FOCUS OF THE WEEK
Kaiser Poll Finds Strong Support to Control Drug Prices
The Kaiser Health Tracking Poll found Americans strongly support ensuring that those with chronic conditions like cancer, HIV, and mental illness can have access to affordable drugs, and this sentiment was shared across partisan lines.
Florida Standoff Could Disrupt Managed Care Progress in Medicaid
Governor Rick Scott's decision to sue CMS could harm an opportunity to expand a pilot program in Medicaid managed care first championed by former Republican Governor Jeb Bush, which was found to save $118 million a year. It was praised by the conservative Heritage Foundation.
Myths and Truths about the UK National Health System
What can the US learn from the UK National Health System? Probably not acute care management, but definitely, primary care and preventive interventions.
Rise of E-Cigarettes, Hookahs Among Teens Offsets Drop in Other Tobacco Products
Soaring e-cigarette use will likely increase momentum for FDA's proposed regulation of the product, which critics say is being heavily marketed at teenagers.
Could Missouri Be Next to Expand Medicaid Managed Care?
Missouri already spends $1.2 billion on Medicaid managed care in less than half its counties. The new plan would extend managed care to all Medicaid clients except the blind, disabled, and elderly. Meanwhile, in North Carolina, the CEO of the Medical Society argued against moving Medicaid to managed care, citing problems in other states.
USPSTF Evidence Review Could Lead to Revised Screening Guidelines
Recent emphasis of identifying those with prediabetes and intervening to halt its progression is aimed at reducing the financial impact of diabetes in the United States, which was estimated in 2012 at $245 billion.
Kentucky to Overhaul Medicaid Managed Care Contracts
The move comes after an auditor's report found several rural hospitals in poor financial shape, with low Medicaid reimbursements cited as a reason.
Emergency Departments Report Greater Readiness to Handle Pediatric Cases
Self-reported data indicate the nation's emergency departments are better prepared to handle pediatric cases, but there is room for improvement.
Two Tales of Medicaid Expansion: in Montana, a Step Forward; in Florida, a Step Back
In Montana, 13 Republicans helped give a Medicaid expansion bill a solid majority to send it back to the Senate for reconciliation. A bill signing could come by next week. In Florida, Governor Rick Scott appeared to reverse his 2013 position that he could not deny the uninsured access to care.
Tying Financial Incentives to Healthy Behavior Isn’t So Easy
Incentives in employee wellness programs, especially penalties, can hurt morale and lead to legal action. But without incentives, there's no guarantee the employer will see healthcare savings and return on investment.