On the eve of what could be a historic vote in Congress to repeal key portions of the Affordable Care Act, the California Department of Health Care Services has issued an analysis of how that might impact future funding of the Medi-Cal program.
California Healthcare News
The Department of Managed Health Care has issued a rare license revocation for an insurer, although that company's top executive said it had already planned to surrender its license this summer.
The agency revoked the license of Fresno-based mental health insurer Avante Behavioral Health Plan on March 16, records show. Although the agency has revoked or suspended the licenses of several individual insurance agents, this appears to be the first case in recent memory where it revoked the license of an insurer to conduct business.
The U.S. House of Representatives has scheduled a vote on the afternoon of March 23 to repeal and replace some of the most crucial provisions of the Affordable Care Act. However, on the morning of the vote, it remains unsure whether there are enough votes in place to pass the bill and send it to the U.S. Senate. The New York Times reported on Thursday morning that the Republicans still appear short of a majority to get the bill, known as the American Health Care Act, passed. No Democratic lawmakers are expected to vote for the AHCA.
A new study by researchers at UC San Francisco suggests that the use of geofencing applications could improve the monitoring of chronically ill patients and improve their overall health.
The San Francisco-based Blue Shield of California Foundation has announced $670,000 in grants to nine organizations which are focused on preserving the healthcare gains made by the expansion of the Medi-Cal program, as well as curbing domestic violence.
The grants are going to organizations such as California Indian Legal Services, the California Partnership to End Domestic Violence, and the Los Angeles LGBT Center, among others. The specific amounts of each grant were not announced.
The state's health insurance exchange has crunched the numbers on what the American Health Care Act – the bill intend-ed to replace current healthcare reform would create. And the picture is not pretty.
State Sen. Ed Hernandez, D-West Covina, has introduced legislation that would compel a significant level of price transparency and cost disclosures on the part of drug manufacturers. The bill has gained the support of California's health insurers despite extensive reporting burdens placed on them as well.
Hernandez has been a highly vocal critic of the recent business practices of drug manufacturers, which include huge increases for the prices of medications that have often been on the market for decades.
The Congressional Budget Office is out with its estimate of the effect that the Republican health bill, “The American Health Care Act,” would have on the nation’s healthcare system and how much it would cost the federal government. The GOP plan is designed to partially repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act passed during the Obama administration.
Here are some of the CBO highlights:
The California Department of Public Health says that Anthem Blue Cross of California owes it approximately $525,000 for prenatal screening tests it conducted for its enrollees.
A diabetes “tune up” clinic operated by the Skaggs School of Pharmacy and Pharmaceutical Sciences at University of California San Diego for the local Veterans Affairs healthcare system has been able to cut avoidable costs for patients by a significant amount.
The model is based on collaboration between a pharmacist and endocrinologist, with the assistance of some pharmacy school students. They focus on medication therapy management and education for the patients.
The Republican-controlled House of Representatives revealed this week its plan to overhaul the Affordable Care Act, the crux of their proposals in two committee bills that would vastly revise the financing of Medicaid enrollments for the poor and premium support for middle-income Americans to purchase health insurance.
The changes were roundly criticized by healthcare and public officials in California as sharply curtailing some of the most critical provisions of the ACA, and fearing that it would lead to millions losing their healthcare insurance in the future.
The convenience of “telehealth” appeals to patients, and the notion that it costs less than an in-office visit would make it attractive to employers and health plans.
But a new study suggests that while telehealth services may boost access to a physician, they don’t necessarily reduce healthcare spending, contrary to assertions by telehealth companies.
Kaiser Permanente has created a protocol that has dramatically reduced the use of antibiotics in newborns.
A bill in the California Senate would require hospitals to jump through additional hoops if it is decided to close down emergency services.
The Department of Managed Health Care was particularly active in the waning days of February, when the agency fined three major health plans more than $800,000 combined, records show.
The largest fine, against Anthem Blue Cross of California, was for $500,000 for its failure to cover the costs of prenatal testing for thousands of enrollees. It constituted a repeat misbehavior that led to a $1.5 million fine against the insurer in 2015.
When Margarita Ruiz takes her children to the doctor’s office, she has no choice but to trust that nurses and front desk staff are translating medical orders accurately. She doesn’t speak English and her children’s pediatrician speaks very little Spanish.
A consumer advocacy group has claimed in front of a state Senate committee that the Medical Board of California is still not providing appropriate oversight and discipline of problem doctors.
The Santa Monica-based Consumer Watchdog made the claim in testimony this week in front of the Senate Business and Professions Committee earlier this week. The hearing is known as a “sunset review.” Such hearings take place every four years to determine if state agencies should continue to operate moving forward.
UC San Francisco has joined forces with its affiliate Benioff Children's Hospital, the Children's Hospital Oakland Research Institute and UC Berkeley to create what is known as the Engineering for Children's Health Initiative.
Kaiser Permanente reported significantly higher earnings for calendar 2016, much of it due to the improved performance of its investments.
The Oakland-based Kaiser, which is a not-for-profit, reported net income of $3.1 billion in calendar 2016 on revenue of $64.6 million. For 2015, it reported net income of $1.9 billion on revenue of $60.6 billion.
The 60% boost in the bottom line is attributed primarily to the $1.2 billion reported in net non-operating income. In 2015 that total was $102 million in 2015.
The California Department of Public Health has fined a Los Angeles-area skilled nursing facility $100,000 in relation to neglect that led to a patient's death nearly eight years ago.
The patient, an unidentified female, died at a hospital emergency room in November 2009, suffering from peritonitis, sepsis and a perforated colon.