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Jan 12, 2018
SANFRANCISCO—Health systems are turning to apps, partnerships with retail stores, revamped websites and business models outside of healthcare with the hope they can keep their heads above water as they try to ride the wave of consumerism.

In presentations and meetings at the J.P. Morgan Healthcare Conference last week, executives described some of the new models in place right now, such as a health system taking the view that even patients leaving the hospital should still be considered as...

Jan 12, 2018

The CMS has proposed revising its coverage policy to make it easier for Medicare enrollees with implantable cardiac devices to receive an MRI.

While the agency first signed off on covering MRIs for beneficiaries with implantable devices like pacemakers in 2011, the approval included some requirements. Beneficiaries with certain implanted cardiac devices could only receive MRIs if it was part of a clinical trial.

Now, the agency is changing its tune and suggested allowing...

Jan 12, 2018

The Trump administration’s watershed decision Thursday to allow states to test a work requirement for adult Medicaid enrollees sparked widespread criticism from doctors, advocates for the poor, and minority and disability rights groups.

Conservatives, however, hailed the change to the federal-state program for low-income people. Stephen Miller, the Medicaid commissioner for Kentucky, which received authority Friday to implement a work requirement, said the new policy will “allow...

Jan 12, 2018

Kentucky has become the first state in the nation to receive federal approval to impose work requirements as a condition of Medicaid coverage.

In a letter sent to Kentucky state officials on Friday, the Trump administration made clear it would approve similar waivers for other states.

"Your substantial work will help inform future state demonstrations seeking to draw on Kentucky's novel approaches to Medicaid reform," Brian Neale, CMS' Medicaid director, said in the letter to...

Jan 12, 2018

Watch Our Live Taping

What The Health is going to happen in 2018? Come join us in D.C. and find out.

THE EVENT: A live taping of KHN’s “What The Health?” podcast.

WHEN: Thursday, Jan. 18, 1–2 p.m. ET

WHERE: Kaiser Family Foundation, 1330 G. Street NW, Washington, D.C.

The Trump administration this week told states they will be allowed to require some beneficiaries of the Medicaid program to work or perform community...

Jan 12, 2018

A report touted this week by the American Osteopathic Association shows an 85 percent increase in osteopathic medical students since 2007. Now, about 1 in 4 medical students attends an osteopathic medicine college—an enrollment figure that has increased an average of 25 percent every five years.

The report comes amid concerns that the United States is facing a physician shortage: The gap between physician supply and demand will range between 61,700 and 94,700 physicians by 2025,...

Jan 12, 2018

In a move that is sparking insurers' hopes, House Republican leaders are quietly pushing a bill that would fund cost-sharing reduction payments and a reinsurance pool.

Rep. Ryan Costello (R-Pa.) of the Energy and Commerce Committee said committee leadership wants to mark up his market stabilization bill—introduced last month—so it can potentially be attached to the omnibus spending package expected in February.

Both Costello and insurance lobbyists close to talks say carriers...

Jan 12, 2018

This story also ran on NPR.
This story can be republished for free (details).

Dr. Mahendra Patel, a pediatric cancer doctor, has begun giving away medications to some of his patients, determined not to disrupt their treatments for serious illnesses like leukemia, should Congress fail to come up with renewed funding for a key children’s health program now hostage to partisan politics.

In his 35 years of practice, Patel, of San Antonio, has seen the...

Jan 11, 2018
Tenet Healthcare Corp. completed the $170 million sale of its last two Philadelphia hospitals—Hahnemann University Hospital and St. Christopher's Hospital for Children—to American Academic Health System, an affiliate of Paladin Healthcare.

The deal was initially announced in early September as part of eight low-margin U.S. hospitals and nine hospitals and clinics in the United Kingdom that Tenet planned to offload to reduce debt and focus on healthier operations where it has leading market...

Jan 11, 2018

New guidance offers hospitals the first standardized recommendations on ending safety protocols when treating patients for multidrug-resistant infections.

The guidance suggests clinicians determine how long they should use gowns, gloves and masks when treating patients with antimicrobial-resistant pathogens, as well as deciding how long those patients should remain in isolation.

Co-author Dr. Gonzolo Bearman, chair of the division of Infectious Diseases at Virginia...