A new study finds that both Medicaid and privately insured children frequently receive healthcare services that do not improve health. There has been an assumption that because providers are paid less by Medicaid, they have no incentive to provide unnecessary services. The study, published in Pediatrics, analyzed records from almost 7 million American children in…

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Smoking costs Connecticut smokers $2,447, 965 over a lifetime, behind only New York smokers, according to a new analysis by Wallet Hub. Not only is smoking the leading preventable cause of death, killing 480,000 Americans each year, accounting for one in five deaths, but it is also a substantial economic burden on smokers and their…

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Babies of black mothers in Connecticut are over four times more likely to die in their first year than babies born to white mothers, according to a new report from the CT Health Foundation. Black state residents die at 1.2 times the rate of whites. Overall Connecticut residents are among the healthiest in the nation,…

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The latest MACStats data release repeated trends from years ago but held a few new nuggets. Last July 857,415, or one in four, Connecticut residents were covered by Medicaid. Connecticut spent 14.9% of our state budget on Medicaid, below the US average of 16%. Our surrounding states were all above the US average — Massachusetts…

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As in the past, Medicaid patients of Connecticut’s community health centers are far more likely to visit an ED than other Medicaid patients, according to a presentation by CHNCT at Friday’s Medicaid Council meeting. While rates have decreased a bit, the very large gap in ED use rate between clinic patients and other Patient-Centered Medical…

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Connecticut residents are healthier than all but three other states. According to the latest America’s Health Rankings by the United Health Foundation. That is down from third last year, and below 2006 and 2008 when we were the healthiest in the nation. Despite the wobbling, we consistently rank well. Unfortunately, our health isn’t reflected in…

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Worker costs for health insurance are growing in all states, including Connecticut, both in total dollars and as a proportion of median incomes, according to a new analysis by the Commonwealth Fund. Connecticut has not been hit as hard as other states, because in the past growth in median income here was strong. But that…

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The Institute for Clinical and Economic Review has opened nominations for membership on their New England Comparative Effectiveness Public Advisory Council.  New England CEPAC meets three times each year in public forums across the region to assess the evidence for treatments for specific conditions with input from stakeholders including patients affected by the condition. In…

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Similar to national results, a new survey of Connecticut Accountable Care Organizations for MAPOC’s Complex Care Committee by the CT Health Policy Project finds that most are using multiple methods to identify high need members. But they are still working on implementing effective programs to address the needs. Many of their plans follow best practices…

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Unintended consequences are old news; so why are we surprised every time it happens? Computer programs developed to target care management services to people with serious complex conditions were meant to make important health decisions based on data but instead favored White patients over sicker Black patients. Read more

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