Experiments in health care delivery from all over

The mantra of improving quality of care while holding costs in check produces a continual stream of experiments in health care delivery.  This month, we learn that Washington, D.C. is seeing the return of the house call — as a cost-saving measure — and that provision of free preventive care to patients with chronic conditions […]

CA ED overcrowding issues laid at PCPs' feet

The California Health Care Foundation released today a report on ED overcrowding (link to press release, report and other related information here), and recommendations for shifting nonemergency care to other settings.  Top of the list of reasons for ED overcrowding, based on a survey of patients, was the inability to get an appointment for an […]

Insurers at the gates: Who gets the state imprimatur under the Massachusetts universal health care law?

Yesterday’s Boston Globe highlighted a potential problem with the creation of new insurance markets under the Massachusetts universal health care law.  One currently-licensed "limited benefit" insurance company, within weeks of being touted by the Insurance Commissioner at a Health Insurance Connector Authority meeting, was being sued by the Attorney General based on allegations of deceptive […]

CDHPs and HSAs: Some spend more and some spend less

Health Affairs published yesterday (see the Health Affairs blog post) a RAND meta-analysis with an unsurprising conclusion: some folks with high-deductible consumer-directed health plans (usually paired with health savings accounts, or HSAs) use less care, and some use more.  There are those who are affected more by the out-of-pocket expenses, and may defer care.  There […]

Tax-exempt hospitals focus their response to the IRS, which is questioning their status

The IRS inquiry into the tax-exempt status of not-for-profit hospitals continues (i.e., do such hospitals provide community benefits, including charity care, sufficient to justify their tax-exempt status?), and hospital associations and their advisors continue to react to the IRS questionnaire that was sent out to hospitals a while back (see earlier post).  The AHA wrote […]

. . . And then there were four (Massachusetts CON applications for linear accelerators)

Only four of the six CON applications filed with the Massachusetts Department of Public Health earlier this month for radiation therapy services are still pending.  This week, DPH rejected the New England Radiosurgery application for certain technical deficiencies, and Brigham and Women’s Hospital withdrew its application for a service in Dartmouth, MA.  In addition to […]