Healthcare IT Interoperability, EHR interoperability, Hospital Interoperability

Primers

UnitedHealth Releases Accountable Care Organization Coverage

by Vera Gruessner

On December 7, UnitedHealthcare announced in a company press release the introduction of the NexusACO, which is a new health plan product that allows consumers to obtain care from accountable care organizations. The program is expected to reduce...

CMS Accountable Care Organization Model Targets Dual Eligibles

by Vera Gruessner

On December 15, the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) announced the creation of the new Medicare-Medicaid Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Model. The model is meant to improve the quality of care and decrease costs of beneficiaries...

ACA Health Insurance Exchanges Bring Challenges for 2017

by Vera Gruessner

The Affordable Care Act (ACA) health insurance exchanges will have some key differences next year. Health insurance companies have faced various obstacles when selling health plans through the exchanges. These challenges include a higher risk...

Senate, House of Representatives Pass 21st Century Cures Act

by Vera Gruessner

This week, Congress passed the 21st Century Cures Act. President Obama signed the legislation into law on Tuesday, December 13. The 21st Century Cures Act passed with bipartisan support 94-5 in the Senate and 392-26 in the House of Representatives....

Tom Price and His Stance on Value-Based Care Reimbursement

by Vera Gruessner

Representative Tom Price, an orthopedic surgeon, was nominated to be the next Secretary of the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) on November 29. What does this nomination mean for value-based care reimbursement in the Medicare program?...

AMA: Health Insurance Merger Cuts Medicare Advantage Competition

by Vera Gruessner

The American Medical Association (AMA) announced in a press release earlier this week their position against the health insurance merger between Aetna and Humana, particularly regarding its impact on the Medicare Advantage market. The AMA is...

Payers See High Financial Losses on Health Insurance Exchanges

by Vera Gruessner

Healthcare payers have been facing significant financial losses on the health insurance exchanges in recent years. UnitedHealth Group lost $475 million in 2015 and was predicting a loss of $650 million in 2016, according to Kaiser Health News....

How the 21st Century Cures Act will Impact Healthcare Payers

by Vera Gruessner

Last week, the House of Representatives passed the 21st Century Cures Act by 392-26 votes. The 21st Century Cures Act affects the health insurance market through a provision that establishes small business health reimbursement arrangements (HRAs),...

CMS Commits to Improved Care Quality, Medical Spending Cuts

by Vera Gruessner

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will continue to work toward creating a better healthcare system for patients while keeping close track of medical spending regardless of which political party is in charge, said Andy...

UnitedHealth Group Adopts Bundled Payment Models for Surgeries

by Vera Gruessner

The commercial payer UnitedHealth Group has begun expanding its involvement in bundled payment models. Forbes reported that UnitedHealth will be implementing bundled payment models for spinal surgeries as well as hip and knee replacement operations...

Population Health Helps Medicare ACO Models Earn Shared Savings

by Vera Gruessner

Medicare ACO models operating through the Medicare Shared Savings Program have faced some significant challenges in garnering shared savings and taking on more financial risk. With multiple programs competing for funding from the Centers for...

Affordable Care Act Replacement Seeks Automatic Enrollment

by Vera Gruessner

Since the Presidential election of Donald J. Trump, a number of differing viewpoints came out emphasizing how the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act will be impacted. For the last several years, the Republican Party has attempted to repeal...

Health Insurance Merger Lawsuit Considers Efficiencies Factor

by Vera Gruessner

On Monday, November 21, the court trial filed by the Department of Justice against the health insurance merger between Anthem and Cigna began. The drive to stop the $48 billion health insurance merger started due to concerns over a negative impact...

How to Fix Obama’s Affordable Care Act Without a Repeal

by Vera Gruessner

Now that a new President and a Republican-controlled Congress has been elected, what does the future for healthcare reform and the Affordable Care Act (ACA) look like? What will happen to the Affordable Care Act cannot be answered simply since...

Humana Spent $93M in Quality Payments for Provider Network

by Vera Gruessner

The national payer Humana announced in a company press release earlier this week that it has reimbursed more than $93.6 million to more than 4,000 provider groups countrywide participating in their Provider Quality Rewards Program. These particular...

Premier Accountable Care Organizations Improved Quality in 2015

by Vera Gruessner

New results from the Premier Inc. Population Health Management Collaborative (PHMC) show that accountable care organizations (ACOs) within the collaborative improved quality and cost reduction in 2015 better than other ACOs operating through...

Anthem-Cigna Health Insurance Merger Suit Starts on November 21

by Vera Gruessner

The lawsuit against the Anthem-Cigna health insurance merger had its first pretrial conference this past Monday, according to The Coalition to Protect Patient Choice. Judge Amy Berman Jackson said that the two parties met to have a discussion...

AMA Pledges to Prevent Loss of Americans’ Healthcare Coverage

by Vera Gruessner

The American Medical Association (AMA) released a statement yesterday reaffirming its commitment to ensuring that every American who currently has healthcare coverage will continue to have insurance and access to medical care. In particular,...

House Speaker Paul Ryan Proposes a Privatized Medicare System

by Vera Gruessner

House Speaker Paul Ryan announced in an interview with Fox News Channel several days after the presidential election that the Republican-controlled Congress and White House will look to create a privatized Medicare system and cut funding from...

Patients Need More Guidance on Medicare Prescription Drug Plans

by Vera Gruessner

Among Medicare beneficiaries, 34 percent are not taking the time to review their Medicare Advantage prescription drug plan before renewing during the open enrollment period, according to a Walgreens survey. Nearly one in five or 19 percent stated...

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