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June 2019
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CDC: No significant change in 2018 uninsured rate

Editor's Note The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on May 9 released a National Health Interview Survey that found an estimated 9.4% of US residents (30.4 million people) lacked health insurance in 2018, which is not significantly different than in 2017, but it is 18.2 million fewer than…

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By: Judy Mathias
May 13, 2019
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Effect of ACA on ED visits, hospital discharges

Editor's Note Though emergency department (ED) visits and hospital discharges by uninsured patients decreased after implementation of the Affordable Care Act, 1 in 10 ED visits and 1 in 20 hospital discharges were still made by uninsured patients from 2014 to 2016, this study finds.   There were 1.4 million…

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By: Judy Mathias
May 6, 2019
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Haven is new name for Amazon-backed healthcare venture

Editor's Note The healthcare organization founded by Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JP Morgan Chase announced on March 6 its new name−Haven−along with the launching of its new website www.havenhealthcare.com. The website outlines some of the areas where Haven intends to make improvements on the current healthcare system, including access of…

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By: Judy Mathias
March 7, 2019
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Researchers pinpoint factor that predicts unplanned readmissions

Editor's Note The widely used “LACE index,” which assesses a patient’s risk of hospital readmission, has a “blindspot” because it fails to consider whether patients are on Medicaid, West Virginia University researchers say. LACE stands for length of stay, acuity, comorbidity, and emergency department. To assess the predictive value of…

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By: Judy Mathias
January 17, 2019
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Editorial

Early in a new year, there’s a tendency to reflect on how past events might inform the future. The January issue of OR Manager looked at 2018 legislative changes and their potential impact on healthcare. In just the past few weeks, several legal and financial actions have already changed the…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
January 14, 2019
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Medicare’s bundled payments for joint replacements show moderate savings

Editor's Note In the first 2 years of Medicare’s Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) program, there was a modest reduction in spending per procedure without an increase in complication rates, this study finds. Comparing costs associated with 280,161 joint replacement procedures in 803 hospitals required to participate in the…

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By: Judy Mathias
January 3, 2019
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Editorial

A greater focus on cost cutting and improving quality of care, a rise in outpatient procedures, and increased demand for cost and quality transparency were among the major healthcare trends projected for 2018. It’s safe to say these will continue to dominate in 2019 and beyond. A year ago, all…

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By: Elizabeth Wood
December 13, 2018
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Advise and collect: Helping patients pay for surgery

Long gone are the days when employer-based health insurance covered most, if not all, of patients’ healthcare bills. Insurance companies and employers expect individuals to pay a larger chunk of healthcare costs themselves. The 2018 benchmark Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) Employer Health Benefits Survey found that “a quarter (26%) of…

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By: Janet M. Boivin, BSN, BSJ, RN
November 14, 2018
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CMS gives states more Medicaid waiver power, and flexibility to lower premiums

Editor's Note The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on October 22 issued guidance that gives state governors more power and flexibility in overhauling the rules and regulations of their Medicaid programs imposed by the Affordable Care Act and changes the way waivers are evaluated. Under the new policy,…

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By: Judy Mathias
October 22, 2018
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Orthopedic bundled payment models on the fast track--Part 2

According to a 2016 McKesson report, payers expect value-based reimbursement, including bundled payments, to grow from a third of their business to a majority of it in 5 years. And as noted in Part 1 of this two-part series (OR Manager, September 2018, 1, 13-17), bundles are advancing on multiple…

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By: Cynthia Saver, MS, RN
September 20, 2018
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