In a push to improve quality, Medicare will pay some hospitals more and others, including Boston's Massachusetts General, less. Steven Senne/AP hide caption

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A protester at a fiscal cliff rally on Monday in Doral, Fla. Joe Raedle/Getty Images hide caption

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Alan Krueger, chairman of the president's Council of Economic Advisers, warns that consumer spending will drop if Congress and the White House fail to reach a deal on spending cuts and tax increases. Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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Keith Gresham, 65, lines up four medications he takes at his home in Detroit in 2011. The self-employed painter was without health insurance for about a decade and was happy to finally turn 65 last year so he could qualify for Medicare. Patricia Beck/MCT/Landov hide caption

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New research suggests that doctors who communicate online with their patients may not see a drop in office visits. iStockphoto.com hide caption

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Two new studies and a proposed class-action lawsuit settlement all have the potential to change dollar signs as lawmakers address the impending fiscal cliff. iStockphoto.com hide caption

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Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney makes his case about Medicare during a briefing in South Carolina in August. Evan Vucci/AP hide caption

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Bruce Osterweil, 59, of San Francisco has long relied on his wife's employer-sponsored health plan for coverage, but she recently turned 65 and signed up for Medicare. She's going to retire in January and now Bruce is on his own to find a plan on the individual insurance market. Sarah Varney/KFF hide caption

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Denver Health has a network of clinics to keep track of patients discharged from its hospital. Denver Health hide caption

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Rep. Paul Ryan of Wisconsin, seen at a weekend rally in Powell, Ohio, is set to formally accept the GOP nomination to become Mitt Romney's running mate. Jewel Samad/AFP/Getty Images hide caption

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With help from the Affordable Care Act, government fraud investigators will make more use of computer programs to detect Medicare and Medicaid scams. iStockphoto.com hide caption

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