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Rising Healthcare Costs, and the Introduction of Accountable Care Organizations

January 27, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Doctors, Employer Sponsored Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance, Primary Care Physician, Specialists

Rising Healthcare costs, and the Introduction of Accountable Care Organizations

By Ashley Ahle
January 27, 2011

While most of the buzz around Health Care Reform seems to be about keeping costs down by holding insurance companies accountable for rising premiums, there is one area that, more often than not, is overlooked by many. Who is holding Doctors and Hospitals accountable for their rising costs?

One part of the Health Care law that is not too often talked about, is the inclusion of Accountable Care Organizations. In the law, ACO’s take up only seven pages. What are ACO’s you may ask? It’s basically a new model of incentives for hospitals and doctors who provide quality care while also keeping costs down.

When basic procedures are done, instead of the doctor recommending many more unexplained tests and visits they merely do it right the first time therefore cutting costs. If they succeed in treating patients while cutting costs, there are incentives, such as savings bonuses available. Other benefits of ACO’s are the melding of all parts of care for patients. Currently one patient can have many specialists providing treatment, without working with each-other. ACO’s would bring all of these components together so that patients have easy access to quality care.

Now, this may sound similar to HMO’s, however with ACO’s the patient may not even know they are in an ACO. Also, the patient still has the freedom to choose who treats them. Conversely, with HMO’s patients are penalized for going out of network.

Accountable Care Organizations come with their own downfalls. Many people worry that the rush to be a part of and ACO will have a huge effect on market share, and give the hospitals too much leverage, therefore back lashing and actually driving health costs up. Also in more rural areas the fear is that independent providers will disappear completely, stifling all competition.

Like it’s all encompassing partner, Health Reform, Accountable Care Organizations still need to be tweaked. They have yet to decide who will run them, insurance companies, hospitals or doctors. There is growing enthusiasm for ACO’s and once the finer points are ironed out, we could potentially see great savings.

The New Republic: The Worst Case For Health Reform

January 21, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Employer Sponsored Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance

The New Republic: The Worst Case For Health Reform

by Jonathan Cohn
January 20, 2011
Jonathan Cohn is a senior editor at The New Republic and a senior fellow at Demos

Steven Hyder, 40, runs his own legal practice out of a shared office in downtown Monroe, Michigan, a blue-collar town south of Detroit. Mostly he handles relatively routine, low-profile work: bankruptcies, personal injury claims, that sort of thing. But recently, he became part of a much bigger case. He’s a named plaintiff in a lawsuit challenging the constitutionality of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act….

Why Health Reform Won’t be Repealed

January 20, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Child(ren) Only Health Plans, College Students, Dependants, Doctors, Employer Sponsored Plans, Grandfathered Health Plans, Group Health Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Exchange, Health Insurance Quotes, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance, Primary Care Physician, Specialists

Why Health Reform Won’t be Repealed

By Aaron Carroll, Special to CNN
January 19, 2011 1:05 p.m. EST

Editor’s note: Dr. Aaron E. Carroll is an associate professor of pediatrics at the Indiana University School of Medicine and director of the university’s Center for Health Policy and Professionalism Research. He blogs about health policy at The Incidental Economist.

(CNN) — This week, the House of Representatives plans to vote to repeal the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act. It will succeed….”

Another Lawsuit Against ObamaCare Survives a Preliminary Challenge

January 20, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Child(ren) Only Health Plans, Doctors, eHealthInsurance.com, Group Health Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Agent, Health Insurance Exchange, Health Insurance Quotes, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance, Life Insurance, Permanent Life Insurance, Primary Care Physician, Specialists, Term Life Insurance, Uncategorized, Whole Life Insurance

Another Lawsuit Against ObamaCare Survives a Preliminary Challenge
October 14, 2010 6:32 pm

The rulings keep rolling in on the constitutionality of the federal reform law. On Thursday, a federal judge in Florida refused to dismiss the lawsuit brought by a group of state attorneys general( led by Florida’s Bill McCollum), although he threw out several of the suit’s lesser claims. (Here’s the ruling, courtesy of the Wall Street Journal.) That’s the second such decision; a federal judge in Virginia held in August that the Commonwealth’s attorney general could proceed with a similar lawsuit. On the flip side, a federal judge in Michigan ruled earlier this month against a lawsuit that had been brought by the Thomas More Law Center, declaring that the law’s requirement to buy was constitutional….

— Jon Healey

Myths — Ahem — Lies About Health-Care Reform

January 19, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Dependants, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance

Myths — Ahem — Lies About Health-Care Reform

By Richard Cohen
Posted at 11:41 AM ET, 01/19/2011

The Post, enamored of euphemisms, calls lies myths. Thus the headline on a terrific article by Glenn Kessler entitled “Debunking common myths about health-care reform.”

The first myth is that “This is a ‘government takeover’ of the health-care system.” It is, of course, no such thing, unless the term “takeover” means the passing of some regulations. If that’s the case, then the government long ago took over the radio and television industry (the FCC and all of that), the drug industry (the FDA) and, of course, mining, what with all those pesky inspections and periodic indignation over the deaths of miners. In fact, as Kessler points out, the government did not take over the health insurance industry….

Administration: Health Repeal Could Cost Millions Coverage

January 18, 2011 in Affordable Health Insurance, Child(ren) Only Health Plans, Dependants, Employer Sponsored Plans, Grandfathered Health Plans, Group Health Plans, Health Care, Health Care Costs, Health Care Reform, Health Insurance Agent, Health Insurance Exchange, Health Insurance Quotes, Health Insurance Reform, Individual Health Insurance, Specialists

Administration: Health Repeal Could Cost Millions Coverage

By the CNN Wire Staff
January 18, 2011 1:19 p.m. EST

Washington (CNN) — Nearly half of all Americans under the age of 65 have health conditions that could prevent them from getting insurance if the Republican effort to repeal health care reform is successful, U.S. Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius said Tuesday.

Sebelius said 129 million people — nearly half of all Americans under the age of 65 — have some form of pre-existing condition that could make them ineligible for coverage should they lose or change jobs, get divorced or face other changes that force them to seek new insurance….

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