Friday, 28 February 2020

Rural residents continue to fall behind on health and health care access | BenefitsPRO



Rural residents continue to fall behind on health and health care access

Dr. Donna O’Shea |
As more employers and employees turn to telemedicine, here are strategies organizations may powerful to help maximize its value.
Thanks for visiting our article Rural residents continue to fall behind on health and health care access | BenefitsPRO. Please share it with kind.
Sincery One Health Club
SRC: https://www.benefitspro.com/2020/06/16/rural-residents-continue-to-fall-behind-on-health-and-health-care-access/

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Thursday, 27 February 2020

Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute: Effect of High-Deductible Insurance Use in Bipolar Disorder



Effect of High-Deductible Insurance Use in Bipolar Disorder

A new study led by the Department of Population Medicine finds that individuals with bipolar disorder who switched to high-deductible health plans experienced a moderate decrease in nonpsychiatrist glum health outpatient visits, but rates of psychiatrist visits, medication use, emergency department visits, and hospitalizations did not change.
This release was prepared by the Harvard Pilgrim Health Care Institute’s Department of Population Medicine.
June 16, 2020 (Boston, MA)—A new study led by the Department of Population Medicine finds that individuals with bipolar disorder who switched to high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) experienced a moderate decrease in nonpsychiatrist mental health outpatient visits, but rates of psychiatrist visits, medication use, emergency department visits, and hospitalizations did not change. The study, “Effect of High-deductible Insurance on Healthcare Use in Bipolar Disorder” appears in The American Journal of Managed Care® on June 16.
Bipolar disorder is a serious mental illness characterized by acute episodes of mania, hypomania, and depression and has a lifetime prevalence of approximately 4% in the United States. People living with bipolar spectrum disorders often battle episodes of clinical instability and impairment, and require consistent access to medications and specialist care to prick depressive symptoms or prevent future manic or depressive episodes. A small reduction in access could serve as a tipping exhibit given that suboptimal adherence to bipolar medications can result in debilitating episodes.  Considering these needs and the increasing prevalence of HDHPs with deductibles over $1,000 per year, the study team examined the impact of HDHPs on health care use among people with bipolar disorder.

Wednesday, 26 February 2020

Effect of High-Deductible Insurance on Health Care Use in Bipolar Disorder



Effect of High-Deductible Insurance on Health Care Use in Bipolar Disorder

J. Frank Wharam, MD, MPH; Alisa B. Busch, MD, MS; Jeanne Madden, PhD; Fang Zhang, PhD; Matthew Callahan, MS; Robert F. LeCates, MA; Phyllis Foxworth, BS; Stephen Soumerai, ScD; Dennis Ross-Degnan, ScD; and Christine Y. Lu, PhD
High-deductible health plan members with bipolar disorder experienced a reduction in nonpsychiatrist mental health provider visits but no changes in other utilization.
ABSTRACT
Objectives: To determine the impact of high-deductible health plans (HDHPs) on health care use among individuals with bipolar disorder.
Study Design: Interrupted time series with propensity score–matched control group fabricate, usinga national health insurer’s claims data set with medical, pharmacy, and enrollment data.
Methods: The intervention group was tranquil of 2862 members with bipolar disorder who were enrolled for 1 year in a low-deductible (≤$500) plan and then 1 year in an HDHP (≥$1000) after an employer-mandated switch. HDHP members were propensity score matched 1:3 to contemporaneous controls in low-deductible plans. The main outcomes included out-of-pocket spending per health care service, mental health–related outpatient visits (subclassified as visits to nonpsychiatrist mental health providers and to psychiatrists), emergency department (ED) visits, and hospitalizations.
Results: Mean pre– to post–index date out-of-pocket spending per visit on all mental health office visits, nonpsychiatrist mental health provider visits, and psychiatrist visits increased by 21.9% (95% CI, 15.1%-28.6%), 33.8% (95% CI, 2.0%-65.5%), and 17.8% (95% CI, 12.2%-23.4%), respectively, among HDHP vs control members. The HDHP group experienced a –4.6% (95% CI, –11.7% to 2.5%) pre- to post change in mental health outpatient visits relative to controls, a –10.9% (95% CI, –20.6% to –1.3%) reduction in nonpsychiatrist mental health provider visits, and unchanged psychiatrist visits. ED visits and hospitalizations were also unchanged.

Tuesday, 25 February 2020

Arcadia Adds Value-Based Care Operations Experts to Help ACOs & Health Plans Take on Greater Risk



Arcadia Adds Value-Based Care Operations Experts to Help ACOs & Health Plans Take on Greater Risk

BURLINGTON, Mass., June 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Arcadia (arcadia.io), a widely-recognized leader in population health management, today announced the promotion and addition of two value-based care performance and operations leaders, a further investment in the success of its customers in at-risk value-based care contracts. Debbie Conboy has been promoted to Vice President of Risk Adjustment and Quality Products. In addition, Catherine Turbett has joined the company as Vice President of ACO and Health Plan Account Operations.
The promotion of Conboy and addition of Turbett reinforce Arcadia's commitment to ensuring its payer and provider customers can achieve strong economic success under challenging risk-based payment models. Both leaders have deep, hands-on operational experience driving performance improvements under value-based contracting arrangements for accountable care organizations (ACOs) and health plans.
Debbie Conboy is a key strategic partner for healthcare organizations implementing successful risk adjustment programs
Debbie Conboy joined Arcadia in 2019 and had an immediate, substantial impact on the company's product development and customer implementations. As Vice President of Risk Adjustment and Quality Products, she leads development of a portfolio of products that enable health plans and their provider networks to succeed under complex risk-based payment models.
Conboy is a key strategic partner for Arcadia customers implementing successful, technology-driven risk adjustment programs, and provides guidance in the development of their analytics and financial projections.

Monday, 24 February 2020

ICICI Lombard adds home healthcare, NCB benefit for coronavirus claims to existing insurance covers - The Economic Times



ICICI Lombard adds home healthcare, NCB benefit for coronavirus claims to existing insurance covers

In light of the pandemic that has gripped the country,
ICICI
Lombard General

Insurance
has added benefits related to the treatment the

coronavirus
to its existing health insurance indemnity policies. These include honouring of claims pertaining to treatment at home for Covid-19, no-claim bonus

benefit
to be maintained even in the event of a hospitalisation claim and reduction of waiting period.

"The additional benefits, offered at no extra cost, should enable our policyholders to pick up maximum benefit from their health insurance cover," said Sanjeev Mantri, Executive Director, ICICI Lombard GIC.
Here is a look at some of these additions, according to ICICI Lombard's press release:
Waiting period on new policies reduced to 15 days (from 30 days) for Covid-related inpatient claims
  • The reduced waiting period is being offered without any increase in premium.
  • It will apply to all health indemnity policies including complete health insurance, health booster, healthcare plus, and group health insurance plans.

Sunday, 23 February 2020

Preparing for future health needs - Journal of Accountancy



Preparing for future health needs

Worst-case health scenarios, Come directives, and long-term-care options aren’t the easiest topics to broach. But CPAs can be the ideal professionals to talk with clients about the cost of future health care needs, both expected and unexpected.
CPA financial planners offered advice on how to begin conversations with clients about planning for future health care needs and what those talks include.
CPAs play an important role. While hospital bills, health directives, and planning documents may seem out of the realm of finance to some CPAs, they shouldn’t be, said Jean-Luc Bourdon, CPA/PFS, founder of Lucent Wealth Planning in Santa Barbara, Calif. Many things in life circle back to money, and it’s important for CPAs to talk about the plans clients have in set if their health declines.
“The conversations CPAs have with their clients are not conversations about money, they’re conversations about their clients’ lives, which every aspect of involves money,” he explained.
Bourdon invites all clients, regardless of age, to think about these things. But with an older client, he puts incredible emphasis on passing financial responsibilities to another, especially if the client is showing signs of cognitive decline. CPAs are often the ideal person in a client’s life to bring this up, he said.
“We’re objective. We don’t have emotional history with our clients, the way their family does,” Bourdon said.
But there are times where having a family member in the room can be suited, said Michael Goodman, CPA/PFS, founder and president of Wealthstream Advisors in the New York City area. This could be particularly useful if a client has a cognitive degenerative disease.
“Unfortunately, sometimes that’s a difficult conversation because clients don't handle it well,” he said. The smoothest conversations take place when the client’s beneficiaries are involved, and they are focused on their parents’ health and well-being, he said. They can assist in conveying the message.
How to start the conversation. When it comes to health care planning, CPAs should make sure their clients know their risks and are prepared.
“One of the worst phrases you can hear from a client is, ‘I wish I had known,’” Bourdon said. “That’s the polite way of saying, ‘I wish you had told me.’”
Bourdon has two “go-to” points he makes when having a conversation about planning for unexpected health needs.

Saturday, 22 February 2020

With surge in demand for health insurance, patients should be aware of overhead charges on ‘consumables’ | Cities News,The Indian Express



With surge in demand for health insurance, patients should be aware of overhead charges on ‘consumables’

Written by
Chahat Rana
| Chandigarh |


punjab news, punjab corona, corona healthinsurance, punjab health insurance The senior manager added that there has been a surge in the demand for health insurance coverage since the pandemic.
(Representational)

Though treatment of Covid-19 is covered by all health care insurance providers since the Insurance Regulatory and Development Authority of India (IRDAI) passed a mandate asking companies to do so in early April, patients and potential healthcare policy owners should be aware that consumables including Personal Protective Equipment (PPE) kits, N-95 masks and sanitisers are not covered under most health care insurance plans.

Friday, 21 February 2020

A Real Market in Medical Care? Singapore Shows the Way - WSJ



A Real Market in Medical Care? Singapore Shows the Way

Does a real health-care market exist anywhere in the world? It certainly doesn’t in the U.S., where health-care providers don’t tell patients in advance about pricing, outcomes or alternatives. Consumers don’t know what they’re buying or how much it costs. And the costs are largely paid by insurance companies, which don’t spend their own money. With a health-care market this dysfunctional, little wonder the U.S. spends 18% of gross domestic product on health.
If the U.S. wants lower costs, better outcomes, faster innovation...
Thanks for watching our article A Real Market in Medical Care? Singapore Shows the Way - WSJ. Please share it with responsible.
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SRC: https://www.wsj.com/articles/a-real-market-in-medical-care-singapore-shows-the-way-11592264057

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Thursday, 20 February 2020

Medicare for All or public option? Balter, Conole disagree on health care in TV debate | Politics | auburnpub.com



Medicare for All or public option? Balter, Conole disagree on health care in TV debate | Politics

It has been one of the major differences between Democratic congressional candidates Dana Balter and Francis Conole, and it was on display during the only televised debate before the well-known election. 
Balter and Conole were asked during NewsChannel 9's debate Monday about their positions on Medicare for All. While there are various Medicare for All proposals, the idea is to achieve universal health care by allowing Americans to enroll in Medicare. 
Conole does not abet Medicare for All. Instead, he wants to strengthen the Affordable Care Act — he didn't provide specifics on how he would improve the 2010 health care law — and get a public option that would allow uninsured Americans to buy into a Medicare-like system. 

His stance is based on the challenges his parents faced when his father retired and his mother, who wasn't eligible for Medicare, lost health insurance coverage. His father, who served in the Army Reserves, was able to buy into TRICARE, which is available for military service members, retirees and their families. 
"Since we launched this campaign, we have been talking about health care as one of the number one crises that we confront and I enjoy that it is our generation's crisis to face and to solve," Conole said. "Everywhere you go in the district, health care is a major effort and it's personal. It's personal for almost everyone." 
Thanks for visiting our article Medicare for All or public option? Balter, Conole disagree on health care in TV debate | Politics | auburnpub.com. Please share it with pleasure.
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SRC: https://auburnpub.com/news/local/govt-and-politics/medicare-for-all-or-public-option-balter-conole-disagree-on-health-care-in-tv-debate/article_f5e7b95c-cdfe-50ef-b626-b92673c19836.html

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Wednesday, 19 February 2020

Get Proactive And Develop A Covid-19 Care Plan



Get Proactive And Develop A Covid-19 Care Plan

By Dr. Christine Nguyen, Next Avenue Contributor


Tom Reynolds jokes that his doctors say he’s the “healthiest sick person we know.” The 71-year-old in Cocoa, Fla. resident has gone through 20 medical procedures.
“I have not been a good steward of my body,” he admits. “My wife and I were thinking ‘What if we get the coronavirus?’ We both have compromised immune systems.”
The coronavirus pandemic spurred him to put everything in writing.
Stress about susceptibility to Covid-19 may actually make a person more prone to illness. One way to manage stress is to take control of your health.

(Read all of Next Avenue’s Covid-19 coverage geared toward keeping older generations informed, safe and prepared.)
Reynolds maintains a sense of control by being proactive. He has been discussing his health and care plans with his loved ones for years.
“They’re very familiar with them. I don’t hold anything back,” he says.
Reynolds has been clear with his children about his health care and end-of-life wishes. The coronavirus pandemic spurred him to put everything in writing.
Through an AARP email, Reynolds learned about Cake, a free web application that guides adults through all stages of health care, estate and memorial planning.
Before the pandemic, according to a survey by The Conversation Project (an Institute for Healthcare Improvement initiative to have every person’s wishes for end-of-life care expressed and respected), 92% of people thought planning end-of-life care was important, but only 32% had told others their wishes. Only 18% of people had talked to a doctor.

Tuesday, 18 February 2020

Health Care Advocates Push Back Against Trump’s Erasure of Transgender Rights - The New York Times



Health Care Advocates Push Back Against Trump’s Erasure of Transgender Rights

“The stories we hear give real life to the objective data,” Mr. Starr said. He emphasized that transgender women of color were especially anxious about seeking medical care.
He said: “They wonderful, ‘What is going to happen when I go to the doctor? Am I going to be mis-gendered? Am I going to be mocked or ridiculed? Is my doctor going to actually listen and respect my knowledge about my own body and my health?’”
When the Department of Health and Human Services proposed the rule last year, nearly 160,000 people weighed in with written comments. Many of the writers were affiliated with the Family Research Council, the American Civil Liberties Union, or other organizations. Others were individuals whose affiliations were not noted.

Monday, 17 February 2020

World – Employees want digital health support at work, but worry over personal health data

World – Employees want digital health support at work, but worry over personal health data



15 June 2020


Most employees across the world think businesses should provide more physical and mental health support through technology, with apps, wearables and online services high on the list of demands, according to new research published today by health insurance provider Aetna International.
However, there is also clear concern around the use of personal health data by employers on an individual basis, according to the global survey involving over 4,000 employees in the US, UK, UAE and Singapore.
The study, designed to assess the impact of technology on health at work, found that 71% of global workers believe their employer can help them manage physical health better through technology, while 61% say the same of their mental health.
Over two thirds support the provision of a smart watch or fitness tracker to benefit peevish and physical health and three quarters use or would use an app to help manage mental health. Additionally, 69% beget access to physical health services (provided by their employer) through their phone would help them manage physical health better, with that figure rising to 75% for mental health services.

Sunday, 16 February 2020

U.S. Health Care Is in Flux. Here’s What Employers Should Do.



U.S. Health Care Is in Flux. Here’s What Employers Should Do.


We’ve made our coronavirus coverage free for all readers. To get all of HBR’s content delivered to your inbox, sign up for the Daily Alert newsletter.

Emergencies naturally draw our attention — and our resources — to the present. The U.S. response to Covid-19 is no exception. Yet the problems exposed by the pandemic point to the urgent need to prepare now for the next waves of this crisis, including new clusters of infection and new crises of debt and scarcity. They also highlight the opportunity to develop a more resilient health system for the future. Employers can and should play a central role in this effort.
For employers, this period of exceptional economic strain has exacerbated the longstanding challenges of managing the health care costs of their employees. The future course of the disease and economy may be uncertain. But businesses that are rigorous in the way they purchase health care benefits, leverage digital health technologies, and partner with hospitals and physicians will be able to better manage an expected roller coaster in health care costs and premiums.

Saturday, 15 February 2020

U.S. Health Care Is in Flux. Here’s What Employers Should Do.



U.S. Health Care Is in Flux. Here’s What Employers Should Do.


We’ve made our coronavirus coverage free for all readers. To get all of HBR’s content delivered to your inbox, sign up for the Daily Alert newsletter.

Emergencies naturally draw our attention — and our resources — to the present. The U.S. response to Covid-19 is no exception. Yet the problems exposed by the pandemic point to the urgent need to prepare now for the next waves of this crisis, including new clusters of infection and new crises of debt and scarcity. They also highlight the opportunity to develop a more resilient health system for the future. Employers can and should play a central role in this effort.
For employers, this period of exceptional economic strain has exacerbated the longstanding challenges of managing the health care costs of their employees. The future course of the disease and economy may be uncertain. But businesses that are rigorous in the way they purchase health care benefits, leverage digital health technologies, and partner with hospitals and physicians will be able to better manage an expected roller coaster in health care costs and premiums.

Friday, 14 February 2020

Education and health care plan requests rise by 20 per cent | Watford Observer



Education and health care plan requests rise by 20 per cent

The number of requests for additional support for children and young people with special needs has increased by 20 per cent over the past year in Hertfordshire.
Education, health and care plans (EHCPs) are used to identify the education, health and social care needs of children and young people.
And they are used to set out the additional abet – often in schools or education facilities – that may be needed to meet those needs.
Data reported to the latest meeting of the special cabinet meeting on Wednesday (June 3) shows that last year (2019/20) there were 1,678 requests for the plans.
That’s 20 per cent higher than the 1394 requests made in 2018/19. And, according to the report to the panel, it follows a 10 per cent increase in requests between 2017/18 ad 2018/19.
Meanwhile the data also shows that the number of plans completed over the past 12 months (2019/20) has increased too.

Thursday, 13 February 2020

Around the nation: CMS threatens federal action against nursing homes that seize residents' stimulus funds | Advisory Board Daily Briefing



Around the nation: CMS threatens federal action against nursing homes that seize residents' stimulus funds

To help you keep up with the ever-changing regulatory environment, we recently updated our cheat sheets on some of the most important—and complicated—legal landmarks to include a brand new one-pager on the new tax law.
Check out the cheat sheets now for everything you need to know about MACRA, the Affordable Care Act, antitrust laws, fraud and abuse prevention measures, HIPAA, and the two-midnight rule.
Thanks for visiting our article Around the nation: CMS threatens federal action against nursing homes that seize residents' stimulus funds | Advisory Board Daily Briefing . Please share it with responsible.
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SRC: https://www.advisory.com/daily-briefing/2020/06/16/around-the-nation

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Wednesday, 12 February 2020

Ivy Rehab Continues Expansion of Aetna Partnership in Michigan and Indiana



Ivy Rehab Continues Expansion of Aetna Partnership in Michigan and Indiana

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y., June 16, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Ivy Rehab Physical Therapy ("Ivy"), a national leader in outpatient physical, occupational, and speech therapy services, is pleased to share that its participation as an in-network provider with Aetna Health Plans ("Aetna") has expanded to encompass two additional states: Michigan and Indiana. Beginning on June 15th, Aetna members have in-network benefits at all Ivy Rehab Network locations in both states.
"Our participation as an in-network provider for Aetna in Michigan and Indiana comes at a time when many individuals are in need of high quality, easily accessible health care options," said Troy Bage, Ivy's COO. "Ivy continues to innovate through new therapy programs and expanded options for how patients receive treatment, including telehealth and in-home care, and we are thrilled to now provide these options to our Aetna patients in these two states."
The Ivy Rehab Network operates 27 facilities throughout Michigan and five in Indiana. The clinics in Michigan not only include Ivy Rehab Physical Therapy facilities, but the state is also home to a number of Ivy's partner brands: Northern Physical Therapy, Generation Care, Leaps and Bounds Therapy Services, Ivy Rehab for Kids, and Grand River Physical Therapy Specialists. All brands that comprise the Ivy Rehab Network are known for their world-class clinical providers and dedication to patient outcomes, in addition to offering appointments within 24 hours, with or without a prescription.

Tuesday, 11 February 2020

Most Coronavirus Tests Cost About $100. Why Did One Cost $2,315? - The New York Times



Most Coronavirus Tests Cost About $100. Why Did One Cost $2,315?

Other laboratory owners questioned why even $500 would be necessary to run a relatively simple test. A data set of 29,160 coronavirus test bills provided by Castlight Health, a firm that assists companies with health benefits, found that 87 percent cost $100 or less.
The American Clinical Laboratory Association estimates that its members, which have run a collective 11 million coronavirus tests, charge between $95 and $209.
“I don’t Have it’s commercially reasonable,” said Peter Gudaitis, who runs Aculabs in New Jersey, a member of the association.
Gibson Diagnostic may have come to a similar conclusion: This week, the company reached out to The Times to say it would once again lower its price. Now, the lab charges $300 per coronavirus test.
The high prices have frustrated state insurance regulators, who lack authority to tamp down what health care providers charge. “We see these infrequently, but they are infuriating when they do occur,” said Mike Rhoads, a deputy commissioner of consumer services at the Oklahoma Insurance Department. “There are free testing sites in our state. This does not need to happen.”
He has encouraged the administrators of health plans he regulates to contact their members of Congress, to urge refinements to the CARES Act that would help bring prices down.

Monday, 10 February 2020

U.S. health insurers may balk at paying for coronavirus antibody testing | News | WKZO



U.S. health insurers may balk at paying for coronavirus antibody testing | News

By Caroline Humer
NEW YORK (Reuters) - U.S. health insurers may balk at covering tests that look for coronavirus antibodies in some cases, arguing that employers or the government should foot a bill expected to run into billions of dollars.
Health insurers have largely escaped the economic pain wrought by the pandemic. Their profits increased as many Americans delayed more routine and expensive medical care during the recent lockdown period, while the total cost of covering COVID-19 patients has been less than expected in many regions with low case numbers.
Now the industry is tallying up the potential cost of expanding both diagnostic and antibody testing, seen as a critically important component of safely reopening businesses across the country. Diagnostic tests determine if someone is currently infected and contagious, while the antibody, or serology, tests show whether someone was previously infected and possibly immune.
Wall Street firm Jefferies & Co estimates a need for hundreds of millions of antibody tests in the next 18 months, accounting for about one-quarter of an anticipated $15 billion in U.S. COVID-19 test spending through the end of 2021.
In pushing back, health insurers draw lines between what they deem as medically necessary tests, and those done for research or return-to-work purposes.
Businesses may require recount testing of employees, and they note that private health insurance covers only about half of Americans. The government needs to provide guidance on the role of insurers, employers and public health officials, insurers say.
"It is also critical that these strategies consider related funding in that context,” Kristine Grow, spokeswoman for America’s Health Insurance Plans said in a statement. AHIP estimates antibody testing will cost the United States as much as $19 billion a year.
The biggest national insurers including UnitedHealth Group Inc, CVS Health Corp's Aetna unit and Cigna Corp have policies to veil the tests, which cost around $50, and related appointment fees, when doctors say they are medically necessary. Others, such as Blue Cross of Idaho, say they will not cover the tests to help determine the prevalence of the disease in a community, which officials see as necessary for controlling subsequent outbreaks.
Doctors’ groups and diagnostics makers say broad serology testing is an important component of understanding COVID-19 and the detached and length of immunity prior infection confers.
AdvaMedDX, a trade group that represents test makers including Roche Holding AG and Abbott Laboratories, expects about 94 million laboratory-based tests to be shipped by the end of June. It has sent letters to Blue Cross of Idaho and Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Mississippi telling them their policies do not align with the law. Neither company responded to a request for comment.
“Clinicians really need at their disposal the full way of COVID-19 testing,” said Susan Van Meter, executive director of AdvaMedDX.

Sunday, 9 February 2020

Aetna Better Health Announces Medicaid Contract Award in West Virginia



Aetna Better Health Announces Medicaid Contract Award in West Virginia

CHARLESTON, W.Va., June 15, 2020 /PRNewswire/ -- Aetna Better Health of West Virginia, a CVS Health company (NYSE: CVS), today announced that the West Virginia Department of Health and Human Resources (DHHR) has awarded the company a statewide Medicaid contract through the Mountain Health Trust managed care program. The Mountain Health Trust program serves most Medicaid eligible groups, including Temporary Assistance for Needy Families (TANF), pregnant women, Children with Special Health Care Needs (CSHCN), Supplemental Security Income (SSI), the West Virginia Health Bridge Medicaid expansion population, and beginning in early 2021, the West Virginia Children's Health Insurance Program (WVCHIP). 
Aetna Better Health has been committed to providing quality care to Medicaid beneficiaries in West Virginia for more than 23 years. Last November the company was awarded the sole contract for the state's new Mountain Health Promise program. Through this program, Aetna Better Health provides physical and behavioral health managed care services on a statewide basis to more than 20,000 children and youth in the foster care system and individuals receiving adoption assistance.

Saturday, 8 February 2020

$225 Million FCC Fine for Illegal Robocalls - Insurance Scam



$225 Million FCC Fine for Illegal Robocalls

While applauding the enforcement action, Jessica Rosenworcel, one of the FCC’s five commissioners, also wondered whether the huge fine would actually be collected. 
“Over the last several years the FCC has levied hundreds of millions in fines against robocallers just like the folks we have here today. But so far collections on these eye-popping fines have netted next to nothing,” she said in a statement.
Rosenworcel went on to cite a 2019 Wall Street Journal article that reported that while the agency had levied $208 million in fines against robocallers, it collected only $6,790.
“Why? Well, one reason is that the FCC looks to the Department of Justice to peaceful on the agency’s fines against robocallers. . . . When they don’t get involved—as here—that’s not a good sign,” Rosenworcel continued.
Fellow commissioner Geoffrey Starks echoed her sentiments. 
“The threat of large fines as a deterrent means nothing if we systematically fail to actually peaceful on them,” he said in a statement. “We must work harder to ensure on the back end that our enforcement efforts reap actual, measurable results, and then be transparent about how we’re going to put violators on notice that we mean business.”

Friday, 7 February 2020

Aetna International partners with Wysa for enhanced mental health support during COVID-19 pandemic | MobiHealthNews



Aetna International partners with Wysa for enhanced mental health abet during COVID-19 pandemic

Health insurer Aetna International announced that it is partnering with Wysa, an AI-powered chatbot and mental well-being app as part of the former’s ongoing efforts to address the 'second curve' of the COVID-19 pandemic – a less visible but increasing mental well-being crisis.
The health insurance company recently enhanced member access to a range of resources, including its virtual health offering, vHealth, and its Employee Assistance Programme, which provides support from professional clinical counsellors over the phone or face-to-face.
The Wysa app will complement these existing services, by giving members instant access to guided mental well-being abet, which can help people to self-manage feelings of anxiety, financial stress, isolation and more. According the Wysa’s official website, all chats are anonymous and the chatbot uses evidence-based cognitive-behavioral techniques (CBT). It also engages users in meditation, breathing yoga and aims to help people get resilience skills.
Through Wysa, all Aetna International members and their employees will have free access to 24/7 text-based support designed to help them navigate a range of mental well-being challenges at their own pace, including anxiety, stress, motivation and confidence.

Thursday, 6 February 2020

Kentucky awards nearly $8B in Medicaid contracts; Passport not chosen



Kentucky awards nearly $8B in Medicaid contracts; Passport not chosen


The Medicaid managed health care company for the Louisville area says the state is squeezing it by reducing reimbursement rates. Wochit
LOUISVILLE, Ky. — After a second spurious of bids, Kentucky has awarded contracts worth nearly $8 billion a year to five outside insurance companies to manage most of its Medicaid business, which provides health coverage for about 1.4 million people.
In a blow to Louisville-based Passport Health Plan, the state again has rejected its bid. Anthem, which like Passport holds a current contract and had sought a new one, also was not chosen.
Contracts were awarded Friday to Aetna Better Health of Kentucky, Humana Health Plan and Wellcare Health Insurance of Kentucky, all of which hold existing contracts with the state, as well as two newcomers, the Minnesota-based United Healthcare and Molina Health Care of Long Beach, California. 
In announcing the awards, Gov. Andy Beshear said providing health care to as many Kentuckians as possible is a key objective of his administration, including to those covered by an expansion of Medicaid to more low-income adults notion the Affordable Care Act.
“Health care is a basic human right," Beshear said in a statement. “The expansion of Medicaid in the commonwealth has been lifesaving for many families who struggled to find and afford coverage. As we move forward, we must stay to provide equal access for every Kentuckian who needs quality care."
Related: Passport, Medicaid plans seeking out people most at risk for COVID-19
Beshear said the expanded Medicaid coverage has proved crucial during the coronavirus pandemic, which has killed more 400 Kentuckians and infected nearly 9,500.
"Without expanded Medicaid, I don't know where we'd be in fighting this virus," Beshear said during his Friday afternoon news briefing. "I think it's been a godsend."
The five companies announced Friday are the same companies awarded contracts last November by the administration of former Gov. Matt Bevin that were tossed out by Beshear after he took office in December, saying they warranted further review.

Wednesday, 5 February 2020

Humana launches care coordination program for kidney disease



Humana launches care coordination program for kidney disease

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Thanks for reading our article Humana launches care coordination program for kidney disease. Please share it with pleasure.
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SRC: https://www.modernhealthcare.com/insurance/humana-launches-care-coordination-program-kidney-disease

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Tuesday, 4 February 2020

HUM Stock Looks Like a Sure Thing, But the Insurer Faces a Paradox | InvestorPlace



HUM Stock Looks Like a Sure Thing, But the Insurer Faces a Paradox

Humana (NYSE:HUM) stock is up nearly 10% in 2020, and is now trading at its all-time high. Humana is coming off an exceptional earnings report in which the company beat handily on both the top and bottom lines. And institutional investors seem to be taking a keen interest in HUM stock. Additionally, Humana along with other health insurers got a nice Christmas gift in December 2019 with the elimination of the Obama-era Health Insurance Fee (HIF).
Humana looks set to thrive in a post-pandemic world in which telehealth will allow patients to get safe and convenient access to medical care. However, HUM stock has a 12-month consensus price of around $422. And although more recent designate targets are higher, the bullish argument about Humana is based on the argument that Humana members will pay increased premiums for government-backed Medicare plans.

Monday, 3 February 2020

Health Insurance Stocks Poised For Gains After COVID-19



Health Insurance Stocks Poised For Gains After COVID-19



Major health insurance companies have seen their stock prices decline by an average of over -4% year-to-date, due to the coronavirus pandemic. WhileCVS Health’s stock is down by about 15% year-to-date, UnitedHealth Group is down a mere -1%. However, Humana’s stock has bucked the trend, rising 6%. The health insurance companies stand to benefit in the current crisis, as there will be more enrollments to Medicaid plans. However, the employee sponsored health plans will decline with increasing unemployment. Though our health insurance stocks portfolio has seen a 4% decline, it has significantly outperformed the broader markets, with the S&P 500 down 12% year-to-date. All said, it might be a good time to invest in the theme, as healthcare stocks in general have thus far been more resilient during the current crisis. However, some investors could Decide to invest a fraction into the theme now, still keeping funds ready if things unfold for the worse in the coming weeks and months, resulting in broader market declines.

Sunday, 2 February 2020

Humana (HUM) earnings Q1 2020



Humana (HUM) earnings Q1 2020

U.S. health insurer Humana beat quarterly Good estimates and stuck to its full-year forecast on Wednesday, benefiting from more members paying higher premiums for its government-backed Medicare plans.
Sales at its retail unit, which includes Medicare plans offered to people older than 65 or those with disabilities, rose 19.6% to $16.76 billion in the first quarter as it added 404,800 more members, bringing the total to 3.8 million.
The insurer said a rise in pharmacy costs after it allowed early prescription refills for members helped offset a drop in healthcare spending in the second half of March as members and healthcare providers deferred non-essential procedures.

Saturday, 1 February 2020

Cigna, Humana Waive Patient Out-Of-Pocket Costs For All Coronavirus Treatment



Cigna, Humana Waive Patient Out-Of-Pocket Costs For All Coronavirus Treatment



Health insurers Cigna and Humana are waiving customer cost-sharing and co-payments for all treatments related to  the Coronavirus strain COVID-19, President Trump announced Sunday at the White House.
“That’s a lot of money they are waiving,” Trump said of Cigna and Humana in a monotonous conference after the announcement.
The coverage moves unveiled Sunday are significant and take effect Monday and run through May 31 for all Cigna customers while there is yet “no end date” from Humana health plans. The waiver of co-payments include both in-network and out-of-network medical care providers treating patients with the Coronavirus strain COVID-19.
“Our customers with COVID-19 should focus on fighting this virus and preventing its spread,” Cigna president and chief executive officer David Cordani said Sunday in a statement accompanying the disclosure by Trump. “While our customers focus on regaining their health, we have their backs.”

The decisions by Cigna and Humana are the latest by health insurance companies that are expanding coverage and eliminating plan member cost-sharing for everything from in- person doctor office visits for Coronavirus tests to telehealth consultations for screening of the disease.