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GOP eyeing Medicare, Medicaid reform in 2018, Ryan says

December 8, 2017

House Speaker Paul Ryan (R-Wis.) says Republican lawmakers next year will "have to get back [to] entitlement reform," such as Medicare and Medicaid reform, as a way of "tackl[ing] the debt and the deficit."

US health spending slows, but consumers' out-of-pocket spending soars, CMS data show

December 7, 2017

In an annual report, CMS actuaries find U.S. health spending increased by 4.3% to $3.3 trillion in 2016, down from growth rates of 5.8% in 2015 and 5.1% in 2014—but consumers' out-of-pocket spending rose at its fastest rate since 2007.

Study: Largest US insurers are depending more on Medicare, Medicaid for revenues, enrollment

December 7, 2017

The study finds that Medicare and Medicaid plans offered by the United States' five largest health insurers accounted for 59% of the insurers' total revenue and 20% of the insurers' combined enrollment in 2016, demonstrating the insurers' growing dependence on government health programs.

Analysts warn hospital bankruptcies could be looming

December 5, 2017

Industry observers say an increasing number of hospitals and other health care companies likely will file for bankruptcy or restructure their debt in the coming year.

'Street medicine' brings primary care to homeless people

December 4, 2017

Street medicine programs—under which health care providers meet homeless and other disadvantaged individuals where they are to provide primary care and social services—are growing throughout the United States, and some are generating unexpected cost savings.

AHL feature: 5 questions you were too embarrassed to ask about health insurance

November 30, 2017

The U.S. health insurance system is one of the most complex in the world, so we don't blame you if you need a refresher on the basics. American Health Line answers five key questions surrounding the different payers, methods of reimbursement, various forms of cost-sharing, and the most common types of plans on the market.

Trump’s HHS secretary nominee unveils his top 4 priorities

November 30, 2017

Alex Azar, President Trump’s nominee for HHS secretary, says lowering prescription drug prices would be one of his top four priorities if confirmed and addresses concerns about his background as a pharmaceutical executive.

Report: Medicaid covered 32% of all US ED visits in 2014

November 30, 2017

A recent report from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality shows Medicaid paid for more emergency department visits in 2014 than Medicare or private insurers.

Making the 'ambulance call' a 'house call': New efforts aim to treat urgent care patients at home

November 28, 2017

Under mobile integrated health initiatives, first responders are permitted to provide certain care services in patients' homes, in some cases preventing unnecessary hospital visits.

Mass. enacts law to guarantee access to no-cost contraceptives, even if ACA is repealed

November 22, 2017

The new law aims to guarantee Massachusetts residents have access to contraceptives with no out-of-pocket costs, even if the Affordable Care Act—which requires insurers to cover contraceptives without cost-sharing—is repealed.

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