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Once Again, Care for Millions at Risk

By Rick Pollack
September 22, 2017

Once again, health coverage for tens of millions of Americans is at risk. The Senate is considering yet another proposal, by Sens. Lindsey Graham (R-SC) and Bill Cassidy (R-LA), to repeal significant parts of the Affordable Care Act, with a vote planned for next week.

The Graham-Cassidy proposal would result in millions losing coverage. It would erode key protections for patients and consumers. It would not stabilize the insurance market in the short or long term. And the new... read more

Topics: Access and Coverage, Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: Coverage, advocacy, access, leadership, members

MACRA Decision Guide

By AHA STAT Staff
September 22, 2017

Are you ready for the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act or MACRA? The AHA’s MACRA resources are designed to support your needs as you implement MACRA’s sweeping changes.

Our latest offering aims to help you and your clinician partners decide which MACRA track to pursue – the Merit-based Incentive Payment System or alternative payment models. By answering a series of questions, the interactive decision guide leads participants to briefs on associated topics.

To access... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: physician issues, physicians, Medicare

Must-do Health Care Priorities for Congress

By Rick Pollack
September 15, 2017

Today, Washington’s focus – and the media headlines – have begun to shift to matters like tax reform, the Deferred Action for Childhood Arrivals (DACA) program, an infrastructure package, and relief for the victims of Hurricanes Harvey and Irma. However, several key issues of great importance to hospitals and health systems are still at stake as we approach the end of the federal fiscal year.

Many key policy issues that are vital to ensuring that patients continue to receive... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: Medicare, rural, Critical Access Hospitals, advocacy, Medicaid

Congress: Take Action to Stabilize the Health Insurance Marketplaces

September 13, 2017

BY NANCY HOWELL AGEE

What if the health coverage you need is priced out of reach?  Do you forego care knowing that you can’t afford your deductible? Or do you see the doctor knowing that you may not be able to pay your co-pay?

More than half of individuals who buy their insurance through the Health Insurance Marketplaces – 7 million people – could face that predicament if they didn’t have access to the cost sharing reduction (CSR) subsidies. CSRs help consumers cover their... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tag: access

Beyond the Four Walls

By Rick Pollack
August 25, 2017

Helping patients overcome socioeconomic barriers to better health by building partnerships that improve the community’s health will be critical to hospitals’ and health systems’ ability to continue to carry the promise of help, hope and healing. The good news is how population health strategies and initiatives can change many lives for the better.

 With that in mind, the AHA is offering the field a series of guides on how hospitals and health systems can address the social... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: population health, Community health, Redefining the H, Behavioral health

Protect 340B and Preserve the Safety Net

By AHA STAT Staff
August 24, 2017

The panel that advises the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services on hospital outpatient payments sent a clear signal to the agency this week: Don’t shortchange patients’ access to vital pharmaceuticals by cutting the 340B Drug Pricing Program. CMS’s Advisory Panel on Hospital Outpatient Payment responded to concerns raised by the AHA and hospital witnesses by calling on the agency to shelve a proposal that would drastically reduce funding for the 340B program in 2018.

Created... read more

Topics: Access and Coverage, Advocacy and Public Policy
Tags: Drug Pricing Program, advocacy, access

Hospitals Innovate New Strategies to Fight Opioid Crisis

By Rick Pollack
August 11, 2017

More than 140 Americans die from a drug overdose every day – that’s more than from gun homicides and car crashes combined.  Most of these deaths are due to prescription painkillers, heroin and other opioids. The opioid crisis in our country is severe enough that yesterday President Donald Trump signaled his intention to declare it a national emergency.

Hospitals and health systems serve on the front lines in this crisis every day. We’re using many strategies to help: implementing... read more

Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Community Health
Tags: Community health, Community Connections, Behavioral health, opioids

Full Plate Ahead - Washington's To-Do List

By Rick Pollack
August 5, 2017

Senators have left Washington for their home states for a month-long recess. When Congress returns after Labor Day, they will return to a full plate of must-do issues, including funding the government, extending the moratorium on Medicaid disproportionate share hospital cuts, extending certain expiring Medicare payment provisions for hospital services, reauthorization of funding for the Children’s Health Insurance Program, raising the debt ceiling, and tax reform. And there may... read more

Topic: Advocacy and Public Policy

Telehealth is changing care

By AHA STAT Staff
August 3, 2017

The health care world is changing. New technologies are moving the field in new and different directions, all of which is good news for patients.

Take, for example, how hospitals and health systems are using telehealth to expand access to care, improve outcomes for patients and reduce costs. We released a report at last week’s AHA Leadership Summit that shows how seven hospitals and health systems are using telehealth to expand access to opioid recovery programs, early... read more

Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Community Health
Tags: access, Telehealth, telemedicine

Community conversations

By AHA STAT Staff
July 31, 2017

America’s hospitals take a lot of pride in staying close to their communities. We like to believe we have our fingers on the pulse of the people we serve. Much of what we do to stay in touch is centered on “telling our story,” letting people know what we are doing and why.

Given the challenges facing many of our urban and rural hospitals and communities, it may be a good idea for many of us to spend even more time on the other side of the coin: listening.

One in four hospitals in... read more

Topics: Advocacy and Public Policy, Community Health
Tags: Community health, Community Connections, leadership
 

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