Devil is in the details of a new Medicare plan to buy medical supplies

Math Trek

By Julie Rehmeyer, 10:01 AM January 11, 2013

Medicare could waste billions of dollars, bankrupt small businesses and leave seniors without crucial equipment like oxygen tanks and wheelchairs, some economists warn, with a new auction-based purchasing plan that ignores mathematical principles of competitive bidding.

The new plan began with an apparently good idea: Medicare has started buying durable medical equipment through a competitive bidding process rather than through fixed prices influenced by industry lobbying. In theory, this c...

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