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Archive for April, 2010




Arizona’s Immigration Law: Bad for Health


April 30th, 2010

Editor’s Note: GrantWatch Blog invited Roger Hughes, executive director of St. Luke’s Health Initiatives (SLHI), a public foundation in Phoenix, Arizona, to write a post commenting on the new Arizona immigration law, passed 23 April 2010, and its potential effect on health in that state. SLHI does most of its funding in the Phoenix metro area. This funder […]

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How To Simplify Medical Billing And Reduce Costs


April 30th, 2010

As every American knows, the process of billing third-party entities for health care services is complex and time-consuming, for the patient as well as for the provider.  According to the authors of an article published yesterday in Health Affairs, physicians use nearly 12 percent of their net revenue to cover the costs of these administrative charges. […]

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The Health Wonk Review


April 29th, 2010

Healthcare Economist hosts the latest edition of the Health Wonk Review. Jason Shafrin ably presents the latest in quality health policy blogging, using a theme that we here in the Washington D.C. area have become sadly unfamiliar with: the NBA playoffs.

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Health Affairs Blog Roundtable Transcript: CMS And Health Reform


April 29th, 2010

Editor’s Note: Much of the burden of implementing the newly passed health reform legislation will fall on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The agency must handle this task while continuing to perform its already daunting duties involving Medicare, Medicaid, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, and many other functions. How well equipped is […]

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Sebelius To Keynote Health Affairs Briefing


April 29th, 2010

Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius will keynote the Health Affairs May 4 briefing “Reinventing Primary Care.” The briefing will take place from 8:30 AM to 2:30 PM at the National Press Club in Washington D.C.  It will highlight the journal’s May issue, a thematic volume on primary care that will be released that day. You may obtain more […]

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Improving Care Transitions: A Key Component of Health Reform


April 29th, 2010

The Community-Based Care Transitions Program, a provision of the newly enacted Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Section 3026 of HR 3590), provides $500 million to collaborative partnerships between hospitals and community-based organizations designed to meet the goal of implementing evidence-based care transitions services for Medicare beneficiaries at high risk for hospital readmission.  The provision in the […]

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Credit Scores: Juicing Up The Mandate


April 28th, 2010

Americans carry large amounts of consumer debt.  They are directly affected by credit scores, because the scores affect the interest rates they pay, and the amount of credit they are offered.  One late payment of a bill:  a 60- to 110-point score reduction.  Simply hitting the limit on a credit card:  a 10- to 45-point […]

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Health Affairs Briefing: Reinventing Primary Care


April 27th, 2010

The May 2010 issue of Health Affairs examines what it will take to reinvent primary care in the United States. Operational, payment, regulatory, legal, and educational reforms will be necessary to improve care and achieve savings —and to prepare for the influx of millions of Americans who will be insured for the first time as […]

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California Voters’ Views on Long-Term Care


April 27th, 2010

Two-thirds of registered voters in California (age forty and older) say that they are worried about the future costs of long-term care for themselves or a family member, according to survey results released 21 April 2010. The “concern crosses party affiliation,” with majorities of Democrats, Republicans, and independents being worried about affordability, the full survey […]

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Don Berwick On Patient-Centeredness And More


April 23rd, 2010

In an essay in Health Affairs last year, Don Berwick, President Obama’s nominee to head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, surveys the debate in the health policy community over how the principle of “patient-centeredness” should be defined and implemented. In his piece, titled “What ‘Patient-Centered’ Should Mean: Confessions Of An Extremist,” Berwick offers […]

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GrantWatch Blog: Focus on Foundations’ Funding in Environmental Health


April 22nd, 2010

In honor of Earth Day 2010, I thought I would mention a few foundations that have funded environmental health efforts. While I was at the Grantmakers In Health (GIH) annual meeting in Orlando, Florida, in March 2010, I attended a session titled “Environmental Justice at a Crossroads: From Protest to Sustainability.” Unfortunately, as it was […]

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GrantWatch Blog’s Periodic Round-up of Foundation News


April 20th, 2010

The following items on a spectrum of topics have come across my desk recently, and you may want to check them out. I have listed them, along with the links, under the relevant subject headings. Health Care for the Elderly The MacArthur Research Network on an Aging Society “is an interdisciplinary group of scholars who […]

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Don Berwick’s Vision: The Triple Aim


April 20th, 2010

Yesterday, President Obama made it official: He nominated Don Berwick, president of the Institute for Healthcare Improvement, to lead the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, which has been without an administrator since October 2006. Berwick, a pediatrician who is also a professor at the Harvard Medical School and the Harvard School of Public Health, […]

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Book on American Foundations Published by Brookings Institution Press


April 16th, 2010

American Foundations: Roles and Contributions has recently been published by Brookings Institution Press. Helmut K. Anheier and David C. Hammack edited this 450-page volume. Overview of the Book The product of a three-year project supported by the Aspen Institute’s Nonprofit Sector and Philanthropy Program, the volume provides the most comprehensive assessment to date of the significance […]

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Latest Health Wonk Review Is Up


April 15th, 2010

Today is of course tax day, but over at the HealthBlawg, David Harlow marks the day in happier fashion, offering the best in health policy blogging in the latest Health Wonk Review. In an entertaining edition titled “Block That Metaphor,” David works in Ray Kroc, Leonardo Da Vinci, Bessie Smith, and the Titanic, along with a cornucopia […]

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Imaging Technology Adoption: The Impact Of Self-Referral


April 15th, 2010

Editor’s Note: In October 2009, Health Affairs published two papers on factors driving imaging utilization. One paper, by Jacqueline Baras and Laurence Baker, analyzes the relationship between MRI supply and care for fee-for-service Medicare patients with low back pain. It finds that increases in MRI supply are related to higher use of both low back MRI and […]

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Bending the Cost Curve: Rhode Island Looks North


April 13th, 2010

On April 8, the Rhode Island Foundation hosted Sarah Iselin, president of the Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts Foundation, who spoke on “Bending the Curve: The Challenges of Cost Containment.” This was the third presentation in the foundation’s “Making It Work: Health Reform in Rhode Island series.” The goal of the series is to […]

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CMS And Health Reform: A Health Affairs Blog Roundtable


April 13th, 2010

Much of the burden of implementing the newly passed health reform legislation will fall on the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. The agency must handle this task while continuing to perform its already daunting duties involving Medicare, Medicaid, the State Children’s Health Insurance Program, and many other functions. How well equipped is the agency […]

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Health Reform: What Foundations Are Saying and Funding


April 9th, 2010

With the recent passage of federal health reform, GrantWatch Blog has gathered here a sampling of foundation leaders’ comments on reform, examples of what foundations have funded on this topic, and related resources. Foundation Leaders’ Statements on the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (H.R. 3590) “The Health Reform You Haven’t Heard About,” Robert K. […]

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An International Trend Toward Self-Directed Care


April 9th, 2010

Critics of consumer-directed health care often argue that patients are not knowledgeable enough and the market is not transparent enough for consumerism to work in health care. But a study by The Commonwealth Fund says there is an international trend toward self-directed care (SDC) and it is focused on a most unlikely group of patients: […]

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