While Vermontanticipates $4 million in returns this year on its 121,000 Medicaidbeneficiaries, Iowa expects $11 million and Maine nearly $5 millionon their collective lives. Governor Douglas noted, “This represents andextraordinary accomplishment for our states of which we can be veryproud.” Jason GibbsGovernor’sCommunications Director109 State Street ¨ The Pavilion ¨ Montpelier,VT 05609-0101 ¨ www.vermont.gov/governor(link is external)Telephone: 802.828.3333 ¨ Fax: 802.828.3339 ¨ TDD: 802.828.3345 ### Governor Douglas stated, “Medicaid drug costshave grown dramatically in recent years. States have control over what we coverunder Medicaid and how much we pay for it. Medicaid programs have beeninnovative in creating cost-saving strategies like Preferred Drug Lists andappropriate drug utilization programs. The preservation of the benefit weprovide our citizens is a top priority; however, we must work to controlspending in order to ensure coverage. In the absence of federal initiatives, ithas been necessary for states to be creative in finding ways to contain costs. Thecreation of the SSDC is the next step in the ongoing effort to control theincreases in drug costs while maintaining a comprehensive drug benefit.” Two other Medicaid pools have been approved by CMS. These pools aremanaged by pharmacy benefit management companies contracted to select states. Oneof the unique components of the SSDC as a state administered pool is that anystate can participate regardless of how they administer their Medicaid pharmacybenefit, through state or contractual resources, and the SSDC will beencouraging other states to look at this model in the future. Anotherdistinction is that the SSDC process is completely transparent to its members. All participating states have access to the full terms and conditions of allbids by pharmaceutical manufacturers. States then collectively review the bidswhile independently deciding which are appropriate for each of our states. Atthe same, this arrangement can assure that 100 percent of negotiated rebatesare returned to the Medicaid program – a no contractor can profit bysharing in the rebates. Montpelier, Vt. – Governor Jim Douglas announced today thatVermont, Iowa and Maine have formed a first in the nation, state administeredprescription drug purchasing pool, that is expected to save Vermont approximately$4 million this year. On July 20, 2006 the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services approvedthe operation of the Sovereign States Drug Consortium (SSDC), collaborationbetween Vermont, Maineand Iowa. Program Expected to Save Vermont $4 Million This Year In a Medicaid drug rebate pool, states leverage their collectivecovered lives to negotiate for discounts in drug costs. Statesuse Preferred Drug Lists to promote clinically appropriate alternatives thatare the most cost effective in the individual states. Preferred products maybe generics, low cost brands, or higher cost brands where the drugmanufacturers provide a financial incentive to have their products preferred. The incentive is provided through a negotiated rebate from the drugmanufacturers based on actual utilization. The more states in a pool, the higherthe utilization, and, thus, the greater the rebate negotiated. GOVERNORDOUGLAS ANNOUNCES VERMONT TO FORM FIRST-EVER STATE ADMINISTEREDPRESCRIPTION DRUGPURCHASINGPOOL WITH MAINE AND IOWA
Greensburg, Ind. — Southeastern Indiana hearing patients now have another option. Help U Hear Audiology held a Greensburg Decatur County Chamber of Commerce ribbon cutting this morning, at their new offices.Hearing Instrument Specialist, Austin Dunn, who formerly lived in New Point and Oldenburg, now sees patients there. The practice is overseen by Certified Audiologist, Dr. David Lewis. Dunn is pictured (above) holding the ceremonial scissors, along with Lewis at his side.Help U Hear’s building formerly housed Dr. Robert Eversole’s dental practice, and -long ago- a branch of Union Bank & Trust. It is situated on West 4th Street, between Tops Hardware and the soccer field at North Park.
The Argentinian has joined Norwich until the end of the season, having lost his place after five years as a regular at St James’ Park. He has made just two appearances this season and admits he is at a loss as to why he has been left out by Pardew. Jonas Gutierrez’s Newcastle career looks to be over after the midfielder claimed manager Alan Pardew told him he has no future with the club. “The manager told me in December I was not going to play any more and told me to find myself another club,” he told several national newspapers. “I don’t know why it happened and I still don’t understand what I did wrong. “There were no rows with Alan Pardew or anything like that. He just said I needed to leave and that was that. “I honestly don’t know why I wasn’t playing, you will have to ask the manager that. “He just made his decision and that was it. Something must have happened – but I don’t know what.” Press Association
Liverpool manager Brendan Rodgers insists his players have to step up in the absence of captain Steven Gerrard after a frustrating goalless draw at home to Sunderland. Press Association “That is a decision I make as a manager,” said Rodgers when asked about the forward’s absence. Black Cats manager Gus Poyet admits he would leap at the chance to take Borini back to the Stadium of Light. “I would love to,” he said before attempting to address the collapse of the transfer. “It is difficult to explain. It was a long summer and the things everyone knows, we agreed a price and we flew to America (for Liverpool’s pre-season tour) and he didn’t come. “The bottom line is he is not with us. I am trying to concentrate on what we have got.” What they had was good enough to keep their hosts at bay, having been beaten 4-1 by Manchester City in midweek. “First half we were much better with the ball than in the last three or four games,” Poyet added. “We are just missing that cutting edge but in the rest of the game we were quite good.” “We can’t always rely on Stevie. His talent is world-class but that contribution has to come around the team,” he said. “It can’t be up to him every single game to be the catalyst. “It is very hard to replace that quality but going forward that is something of course we will need. “He was excellent when he came on and of course he plays on Tuesday. “He still has that talent, he has world-class ability and it is me looking to manage that. “We have a big month. Until the new year there are big games and the management of Steven is fine, there is no problem with that.” Only Aston Villa and Burnley have scored fewer goals at home than Liverpool’s seven and Rodgers’ decision to leave Fabio Borini out of the squad – meaning he had no striker on the bench – was questioned. The Italian enjoyed a good loan spell at Sunderland last season and almost joined them in the summer after Liverpool agreed a deal to sell him. With a must-win match at home to Basle in the Champions League on Tuesday, followed by a trip to Old Trafford, the 34-year-old midfielder was left on the bench until 23 minutes from the end. He could not inspire his side to victory but Rodgers admits it should not always be up to him.
By Shamya DasguptaPakistan’s finest batsmen, through the best part of my cricket-watching years, have not been the prettiest. They were the ones that got the job done, smashingly well at that, and none superior to that man, Javed Miandad. Then Saleem Malik and Ijaz Ahmed and later, Inzamam-ul-Haq and Saeed Anwar. They were certainly not graceless, the last two especially, but neither was a jaw-dropping stylist either. For that, we have…Majid KhanMajid’s last Test had a fun batting order: Mohsin Khan (pretty), Mudassar Nazar (not pretty), Majid Khan (pretty), Javed Miandad (not pretty), Zaheer Abbas (pretty) and Saleem Malik (not pretty). Unfortunately, Majid fell for a 13-ball duck in that game. But he had made a name as a batsman most pleasing to the eye over the course of a near-20-year-long Test career.Right-handed Majid was elegant in the way left-hand batsmen usually are, with flowing drives and pulls, his bat coming down in a graceful arc. What gave him an air of sophistication was the somewhat laidback appearance at the crease, which led to more than one critic suggesting that it didn’t matter to him enough. It certainly did. A long and quite successful career at first-class and Test level proves that.Zaheer AbbasZaheer Abbas caressed the ball as if afraid he would hurt it (Getty Images)One of Pakistan’s absolute greats, Abbas was, at his best, almost the perfect batsman, beautiful to watch and someone his team could count on to lead the charge – not always a given with batsmen so pleasing to the eye. Abbas finished with a Test average of 44.79.In Australia, it was 40.62, and in England, where he also found a happy, long-term home with Gloucestershire, it was 56.06. He wasn’t quite so successful in India, strangely, or New Zealand and the West Indies. But wherever he played, Abbas wowed onlookers like few could at the time, certainly among right-handers.In many ways, he was the anti-Viv Richards. Both Richards and he scored a lot of runs and dominated attacks, and were equally stylish in their different ways, but Richards was more hammer ’em while Abbas was knife through butter. He was especially alluring because he hit so many boundaries and looked, at times, like he was worried about hurting the ball when banishing it.Is there a prettier off-drive in the game than Babar Azam’s? Getty ImagesMohsin KhanMohsin Khan walked away from the game at the age of 31 to become an actor in India. He left with some pretty impressive performances and numbers to his name, but they don’t tell of how, in late 1983, he seemed like he could make himself taller than he was at the crease and get on top of the bounce from Dennis Lillee, Geoff Lawson, Rodney Hogg and Carl Rackemann to score 390 runs at 43.33 in a five-Test series in Australia.At the time, pace and bounce were the weaknesses of many an opening bat from the subcontinent, but Mohsin – tall and loose-limbed, with in-vogue long hair – was cut from a different cloth (and even in the regulation whites of the time, he looked more stylish than his team-mates). He could have played on, surely, and had he done so it would have only made Pakistan that much more appealing a side.Mohammad YousufFrom the mid-1980s, we jump straight to the late-1990s and 2000s, and to the man who started out as Yousuf Youhana but really came into his own after changing his name to Mohammad Yousuf. Like Abbas before him, the best part about Yousuf was how well he balanced a hunger for runs with grace and grandeur. With 7530 runs in 90 Tests, at an average of 52.29, and 9720 in 288 ODIs at 41.71, he is among Pakistan’s top five run-getters in both formats. Like the other three, Yousuf was supple, graceful, and – what’s the best word? – calm. Calm himself, of course, and so unhurried, so in control, so peaceful that he created a sense of serenity while he was out in the middle. Was it the exaggerated backlift? Was it the time he seemed to create between bowler releasing ball and batsman doing something about it? Or was it, maybe, Younis Khan and Inzamam-ul-Haq on either side of him in the batting order? Yousuf stood out. An unusual run-machine who rarely ever looked clumsy.Babar AzamSome say he should be included in the current Fab Four – lose one of Steve Smith, Kane Williamson, Virat Kohli and Joe Root. That, or just make it the Fab Five because there can’t be a list of great current-day batsmen without this young man. It’s tough to say exactly why he sets the pulse racing because Azam is not quite as obviously magnificent as the other four stylists on this list. He isn’t even built like them; not as languid nor as nimble.The thing about him is that he never looks ugly, or gauche, not for a moment. His statements on style aren’t as conspicuous as, say, Williamson’s, but you’ll find them – enough to be bowled over – if you are attentive. Think soft-shouldered suits and a dollop of the blasé. That’s Azam.When I can began writing this piece, I didn’t think it would end it with five right-hand batsmen and not even Anwar in it. Here we are, though – and when it comes to Team Pakistan… you know the cliché. (ESPN Cricinfo)