Archive for January 2017

Complex Care Committee hears about serious problems with new technology for home health visits

Friday’s meeting of MAPOC’s Complex Care Committee focused on problems with DSS’s new Electronic Verification System to ensure accountability in provision of home care to Medicaid members. Implementation of the troubled, costly, mandated system began January 1st and is scheduled to be completed February 1st. All stakeholders, including consumer advocates and home health agencies, repeated…

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Maryland explores state options to control pharmacy costs

Like many states, Maryland is considering state policy options to control rising prescription costs. Tuesday, the state’s Senate Finance Committee heard from 13 invited experts about possibilities. Committee Chair, Sen. Thomas “Mac” Middleton, opened the briefing stating that controlling prescription drug costs is “one of the biggest issues that we’ll deal with this year.” Ellen…

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Unlike most of US, non-medical vaccine opt-outs for children rising in CT

New analysis by the CDC finds that while the percentage of families opting out of school-required vaccines for kindergartners for non-medical reasons is dropping nationally, Connecticut’s rate continues to rise. The percent of Connecticut kindergarteners without vaccines rose from 0.8% in 2009/2010 to 1.7% in 2015/2016. Connecticut is one of only eleven states with rising…

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How Republican plans to replace the ACA could affect you

The Washington Post has published an online tool to predict how four Republican plans to replace Obamacare would affect you and your coverage. Input your age, income, pre-existing conditions, and coverage status hereand the tool uses expert analyses to predict the impact of the leading Republican proposals. While details on the new administration’s plans to…

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PCMH + evaluation plans – weak review and too late to matter

Wednesday DSS unveiled their initial plans to evaluate PCMH +, the new experimental HUSKY shared savings program that just started January 1st with 160,000 members. HUSKY’s previous experience with financial risk was a universally acknowledged failure. Contrary to promises for a meaningful evaluation of the program before moving another 200,000 members into the program next…

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Cabinet begins to tackle prescription costs

CT’s Health Care Cabinet began drilling down into rising prescription drug costs and state options to stem the rise. We heard from Ameet Sarpatwari, consultant to NASHP on their report for states, and Tom Brownlie of Pfizer and Jenny Bryant of PhRMA. Dr. Sarpatwari outlined high US spending on drugs and the consequences for consumers’…

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Busting Medicaid spending myths

Despite best efforts by legislators, advocates, and state officials, persistent myths remain about the success of Connecticut’s Medicaid program. It’s understandable – before the shift five years ago away from private insurers to care coordination, costs were out of control, but things are very different now. We’ve looked under the hood, drilled down into details,…

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