Future of Health CareMACRAPatient EmpowermentPerformance ImprovementValue-Based Health Care
March 29, 2017

Why Bundled Payments Are a Win-Win for Specialists and Health Care Consumers

Bundled payments, a health care payment innovation that has been widely praised for controlling costs, recently got a bad rap. Secretary of Health and Human Services Tom Price  has delayed implementation of the final Medicare rule for several bundled payment programs that were set to start this year. He has criticized the bundled payments initiative for moving too fast and “experimenting with patients’ health.” Other industry experts disagree. They strongly favor the concept for both improving care and cutting costs. Bundled payments reimburse physicians and hospitals according to a set fee that includes all care associated with a procedure or…
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Future of Health CareMedical Decision-MakingPatient Empowerment
March 22, 2017

Health Care Price Transparency for Consumers Starts with Provider Action

“Consumer choice” is at the heart of the national health care debate. This presumes access to accurate information about costs. While consumers woke up to health care costs a few years ago as their share began to rise, they lack the necessary facts to make intelligent decisions about the quantity and quality of what they are purchasing. As costs continue skyward, this crucial information, especially price transparency, is what consumers are now demanding. But health care pricing remains a mystery that can’t be solved by consumers, on their own. While “pricing” to consumers includes insurance premiums and payments to providers, only…
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Future of Health CareMedical Decision-MakingPatient Empowerment
March 14, 2017

Fast Forward: Why Patients Should Own Their Medical Records

Up to now, who owns patient medical records hasn’t been a big issue. In fact, the “who owns” question has been largely confined to provider purchasing discussions regarding health care data analytics or other sharing of patient records, when providers want to assert their ownership of the data. Patients have had no voice in this conversation. Few people question the provider’s ownership of a patient’s record, which is supported by state statutes (only one state grants ownership to patients) as well as the rare case of litigation. All that changes going forward. Why? Because big revisions in health insurance will…
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Future of Health CareMACRAMedical Decision-MakingPatient Empowerment
March 7, 2017

The Problematic “A” in the ACA Repeal and Replace

Last week, my sister sent me a copy of an email that she had sent to her inner circle. It began, “I am writing you today as a metastatic breast cancer patient . . . and also as your friend or relative who wants you to have the best resources and care if this disease ever affects your life or loved ones.” It was a plea for women to understand what would happen to breast cancer patients if the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was repealed, linked to an article. She was hoping to reach across a divide to raise consciousness about…
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