and monkey viral particles in a number of vaccines. In the MMR II and Varivax (Chicken Pox) vaccines, researchers detected human endogenous retrovirus K, or HERV-K. The retrovirus was a “consequence of their manufacture using human cell lines.” A 2001 study of genes and autism reports on the development of “frozen blocks of DNA” caused by imperfect gene duplication. “It appears that human endogenous retroviruses (HERV) and
HERV fragments are involved,” the authors wrote. “The long version of the C4 gene, for
example, results from the integration of an HERV-K.”

Do vaccines and vaccine ingredients belong on the list of candidates? Many people say no, but the IOM and the VICP say yes.

I agree with the experts. And now that we have a “changepoint” of 1988, we should go back and look at vaccine exposures both pre- and post- changepoint. Between 1988 and 1996, the following vaccines were added to the US schedule for children in the first 15 months of life:

  • HiB – Improved Hib conjugate vaccine licensed in December 1987, and single dose added to childhood schedule in 1988.
  • DTaP – Additional dose at younger age added around 1990.
  • HiB – Three additional doses added to schedule in 1991.
  • Hep B – Three doses – Added to childhood schedule in 1992.
  • Chicken Pox – Approved in 1995, added to schedule in 1996

1988 was a very interesting year, and those children have a lot to tell us. Let’s listen.”

Read more:

https://www.huffingtonpost.com/david-kirby/autism-vaccine-epa-study_b_548837.html

I found the following graphs and correlations extremely interesting.

The growth in autism compared to flu vaccine distribution.

Flu vaccine distribution.

Autism increases.

Is there a cause and effect relationship between flu vaccines and Autism?

Dr. David Brownstein, Board-Certified family physician.

“The flu vaccine is a toxic mess that can contain mercury and other unwanted substances that should never be injected into any living being.  The flu vaccine has been around for many years and has never been shown to be very effective at preventing the flu.”

https://www.drbrownstein.com/flu-vaccine-moderately-effective-fake-news/\

Reverend Lisa Sykes, author of “Sacred Spark.”

“Lie #2 “Mercury was removed from all childhood vaccines in (pick any year between 1999 and the present).”

“The Facts: After “realizing” the amount of mercury in the childhood vaccination schedule recommended by the CDC exceeded all national and global maximum safety limits, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the United States Public Health Service called for the immediate removal of Thimerosal from all vaccines on July 7, 1999.

By 2003, the vaccine manufacturers had begun to react to the 1999 call by lowering the mercury content in many of the Thimerosal-preserved early childhood vaccines. However, in April of 2002, the CDC began recommending that pregnant women and very young children get annual Thimerosal-preserved flu shots. The result was a ‘shell game’ which has caused widespread confusion in the public because of press reports declaring, “Since (select a year between 1999 and the present), mercury has been removed from all recommended vaccines for children except for some flu shots.”

http://eachstorytold.com/2018/05/03/lisa-sykes-mercury-in-vaccines-10-lies-about-the-safety-of-thimerosal-lie-1-thimerosal-49-55-mercury-by-weight-is-safe-when-used-as-a-preservative-in-vaccines-lie-2/

I am not stating that flu vaccines are a cause of autism but I do question the widespread use especially in small children and pregnant women.

Personally I have never had one and do not intend to have one.

More questions should be asked and more real science should be applied.

Mr. Trump, I urge you to get more involved.

Wells.

 

More here:

https://citizenwells.com/

http://citizenwells.net/

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Obama and Pharmaceutical firms again in cahoots on TPP, Trans Pacific Partnership empowers big pharma, Greater access to and influence over decision making processes around pricing and reimbursement, Drug companies biggest spenders on lobbying

Obama and Pharmaceutical firms again in cahoots on TPP, Trans Pacific Partnership empowers big pharma, Greater access to and influence over decision making processes around pricing and reimbursement, Drug companies biggest spenders on lobbying

“If you like your health care plan, you’ll be able to keep your health care plan.”…Barack Obama

“millions of Americans are getting or are about to get cancellation letters for their health insurance under Obamacare, say experts, and the Obama administration has known that for at least three years.”…NBC News October 29, 2013

 

“We are being lied to on a scale unimaginable by George Orwell.”…Citizen Wells

 

From the NY Times June 10, 2015.

“Facing resistance from Pacific trading partners, the Obama administration is no longer demanding protection for pharmaceutical prices under the 12-nation Trans-Pacific Partnership, according to a newly leaked section of the proposed trade accord.”

“It was very clear to everyone except the U.S. that the initial proposal wasn’t about transparency. It was about getting market access for the pharmaceutical industry by giving them greater access to and influence over decision-making processes around pricing and reimbursement,” saidDeborah Gleeson, a lecturer at the School of Psychology and Public Health at La Trobe University in Australia. And even though the section, known as the transparency annex, has been toned down, she said, “I think it’s a shame that the annex is still being considered at all for the T.P.P.”

The annex, which covers pharmaceutical and medical devices, is the latest document obtained by The New York Times in collaboration with the watchdog group WikiLeaks, and it was released before the House vote on whether to give President Obama expanded powers to complete the Trans-Pacific Partnership.”

“The agreement “will increase the cost of medicines worldwide, starting with the 12 countries that are negotiating the Trans-Pacific Partnership,” said Judit Rius Sanjuan, a lawyer at Doctors Without Borders, a humanitarian organization that provides medical care in more than 60 countries.”

“Pharmaceutical firms and their trade associations have filed by far more lobbying disclosure forms on the Pacific trade negotiations than any other industry, according to the watchdog Sunlight Foundation. More broadly, the pharmaceutical and health product industries have been the biggest spenders on lobbying, and drug company deal-making with the Obama administration and in Congress was instrumental in securing passage of the Affordable Care Act.”

““The leak is just the latest glaring example of why fast-tracking the T.P.P. would undermine the health of Americans and the other countries and cost our government more, all to the benefit of pharma’s profits,” said Lori Wallach, director of Public Citizen’s Global Trade Watch and one of the most prominent voices in the coalition working to scuttle trade promotion authority.”

Read more:

http://www.nytimes.com/2015/06/11/business/international/us-shifts-stance-on-drug-pricing-in-pacific-trade-pact-talks-document-reveals.html?smid=tw-share&_r=0

Naw, Mr transparency, Obama, wouldn’t make a deal with the pharmaceutical companies would he?

From Citizen Wells August 23, 2009.

“Internal Memo Confirms Big Giveaways In White House Deal With Big Pharma
A memo obtained by the Huffington Post confirms that the White House and the pharmaceutical lobby secretly agreed to precisely the sort of wide-ranging deal that both parties have been denying over the past week.

The memo, which according to a knowledgeable health care lobbyist was prepared by a person directly involved in the negotiations, lists exactly what the White House gave up, and what it got in return.”

“Critics on Capitol Hill and online responded with outrage at the reports that Obama had gone behind their backs and sold the reform movement short. Furthermore, the deal seemed to be a betrayal of several promises made by then-Sen. Obama during the presidential campaign, among them that he would use the power of government to drive down the costs of drugs to Medicare and that negotiations would be conducted in the open.”

“the White House agreed to:

1. Oppose importation

2. Oppose rebates in Medicare Part D

3. Oppose repeal of non-interference

4. Oppose opening Medicare Part B”

“Here is a CNN report on this backroom deal:

“Obama:Caught Lying Again-Making Back Room Deals with Pharmaceutical Lobbyist”

https://citizenwells.com/2009/08/23/obama-pharmaceutical-memo-obama-lying-white-house-deal-with-pharmaceutical-lobby-phrma-internal-memo-pharmaceutical-researchers-and-manufacturers-association-deal-lobbyistsyoutube-video/

Can Obama keep Blagojevich and Hastert from talking?, Sidley Austin coming to their aid?, Hastert named in Rezko trial, Witness testified Rezko stated that Patrick Fitzgerald would be fired and replaced by Hastert pick, Purple Hotel or other Stuart Levine drug/sex ties?

Can Obama keep Blagojevich and Hastert from talking?, Sidley Austin coming to their aid?, Hastert named in Rezko trial, Witness testified Rezko stated that Patrick Fitzgerald would be fired and replaced by Hastert pick, Purple Hotel or other Stuart Levine drug/sex ties?

“Maloof, who once helped run some of Rezko’s fast-food businesses, said Rezko told him of Fitzgerald’s replacement: “That they will order the prosecutor to stop the investigation.”
“It is the first time jurors heard an accusation that Rezko worked behind the scenes to oust Fitzgerald.”
“Maloof left the stand without ever invoking Barack Obama’s name, despite previous allegations by prosecutors that he made a straw donation for Rezko to Obama’s Senatorial campaign fund. It is clear that lawyers — and the judge — have been careful not to bring Obama’s name into case, even outside the presence of the jury.”…Chicago SunTimes April 28, 2008

“In both conversations with Obama for America and AKP Message & Media, I explained that on November 6, 1999, I had been introduced to Barack Obama by a friend and that Obama had, in fact, sold me an eight-ball of cocaine and had himself engaged in smoking crack cocaine in my limo on that date and again in my hotel room the following day.”…Larry Sinclair, “Barack Obama & Larry Sinclair Cocaine, Sex, Lies & Murder”

“I believe I’m more pristine on Rezko than him.”…Rod Blagojevich

“There is enough corruption in Illinois so that all it takes is someone who is serious about finding it to uncover it. If a U.S. attorney is not finding corruption in Illinois, they’re not seriously looking for it.”…Northwestern Law Professor James Lindgren

 

 

Rod Blagojevich and Tony Rezko have been languishing in prison for years for their involvement in Chicago, IL corruption.

Obama was involved in much of the same corruption but he has been occupying the White House.

It doesn’t seem quite fair, does it?

Blagojevich and Rezko know plenty about Obama’s involvement in corruption, drug use and probable down low sexual activity.

I am willing to bet that Dennis Hastert does too.

HastertBlagojevich

From comments and emails in 2008 by a Chicago restaurant owner.

Comment May 1, 2008.

“As the Chicago-area chef and restaurateur mentioned in this posting, I’ve already provided information to Larry Sinclair’s attorney concerning the several dozen (at least) gay men who spoke with me about Obama’s sexual proclivities (specifically, his being on the “down low,” as they say). I began hearing these rumors in late 2000-early 2001, and continued to hear them until I closed my restaurant and dropped out of civilized society in 2003. These stories were from apparently unrelated sources, and the details in each, when such details were given, were consistent from story to story: always oral sex only, with Obama as the, well, I suppose “recipient” would be as good a word as any.”

Comment May 24, 2008.

Yes, I do live in the Chicago area. I was a chef/restaurant owner here until several years ago. During that time, I heard from several dozen different Chicagoland gay men that Obama was bisexual. Their details closely correspond with Larry Sinclair’s account. This was several years before Obama’s presidential run… he was simply a local politician, part of the same dark Chicago political machine that makes that of my home area (Washington, DC) seem almost tame by comparison. Back then, all I knew of Obama was that he was an extremely mediocre legislator and was one of the dirtiest campaigners I’ve ever encountered… and I come from a politically involved family, and had previously known many a less-than-clean politician. I’m honestly astonished that anyone considers him capable of leading this country in any direction except down.

Comment June 5, 2008.

“Levine’s the one who’s talking… yet he was silenced in court by the judge, stopped from naming names, including the names of the politicians and powerbrokers who had the “all-night all-male drug parties.” And those he has done his talking to — FBI? Fitzgerald? some we know, some we don’t — haven’t let any secrets slip, either.

They’ve thrown Blagojevich to the wolves… and we both know who he was sacrificed for.”

Email May 6, 2008.

“And as I told you tonight, the only other politician mentioned to me as being on the down low by gay guys from the Chicago area, none other than Denny Hastert… who apparently stepped down from a highly powerful US Senate career after being threatened with being outed for gay activities.”

So, there we have it.

Dennis Hastert, who is being investigated for perjury and banking activities tied to alleged gay sex extortion, according to the Rezko trial testimony, was going to help replace Patrick Fitzgerald.

Why and How?

From the Chicago Tribune April 29, 2008.

“Witness says Hastert linked to alleged plot
House speaker would have picked Fitzgerald’s replacement, defendant’s ex-associate claims”

“The name of former U.S. House Speaker Dennis Hastert was added Monday to the roster of political heavyweights linked by witnesses to an alleged plan to dump Chicago’s top federal prosecutor and kill a criminal investigation into a top fundraiser for Gov. Rod Blagojevich.

A witness at the corruption trial of Blagojevich insider Antoin “Tony” Rezko testified that Rezko told him in February 2005 about an effort under way to fire U.S. Atty. Patrick Fitzgerald and replace him with someone more compliant to be hand-picked by Hastert, then the top Republican in the House.

Rezko said the Hastert designee would then “order the prosecutor to stop the investigation,” recalled Elie Maloof, a former Rezko business associate who also testified that Rezko had told him to keep Rezko’s name to himself if he were questioned by authorities because it could damage Blagojevich.”

http://articles.chicagotribune.com/2008-04-29/news/0804280604_1_antoin-tony-rezko-robert-kjellander-house-speaker-dennis-hastert

From True News USA August 27, 2013.

“The Purple Hotel – made famous during the Stuart Levine criminal trial as the hotel that Rezko, Stuart Levine, and Obama attended drug filled gay orgies is set to be demolished”

“Daylong, drug-fueled parties at the Purple Hotel in Lincolnwood and sometimes in Springfield. Snorting crystal meth and “Special K.” Stuart Levine, the star witness at businessman and political fund-raiser Tony Rezko’s corruption trial, told jurors Monday the drugs would make him “euphoric” and lower his inhibitions as he partied all night with five other men.
“I would stay out all night,” said Levine, testifying that he hid his behavior “in order to deceive my family.”

Stuart Levine (inset) testified that he took part in daylong, drug-fueled parties at the Purple Hotel (shown in 2006) in Lincolnwood.”

http://truenewsusa.blogspot.com/2013/08/the-purple-hotel-made-famous-during.html

ObamaLevine

 

Obama known drug use and probable down low.

Citizen Wells August 16, 2012.

https://citizenwells.com/2012/08/16/obama-2000-tax-return-raises-questions-obama-drug-use-left-him-more-or-less-broke-obamas-adjusted-gross-income-over-240k-obama-larry-sinclair-stuart-levine/

The law firm of Sidley Austin is representing Hastert.

From Muckety May 20, 2012.

“Obama connection to Sidley Austin still strong

To those outside legal circles, Sidley Austin is probably best known as the Chicago law firm where Barack Obama and Michelle Obama met.

The future president was an intern in 1989. The future first lady was an associate. Barack Obama turned down a job offer at the end of his internship, Michelle Obama left the firm, and the two married in 1992.”

“Two decades later, Sidley Austin is faring well under the Obama administration.

Current and former attorneys at the firm receiving presidential appointments include:

  • Virginia A. Seitz – Seitz was a partner at Sidley Austin before being named assistant attorney general in 2011.
  • Gary Scott Feinerman – A former solicitor general of Illinois and clerk to Supreme Court Justice Anthony M. Kennedy, Feinerman is now a federal judge with the District Court of the Northern District of Illinois.
  • David B. Barlow – A partner at the firm from 2006 to 2010, Barlow is now U.S. attorney for the Utah district.
  • John G. Levi – A current partner and a bundler for the Obama 2008 and 2012 presidential campaigns, Levi chairs the Legal Services Corporation, a governmental corporation that funds legal aid for the poor.
  • Christopher P. Lu – After working as a litigation associate at Sidley Austin, Lu moved to government. He was legislative director to then-Sen. Barack Obama and is now the president’s cabinet secretary.
  • Kathryn B. Thomson – Thomson, who is married to Lu, worked for 19 years at Sidley Austin. She became counselor to Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood in 2009, and was appointed chief counsel of the Federal Aviation Administration in 2012.
  • Michael Strautmanis – Like Lu, Strautmanis worked with Obama before 2009. He was chief counsel and deputy chief of staff during Obama’s stint in the Senate. He previously practiced complex litigation and employment law at Sidley Austin.

Newton Minow, senior counsel at the law firm and chairman of the Federal Communications Commission during the Kennedy administration, has multiple connections to the White House. Minow met Barack Obama through his daughter Martha, who was Obama’s professor. She urged her father to hire the young law student.

As president, Obama appointed Martha Minow, now dean of Harvard Law School, to the Legal Services Corporation. He named another Minow daughter, Mary, to the National Museum Library Services Board.

Sidley Austin has been embraced by Washington in more ways than federal appointments.

The firm has landed federal contracts totalling nearly $12 million since 2009.”

http://news.muckety.com/2012/05/20/obama-connection-to-sidley-austin-still-strong/37071

Anybody smell a rat(s)?

 

 

 

 

 

Ebola endemic in W Africa and 20k cases by November 2 if control not improved, World Health Organization, Far worse outlook for epidemic, Death rate 70 percent in Guinea Liberia Sierra Leone

Ebola endemic in W Africa and 20k cases by November 2 if control not improved, World Health Organization, Far worse outlook for epidemic, Death rate 70 percent in Guinea Liberia Sierra Leone

“Barack Obama is endangering the children of the US and now our troops. Where is the outrage?”…Citizen Wells

“You can see that these doctors, who are highly trained people, got themselves infected,”
“So sending troops into an area, if they’re dealing one-on-one with a patient, they’re not going to be able to protect themselves very well. It’s not easy to [prevent transmission], because you get tired and you get careless and you make some simple mistakes. All it takes is one virus particle.”…Dr. Lee Hieb, former president of the Association of American Physicians and Surgeons

“Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.”…George Orwell, “1984″

 

 

From the NY Times September 22, 2014.

“New figures published Monday by the World Health Organization reveal a far worse outlook than it had previously anticipated for the Ebola epidemic in West Africa.

In addition to predicting many more cases and deaths, the new report for the first time raises the possibility that the epidemic will not be brought under control and that the disease will become endemic in West Africa, meaning that it could reach a steady state and become a constant presence there.

“The epidemiologic outlook is bleak,” the report said.

If control does not improve now, there will be more than 20,000 cases by Nov. 2, and the numbers of cases and deaths will continue increasing from hundreds to thousands per week for months to come, according to the report. The death rate is about 70 percent in each of the heavily affected countries, Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone.

The new estimates were published online in The New England Journal of Medicine by a team of more than 50 scientists. An earlier prediction by the health organization was far less dire, saying there might be 20,000 cases in nine months.”

“So far, there have been 5,843 cases, including 2,803 deaths, with the most cases, 3,022, reported by Liberia. But the scientists say it is likely that many cases have not been detected.

Although researchers are scrambling to produce and test drugs to treat the disease and vaccines to prevent it, the report says they are unlikely to be available for months — and have not yet been fully tested in humans.

An editorial in the same journal called the epidemic “an avoidable crisis,” and faulted a “highly inadequate and late global response” for letting it surge out of control. It was written by Dr. Jeremy J. Farrar of the Wellcome Trust, and Dr. Peter Piot of the London School of Hygiene and Tropical Medicine. Dr. Piot helped discover the Ebola virus in 1976.”

Read more:

http://www.nytimes.com/2014/09/23/world/health-agencys-new-assessment-of-the-epidemic-is-more-dire-still.html?_r=0

 

 

Obama immigration policy leads to outbreaks of hand foot and mouth disease?, Usually affects children under 5, High school football game cancelled, Enterovirus 71 association, Caused deaths in China

Obama immigration policy leads to outbreaks of hand foot and mouth disease?, Usually affects children under 5, High School football game cancelled, Enterovirus 71 association, Caused deaths in China

“Barack Obama is endangering the children of the US. Where is the outrage?”…Citizen Wells

“Enterovirus 68 was first identified in a California lab in 1962 after four children came down with a severe respiratory illness. Between 1970 and 2005, only 26 cases of enterovirus 68 in the United States were reported to the CDC. Since 2000, the government agency has kept a closer watch and has seen 47 cases, Oberste said. Outbreaks have occurred over the years in Asia and Europe, but it’s still one of the rarest types of enterovirus.”…CNN February 25, 2014

“Freedom is the freedom to say that two plus two make four. If that is granted, all else follows.”…George Orwell, “1984″

 

 

When was the last time you heard of a high school football game being cancelled due to hand foot and mouth disease?

From the Burlington Free Press September 12, 2014.

“Disease outbreak at North Country nixes football game”

“An outbreak of hand, foot and mouth disease at North Country Union High School has led to the cancellation of Friday night’s Division II football game between the Newport school and Burr and Burton Academy, according to athletic directors from both schools.”

Read more:

http://www.burlingtonfreepress.com/story/sports/high-school/2014/09/11/disease-outbreak-north-country-nixes-football-game/15483713/

From Citizen Wells commenter bob strauss.

“Could be related,
My granddaughter contracted,Hand Foot and Mouth disease a couple of months ago. She lives in north Texas.”

I know a young lady who recently had hand, foot and mouth disease.

Hand, foot and mouth disease is a common malady in the US.

Is it more common now with the spread of illegal alien children in this country?

From WGVU July 24, 2014.

“The Kent County health Department says it is seeing more cases of hand foot and mouth earlier in the year.  Normally an increase in numbers occurs in August and health officials are unsure why they’re seeing an earlier increase.”

http://www.wgvu.org/wgvunews/index.cfm?id=sdetail&sty=27654

Lest you believe that the disease is not serious.

From the CDC.

“Individual cases and outbreaks of hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) occur around the world. In countries with temperate (varying) climates, cases occur more often in the spring to fall.

Since 1997, large outbreaks of HFMD caused by enterovirus 71 have been reported mostly in children in east and Southeast Asia. In these outbreaks, most children have typical symptoms of HFMD and recover without health complications. However, a small number of people with this disease develop severe complications requiring hospitalization or even causing death.”

From The Disease Daily April 17, 2009.

“Over 125,000 cases, and 57 fatalities of hand, foot, and mouth disease (HFMD) have been reported by China’s Ministry of Health so far this year. It is estimated that 95% of cases of HFMD have been in children less than 5 years old living in the most rural parts of the country. Regions reporting the greatest number of cases include Henan, Shandong, Jiangsu, Guangxi, Anhui, Guangdong, Hebei, Hubei, Hunan, and Zhejiang, all within China’s agricultural belt where healthcare is minimal. Continuing problems, such as the lack of HFMD prevention training for rural doctors, and the existing fear that government officials are hiding the problem and number of deaths, plague the provinces most severely affected. In addition, with the outbreak not expected to peak until May-July, it is likely that the number of cases and fatalities will rise.”

http://healthmap.org/site/diseasedaily/article/hand-foot-and-mouth-outbreak-spreading-china-41709

From English.news.cn March 21, 2014.

“Hand-foot-and-mouth disease (HFMD) killed two children within three days in Jinshan District of Shanghai, the district’s health and family planning commission said on Friday.”

“HFMD is caused by a group of viruses known as enterovirus (EV), including EV71, which causes severe complications that can lead to death.”

http://news.xinhuanet.com/english/china/2014-03/21/c_133204849.htm

 

 

 

 

 

 

Obama TUCC down low past connections, Jeri Wright indictment, Donald Young murder, Jeremiah Wright arranged marriages for gay members

Obama TUCC down low past connections, Jeri Wright indictment, Donald Young murder, Jeremiah Wright arranged marriages for gay members

“Why was Barack Obama absent from the opening session of the IL Senate on November 4, 1999?”…Citizen Wells

“He kept his eye on the young guys coming up in Trinity,” she said, “and if he spotted someone that acted or looked gay, then Wright would give them kind of a guidance counselor-type direction on how to keep down low – how to do the things they wanted to do, but then also getting married and looking ‘respectable’ – being part of black society.”...WND October 2, 2012

“Why did Donald Young, Bill Gwatney, Christopher Kelly, Andrew Breitbart and others with information about Obama all die under mysterious circumstances?”…Citizen Wells

 

When you look at all of the evidence, and then revisit Larry Sinclair’s allegations of a drug and sex encounter with Barack Obama in 1999 and subsequent contact by the gay choirmaster of TUCC, Donald Young, before he was murdered in December 2007, the puzzle picture is clear.

Obama was on the down low. And probably still is.

Jeri Wright, the daughter of Jeremiah Wright, the former pastor of Obama’s church, TUCC, was indicted last week.

From the McHenry County Blog April 10, 2013.

“Three indictments returned today by the grand jury in Springfield, Ill., collectively broaden allegations of fraud related to a $1.25 million state grant awarded in 2009 to We Are Our Brother’s Keeper, a not-for-profit program owned by Regina R. Evans, former police chief for Country Club Hills, Ill., and her husband, Ronald W. Evans, Jr., also
formerly employed with the Country Club Hills Police Department.

The grant agreement provided for an estimated 40 participants to receive bricklaying and electrical  pre-apprenticeship training and GED preparation, at the Regal Theater, another entity owned by the Evanses.”

“Another indictment returned today charges Jeri L. Wright, 47, of Hazel Crest, Ill., with money laundering (two counts), making false statements to federal law enforcement officers (two counts), and giving false testimony before a grand jury (seven counts), related to the investigation of the alleged fraudulent use of grant funds.

According to the indictment, Wright, a close friend and associate of the Evanses, allegedly received three checks in November 2009, totaling approximately $28,000, purporting to be for work related to the grant, and approximately $20,000 of the proceeds of the checks was allegedly deposited back into accounts controlled by the Evanses.

The indictment further alleges that Wright made false statements to federal law enforcement officers when she was interviewed on various occasions in 2012, and that on Nov. 7, 2012, Wright made materially false statements to the grand jury.”

http://mchenrycountyblog.com/2013/04/10/broader-indictment-in-1-25-million-pat-quinn-era-state-grant-for-we-are-our-borthers-keeper/

Jeri Wright was a Deacon at TUCC when Obama was a member and when Donald Young was murdered.

“PASTORAL/PROGRAM STAFF”

“Deacon Jeri L. Wright, Director of Media”

http://www.scribd.com/doc/2368217/Trinity-United-Church-of-Christ-Bulletin-Nov-4-2007

From WND October 2, 2012.

“TRINITY CHURCH MEMBERS REVEAL OBAMA SHOCKER!”

“NEW YORK – Ten years ago, the New York Times reported on a growing underground subculture in the black community known as Down Low, comprised largely of men who secretly engage in homosexual activity while living “straight” lives in public.

It’s within that subtext that opposition researchers for Hillary Clinton’s 2008 presidential campaign began investigating rumors that Rev. Jeremiah Wright was running a “matchmaking service” for members of his Trinity United Church of Christ known as the Down Low Club, which included Barack Obama.

Over the past several months, WND investigators have interviewed a number of members of the church who claim the president benefited from Wright’s efforts to help black men who engage in homosexual activity appear respectable in black society by finding them a wife.

The 2003 New York Times story, “Double Lives on the Down Low,” said that though many black men reject “a gay culture they perceive as white and effeminate,” they “have settled on a new identity, with its own vocabulary and customs and its own name: Down Low.”

The Times said that while “there are black men who are openly gay, it seems that the majority of those having sex with men still lead secret lives, products of a black culture that deems masculinity and fatherhood as a black man’s primary responsibility – and homosexuality as a white man’s perversion.”

The Down Low Club at Trinity “doesn’t have meetings, and it isn’t like the Rotary Club,” a source identified for this article as “Carolyn” explained to a WND investigator in Chicago.

“It was more that Wright served as a matchmaker,” said Carolyn, a 20-year member of Trinity who has played a role in church administration and knows the Obamas personally.

“He kept his eye on the young guys coming up in Trinity,” she said, “and if he spotted someone that acted or looked gay, then Wright would give them kind of a guidance counselor-type direction on how to keep down low – how to do the things they wanted to do, but then also getting married and looking ‘respectable’ – being part of black society.”

To Trinity insiders, the Down Low Club was simply known as “the program.”

“That’s the terminology. At Trinity, you’re urged to ‘get with the program,’” explained a male beneficiary of the Down Low Club. “What that means is it’s OK to go ahead and have sex with men, just as long as you ‘get with the program’ and marry a woman, somebody no straight guy would want to marry.”

The wife, the Down Low Club member explained, is “your ‘beard,’ your cover – so you can look like you’re living a straight life, even though you’re not.”

The male source was a “computer consultant” who claims not to know “scratch” about computers. But “getting with the program” at Trinity meant he could keep living a “gay” life and receive lots of computer consulting work thrown his way by Trinity, as long as he was willing to marry an unattractive woman who otherwise might have ended up a lonely spinster with no means to provide for living.

Carolyn explained that for many black families, attending Trinity was a way out of poverty.

“Trinity was a chance to network,” she said. “The stuff preached was hateful, but about 70 percent of those who go there ignore the radical rhetoric and just trying to get ahead.”

Carolyn said Trinity “helped a lot of blacks get successful and connected.”

“That’s what Wright did for Obama,” she claimed. “He connected Obama in the community, and he helped Obama hide his homosexuality.””

“Remember the choir director

Carolyn and the other members of Trinity who provided statements corroborating her testimony were insistent that WND conceal their identities as a condition of being interviewed.

“I’m still scared to discuss any of this,” Carolyn said.

“At Trinity, if you even hint at talking about Obama being gay, you are reminded of our dear departed choir director,” she said. “He was killed, and it wasn’t a robbery. The Christmas presents weren’t touched. The TV was not taken, nothing in the apartment was missing.”

Carolyn’s reference was to Donald Young, the 47-year-old homosexual choirmaster at Trinity who died of multiple gunshot wounds in his Chicago apartment Dec. 24, 2007.

Young’s murder was preceded Nov. 17, 2007, with the execution-style murder of 25-year-old Larry Bland, another black gay member of Trinity United. He also was murdered in his home, dying of multiple gunshot wounds, according to his death certificate.”

“Sensational charges

As WND reported last month, a prominent member of Chicago’s homosexual community claims Obama’s participation in the “gay” bar and bathhouse scene was so well known that many who were aware of his lifestyle were shocked when he ran for president and finally won the White House.

In April, WND reported a federal judge dismissed a libel case against Larry Sinclair, a homosexual who claimed Obama’s 2008 presidential campaign had paid to rig a polygraph test regarding Sinclair’s sensational charge that he had sex and used cocaine twice with Obama while Obama was an Illinois state senator. Sinclair tells his story in “Barack Obama & Larry Sinclair: Cocaine, Sex, Lies & Murder.”

WND also reported former radical activist John Drew has said that when he met Obama when Obama was a student at Occidental College, he thought Obama and his then-Pakistani roommate were “gay” lovers.

In addition, rumors have swirled around Obama’s relationship with his personal aide and former “body man,” Reggie Love, who resurfaced on the eve of the Republican National Convention to support his old boss. Love resigned from the White House in November 2011 after compromising photographs of him as a college student received wide circulation.”

“Shocking phone call

Sinclair gave an affidavit to the Chicago Police Department regarding contacts he says he had with Young just prior to Young’s murder.

According to Sinclair’s affidavit, published in its entirety beginning on page 56 of his book, he contacted Obama’s presidential campaign in September 2007. Sinclair says he requested that Obama correct claims he made about when he stopped abusing drugs to reflect use of crack cocaine during their sex encounters in November 1999.

During the 2008 presidential campaign, Obama had stated famously he stopped using marijuana and cocaine in college, implying his drug abuse ended when he had completed his first two years of college at Occidental in Los Angeles.

Sinclair explained that when he made contact with the Obama campaign in September 2007, he provided callback numbers, in case the campaign wanted to get in touch with him.

Then, in late September or early October 2007, as Sinclair stated in his affidavit, he received a call from a male identifying himself as “Mr. Young,” who stated he was responding to calls Sinclair had made to the Obama campaign.

“This first call shocked me in that this ‘Mr. Young’ asked me why I had not asked Senator Obama to disclose sexual encounters I had with Mr. Obama in 1999,” Sinclair’s affidavit reads. “I was shocked as I had never mentioned to the campaign or anyone working for the campaign any sexual encounters. The call ended with Mr. Young stating I would hear from someone in a few days.”

Sinclair claims it was in a second call from “Mr. Young” that he began to suspect the man had been sexually intimate with Obama. Sinclair said he drew that conclusion “by the tone of the conversation” and by its “sexual nature.”

In late October 2007, Sinclair received a text message from “Mr. Young” stating Young “was intimately involved with Senator Obama and that Obama was discussing with him and his pastor how to publicly acknowledge Senator Obama’s drug use in 1999.”

The text message also indicated Obama wanted to make sure Sinclair had not discussed the sexual encounters or drug use with any media at that time.

In November 2007, Sinclair received a second text message from “Mr. Young,” advising him that Obama would publicly correct his statement as to the last time he used drugs and that Sinclair did not need to concern himself with publicly disclosing it.

Then, in early December 2007, Sinclair received his last contact with “Mr. Young,” with Young making it clear Obama had no intention of acknowledging publicly his use of crack cocaine in 1999.

After Young was murdered, Sinclair had several contacts with Young’s family.”

““What was the cause of my son’s death?” Norma Jean Young asked in the Globe interview. “I’m very suspicious that it may have been related to Obama. Donald and Obama were very close friends. Whatever went on with this is very private. I am suspicious of a cover-up!””
Read more:

http://www.wnd.com/2012/10/trinity-church-members-reveal-obama-shocker/#t4r6ehbAepm74JLj.99

 

NC Healthcare service costs soar, Hospitals buy out doctors, Medicare rules let hospitals charge more than independent doctors, Indigent care cost shifting

NC Healthcare service costs soar, Hospitals buy out doctors, Medicare rules let hospitals charge more than independent doctors, Indigent care cost shifting

“If you like your health care plan, you can keep your health care plan.”…Barack Obama

“If you’ve got health insurance we’re going to work with you to lower your premiums by $2,500 per family per year.”…Barack Obama

“Can we stop calling ObamaCare the Affordable Care Act now?”…Ron Meyer

From the Raleigh News Observer December 16, 2012.

“Doctors join hospitals, and prices soar”

“North Carolina patients pay more for many tests and procedures if their physician is employed by a hospital, an investigation by The News & Observer and The Charlotte Observer has found.

It’s true whether the health care offered is a heart stress test or a routine visit to a doctor’s office. And it’s part of a national shift that experts say is raising costs but not quality: Hospitals are increasingly buying doctors’ practices, then sending bills for routine services that are significantly higher than those charged by independent doctors.

By one count, the percentage of doctors nationally who are employed by hospitals has doubled over the past decade. No similar statistics are available in North Carolina, but it’s clear that more and more doctors are affiliating with hospitals.

For example, in the Triangle, about 90 percent of cardiologists work for hospitals, which can charge more for procedures than private practices.

As a result, the cost of many routine medical tests and services has soared, according to Medicare data and insurance claims reviewed by the newspapers.

The same service performed in the same location by the same doctor can cost more than double what it did just a few years ago.

“Prices are increasing, often for no other reason than the sign on the door changed,” said Robert Zirkelbach, spokesman for America’s Health Insurance Plans, a trade group representing the insurance industry.

Here’s why: Medicare and private insurers pay more for outpatient care – which includes an allowed facility fee for hospital infrastructure – than for the same procedure in a doctor’s office, which cannot charge a facility fee. A hospital can increase revenue by acquiring a practice and changing the billing to outpatient. Or the hospital can simply convert its doctors’ offices to hospital facilities.

In the Triangle, Duke University Health System has been most aggressive in converting its doctor practices to outpatient entities.

“Outpatient visits (in 2010) increased 12.1 percent over 2009, which was due entirely to converted clinics,” according to a 2011 Duke bond document.

One example: For a common echocardiogram procedure, Duke Hospital submitted 4,879 claims to Medicare in 2010, up 68 percent from the year before. Medicare allows $471 for outpatient echocardiograms, more than twice the $200 allowed for those performed in physician offices.

Hospital officials contend they deserve to be paid more because they have expenses and obligations not shared by independent physicians. They must comply with more regulations, keep many departments staffed at all times and treat all patients, regardless of ability to pay.

Experts agree that hospitals should be reimbursed for the extra services they provide.

But there’s a limit, said Robert Berenson, an analyst at the Urban Institute’s Health Policy Center. For many routine services, Medicare pays hospitals about 80 percent more than it pays independent doctors, he said. But he said the additional expenses for a hospital don’t justify that kind of payment difference.

The newspapers’ latest findings underscore the lessons of the newspapers’ previous investigations, which found that the growing market power of nonprofit hospital systems is one of the factors in the rising cost of health care.

Now some public officials are questioning whether hospital systems have grown too big for the public good. Among them is state Attorney General Roy Cooper, who is examining whether to use antitrust laws or push for new legislation to reduce health care costs.

In the meantime, experts say, it’s likely that hospitals will continue to buy doctors’ practices at a rapid clip.

“It’s only going to grow, and it’s going to grow substantially,” said Paul Ginsburg, president of the Center for Studying Health System Change. “It raises the amount people pay. And I don’t think there’s a redeeming benefit to it.”

Jenny Palmer of Durham had been seeing a Duke neurologist for years for her epilepsy. She was furious when her $50 copay turned into a $425 payment applied to her deductible. The visit was less than 10 minutes, Palmer said, as she told the doctor her health was good and she received a prescription for a year’s worth of medicine.

Her bill made no mention of a facility fee, but Duke confirmed it in a letter after she complained.

“This clinic is now owned by Duke University Hospital (DUH) and in addition to the professional fee, there is also a facility fee charged in conjunction with each visit. Both charges are billed as an outpatient service as opposed to an office visit.”

“It makes no financial sense for me to see Duke doctors now,” Palmer wrote to her neighborhood Listserv. “BUT there aren’t many non-Duke doctors in Durham. ARGH!”

Palmer, 41, an administrator of a nonprofit, eventually found a neurologist in Raleigh.

Duke would not comment on Palmer’s case. It has acknowledged the fees in the past but said they were legitimate because of the increased costs of running the doctors’ practices.

‘I was just shocked’

Gay Miller thought she knew what to expect when she received a heart test earlier this year – until she got the bill.

After a heart valve replacement eight years ago, she has been getting periodic echocardiograms at her cardiologist’s office in Shelby to ensure the valves still work properly. Under her insurance plan, the tests used to cost her a $60 copay.

Not this year. During Miller’s annual checkup at the Sanger Heart & Vascular Institute in February, her doctor told her she would need to go to nearby Cleveland Regional Medical Center for her echocardiogram.

At the hospital, Miller received the usual 30-minute test. And the usual technician conducted it.

But there was nothing typical about the bill: Miller wound up owing $952.

“I was just shocked,” said Miller, 64, who lives in Lincoln County west of Charlotte. “I feel like I got taken advantage of.”

Across North Carolina and the U.S., hospitals are increasingly billing for heart tests like these. Experts say the higher bills for those tests are a telling illustration of a structural shift that is leaving patients with higher bills for identical procedures.

In 2005, doctors with Sanger – Charlotte’s oldest and largest group of cardiologists and heart surgeons – became employees of Carolinas HealthCare System, the hospital system that runs Cleveland Regional.

At the time of the merger, officials said Sanger patients wouldn’t notice any difference. Now, however, some Sanger patients who need echocardiograms are diverted to higher-charging hospitals.

Officials for Carolinas HealthCare did not address questions about the case. But in general, the system said, Sanger has been nationally recognized “for cost effectiveness and delivering the most appropriate care to each patient.”

Flocking to hospitals

Until recently, the large majority of physicians worked in doctor-owned practices. But that’s swiftly changing.

Last year, 47 percent of physicians in the U.S. were employed by hospitals – roughly twice the percentage in 2002, according to surveys by the Medical Group Management Association.

That trend is expected to continue, with one health care recruiting company predicting that hospitals could employ as many as 75 percent of all doctors within two years.

About 35 percent of North Carolina cardiologists work for hospitals – almost three times the percentage who did so five years ago, according to a recent survey by the American College of Cardiology.

The irony, some doctors say, is that federal efforts to reduce health care costs have helped drive the trend.

In 2010, Medicare reduced payments to physicians for various cardiology tests while raising payments to hospitals. That prompted many independent doctors to sell to hospitals, which could collect significantly more for the same tests.

Many doctors, however, have been unhappy about the trend. In a recent Physicians Foundation survey, 75 percent of North Carolina doctors said they disagreed “somewhat” or “mostly” with the premise that hospital employment of physicians is a “positive trend likely to enhance quality of care and decrease cost.”

While money helps explain why many doctors have opted to join hospitals, other factors also play a role. By joining hospital systems, many overworked physicians have been able to shorten their workweeks and share on-call duty. Hospitals also take over the complicated back office functions such as billing, negotiating with insurance companies and managing the expensive transition to electronic medical records.

Hospital systems have plenty to gain as well. Purchasing doctors’ offices helps hospitals enlarge their referral networks and boost profitability. It will also help them become Accountable Care Organizations, networks of doctors and hospitals that the architects of President Barack Obama’s health care plan believe will improve quality and efficiency.

Many experts predict that hospital acquisitions of doctors offices will boost prices still higher.

“This is really a historic change in the practice of medicine in the U.S.,” said Dr. William Zoghbi, president of the American College of Cardiology. “It’s more costly to the whole health care system, including patients.”

Dr. Daniel Wise has been on both sides. He was an independent cardiologist, then an employee of Presbyterian Hospital in Charlotte, and now he’s independent again. He left the hospital because he didn’t agree with its priorities.

But the reduced Medicare reimbursements make him wish he had stayed.

Wise said cardiologists’ incomes have declined by 30 percent to 40 percent in the past three years. “It doesn’t make economic sense anymore to try and do it in the office,” he said.

Two labs, two prices

In late 2011, Bruce Stanley was invited to an open house at WakeMed’s new Brier Creek facility. He nibbled cookies and toured the facility. He liked the convenient location and pleasant staff.

In January, he had two routine blood tests done there. He did them in advance of a physical and wanted to be able to discuss the tests with his doctor.

The results pleased Stanley. The bill did not.

Stanley owed WakeMed $240.82 for two routine blood panels. Three months earlier, he had paid $13.73 for the same tests done at the LabCorp office near Rex Hospital. Stanley didn’t know he would be charged full hospital prices.

“I thought it was a satellite clinic,” said Stanley, 58, a Raleigh businessman.

Debbie Laughery, a WakeMed spokeswoman, said the hospital can’t compete with LabCorp, partly because hospitals have more expensive facilities. Laughery also pointed to the practice of “cost-shifting,” where hospitals pay for charity care for the poor by collecting more from insured patients.

“We have to pay for all of our indigent care somehow,” Laughery said.

Is cost bump justifiable?

For many tests and services, the difference between what hospitals and independent physicians can collect is vast.

Hospitals, for instance, can get about 80 percent more from Medicare than independent physicians for a 15-minute office visit – and more than twice as much for many cardiac tests.

The payments to hospitals are also higher from private insurers. For a common outpatient echocardiogram in 2012, Duke was paid an average of about $1,800 by a private health plan. WakeMed was paid about $1,500; UNC, about $900, according to thousands of private insurance claims reviewed by the newspapers.

The same data showed the average payment to an independent cardiologist for the same test was $480.

Experts say private insurers have little choice but to pay hospitals more. When negotiating contracts with health care providers, insurers can survive without a single doctor’s office in their networks. But they must be able to offer customers access to major hospitals. That gives hospitals power to negotiate higher payment rates.

The employers and workers who share costs for health insurance wind up footing much of the bill. Patients, meanwhile, are left with higher out-of-pocket costs.

Hospital officials say there are valid reasons they can collect more. They say they’re obligated to serve all patients, regardless of ability to pay, while independent doctors can be more selective about which patients they treat.

“Provider-based services are also under state and federal regulatory oversight, while free-standing physicians and clinics are not,” the N.C. Hospital Association said in a written statement.

The association stresses that its members are merely following Medicare rules. Doctors’ offices owned by hospitals are generally allowed to bill Medicare at the higher outpatient rates if they are within 35 miles of the hospital campus and integrate their operations with the hospital.

But some experts and insurers question whether that’s reason enough for patients and taxpayers to pay dramatically higher prices.

Margie Maxwell, president of Aetna’s Southeast market, said: “There is no logic and there is no reason to allow a higher payment because it has now become a hospital billing. … It should not be happening.”

‘Harming consumers’

In a review of Medicare and private health plan data, the newspapers found that North Carolina hospitals are increasingly billing for routine office visits and for echocardiograms.

The number of office visits that North Carolina hospitals billed to Medicare climbed by more than 40 percent from 2007 to 2010, according to data compiled by the American Hospital Directory. And at Duke University Hospital, the number more than tripled.

During the same period, the number of echocardiography claims that North Carolina hospitals billed to Medicare increased more than 20 percent. At Carolinas Medical Center in Charlotte, the number more than quadrupled.

Berenson, of the Urban Institute, sees nothing redeeming in the trend.

“That’s taking advantage of the payers and really harming consumers,” said Berenson, who previously served as a commissioner of MedPAC, which advises Congress on Medicare policy. “It is not promoting more efficient care.”

Read more: