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Medicare bonus program has fewer recipients
In 2017, almost 200 fewer hospitals are receiving bonuses for high performance on Medicare quality measures. The Hospital Value-Based Purchasing program provides hospitals with additional revenue for achieving high-quality measurements. Providers are assessed against each other and their own historical performance, explains Elizabeth Whitman of Modern Healthcare. Hospitals that are not receiving a bonus this year either performed worse than they had in the past or did not perform as well as other hospitals.
Group sues Anthem over changes in coverage
A consumer group sued health insurer Anthem on the first day of open enrollment for the automatic renewal of policies that do not cover out-of-network costs. According to Consumer Watchdog Anthem was attempting to enroll hundreds of thousands of Californians in plans with bare-bones coverage without properly alerting them of the change. Melody Petersen at the Los Angeles Times has the story.
Officials try to boost ACA enrollment
The Affordable Care Act faces a critical year, as enrollees have been older and sicker than expected. Stephanie Armour and Louise Radnofsky of The Wall Street Journal share administration officials have two goals for this open-enrollment season: Sign up new individuals and encourage consumers whose plans have been canceled to choose a new policy. Officials are expecting television ads, targeted outreach and direct mail to increase sign-ups of younger adults (subscriber’s content).
Monetary reward motivates pharma research
Universities and pharmaceutical companies are more motivated by profits than in the past. Carolyn Y. Johnson of the Washington Post shares when researchers discovered insulin in the 1920s they provided the patent to a university to prevent commercial exploitation. Incentives in medicine have since changed, as have the relationship between universities and drug companies. In March 2016 the University of California at Los Angeles sold its royalty interest in an expensive prostate cancer medication for more than $1 billion.