Impact of Certificate of Need on Health

An interesting paper from Kevin Chiu in the Journal of Health Economics looks at the relationship between certificate of need laws and health outcomes: Certificate of need (CON) regulations requires that health care providers obtain state approval before offering a new service or expanding existing facilities. The purported goal of CON regulations is to reduce…

Impact of star ratings on provider demand

For years, Medicare and other payers have used quality measures to evaluate the quality of care patients receive at various types of providers settings (e.g., hospital, home health agencies, skilled nursing homes). For some payers, higher quality scores/higher star ratings lead to direct increases in reimbursement through a value-based purchasing arrangement. Typically, value-based payment systems…

Integrated Delivery Network-based Specialty Pharmacies

Increasingly, integrated delivery networks (IDNs) are creating their own full-blown specialty pharmacies. Many are familiar with the integrated payer-provider model from groups such as Kaiser Permanente. However, other IDNs are getting into the game according to a recent white paper. Why are IDNs considering creating their own specialty pharmacies? Address patient access concerns. The number…

Few Americans research hospital prices

New regulation is making hospital prices available to patients. The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) reports: As of January 1 of this year, hospitals are required to post prices of common health services on their websites via consumer-friendly tools for patient use. Prior to implementation of this rule, hospitals were only required to publish their gross,…

Bagging it

How do you get your prescription drugs? For most people, it involves going to your local pharmacy and picking up your pills. But what if the drugs you needs are infused treatments that have to be administered at a physician’s office? Typically, you just show up at a physician’s office and it’ll be ready for…