Category Archives: Insurance Industry

From The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services: Medicare Provider Charge Data

As part of the Obama administration’s work to make our health care system more affordable and accountable, data was released on May 8, 2013, that shows significant variations across the country and within communities in what hospitals charge for common inpatient services.

Visit these sites for more information -

Alaska Dispatch: Huge discrepancies in medical charges found — in Alaska and nationwide

Alaska Dispatch: Will new hospital billing data impact Alaska’s infamously expensive healthcare?

HHS.gov: Administration offers consumers an unprecedented look at hospital charges

Washington Post: One hospital charges $8,000 — another, $38,000

Use this interactive tool to compare how much providers charge for common services in different states

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Affordable Care Act and Implications of Medicaid Expansion in Alaska

By Christine Brubaker-Schauble, RN

Due to the complexity and scope of Medicaid expansion-related ACA provisions, much is still unknown about how Medicaid expansion would alter the structure of current state-funded programs for the uninsured and other health care delivery stakeholders such as hospitals, clinics, clinicians, employers, private insurers, and Tribal health organizations. Alaska Center for Public Policy in collaboration with Christine Brubaker-Schauble will work to summarize components of the ACA and provide a roadmap to published information relevant to various stakeholder groups. When publications with quality Alaska-specific data are not available, summaries of national-level data/information supplemented with key informant interviews will be provided.

Alaska’s health care delivery system has both cutting-edge innovations (such as the Community Health Aide Program and telemedicine) and substantial challenges to overcome (such as how to keep vaccine viable when delivering to rural communities via unheated bush plane). Our issues are unique as compared to the Lower 48 states so in the end only Alaskans know the answers to questions like, “Will an expanded Alaska Medicaid program meet the health care needs of low-income Alaskans and if not, what alternatives do we have for meeting those needs?”

This project seeks to give practical information to Alaska decision-makers and health policy experts on the potential impact of opting for a Medicaid program expansion. A series of policy briefings will be published in segments during the remainder of the 2013 legislative session and throughout the summer, and will include

  • a review of key components of the Medicaid expansion provision and how it fits within the context of the ACA as a whole,
  • an overview of the Medicaid program in Alaska, and
  • key informant interviews with stakeholders, providers, and organizations in Alaska.

Keep reading…

Access the full list of resources utilized for this paper here. Your comments are also appreciated. 

From the Commonwealth Fund Blog: The Cost of 30 Years of Unsustainable Health Spending Growth in the United States

“The United States has by far the most expensive health care system of any country in the world. Health spending constitutes more than 18 percent of the U.S. economy, compared with less than 10 percent in the average industrialized country. And not only is health spending high, it is projected to rise faster than gross domestic product over the next 10 years.”

View the full article by David Squires here.

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From HealthCare.gov: How the Health Care Law is Making a Difference for the People of Alaska

Find out how health reform is already making a difference for the people of Alaska by reading the full article from HealthCare.gov here.

Want to learn more about the Affordable Care Act? Read the full law or view all 10 Titles section by section.

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Get Ready! Healthcare.gov Can Help You Prepare

It’s almost here. In a matter of months the Affordable Care Act will open the doors for millions of Americans to enroll in affordable health coverage through the Health Insurance Marketplace. Healthcare.gov is a website specifically designed to help prepare everyone from individuals and families to small businesses and communities. Below are some additional websites that hold a wealth of information about plans, implementation and easily understandable explanations to even the hardest questions. Are you prepared?

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