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Catholic Health Initiatives keeps Fitch rating despite setbacks

By Melanie Evans  |  December 19, 2014

Fitch Ratings is maintaining it's A+ credit rating for Catholic Health Initiatives, the rapidly expanding national health system that earlier this week reported a sharp drop in its operating performance. Rival rating agency Standard & Poor's recently downgraded CHI because of weak financial results.

Price of an echocardiogram machine isn't a mystery

By Merrill Goozner  |  December 16, 2014

Readers of this morning’s New York Times story on the wildly varying charges levied for routine echocardiograms may have been left with the erroneous impression that it is nearly impossible to learn the price of cardiac ultrasound machines. Not so.

Virtual visits cheaper, even if other factors considered

By Darius Tahir  |  December 12, 2014

Patients using virtual visits are largely using them to replace emergency department, urgent-care and office visits and they don't require extensive follow-up care, a new study reports.

VA's private-care initiative impeded by administrative issues

By Virgil Dickson  |  December 12, 2014

Administrative and reimbursement issues are hampering the Veterans Affairs Department's new initiative aimed at granting wider access to private care for vets unable to get treatment within the system, say some providers around the country who have tried working in the new program.

Medicaid pay cut looms for primary-care docs

By Andis Robeznieks  |  December 11, 2014

Most physicians expect Congress will once again deliver an 11th-hour legislative “patch” around March 31 to override a 21% Medicare pay cut under the sustainable growth-rate formula. No such heroics are expected to block a 42.8% Medicaid pay cut that primary-care physicians face Jan. 1.

Practice Makes Perfect: Planning for possible cuts to Medicare reimbursement

Practice Makes Perfect: Planning for possible cuts to Medicare reimbursement

By Jeffrey B. Milburn  |  December 04, 2014

In June, the Medical Group Management Association released the results of a questionnaire that ranked members' most pressing practice management challenges. In this edition of “Practice Makes Perfect,” we will tackle No. 5 on that list: Managing finances with the uncertainty of Medicare...

Can MedPAC make the two-midnight rule go away?

By Virgil Dickson  |  November 18, 2014

The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission is mulling trying to solve the conundrum posed by the widely panned “two-midnight rule” by eliminating the outpatient observation claims that gave rise to it.

Hospitals ask feds to help pay for their role in Ebola fight

By Virgil Dickson  |  November 13, 2014

Hospitals and lawmakers are asking why the $6.2 billion the Obama administration requested for battling Ebola doesn't include any money to reimburse hospitals for the high cost of treating patients with the virus or preparing for the possibility of more cases.

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