The Health 202: Hospitals lean into virtual health care even as Medicare won't cover it
Telehealth advocates say it's not only rural areas that lack access to health providers. (Source: Washington Post: To Your Health)
Source: Washington Post: To Your Health - March 22, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Paige Winfield Cunningham Source Type: news

The Health 202: Industry is tussling over drug prices. But it's united on combating Medicare-for-all
The big industry players are simultaneously allies and enemies. (Source: Washington Post: To Your Health)
Source: Washington Post: To Your Health - March 21, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Paige Winfield Cunningham Source Type: news

Value of Training Physicians at Health Centers Pegged at $1.8 Billion in Public Program Savings
Research released today identifies how the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education (THCGME) program could save $1.8 billion in Medicare and Medicaid spending, as residents trained in lower-spending areas average lower spending per patient once they begin practice. The THCGME program trains physicians and dentists at community health centers in rural and underserved areas, encouraging them to work in these areas and practice in primary care. (Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center - March 21, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Fewer black, white Medicare patients dying within 30 days of stroke
The rate of older black and white people who receive Medicare benefits and die after an initial stroke has fallen over the last 25 years, a new study says. (Source: Health News - UPI.com)
Source: Health News - UPI.com - March 20, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

Bet Your Toilet Seat Can & #039;t Do This!
Every now and then we come across a technology that just begs the question: How on Earth did they think of that? Case in point, a toilet seat designed to detect heart failure by measuring a patient's biometrics during "natural" processes.  A team of researchers at Rochester Institute of Technology (RIT) are responsible for the idea, which is intended to lower hospital readmission rates by alerting doctors of a patient's deteriorating cardiovascular condition before the patients even realize they have symptoms. The idea is for hospitals to buy the seats and issue them to heart failure patie...
Source: MDDI - March 20, 2019 Category: Medical Devices Authors: Amanda Pedersen Tags: Cardiovascular Source Type: news

Peerfit raises $18M from Virgo Investment Group
Along with expanding its brand and business, the new funding will also go toward support of the company's Medicare Advantage product, Peerfit Move. (Source: mobihealthnews)
Source: mobihealthnews - March 20, 2019 Category: Information Technology Source Type: news

Healthy Food Rx Could Be Cost-Effective for Medicare, Medicaid
WEDNESDAY, March 20, 2019 -- Economic incentives for healthier foods through Medicare and Medicaid could generate substantial health gains and be highly cost-effective, according to a study published online March 19 in PLOS Medicine. Yujin Lee,... (Source: Drugs.com - Pharma News)
Source: Drugs.com - Pharma News - March 20, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Source Type: news

Stroke risk drops in both black and white older adults
(Wolters Kluwer Health) Recent reductions in hospitalization and death due to stroke extend to both black and white Medicare beneficiaries, reports a study in the April issue of Medical Care. The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer. (Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health)
Source: EurekAlert! - Medicine and Health - March 20, 2019 Category: International Medicine & Public Health Source Type: news

Prescriptions for healthy food might save lives - and money
(Reuters Health) - Healthy food prescriptions written for Medicare and Medicaid beneficiaries might lower the risk of costly chronic illnesses, such as diabetes and cardiovascular disease, and at the same time lower the costs of care, a new study suggests. (Source: Reuters: Health)
Source: Reuters: Health - March 19, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: healthNews Source Type: news

Swalwell Touts'Coverage For All' But Leaves Opening For Private Medicare
2020 Democratic Presidential hopeful U.S. Rep. Eric Swalwell wants to maintain private insurance while adding a public option, a position consistent with his past support of privatized Medicare Advantage. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 19, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Source Type: news

Food prescriptions may prevent heart disease in 2 million people
If Medicaid and Medicare provided fruits and vegetables, it could prevent cardiovascular disease in about 1.93 million beneficiaries, according to new research. (Source: Health News - UPI.com)
Source: Health News - UPI.com - March 19, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

Quality of Life Assessment Among Substance Use Disorder Patients - Measure Testing Opportunity
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and Mathematica Policy Research will be developing and testing an electronic clinical quality measure related to quality of life (QOL) for patients who have received any intervention for substance use disorder (SUD). To inform this effort, they are recruiting clinicians to interview about QOL assessments for SUD patients in daily practice. (Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center - March 19, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Morning Break: No Free Medicare Visits; Pill-Free Painkillers; Luck of the Irish AMR Solution
(MedPage Today) -- Health news and commentary from around the Web gathered by the MedPage Today staff (Source: MedPage Today Psychiatry)
Source: MedPage Today Psychiatry - March 18, 2019 Category: Psychiatry Source Type: news

Can a lifetime guarantee boost value-based care?
Cheryl Bednar, 54, of Laflin, Penn., suffered from chronic pain from hip deterioration until Geisinger Dr. James Murphy performed a hip replacement in February 2018 and offered the lifetime guarantee. (Image from Geisinger) Swiss orthopedics company Medacta International and Geisinger Health System have said they will pilot a lifetime guarantee program for knee replacement surgeries. The program will cover full costs for screened Geisinger Health Plan members who receive knee replacement surgery while also ensuring reimbursement for any associated future care the patients may incur throughout their life...
Source: Mass Device - March 18, 2019 Category: Medical Devices Authors: Nancy Crotti Tags: Business/Financial News Featured Implants News Well Orthopedics Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Geisinger Health System Medacta Source Type: news

Meet Elite Insurance Co., a 2019 Best Places to Work honoree
Medium (25-49 employees) Elite Insurance Company Location: Clearwater What is your company culture in a #hashtag? #WeCare Elite Insurance Co. is a Medicare learning resource center. The company educates Medicare beneficiaries on all their Medicare healthcare options and is also a Medicare Supplement insurance broker.  Are you currently hiring? Mid-year, we will start hiring 15 – 20 employees every couple of months. When hiring, what do you look for in the ideal candidate? Our ideal candidate… (Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines)
Source: bizjournals.com Health Care:Biotechnology headlines - March 18, 2019 Category: Biotechnology Authors: Chris Erickson Source Type: news

Medicare For All Won't Result In Better Health Outcomes
Abolishing private insurance and forcing everyone into a government health plan -- as Medicare for All's proponents advocate -- wouldn't improve patients'health. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 18, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Sally Pipes, Contributor Source Type: news

CMS: Agency Information Collection Activities: Proposed Collection; Comment Request
Request for comments from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) regarding a proposed information collection related to identity tracking for people accessing the HIPAA Eligibility Transaction System (HETS). HIPAA Security rules require employees using the system to have a unique identifier assigned by their provider office, health plan, group health plan, or clearinghouse. Comments are due May 17, 2019. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - March 18, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

CMS: Medicare and Medicaid Programs: Approval of an Application From the Accreditation Association for Hospitals and Health Systems/Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program for Continued CMS Approval of Its Hospital Accreditation Program
Final notice from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) of their decision to approve the Accreditation Assocation for Hospitals and Health Systems/Healthcare Facilities Accreditation Program (AAHHS/HFAP) as the national accreditation organization for hospitals who want to participate in Medicaid or Medicare. The notice is effective September 25, 2019 through September 25, 2023. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - March 18, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Beto O ’Rourke Dials Back Medicare-For-All Debate
In launching his campaign for President, Beto O'Rourke laid out priorities on the path to Medicare coverage for all Americans. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 17, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Source Type: news

Beto O ’Rourke Dials Back Medicare-For-All Talk
In launching his campaign for President, Beto O'Rourke sees an incremental approach to guaranteeing insurance coverage for all Americans. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 17, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Source Type: news

Medicare wellness visits are supposed to be free — unless you call it a physical.
You can face a hefty bill if your appointment veers beyond the bounds of preventive services into medical treatment. (Source: Washington Post: To Your Health)
Source: Washington Post: To Your Health - March 16, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Michelle Andrews Source Type: news

MedPAC: Imaging grows slower than other medical services
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) may have published its latest...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: MedPAC proposes imaging payment cuts in June report Broken record? MedPAC still frets about imaging use MedPAC votes to recommend elimination of MIPS MedPAC floats voluntary MIPS idea MedPAC considers repeal of MIPS value program (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - March 15, 2019 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

MedPAC: Docs Don't Need Raise in Base Medicare Pay
(MedPage Today) -- Commission agrees with update set by MACRA law (Source: MedPage Today Primary Care)
Source: MedPage Today Primary Care - March 15, 2019 Category: Primary Care Source Type: news

Heart Attacks Fall One-Third Among Older Americans
The study of more than 4 million Medicare patients found that hospitalizations for heart attacks dropped 38 percent between 1995 and 2014. At the same time, deaths within 30 days of a heart attack reached an all-time low of 12 percent, down more than one-third since 1995. (Source: WebMD Health)
Source: WebMD Health - March 15, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

Beto O'Rourke: Medicare for All is "one of the possible paths" to fix health care
Former Texas congressman and Senate candidate Beto O'Rourke is the latest Democrat to join the presidential race. He sat down with "CBS This Morning" co-host Gayle King for his first TV interview since announcing his campaign. In their wide-ranging conversation, they discuss why he decided to run, his plans to tackle health care, and why he thinks his limited government experience will not hurt his chances. (Source: Health News: CBSNews.com)
Source: Health News: CBSNews.com - March 15, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Source Type: news

Changes to the six protected class policy are the wrong prescription for Medicare and HIV patients
For over 10 years, one of the cornerstones of the Medicare Part D program has been to ensure the sickest and most vulnerable patients have access to the clinically critical medicines they rely on. For the patients whose treatment is covered under six specific classes of medicines – those with HIV, cancer and epilepsy among others – more commonly known as the six protected classes, there is no “one size fits all” for medicines that will work. The medicines for these patients have complex interactions, side effects, contraindications and other factors that must be cons idered in their coverage. (Source: The Catalyst)
Source: The Catalyst - March 15, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Tom Wilbur Tags: HIV/AIDS Part D Prescription for Medicare Source Type: news

Abbott Wins Additional Indication for MitraClip
Abbott Laboratories has received an expanded indication for MitraClip. The Abbott Park, IL-based company’s new indication addresses the secondary form of mitral regurgitation and significantly increases the amount of people with MR able to be treated with MitraClip. Based on this approval, Abbott said it will now begin discussions with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and physician specialty societies to request a revision to the national coverage determination that would expand Medicare coverage to include secondary MR patients.The indication was supported by the results of the COAPT T...
Source: MDDI - March 15, 2019 Category: Medical Devices Authors: Omar Ford Tags: Business Cardiovascular Source Type: news

CMS, HHS: Medicare Program; Revisions to Payment Policies Under the Physician Fee Schedule and Other Revisions to Part B for CY 2019; Medicare Shared Savings Program Requirements; Quality Payment Program; Medicaid Promoting Interoperability Program; Quality Payment Program-Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstance Policy for the 2019 MIPS Payment Year; Provisions From the Medicare Shared Savings Program-Accountable Care Organizations-Pathways to Success; and Expanding the Use of Telehealth Services for the Treatment of Opioid Use Disorder Under the Substance Use-Disorder Prevention That Promotes Opioid Recovery and Treatment (SUPPORT) for Patients and Communities Act; Correction
Notice from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) and Health and Human Services (HHS) correcting technical errors in the "Evaluation and Management Services" provisions in theNovember 23, 2018 final rule regarding Medicare Part B payment policies and the Medicare physician fee schedule. The corrections are effective March 14, 2019. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - March 15, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

CMS: Agency Information Collection Activities: Submission for OMB Review; Comment Request
Centers for Medicare& Medicaid Services (CMS) requests comments on three information collection activities: 1) revisions to the Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems (HCAHPS) survey that removes three questions related to pain communication to avoid potential impacts on opioid prescriptions; 2) new Home and Community Based Services (HCBS) Incident Management Survey; 3) and a new section on The State Flexibility to Stabilize the Market Grant Program Reporting. Comments are due April 15, 2019. (Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: Federal Register updates via the Rural Assistance Center - March 15, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Medicare Payment Advisory Commission Releases Report to Congress on Medicare Payment Policy
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) released it's March 2019Report to the Congress: Medicare Payment Policy. It analyzes the payment adequacy in fee-for-service Medicare, reviews the status of Medicare Advantage (MA) and Medicare Part D, reports on incentives for prescribing opioid and non-opioid pain treatment under Medicare's hospital inpatient and outpatient payment systems, and includes a recommendation that Congress replace the four current hospital quality payment programs with a single streamlined program. (Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center - March 15, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Post-Acute Care At Home Tied To More Readmissions Than Skilled Nursing Facilities (CME/CE)
(MedPage Today) -- Readmissions up at 30 days for Medicare patients discharged to home care while total payments down (Source: MedPage Today Primary Care)
Source: MedPage Today Primary Care - March 14, 2019 Category: Primary Care Source Type: news

Healthcare Reformers Should Look To Europe For Feasible Alternatives To Medicare For All
Rather than taking its cue from our northern neighbors, or the British National Health Services, it makes more sense for the healthcare reform movement to consider what is being done on the European continent. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 14, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Joshua Cohen, Contributor Source Type: news

CMS Strengthens Monitoring and Evaluation Expectations for Medicaid 1115 Demonstrations
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released new tools and guidance for states on monitoring metrics and research methods related to section 1115 demonstrations. These tools and guidance are designed to help states discern if their demonstrations are achieving expected outcomes. (Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center)
Source: News stories via the Rural Assistance Center - March 14, 2019 Category: Rural Health Source Type: news

Medtronic ’ s Covidien to pay $20m to settle ClosureFast kickback allegations
Medtronic‘s (NYSE:MDT) Covidien has agreed to pay approximately $20 million to resolve kickback allegations related to the sale and promotion of its ClosureFast radiofrequency ablation catheters. The Fridley, Minn.-based company agreed to pay approximately $17.5 million to the U.S. to settle alleged violations of the False Claims Act and an additional $1.5 million to California and $1 million to Florida for claims settled by state Medicaid programs, according to a U.S. Department of Justice release. “Today’s settlement serves as an important reminder to those in the health care community that unlawful kic...
Source: Mass Device - March 13, 2019 Category: Medical Devices Authors: Fink Densford Tags: Business/Financial News Featured Legal News Covidien Medtronic Source Type: news

Trump ’ s Proposed Budget Undermines His H.I.V. Plan, Experts Say
Strategies abound to end the AIDS epidemic, but expense — mostly for drugs costing up to $50,000 a year — is the inevitable obstacle. (Source: NYT Health)
Source: NYT Health - March 13, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: DONALD G. McNEIL Jr. Tags: Acquired Immune Deficiency Syndrome Federal Budget (US) Truvada (Drug) United States Politics and Government Medicaid Epidemics Medicare Trump, Donald J Drugs (Pharmaceuticals) Budgets and Budgeting Prices (Fares, Fees and Rates) Source Type: news

Trump Budget Seeks 12% HHS Cut, Medicaid Work Rules, FDA Boost Trump Budget Seeks 12% HHS Cut, Medicaid Work Rules, FDA Boost
The White House on Monday unveiled a budget request that proposes changes in Medicare, including its payment approach for physician services provided in offices owned by hospitals.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Hiv-Aids Headlines)
Source: Medscape Hiv-Aids Headlines - March 12, 2019 Category: Infectious Diseases Tags: Family Medicine/Primary Care News Source Type: news

Trump's cuts to Medicare hospital payments trigger an outcry
Candidate Trump promised not to cut Medicare but his payment cuts to hospitals prompt an outcry (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - March 12, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news

Hospitals: Medicare-Like Public Options Don ’t Pay Us Enough Money
The hospital industry Tuesday ripped Medicare-like public option proposals saying their payment rates aren't high enough. (Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News)
Source: Forbes.com Healthcare News - March 12, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Authors: Bruce Japsen, Contributor Source Type: news

The Health 202: HIV prevention is the part of Trump's budget Congress might pass
Medicare and Medicaid took a beating though. (Source: Washington Post: To Your Health)
Source: Washington Post: To Your Health - March 12, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Paige Winfield Cunningham Source Type: news

Health Highlights: March 12, 2019
Here are some of the latest health and medical news developments, compiled by the editors of HealthDay: Trump Targets Medicaid, Medicare in Budget A significant slowdown in Medicaid spending and a large reduction in Medicare are among the... (Source: Drugs.com - Daily MedNews)
Source: Drugs.com - Daily MedNews - March 12, 2019 Category: General Medicine Source Type: news

Healthcare cuts to come in 2020 federal budget
President Donald Trump on March 7 released a budget for 2020 that includes...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: AMIC pans 'site neutral' payment plan What's next for U.S. healthcare regulation? AACR opposes Trump's 'draconian' research cuts Senate passes bill repealing Medicare's SGR formula House passes SGR repeal bill (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - March 12, 2019 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Vets Who Get Opioids From VA, Medicare at Higher Overdose Risk
Title: Vets Who Get Opioids From VA, Medicare at Higher Overdose RiskCategory: Health NewsCreated: 3/11/2019 12:00:00 AMLast Editorial Review: 3/12/2019 12:00:00 AM (Source: MedicineNet Chronic Pain General)
Source: MedicineNet Chronic Pain General - March 12, 2019 Category: Anesthesiology Source Type: news

Dual Receipt of Opioids Tied to Increased Risk for OD Death
Those enrolled in both VA and Medicare Part D have higher odds of death from Rx opioid overdose (Source: The Doctors Lounge - Psychiatry)
Source: The Doctors Lounge - Psychiatry - March 12, 2019 Category: Psychiatry Tags: Family Medicine, Internal Medicine, Pharmacy, Psychiatry, Anesthesiology & amp; Pain, Journal, Source Type: news

In Dems' 'Medicare for All' battle cry, GOP sees '20 weapon
Republican strategists see 'Medicare for All' proposals from Democratic presidential candidates and lawmakers gives them opening to use health care as 2020 campaign issue (Source: ABC News: Health)
Source: ABC News: Health - March 12, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Health Source Type: news

Trump proposes big cuts to health programs for poor, elderly and disabled
The budget blueprint also proposes trims to Medicare spending, partly by targeting fraud and abuse. (Source: Washington Post: To Your Health)
Source: Washington Post: To Your Health - March 12, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Amy Goldstein Source Type: news

Few Physicians Using CMS Advance Care Planning Codes Few Physicians Using CMS Advance Care Planning Codes
CMS created codes to pay physicians and other qualifying providers for the discussions, but fewer than 3% of Medicare beneficiaries had a claim. Authors identify targets for improving use.Medscape Medical News (Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines)
Source: Medscape Medical News Headlines - March 11, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Tags: Internal Medicine News Source Type: news

Trump ’s Budget Asks for Nearly $300 Million to End the U.S. HIV Epidemic Within 10 Years
President Donald Trump’s proposed 2020 budget includes nearly $300 million meant to “defeat the HIV/AIDS epidemic” in the U.S. — even as it calls for a 12% reduction in total funding to the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). During his February State of the Union address, Trump announced an ambitious plan to “eliminate the HIV epidemic in the United States within 10 years.” During a subsequent call with reporters, health officials said the initiative would focus on 48 at-risk counties across the country and would involve promoting early HIV treatment and diagnosis, expanding ...
Source: TIME: Health - March 11, 2019 Category: Consumer Health News Authors: Jamie Ducharme Tags: Uncategorized HIV/AIDS Source Type: news

Dual Receipt of Opioids Tied to Increased Risk for OD Death
MONDAY, March 11, 2019 -- For veterans enrolled in the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) and Medicare Part D, receipt of opioids from both VA and Part D is associated with an increased likelihood of death from prescription opioid overdose,... (Source: Drugs.com - Pharma News)
Source: Drugs.com - Pharma News - March 11, 2019 Category: Pharmaceuticals Source Type: news

ACR opens call for comments on 'egregious' insurer policy
The American College of Radiology (ACR) is welcoming comments regarding "egregious"...Read more on AuntMinnie.comRelated Reading: ACR, AAPM address radiation incident in Ariz. crematory ACR sounds alarm regarding Medicare ultrasound cuts ACR backs CT colonography ahead of USPSTF review ACR adds topics to Appropriateness Criteria guidelines ACR: No news is good news in MPFS 2019 (Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines)
Source: AuntMinnie.com Headlines - March 11, 2019 Category: Radiology Source Type: news

Vets Who Get Opioids From VA, Medicare at Higher Overdose Risk
MONDAY, March 11, 2019 -- Many military veterans can get prescription opioid painkillers from both the VA and Medicare, putting them at nearly triple the risk for an overdose, new research warns. The finding could have implications for a huge... (Source: Drugs.com - Daily MedNews)
Source: Drugs.com - Daily MedNews - March 11, 2019 Category: General Medicine Source Type: news