In 2007, the Ethics Committee of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) published an opinion prescribing the limits of conscientious refusal in reproductive medicine. However, as this article demonstrates, the opinion was heavily slanted in favor of the patient’s right to receive reproductive procedures such as abortion or contraceptives. ACOG is unwilling to acknowledge the full power of healthcare providers’ right of conscience, and it fails to articulate reasonable alternatives when conflict arises. The language of the opinion is prejudicial, flawed, and incomplete. When compared with early American constitutional history, the erroneous reasoning of the opinion becomes even more apparent. There is ample evidence provided by many founding members of the United States about the important and essential place that rights of conscience have been afforded in the Constitution. Healthcare providers’ right of conscience must be respected in society.
Do Hospitals Cross Subsidize? by Guy David, Richard Lindrooth, Lorens Helmchen, Lawton Burns :: SSRNAugust 31, 2011
Cross-subsidies are often considered the principal mechanism through which hospitals provide unprofitable care. Yet, hospitals’ reliance on and extent of cross-subsidization are difficult to establish. We exploit entry by cardiac specialty hospitals as an exogenous shock to incumbent hospitals’ profitability and in turn to their ability to cross-subsidize unprofitable services. Using patient-level data from general short-term hospitals in Arizona and Colorado before and after entry, we find that the hospitals most exposed to entry reduced their provision of services considered to be unprofitable (psychiatric, substance- abuse, and trauma care) and expanded their admissions for neurosurgery, a highly profitable service.
A new medical research body created by the healthcare reform law should not consider the cost of treatments when evaluating them, the nation’s largest physician lobby argues.
The American Medical Association has invited other groups to sign on to a comment letter regarding the type of research that should be conducted under the law’s Patient Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI). The independent nonprofit began seeking public input last month, and the AMA is concerned about its proposal to “investigate … optimizing outcomes while addressing burden to individuals, resources, and other stakeholder perspectives.”
About half of the uninsured Americans who stand to benefit the most from the health care reform law aren’t aware of how the legislation is designed to help them buy insurance, according to a new poll released Monday.
The Kaiser Family Foundation’s monthly health tracking poll found that 47 percent of the uninsured said the law “won’t make much difference” to them. Another 14 percent said the law would hurt them. Only 31 percent said they thought the law would help them.
According to GAO, some insurers are decreasing premiums or leaving their rates unchanged in order to comply with the MLR requirements. Three companies told GAO that premiums will either fall next year or increase by a smaller amount than they would have without the MLR.
The changes to premiums are coming in conjunction with cuts to brokers’ premiums, GAO found. Insurance agents and brokers have warned repeatedly that the MLR will hurt them. And while consumer advocates have argued that the effects are overstated, the GAO report seems to support agents’ claims.
Getting and Using Medicare Data: What I Wish I Had Known Before I Started My Research – Training & Professional Resources – AcademyHealthAugust 30, 2011
A Webinar Presented by the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO) program and AcademyHealth’s Methods Council
Medicare data has long been an important resource for researchers and policymakers who study the U.S. health care system. The process of acquiring and using data, however, can be complex to navigate, especially for new researchers. In addition to identifying the most suitable data to answer their research questions, they must know how to interpret it appropriately and confirm that needed data elements are actually available. Another practical challenge in creating a custom data request is how to balance the desire for methodological robustness with the need to stay within a budget. Finally, researchers must obtain a data use agreement that conforms to federal privacy rules. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Changes in Health Care Financing and Organization (HCFO) program, in collaboration with AcademyHealth’s Methods Council, is pleased to offer a webinar on best practices for obtaining and using Medicare data for research. Two experienced HCFO researchers, Jack Hoadley of Georgetown University and Jim Reschovsky of the Center for Studying Health System Change will share some of their accumulated wisdom in getting and working with Medicare data in their research. In addition, Barbara Frank from the Research Data Assistance Center (ResDAC) at the University of Minnesota will provide additional resources, tips, and best practices drawn from her organization’s role as a CMS contractor assisting researchers in obtaining and working with Medicare data. There is no charge for this webinar, which is intended for both new and experienced researchers.
Date: September 27, 2011
Time: 1:00 – 2:30pm EDT
November 9-11, 2011:Health Insurance Exchange Congress – Where States and Plans Connect! Baltimore, MD
We are counting down to 2014, and although it may seem like the distant future, the healthcare industry must prepare for the implementation of Exchanges in order comply with current federal law and prepare for the 24 million newly eligibles. The Health Insurance Exchange Congress provides state officials and health plans with the only opportunity to come together to discuss PPACA and strategize on how to make this a successful opportunity for all.