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  •  Obamacare Shows Hospital Savings (3+ / 0-)
    Recommended by:
    Gooserock, wintergreen8694, akmk
    Less than five months before the Affordable Care Act fully kicks in, hospitals are improving care and saving millions of dollars with one of the least touted but potentially most effective provisions of the law.

    While much of the focus on Obamacare has been on the government rush to open insurance exchanges by Oct. 1, 252 hospitals and physician groups across the U.S. have signed up to join the administration’s accountable care program, in which they share the financial risk of keeping patients healthy.

    Under the program, hospitals and physician practices take responsibility for tracking and maintaining the health of elderly and disabled patients. If costs rise beyond an agreed upon level, hospitals may become responsible for reimbursing the government. If they cut the cost of care while maintaining quality, hospitals share in the savings. The government expects the savings may be as much as $1.9 billion from 2012 to 2015. Early indications suggest they are starting to add up.

    http://www.bloomberg.com/...

    "The way to see by faith is to shut the eye of reason." - Thomas Paine

    by shrike on Sun Jul 07, 2013 at 12:42:49 PM PDT

    •  At the same time (1+ / 0-)
      Recommended by:
      Gooserock

      these hospitals are buying out local doctors and once those providers become part of a hospital Medicare pays them a premium for all of their services.

      As a result, Medicare ends up paying twice as much for an electrocardiogram or an echocardiogram. So at the end of the day I'll bet that this consolidation cancels out any savings.

      Medicare Panel Urges Cuts to Hospital Payments for Services Doctors Offer for Less

      WASHINGTON — A federal advisory panel said Friday that Congress should move immediately to cut payments to hospitals for many services that can be provided at much lower cost in doctors’ offices.

      The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission said the current payment disparities had created incentives for hospitals to buy physician practices, driving up costs for the Medicare program and for beneficiaries. Hospital buyouts of doctors, turning independent practitioners into hospital employees, have also led to higher spending by private insurers and higher co-payments for their policyholders, the commission said.

      “In many cases, a physician’s practice that is purchased by a hospital stays in the same location and treats the same patients,” but “Medicare and beneficiaries pay more for the same services,” the 17-member commission said in a report to Congress.

      There are all kinds of unintended side effects associated with the ACA.

      The only trouble with retirement is...I never get a day off!

      by Mr Robert on Sun Jul 07, 2013 at 01:01:58 PM PDT

      [ Parent ]

    •  the pity is that this idea has been floating aroun (0+ / 0-)

      since 1984 at least.  We belonged to some HMOs over the years which provided incentives for clinics which met or exceeded various goals

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