Noteworthy News

Archive for March, 2012


Medicaid Eligibility Does Not Ensure Access to Care

A study published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine has found that Medicaid patients report difficulties gaining access to primary care at twice the rate of those with private insurance. According to “Barriers to Timely Primary Care and Emergency Department Utilization:  Implications for Health Care Reform,” Medicaid patients are also twice as likely to use hospital emergency rooms as people with private insurance. Download the Annals of Emergency Medicine article here

MedPAC Offers Recommendations to Congress

MedPAC’s March 2012 report to Congress include several recommendations to provide no payment increases in FY 2013. The March report is MedPAC’s major annual report to Congress, and among its many Medicare proposals, it called for: increasing Medicare inpatient and outpatient payments one percent; reducing evaluation and management (E&M) payments for outpatient services over the next three years and studying their eventual elimination (during the proposed three-year phase-in of the cuts, their impact would be limited for Medicare disproportionate share (Medicare DSH) hospitals); repealing the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula for determining payments to physicians and replacing it with a [&hellip

Regulation Establishes Future Medicaid Procedures

Medicaid has released a new rule that governs how individuals will apply for Medicaid and health insurance premium subsidies when the Affordable Care Act’s expansion of Medicaid and use of health insurance exchanges (HIEs) with premium support takes effect in 2014. Under the new regulations, applicants for Medicaid, CHIP, and insurance exchanges will use the same application form and, assuming all paperwork is in order and the Department of Homeland Security verifies legal status, decisions will be made in about an hour. Read a detailed description and analysis of the new regulation here, on the Health Affairs web site, and [&hellip

New Report Tracks Community Health Care Access, Cost, Quality, Outcomes

A new report from the Commonwealth Fund’s Commission on a High Performance Health System examines health care access, cost, quality, and outcomes across 306 areas in the U.S. that are referred to in the report as “hospital referral regions.” The report tracks 43 health care indicators across four dimensions of hospital performance:  access, prevention and treatment, costs, and potentially avoidable hospital use.  Not surprisingly, the report concludes that performance in all of these factors varies widely across the country and in general is best in the northeast and upper midwest. Read a summary of the report and download an executive [&hellip

NAUH’s March 2012 Newsletter

Read NAUH’s redesigned newsletter, NAUH Update, including features on hospital uncompensated care, the Medicare area wage index system, the impact of the Medicare doc fix on urban hospitals, and the latest activities of NAUH’s internal technical advisory committee, a group that consists of representatives of all NAUH members and that advises NAUH on the technical aspects of current health policy issues.  Download the newsletter here

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