About Joseph Burns Joseph Burns (@jburns18), a Massachusetts-based independent journalist, is AHCJ’s topic leader on health insurance. He welcomes questions and suggestions on insurance resources and tip sheets at [email protected] View all posts by Joseph Burns → Photo: Thomas Hawk via Flickr Every few months a health insurance news story breaks that’s so big it is likely to require reporters unfamiliar with the beat to get up to speed quickly on how insurance works. A recent case in point came in February when a former medical director for Aetna admitted in a pre-trial deposition that he never looked at a patient’s medical record when approving or denying care. Also, hospital and health system transactions announced in 2017 totaled 115, up 13 percent over the year before and the highest number recorded in recent history, according to a report from Kaufman, Hall & Associates, a management consulting company that tracks health care … [Read more...] about As major mergers transform local health care, covering the business side is key
Emergent health care
News Sports Entertainment Classifieds 77° Full Menu 77° eEdition Customer Service Customer Service SacBee Rewards About Us About Us Contact Us Apps Mobile & Apps Twitter, Facebook, Google+, YouTube News in Education (NIE) Newsletters Local Sacramento Region Arena City Beat Crime Local Govt Salary Database The Homeless Marcos Bretón Transportation Education Environment Health & Medicine Traffic Conditions Weather Communities Elk Grove Folsom/El Dorado Roseville/Placer Yolo Sports Sports Kings Kings Corner with Jason Jones NBA News 49ers with Matt Barrows Giants Oakland A's High School Sports Joe Davidson Ailene Voisin More Sports Raiders NFL News MLB News River Cats Soccer Colleges Golf Auto Racing Politics Politics Capitol Alert State Workers Local Elections PoliGRAPH State Worker Salary Database Legislative Gifts Elections Local Elections California Elections Election … [Read more...] about More undocumented immigrants would qualify for health care in $250 million California plan
They're in the country illegally. Or maybe they had protected status before, but lost it due to policy changes by the current presidential administration. Or they're waiting for word from Congress or the courts on whether they'll get to stay. Whatever their situation under the law, the 11.3 million undocumented immigrants currently in the United States still need, and sometimes get, health care. Even if they don't have health insurance, federal law requires hospitals to care for them in emergencies. They can turn to safety-net clinics for basic needs. Now, a new analysis highlights an ironic development in the intertwined issues of immigration and health care -- two areas where the current and previous administrations differ greatly. Undocumented people in certain states may get more medical help while they are here, it finds, thanks to the current administration's effort to give states more flexibility with their health care spending. And in a reversal of the previous … [Read more...] about An ironic health care twist for undocumented immigrants
The Maryland Proton Treatment Center chose “Survivor” as the theme for its grand opening in 2016, invoking the reality-TV show’s tropical sets with its own Tiki torches, palm trees and thatched booths piled with pineapples and bananas. It was the perfect motif for a facility dedicated to fighting cancer. Jeff Probst, host of CBS’ “Survivor,” greeted guests via video from a Fiji beach.But behind the scenes, the $200 million center’s own survival was less than certain. Insurers were hesitating to cover procedures at the Baltimore facility, affiliated with the University of Maryland Medical Center. The private investors who developed the machine had badly overestimated the number of patients it could attract. Bankers would soon be owed repayment of a $170 million loan. Only two years after it opened, the center is enduring a painful restructuring with investors poised for huge losses. It has never made money, although it has ample cash to finance … [Read more...] about As proton centers struggle, a sign of a health care bubble?
Patients with acute low back pain who get a referral for physical therapy, and are treated within three days, use fewer opioids and have lower health-care costs, according to a study led by a University of Central Florida researcher.The study also showed that early physical therapy lowered the need for health-care services such as advanced imaging, spinal injection, emergency room visits and spine surgery.Researchers said this is the first population-based study to show the benefits of immediate physical therapy for patients who have acute low back pain, which is the most common cause of work-related disability. It is estimated that costs associated with low back pain are more than $100 billion each year.“Low back pain is the cause of significant pain, disability and loss of productivity,” said Xinliang Liu, an assistant professor in the Department of Health Management and Informatics at UCF and the study’s lead author, in a news release. “Decisions about … [Read more...] about Immediate physical therapy for low back pain may reduce health-care costs, opioid use, study shows