Caroline's Feed
Oct 28, 2012

Gigantic Hurricane Sandy bears down on U.S. East Coast

NEW YORK CITY, Oct 28 (Reuters) – Tens of millions of people
along the U.S. East Coast girded themselves on Sunday for
Hurricane Sandy, a gigantic storm forecast to assault the
densely populated region with battering winds, dangerous
flooding and even heavy snowfall.

Sandy, expected to come ashore late on Monday, could deliver
a harsh blow to major cities in its target zone including New
York, Philadelphia, Washington, Baltimore and Boston. Its center
was forecast to strike New York-New Jersey area and then move
inland toward Philadelphia and the rest of Pennsylvania.

Oct 28, 2012

Analysis – U.S. employees to face healthcare sticker shock

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Visit to New York City orthopaedist: $223 (138 pounds). One X-ray: $50. One follow-up magnetic resonance imaging test: $766. Total bill for checking out that aching shoulder: $1,039 – all to be paid by the patient, rather than the insurer.

Healthcare has gone retail.

Over the next 18 months, between one quarter and one half of Americans who get insurance coverage through their employers will pay more of their doctor bills themselves as companies roll out healthcare plans with higher deductibles, benefits consultants say. The result: sticker shock.

Oct 28, 2012

Analysis: Employees to face healthcare sticker shock

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Visit to New York City orthopedist: $223. One X-ray: $50. One follow-up magnetic resonance imaging test: $766. Total bill for checking out that aching shoulder: $1,039 – all to be paid by the patient, rather than the insurer.

Healthcare has gone retail.

Over the next 18 months, between one quarter and one half of Americans who get insurance coverage through their employers will pay more of their doctor bills themselves as companies roll out healthcare plans with higher deductibles, benefits consultants say. The result: sticker shock.

Oct 28, 2012

Wall Street makes plans to open Monday even as Sandy bears down

NEW YORK (Reuters) – U.S. stock exchanges and Wall Street banks are sending employees into Manhattan on Sunday to stay in hotels and coworkers’ homes, as markets prepare to open for business on Monday even as Hurricane Sandy brings public transportation to a halt.

Hurricane Sandy is expected to slam into the East Coast on Monday night, bringing torrential rains, high winds, severe flooding and power outages, forecasters said. The rare “super storm,” created by an Arctic jetstream wrapping itself around a tropical storm, could be the biggest to hit the U.S. mainland.

Oct 25, 2012

Aetna, facing healthcare overhaul, holds down costs

NEW YORK (Reuters) – Health insurer Aetna Inc (AET.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said it was able to hold down costs by directing more of its plans to U.S. medical providers that focus on efficient care, helping it beat quarterly profit expectations and raise its earnings forecast for the year.

The third-largest U.S. health insurer is on the frontlines of a national healthcare overhaul that will be largely in place in 2014.

Oct 18, 2012

LabCorp says 2013 will be tough, cuts 2012 outlook

By Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – Laboratory Corp of America Holdings (LH.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said on Thursday it expects 2013 to be a difficult year as government payments for medical testing services decline and hospitals continue to take more testing in house.

The volume of medical tests has fallen at LabCorp and its main competitor Quest Diagnostics as the U.S. government, insurers, corporations and consumers increasingly question which tests are absolutely necessary.

Oct 17, 2012

Quest Diagnostics lowers 2012 revenue, earnings outlook

By Caroline Humer

(Reuters) – Quest Diagnostics Inc, the No. 1 clinical laboratory-testing company, lowered expectations for 2012 earnings and revenue and said restructuring charges related to a cost-cutting plan had cut into what would have otherwise been flat profits.

Quest shares fell more than 4 percent in morning New York Stock Exchange trading.

Oct 16, 2012

UnitedHealth sees weak business climate in 2013

Oct 16 (Reuters) – UnitedHealth Group Inc., the
largest U.S. health insurer, said its performance next year may
fall short of Wall Street expectations due to a weak business
environment and government efforts to rein in a growing deficit.

The company’s shares fell 1.5 percent i n early trading after
Chief Executive Stephen Hemsley’s comments during a conference
call with analysts to discuss the company’s quarterly financial
reports.

Oct 8, 2012

UnitedHealth to buy most of Brazil’s Amil for $4.9 billion

NEW YORK (Reuters) – UnitedHealth Group Inc (UNH.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) said it would buy a 90 percent stake in Amil Participacoes SA (AMIL3.SA: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz), Brazil’s largest health insurer and hospital operator, for $4.9 billion, tapping into a fast-growing private healthcare market as challenges mount for its U.S. business.

The deal announced on Monday follows a series of multibillion-dollar takeovers by U.S. health insurers in their home market, including Aetna Inc’s (AET.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) $5.6 billion buy of rival Coventry Health Care Inc (CVH.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) and WellPoint Inc’s (WLP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz) planned $4.5 billion purchase of Amerigroup Corp (AGP.N: Quote, Profile, Research, Stock Buzz).

Sep 19, 2012

U.S. needs arsenic limits in rice – Consumer Reports

LOS ANGELES/NEW YORK, Sept 19 (Reuters) – Consumer Reports
is urging U.S. limits for arsenic in rice after tests of more
than 60 popular products – from Kellogg’s Rice Krispies to
Gerber infant cereal – showed most contained some level of
inorganic arsenic, a known human carcinogen.

The watchdog group said some varieties of brown rice -
including brands sold by Whole Foods Markets Inc and
Wal-Mart Stores Inc – contained particularly significant
levels of inorganic arsenic.