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Healthcare Economics & Policy

 

A telemedicine program using Atlanta-based endocrinologists provided suitable type 1 diabetes care to veterans living in rural Alabama and Georgia while saving patients 156 minutes of commute time per visit and cutting travel reimbursement costs paid by the Veterans Health Administration (VHA) by $72.94 per visit.

Patients’ out-of-pocket expenditures (OOPE) on medications rise dramatically with the addition of each coexisting chronic condition, according to a systematic review published online Feb. 6 in BMJ Global Health.

Diabetes treatment itself comes at a considerable price, but related complications like eye disease, kidney damage and amputations can elevate medical bills into the tens of thousands, German researchers reported this month in Diabetes Care.

Those lab tests a physician orders before surgery may seem like just a drop in the bucket of healthcare spending, but over time those routine—often unnecessary—services add up.

President Donald Trump declared February American Heart Month this Thursday in a tradition that stretches back 54 years.

 

Recent Headlines

GAO: Oversight of imported radiological material needs to be improved

On Jan. 12, the U.S. Government Accounting Office (GAO) published a 28-page report on its website that called for U.S. Customs and Border Protection (CBP) to improve its ability to verify the licenses of imported radiological material.

Money Matters: Unpacking Gender Bias in Compensation

Conversations about compensation are among the toughest for healthcare leaders to navigate. Add accusations of gender bias, and it’s a powder keg.

Compensation Quandary: How to Incorporate Academic Missions into a Comp Plan

Ensuring mission and money in faculty compensation plans is a tall order for academic medical centers.

Insurance companies place heavy barriers on access to PCSK9 inhibitors

A $14,000 price tag isn’t the only thing standing between cardiac patients and cholesterol-lowering PCSK9 inhibitors anymore—access to the drugs could be further blocked by insurance companies, according to a study published in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes this week.

Key areas of cardiovascular care included in CMS’s voluntary bundled payment model

The new voluntary bundled payment model announced by CMS on Jan. 9 offers payment for 32 clinical episodes, including several of the cardiovascular variety.

Philips to relocate North American headquarters outside Boston

Royal Philips announced the relocation of its North American headquarters in Massachusetts from Andover to Cambridge in 2020. The new location, including a 243,000-square-foot facility, will house 2,000 employees, while 300 ultrasound system manufacturing positions will stay in Andover, according to the Boston Globe.

CMS proposes expanding MRI coverage for patients with implantable cardiac devices

CMS is on the verge of rescinding a policy that has for years barred heart patients from MRI coverage if they had an implanted pacemaker or cardioverter defibrillator.

Neighborhood socioeconomics have hefty impact on residents' heart health

Neighborhood characteristics—not just individual socioeconomic standing—could have a significant impact on the cardiovascular health of a community and its residents, reports a study published this week in Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

ACC CEO leaving to head new biopharma company

American College of Cardiology CEO Shalom “Shal” Jacobovitz is leaving the organization in February to lead CiVi Biopharma, a privately held biopharmaceutical company founded in 2016. The ACC and CiVi Biopharma both announced the move Jan. 3 with press releases.

School lunches are like dieting: Healthy changes only pay off with persistence

Making healthier changes to school lunch policies is like the battle an individual endures when starting a new diet. It’s unpleasant and unpopular at first, but worth it if you stick with it.

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