Archive: June 2010

Commonwealth issue brief addresses innovative payment approaches

Posted on June 30, 2010

The Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, created by the Affordable Care Act (ACA), has a mandate to develop innovative payment models to improve health care delivery. The aim of this initiative is to achieve higher quality health care delivery and slower cost growth. The Commonwealth Fund Commission on a Higher Performance Health System’s issue brief, “Developing Innovative Payment Approaches: Finding the Path to High Performance,” discusses how the development, implementation, and evaluation of new care payment approaches can be improved, and how those improvements can help achieve the broader goals of health reform. The brief focuses largely on Medicare, but also considers how payment innovation pilots should not be limited to Medicare alone. Instead, payment innovations should also include Medicaid and the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to minimize the fragmented nature in which health care is provided.

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HHS opens Pre-Existing Condition Plan

Posted on June 30, 2010

On July 1, the Department of Health and Human Services will open a new “Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan” available to those who have been denied insurance, which the federal government will operate in 21 states. Twenty-nine states and the District of Columbia are operating their own high risk pools, all of which will be operational by the end of August. A link at Healthcare.gov allows those seeking coverage to find out how the plan works in their state.

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HHS unveils Healthcare.gov with consumer information and implementation updates

Posted on June 30, 2010

The Department of Health and Human Services has unveiled a new website, Healthcare.gov, where consumers will be able to research plans available in their area. Pricing information will be available starting in October, and the site will also provide additional resources on quality. Additionally, Healthcare.gov includes an “Implementation Center” where the Administration intends to post all regulations, authorities, and requests for comment related to the health reform law.

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National Prevention, Health Promotion and Public Health Council issues first report

Posted on June 30, 2010

The National Prevention, Health Promotion, and Public Health Council, which was created by the health reform law, has submitted its first report to Congress.

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GAO announces appointments to CO-OP advisory board

Posted on June 29, 2010

The Government Accountability Office has announced appointments of the 15 members of the Consumer Operated and Oriented Plan (CO-OP) Program Advisory Board.

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HHS opens applications for early retiree program

Posted on June 29, 2010

The Department of Health and Human Services’s Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight has opened applications for the Early Retiree Reinsurance Program created by the health reform law.

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CMS issues proposed rule on preventive and primary care

Posted on June 28, 2010

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has issued a proposed rule to provide preventive services to Medicare beneficiaries and boost payment to primary care providers.

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Medicaid Accountable Care Organization Demonstration Project

Posted on June 27, 2010

The law introduces ACOs on a voluntary basis by directing the Secretary of Health and Human Services to establish a “Pediatric Accountable Care Organization Demonstration Project.” This demonstration project would authorize a participating state to allow certain qualified Medicaid providers to organize themselves into an ACO for the purposes of receiving incentive payments “in the same manner as an accountable care organization is recognized and provided with incentive payments” under the health reform law’s Medicare ACO pilot program. The Medicaid ACO demonstration, akin to the Medicare ACO pilot, is aimed at reducing expenditure growth and improving health outcomes.

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Applications open for Tribal Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Grant Program

Posted on June 25, 2010

The Department of Health and Human Services’ Administration for Children and Families and the Health Resources and Services Administration are accepting applications for fiscal year 2010 for the Tribal Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting Grant Program.

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Administration announces health reform patient protection rules

Posted on June 23, 2010

The Obama Administration has announced new rules aimed at protecting patients under the health reform law, which target preexisting condition exclusions for children, rescissions, and coverage limits.

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