Modern Healthcare: Shades of gray color most states on implementing the ACA, report finds

By Paul Demko  The split among states on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act is more complicated than for and against. Seven states—Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, Massachusetts, Minnesota, Oregon and Vermont—that have expanded Medicaid, are operating their own exchanges and are taking steps to enforce an array of new insurance regulations. At the other extreme are five states—Alabama, Missouri, … Continue reading

California Healthline: Three of the Most Over-Hyped Health Care Reform Stories of 2013

by Matthew Wayt, California Healthline Editor Media coverage of the Affordable Care Act reached a new high in 2013, as state and federal officials scrambled to move the final pieces of the law into place and health policy analysts struggled to forecast the triumphs and pitfalls of the overhaul. As a result, some ACA-related news stories … Continue reading

SF Gate: Correction: Health Overhaul-Language Barrier story

Updated 12:22 pm, Wednesday, March 6, 2013 OAKLAND, Calif. (AP) — In a story March 4 about the challenges of explaining health care reform to non-English speakers, The Associated Press relied on incorrect information from the California Primary Care Association in reporting that organizations have to provide written notices in languages spoken by 10 percent or more of their service population. … Continue reading

California Healthline: Geographic Regions Set at Six, But Only for Now

by David Gorn Floor votes in the Assembly and Senate yesterday approved the first bills of the special session on health care. The bills would eliminate pre-existing conditions as a means for denying health insurance coverage. They also would establish new geographic rating regions to help determine variable rates by area in California, one provision … Continue reading

The Washington Post: Health law’s rules help hospitals cut patient readmission rate

3 of 9Adult Day Health Care dilemma Trinidad Contreras is a fixture at Gardner Family Health Network Adult Day Health Care facility in San Jose, Calif. on Wednesday, June 6, 2012. Due to budget cuts, the state declared Contreras no longer eligible for benefits, but Gardner Family Health Network Adult Day Health Care is continuing to let him participate in its programs without getting reimbursed while he appeals. He spends the hours between about 10 am and 2 pm playing dominos, walking the courtyard and tending the small garden boxes. (Dan Honda/Staff)

By N.C. Aizenman, Published: February 27 Over the past several months, America’s hospitals have achieved a feat that long seemed beyond reach: substantially reducing the share of patients who must return for treatment almost as soon as they are discharged. According to statistics compiled by the Obama administration, the nationwide rate of hospital readmissions of Medicare patients within … Continue reading

NPQ: Sequestration Threatens Access at Community Health Centers

WRITTEN BY RUTH MCCAMBRIDGE  CREATED ON WEDNESDAY, 27 FEBRUARY 2013 14:42 February 22, 2013; Source: San Antonio Business Journal According to the National Association of Community Health Centers (NACHC), budget cuts triggered by sequestration pose the risk of a potential loss of $120 million to the nation’s health centers. That could result in 900,000 patients without access to regular … Continue reading

The Hill: Poll finds 15-point drop in Dem support for health law

By Elise Viebeck – 02/27/13 12:01 AM ET  Democratic support for President Obama’s healthcare law has dropped 15 points since November, contributing to a rise in negative attitudes toward the reform, according to a new poll. Opponents of the Affordable Care Act currently outnumber supporters (42 percent to 36), according to the Kaiser Family Foundation’s latest … Continue reading

The Hill: GAO: Health law will increase deficit if cost-cutting steps stop

By Elise Viebeck – 02/26/13 03:12 PM ET The Affordable Care Act’s long-term deficit impact depends on the law’s cost-cutting measures and whether they survive over the next several decades, government auditors said Tuesday.  In a new report, the nonpartisan Government Accountability Office (GAO) found that President Obama’s signature law could increase or decrease the deficit over … Continue reading

California Healthline: 5.3M Californians Drew Government Assistance in 2011, Report Finds

About 5.3 million California residents in 2011 received income-based government assistance — including health insurance benefits through Medi-Cal — according to a Census Bureau report, the Sacramento Bee‘s “Capitol Alert” reports (Walters, “Capitol Alert,” Sacramento Bee, 2/26). Medi-Cal is California’s Medicaid program. National Findings The report found that about 46 million U.S. residents received income-based government assistance in … Continue reading

California Healthline: Lawmakers Might Have Time To Avert Medicare Payment Cuts

Health care providers are hoping that a one-month delay in reductions to Medicare reimbursement rates under sequestration will give lawmakers enough time to develop and pass legislation to avert cuts under the sequester, Modern Healthcare reports (Daly, Modern Healthcare, 2/26). The mandated cuts involve nearly $1 trillion in across-the-board reductions, including a 2% reduction to Medicare reimbursement rates. … Continue reading

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