Election Roundup: News from the Healthcare Front

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With the reelection of President Barack Obama, the biggest reforms to hit healthcare in nearly a century are positioned to come online. Some provisions of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (aka Obamacare) have already taken effect, but those remaining are likely to have significant impacts on the business of life science. Whether the reforms bode good or ill for biotech and medtech investors has yet to be seen. We've provided a few beats of the media and blog pulse below, and will keep you informed as developments unfold.

Obama's reelection removes the biggest threat to implementation of the provisions of the ACA—dismantling by his Republican challenger—but the trail forward is not obstacle-free. Most pressing is whether states will set up their own health insurance exchanges or let the Feds take the lead. Republican governors may be significant holdouts, according to this report by the Associated Press.

In his "Note to the Pharmaceutical Industry Upon the Re-Election of Barack Obama," Forbes blogger Michael Herper provides interesting insights into how Republicans and Democrats perceive healthcare reform, and offers three "visions of the future" for biotech and medtech companies.

Pharmaceutical and medtech companies face an overarching question as Obamacare takes effect: Will additional income generated by an influx of new health insurance enrollees offset the expense of increased fees, mandated rebates and other healthcare reform costs? Tracy Staton considers this and other important questions in her report for FiercePharma.

Which healthcare ETFs should investors hold in the wake of Obama's reelection? This MarketWatch report provides some insights, including a discussion of the vulnerability of medical device ETFs.

The Associated Press has put together a compilation of the status of each state with regard to implementation of Obamacare mandates. Where does your state stand?

When you get right down to it, there wasn't much difference between the healthcare platforms of President Barack Obama and his challenger, Mitt Romney, says James Merlino of the Cleveland Clinic and member of FierceHealthcare's editorial advisory board. Read Merlino's observations here.

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