BROKE: 16 States Now Rationing Prescription Drugs For Medicaid Patients

July 31, 2012

WASHINGTON, DC – Sixteen states have set a limit on the number of prescription drugs they will cover for Medicaid patients, according to Kaiser Health News.

Seven of those states, according to Kaiser Health News, have enacted or tightened those limits in just the last two years.

Medicaid is a federal program that is carried out in partnership with state governments. It forms an important element of President Barack Obama’s health-care plan because under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act–AKA Obamcare–a larger number of people will be covered by Medicaid, as the income cap is raised for the program.

With both the expanded Medicaid program and the federal subsidy for health-care premiums that will be available to people earning up to 400 percent of the poverty level, a larger percentage of the population will be wholly or partially dependent on the government for their health care under Obamacare than are now.

In Alabama, Medicaid patients are now limited to one brand-name drug, and HIV and psychiatric drugs are excluded.

Illinois has limited Medicaid patients to just four prescription drugs as a cost-cutting move, and patients who need more than four must get permission from the state.

Speaking on C-SPAN’s Washington Journal on Monday, Phil Galewitz, staff writer for Kaiser Health News, said the move “only hurts a limited number of patients.”

“Drugs make up a fair amount of costs for Medicaid. A lot of states have said a lot of drugs are available in generics where they cost less, so they see this sort of another move to push patients to take generics instead of brand,” Galewitz said.

“It only hurts a limited number of patients, ‘cause obviously it hurts patients who are taking multiple brand name drugs in the case of Alabama, Illinois. Some of the states are putting the limits on all drugs. It’s another place to cut. It doesn’t hurt everybody, but it could hurt some,” he added.

Galewitz said the move also puts doctors and patients in a “difficult position.”

“Some doctors I talked to would work with patients with asthma and diabetes, and sometimes it’s tricky to get the right drugs and the right dosage to figure out how to control some of this disease, and just when they get it right, now the state is telling them that, ‘Hey, you’re not going to get all this coverage. You may have to switch to a generic or find another way,’” he said.

Arkansas, California, Kansas, Kentucky, Louisiana, Maine, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Utah and West Virginia have all placed caps on the number of prescription drugs Medicaid patients can get.

“Some people say it’s a matter of you know states are throwing things up against the wall to see what might work, so states have tried, they’ve also tried formularies where they’ll pick certain brand name drugs over other drugs. So states try a whole lot of different things. They’re trying different ways of paying providers to try to maybe slow the costs down,” Galewitz said.

“So it seems like Medicaid’s sort of been one big experiment over the last number of years for states to try to control costs, and it’s an ongoing battle, and I think drugs is just now one of the … latest issues. And it’s a relatively recent thing, only in the last 10 years have we really seen states put these limits on monthly drugs,” he added.

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Savage Black Beast Paid Three Slices Of Pizza In Memphis Tennessee Domino’s Pizza Delivery Driver Robbery

July 27, 2012

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – A Tennessee man who this week confessed his role in the robbery of a Domino’s delivery man told cops that he served as a lookout man in return for three slices of pizza, according to court records.

During questioning Monday by Memphis Police Department officers, Tony Hamer, 19, admitted that he was “present during the planning” of the July 10 robbery, which was carried out by a cohort.

Domino’s worker Jose Reyes told police that he was delivering a pizza around 9 PM when he was approached by two men, one of whom threatened to shoot Reyes if he did not “give him the money and pizza.” Reyes said he handed over $20, his HTC cell phone, and the pizza.

Hamer, seen in the adjacent mug shot, told investigators that he “participated as a look out and provided protection for the other male during the robbery.” Cops noted, “Hamer received three slices of Pizza for his participation in this robbery.”

In addition to the July 10 crime, Hamer also admitted to robbing a second pizza delivery person. Along with stealing a $54 pizza order, Hamer and an associate took $35 from victim Erica Northcutt (who was also relieved of her ID).

A complaint affidavit does not indicate what Hamer’s cut was from the July 20 robbery.

Hamer is being held in the Shelby County jail in lieu of $35,000 bond on two felony robbery counts. He is next due in court on August 1.

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Covington Tennessee Police Officer Jack Hall Out On Bond And Still On The Job After Arrest For Buying Firearm From A Convicted Felon

July 25, 2012

COVINGTON, TENNESSEE – A Covington police officer is at the center of a Tennessee Bureau of Investigation probe for allegedly conducting police business while he was supposed to be on medical leave.

Covington police officer Jack Hall is out of jail on bond after being arrested last week and charged with buying a gun from a convicted felon.

“Jack is a local guy,” said Covington Police Chief Tim Glass. “His family has roots in the city. His grandparents and all have lived here all their lives and we tend to hire local people.”

Glass wasn’t the chief when Hall was hired, but says the sergeant worked at the Shelby County Sheriff’s Office before coming to Covington and was highly recommended by his previous employer.

Hall worked for the Shelby County Sheriff’s office for 6 years, but was fired for personal conduct issues.

“Jack had a few issues but we worked around them, nothing serious,” Glass said.

Hall used his position as a police officer to try and figure out whether the gun he purchased was stolen, according to court records.

Glass says Hall called Tipton County Central Dispatch to get information about the gun.

According to tapes of Hall’s conversation with dispatchers, he claimed he was buying the gun from his father, but didn’t trust that the gun wasn’t stolen, Glass said.

Hall allegedly had dispatchers check on the gun on July 13. That’s the same day Glass was made aware of another problem.

“He contacted some of my officers here. There was a threat made that was brought to my attention during a supervisor’s meeting,” said Glass.

Glass also said Jack Hall was facing some disciplinary action prior to being put on medical leave in June.

Covington police continue to work with the TBI, and officials say there will likely be more arrests, including the man who gave the gun to Hall.

Hall’s next day in court is August 24.

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Hero To Zero: Memphis Tennessee Police Officer David Royal Arrested And Suspended After Drunken Wreck

July 24, 2012

MEMPHIS, TENNESSEE – A Memphis Police officer was charged with DUI Sunday morning after a traffic accident, officials said Monday.

David Royal, 43, was arrested about 9:45 a.m. after being involved in a crash at Ramill and Yale in the Raleigh area. Royal was also charged with public intoxication, reckless driving, and refusing to submit to a Breathalyzer test, authorities said.

According to police, Royal’s 2004 Saab ran into the rear of a 2008 Nissan Maxima, causing minor injuries to the driver of that car. Police investigating the crash suspected Royal was drunk after smelling his breath and seeing him unsteady on his feet.

Royal, who has been with MPD since 1995, is assigned to the Organized Crime Unit. He has been relieved of duty with pay pending the outcome of the investigation.

Royal received an MPD lifesaving medal in 2002 for saving fellow officer William Poteet, who was choking on food.

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Pedophile Former LaFollette Tennessee Police Officer Michael Shane Baker Placed On Tennesse 10 Most Wanted List After Sex With A 13 Year Old Georgia Girl

July 21, 2012

TENNESSEE – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation has put the former LaFollette Police officer wanted for internet sex crimes on its Top 10 Most Wanted List.

Michael Shane Baker is described as a bald, white male with blue eyes. He is 5’11” and weighs approximately 220 lbs. He is a former police officer and may be armed. Anyone with information on his whereabouts is urged to call the TBI at 1-800-TBI-FIND. There is a $1,000 reward for information leading to his arrest.

Authorities are looking for a former LaFollette Police officer who is accused of having inappropriate contact with a 13-year-old girl from Georgia.

A Campbell County grand jury returned a 44 count indictment against Michael Baker, 39, on July 11. He was charged with 22 counts of especially aggravated sexual exploitation of a minor and 22 counts of solicitation of sexual exploitation of a minor.

According to a press release from the LaFollette Police Department, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation contacted them several months ago about the allegations against Baker. LPD notified the Knoxville Police Department’s Internet Crimes Against Children Division to assist in the investigation. The investigatin determined that the crimes were committed between August 2011 and December 2011 in Campbell County

Baker is believed to be living in the New Tazewell area of Claiborne County, but so far, authorities have not been able to locate him to arrest him.

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Veteran Milan Tennessee Police Officer Adam Scott Martin Charged With Sexual Battery Of A Relative

July 21, 2012

MILAN, TENNESSEE – A Milan police officer accused of molesting a 19-year-old woman appeared in court Thursday morning in Gibson County.

The next court dates were set for Adam Scott Martin, 39, in Gibson County General Sessions Court in Trenton. A special prosecutor from Crockett County is representing the state in the case. An investigator with the Milan Police Department, Martin was arrested July 3 on one count of sexual battery by an authority figure.

An order of protection has been filed to to prevent Martin from contacting the alleged victim.

Judge Mark Agee set two court dates for Martin. On Aug. 2, the court will arrange for orders of protection prior to the case moving forward. On Aug. 14, Martin will return to court for his preliminary hearing. The separate court dates were made on request of Martin’s attorney C. Timothy Crocker.

According to court documents, Martin was not acting in his official capacity as a police officer and the incident for which he is charged did not occur while he was on duty. Martin is charged as an authority figure because he is related to the victim in some way, said John Mehr, special agent in charge of the Tennessee Bureau of Investigation in Jackson.

According to state law, sexual battery by an authority figure is defined as unlawful sexual contact involving a defendant who is in a position of trust or has supervisory or disciplinary power, or parental or custodial authority over the victim. The charge is a Class C felony.

Martin was arrested at a residence in Carroll County and was released from the Gibson County Jail the same day on a $15,000 bond.

Milan Police Chief Tim Wright said Martin has been suspended with pay pending further investigation. Martin has worked for the Milan Police Department since March 2002.

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Covington Tennessee Police Officer Jack Hall Arrested, Jailed Without Bond, And Charged After Buying Gun From A Known Felon

July 19, 2012

COVINGTON, TENNESSEE – The Tennessee Bureau of Investigation (TBI) says Covington police officer Jack Hall bought a gun from a known felon. Officers arrested him at his home in Covington.

He is behind bars in the Tipton County jail without bond.

“I think a police officer should know better than to do that,” said Corey Walker, a resident of Tipton County. “Me being a felon myself I would not try to sell one to a police officer. I’m sure they would know better than to buy one from me.”

TBI investigators said Hall called central dispatch for a stolen check on a firearm. He did so while he was on medical leave from the Tipton County Police department.

Investigators say Hall tricked the dispatcher into checking to see if the gun he wanted to buy was ever stolen. Since Hall was not working the TBI says he should not have had access to the information about the gun.

Halls arrest warrant states he later bought the gun from a person he knew wasn’t legally allowed to own the weapon because that person is a felon.

Hall is charged with misusing official information and failing to report that the felon had a gun.

“They don’t need that kind of job,” said Tipton County resident Crystal Maxwell. “They really don’t. Why be a police officer if you’re going to turn around and do the same thing.”

The TBI says agents are in Covington investigating this case. They say there likely will be more arrests including the man who gave the gun to Officer Hall.

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