MASSDEVICE ON CALL — Healthcare reform vote delayed after Giffords shooting. Even though all congressional votes have been delayed because Rep. Gabrielle Giffords’ (D-Ariz.) shooting, the national media can’t help but make connections between the act of violence and the harsh, and at times vicious, rhetoric that comprised the debate over healthcare reform legislation. The vote to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act was delayed, reports ABC News’ The Note blog, "so that we can take whatever actions may be necessary in light of today’s tragedy," said House majority leader Eric Cantor (R-Va.).
The Obama administration’s healthcare defense. The Obama administration launched a full-scale defense of the PPACA, with secretary of Health & Human Services Kathleen Sebelius coming to Boston on Friday, one of many members of the executive branch dispatched across the country to tout the benefits of the healthcare overhaul, reports The Boston Globe.
Blue Shield California plans 59% rate hike. Blue Shield California, one of the golden state’s largest health insurers, announced its intentions to hike its premiums by as much as 59 percent. The increase is slated to take effect on March 1, pending review from state insurance regulators and affects 193,000 individual Blue Shield policy holders, according to CNNMoney.
SCOTUS takes up drug-date case. The Supreme Court agreed to decide whether states can bar the sale of doctors’ prescription data to pharmaceutical companies, which could have sweeping changes for one of the drug industry’s most powerful marketing tools, reports The Wall Street Journal.
J &J lawsuit that even stuns insiders. Via Pharmalot: “The 111-page complaint reads like an indictment as it delves into off-label marketing of prescription drugs, kickback schemes and manufacturing failures that led to those infamous product recalls of tens of millions of over-the-counter meds and surgical devices.” One section reads: “J&J Suffers Fundamental Control Breakdowns Across All of its Business Segments Over the Better Part of the Past Decade.” Read the entire lawsuit here.
Dealflow and more. Avalon Ventures, which includes a focus on life science investments, has raised a $200 million fund; biologics preservation company Denator raised $1.7 million; bone products company Doctors Research Group raised $7.7 million, biopharma Covagen raised $6.5 million; consumer genetic testing company 23andMe raised $9 million; and animal health company Aratana Therapeutics raised $20 million.
The Fall of Paul Levy. One of the most high profile hospital CEOs departs amid a cloud. In an e-mail to staff, Levy wrote: “Over the last nine years, I have certainly made mistakes of degree, emphasis, and judgment. I have apologized to you directly for some of those, but I do so again, in the hope that such errors will not overshadow the many accomplishments and contributions of our hospital to the community and the health care industry. On the personal level, if I have slighted any one of you in any way or given you any cause for concern about my warm regard and respect for you, I doubly apologize.” He will continue his blog.
Material from MedCity News was used in this report.