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Vital Signs
Unless they change, devicemakers may see shrinking profits
By Jaimy Lee | October 20, 2014
A leading consulting firm is warning medical-device companies that they either embrace the changes taking place in the global healthcare system or they will face sharply declining operating margins in the years ahead.
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News
UnitedHealth's earnings suggest tame medical spending
By Bob Herman | October 16, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
UnitedHealth Group's profit per share in the third quarter exceeded Wall Street's estimates in large part because of lower-than-expected medical costs, giving hope for other health insurers that healthcare spending is still being held in check.
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News
Medicare premiums, deductibles won't increase in 2015
By Paul Demko | October 09, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Premiums and deductibles for Medicare Part B beneficiaries will remain flat for a second straight year, HHS announced Wednesday. In 2015, seniors with incomes below $85,000 will pay a $104.90 monthly premium and face a deductible of $147.
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News
Rural hospital patients face higher out-of-pocket costs for outpatient services
By Bob Herman | October 08, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Medicare patients who receive routine outpatient care such as IV bags and heart tests pay considerably more out of their own pockets at critical-access hospitals than at other general acute-care hospitals, according to a report released Wednesday from HHS' Office of the Inspector General. For some...
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Magazine
Recovery audit contractor program draws readers' ire, and other letters
Modern Healthcare | October 04, 2014 | Print Magazine Print Magazine Subscription Details
Regarding the recent article “RACs recouped $3B for Medicare in 2013”, I would strongly disagree with the validity of the 18.1% reversal rate claimed by the RAC trade group.
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News
Healthcare industry doesn't want unique plan identifiers: WEDI
Joseph Conn | September 29, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
When Congress passed the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act in 1996, it saw “administrative simplification” as a general benefit and specifically called for the adoption of several national numerical identifiers as a way to boost efficiency, reduce waste and control...
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News
Medicare's Pioneer program down to 19 ACOs after three more exit
Melanie Evans | September 25, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
Three more accountable care organizations dropped out of Medicare's Pioneer program, which was designed to test the payment and delivery model with a small group of elite providers deemed best prepared to handle the operational demands and financial risks.
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News
CMS seeks to clarify coverage for autism treatment under CHIP, Medicaid
Virgil Dickson | September 25, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The CMS has moved to clarify confusion about a bulletin it released in July on coverage for comprehensive autism treatment under Medicaid and the Children's Health Insurance Program. Uncertainty centered on whether the CMS was mandating coverage for applied-behavior analysis therapy, a costly...
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News
Fewer Medicare Rx plans offered for 2015: Avalere study
Paul Demko | September 22, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The number of prescription drug plans available to seniors will drop by roughly 14% for 2015, according to an analysis of Medicare filings by Avalere Health. The number of Medicare Part D plans nationwide will decrease from 1,169 this year to 1,001 in 2015.
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News
CMS targets nursing homes' overuse of antipsychotic drugs
Sabriya Rice | September 22, 2014 | Basic Web Basic Web Subscription Details
The CMS will push nursing homes to reduce their use of antipsychotic medications by 25% by the end of 2015 and plans to incorporate a measure of the drugs' use to its star-rating system for consumers.
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