Many uninsured diabetes patients gain Medicaid eligibility under healthcare reform (Morning Read)

Current medical news from today, including thousands of uninsured diabetes patients will gain Medicaid eligibility under U.S. healthcare reform laws, Bristol-Myers Squibb raises offer on Inhibitex by 30 percent, and smaller physician practices adopt tablets.

Current medical news and unique business news for anyone who cares about healthcare.

Healthcare reform will lead many diabetics without insurance to Medicaid. New research has found that the number of uninsured diabetics covered by Medicaid will spike due to U.S. healthcare reform, increasing the need for strong Medicaid financing for the condition. Annual spending on Medicaid patients with diabetes was more than three times as much as spending on those without it, according to a new report from Kaiser..

BMY enters bidding war for hepatitis C drug from Inhibitex. Bristol-Myers Squibb (NYSE:BMY) raised its offer to buy Inhibitex by 30 percent to beat a bidding competitor, and at least one writer thinks it was a foolish decision. The original agreement for Bristol-Myers to acquire the hepatitis C drug Alpharetta settled on Jan. 7.

Smaller practices, more iPads. The push toward tablets in the clinical setting will continue this year as three-fourths of small- and midsized physician practices plan to spend an average of $6,800 on tablet computers in the next 12 months, according to market research firm NPD Group.

Genentech/Xenon deal for pain. Genentech and Xenon Pharmaceuticals have inked a $646 million deal for developing new drugs and diagnostics for pain. Roche’s diagnostic division has already struck several other deals recently to develop companion diagnostics for cancer therapeutics.

More dealflow for Big Pharma. In another deal ironed out last week, Forma Therapeutics could earn $700 million from Johnson & Johnson company Janssen Biotech for developing drugs for certain tumor metabolism targets.