CMS fines half of hospitals for readmitting too many patients: Kaiser Health News lets you look up your hospital

CMS fines half of hospitals for readmitting too many patients: Kaiser Health News lets you look up your hospital

“Under programs set up by the Affordable Care Act, the federal government cuts payments to hospitals that have high rates of readmissions and those with the highest numbers of infections and patient injuries,” Jordan Rau writes for Kaiser Health News. “For the readmission penalties, Medicare cuts as much as 3 percent for each patient, although […]

How much does Truvada cost? Or, when your PEO insurance goes sideways

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

How much does Truvada cost? Or, when your PEO insurance goes sideways

The man on the phone said his insurance company quintupled his premiums for next year, from $333 to $1,700, and he was really upset. He was even more upset that the only thing that had changed in his health care situation was that he had started taking Truvada, the anti-HIV drug. Truvada, also known as […]

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and planning: What went wrong with America’s $44 million vaccine data system? | MIT Technology Review

Filed Under: Costs, Patients, Providers

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and planning: What went wrong with America’s $44 million vaccine data system? | MIT Technology Review

“The first time Mary Ann Price logged into her employer’s system to schedule a vaccine, she found an appointment three days later at a nearby Walgreens pharmacy,” Cat Ferguson writes over at MIT Technology Review. “She woke up the next day to an email saying it had been canceled. So she logged in again and […]

The new hospital transparency rule: The deadline for posting price lists is on Jan. 1, so how did they do?

The new hospital transparency rule: The deadline for posting price lists is on Jan. 1, so how did they do?

The new federal price transparency law is rolling out Jan. 1, 2021, mandating that hospitals have to list prices on their web sites. Describing the new rules, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services say on their website: “Hospital price transparency helps Americans know the cost of a hospital item or service before receiving it. […]

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and the bills, part II: falsely billed and overcharged

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and the bills, part II: falsely billed and overcharged

A Rochester-area woman we introduced you to over the summer has continued to receive hospital bills for a Covid test that never happened. Back in July, Rebecca Oliver and her partner Dan Loncoa went to Rochester Regional Hospital’s emergency room seeking a Covid test, only to be sent home without one and then billed $540 […]

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and test avoidance: Why are some people not getting tested?

Coronavirus (Covid-19) and test avoidance: Why are some people not getting tested?

Earlier this fall, the predominantly Hasidic village of Kiryas Joel, N.Y., managed to drop its positive Covid test rate from 34.2% in the last week of September, to a shocking 4.2% just one month later, the Jewish-American news organization The Forward reported. According to The Forward, town leaders and Gov. Andrew Cuomo of New York […]

How much does Medicare cost? Well, it depends.

How much does Medicare cost? Well, it depends.

So I recently went on Medicare, and wanted to put down some thoughts in case they are of assistance to anyone else. I suggest that anyone who’s doing this consider their own specific circumstances very carefully; I am not a licensed insurance broker, and I am not making recommendations here — rather, I am telling […]

Coronavirus (COVID-19) workplace testing: Is my employer allowed to test me?

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Coronavirus (COVID-19) workplace testing: Is my employer allowed to test me?

If you’re one of the countless numbers of Americans getting called back to work this month, you may face some significant changes to your workplace. (We’d encourage you to share your experiences with us!) Across the country, some companies are installing mandatory coronavirus testing for employees. Is this a violation of privacy? Is it allowed? […]

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and health insurance: What you need to know

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Coronavirus (COVID-19) and health insurance: What you need to know

So you’re worried about your health insurance given the coronavirus epidemic. You’re not alone. Whether you have or had job-sponsored insurance, or were on the state exchanges, or were uninsured before COVID-19 hit, it’s a topic of concern. Here are some situations, with answers. You lost your job and need insurance to replace employer-sponsored insurance. […]

Coronavirus (Covid-19) test cost: Do you have to pay? And how do you get the test? The picture unfolds.

Filed Under: Costs, Health plans, Patients

Coronavirus (Covid-19) test cost: Do you have to pay? And how do you get the test? The picture unfolds.

By TINA KELLEY and PHOEBE PINDER (Note: Coronavirus news is changing quickly. We’re updating as warranted.) Coronavirus (COVID 19) testing is making headlines nationwide. Amid a flood of reports of people being charged high prices for testing, or being unable to find testing, there’s a need for reliable information (for a database of test sites, […]