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Study: Medicaid Expansion Linked to Cardiovascular Health Improvement Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 08 April 2019 11:18
EurekAlert! reports on 4/5/19:
Counties in states that expanded Medicaid coverage under the Affordable Care Act had fewer deaths annually from heart disease compared to areas that did not expand Medicaid, according to preliminary research presented at the American Heart Association's Quality of Care and Outcomes Research Scientific Sessions 2019.
Read more in this week's issue of Week Review>>
Last Updated on Monday, 08 April 2019 11:24
Changes to Nursing Home Star Ratings Are Here Print E-mail
Written by Vitale Health Law   
Tuesday, 02 April 2019 16:44
Beginning this month, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is changing its star ratings on Nursing Home Compare and its Five-Star Quality Rating System, which allows consumers to compare quality between nursing homes. CMS says the updates "reflect more transparent and meaningful information about the quality of care that each nursing home is giving its residents." The changes, which are expected to go into effect by mid-April, include revisions to the inspection process, enhancement of new staffing information and implementation of new quality measures. As part of those changes, CMS will lift the freeze it imposed on health inspection ratings it put into place in February 2018.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 02 April 2019 16:49
ACA Update: Health Insurance Exchanges 2019 Open Enrollment Report Print E-mail
Written by   
Monday, 25 March 2019 14:04
The Health Insurance Exchanges 2019 Open Enrollment Report summarizes health plan selections made on the individual Exchanges during the 2019 Open Enrollment Period (2019 OEP) for the 39 states that use the eligibility and enrollment platform, as well as for the 12 State-Based Exchanges (SBEs) that use their own eligibility and enrollment platforms.
Key findings from this report include:
  • Plan Selections: Approximately 11.4 million consumers selected or were automatically re-enrolled in an Exchange plan during the 2019 OEP in the 50 states, plus DC.  This is a decrease from 11.8 million consumers during the 2018 OEP.
  • New Consumers:  Nationally, 24 percent of consumers with a plan selection during the 2019 OEP were new to the Exchange through which they enrolled.  This is a decrease from 27 percent during the 2018 OEP.
  • Average Premiums: Among all consumers in the 39 states that use the platform, the average premium before application of the tax credit was $612 in the 2019 OEP.  This is a decrease from $621 in the 2018 OEP.
  • Financial Assistance: Eighty-seven percent of consumers in states that use the platform received APTC in the 2019 OEP, compared to 85 percent in the 2018 OEP; the average premium after application of APTC for these consumers was $87 in the 2019 OEP, compared to $89 in the 2018 OEP.

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Last Updated on Tuesday, 26 March 2019 14:14
Three or more eggs a week increase your risk of heart disease and early death, study says Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 18 March 2019 16:57
A study published Friday, 3/15/19 in the medical journal JAMA delivers bad news for egg lovers. According the researchers, among 29,615 adults pooled from 6 prospective cohort studies in the United States with a median follow-up of 17.5 years, each additional 300 mg of dietary cholesterol consumed per day was significantly associated with higher risk of incident CVD and all-cause mortality, and each additional half an egg consumed per day was significantly associated with higher risk of incident CVD and all-cause mortality. The researchers adjusted for the fact that egg consumption may be associated with unhealthy behaviors, such as low physical activity, smoking, or an unhealthy diet.
Read more in the current issue of Week in Review>>
Last Updated on Tuesday, 23 April 2019 10:17
How HCA defies industry trends with 19 straight quarters of admission gains Print E-mail
Written by Healthcare Dive   
Monday, 18 March 2019 00:00
Samantha Liss reports for Healthcare Dive on 3.13.19:
HCA has been a Wall Street favorite for a while, bucking industry trends with admissions and revenue growth. The Nashville-based chain boasted 19 consecutive quarters of rising admissions in its most recent earnings report, a feat given the volatility some of its competitors have experienced. By contrast,  Community Health Systems and Tenet both reported slumps in patient volume in the most recent quarter. UHS also has seen volume growth but has a much smaller footprint of acute care hospitals. The streak comes as hospital operators face headwinds leaning on patient volumes, including a shift to lower-cost care settings, payer pressures and relative shifts from commercial to government patients. A few key strategies have boosted HCA's continued admissions growth - from picking the right markets to successfully riding the trend to care outside hospital walls, analysts say.

Last Updated on Tuesday, 19 March 2019 16:32
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