Medicaid plans owned by public companies have higher administrative costs

Number of Medicaid beneficiaries served by such plans increased by more than 4 million between 2004-2009, expected to rise further as health reform expands Medicaid coverage; provider-operated plans perform better than commercially-owned – A new Commonwealth Fund report finds that Medicaid managed care plans that are owned by publicly traded for-profit companies whose primary line of business is managing Medicaid enrollees spent an average of 14 percent of premiums on administrative costs, compared with an average of only 10 percent spent by non-publicly traded plans owned by groups of health care providers, health systems, community health centers, or clinics.

Health reform to make health insurance affordable for all

New study: Health reform to make health insurance affordable for nearly all families — Report finds that 90 percent can afford premiums and costs under Affordable Care Act; out-of-pocket costs will still be a concern for some families – Ninety percent of American families living above the federal poverty level will be able to afford health insurance under the Affordable Care Act, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report by Jonathan Gruber and Ian Perry of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT).

Employer health insurance premiums increased 41%

New report: Employer health insurance premiums increased 41 percent from 2003 to 2009 — Effective Affordable Care Act implementation could save up to $3,000 per year for family policies by 2020 – Premiums for employer-sponsored family health insurance increased an average of 41 percent across states from 2003 to 2009, more than three times faster than median incomes, according to a new Commonwealth Fund report. Yet, insurance is buying less.

Uninsured Americans have a higher mortality rate after trauma

Uninsured Americans have a higher mortality rate after trauma. Treatment delay, different care (via receipt of fewer diagnostic tests), and decreased health literacy are possible mechanisms. – Americans without health insurance appear more likely to die following admission to the hospital for trauma than those with health care coverage, revealed by researchers.

Individual health insurance not affordable in US

73% who tried to buy health insurance on their own did not purchase a plan; Individual health insurance market failing consumers. – The individual health insurance market is not a viable option for the majority of uninsured adults in US, a new report from The Commonwealth Fund finds.

Over 60% of US bankruptcies due to medical incidents

Over 60 percent of all US bankruptcies attributable to medical problems – Most victims are middle class, well-educated and have health insurance. – In 2007, before the current economic downturn, an American family filed for bankruptcy in the aftermath of illness every 90 seconds; three-quarters of them were insured. Over 60% of all bankruptcies in the United States in 2007 were driven by medical incidents.

$1017 surcharge for health care costs of uninsured, US

“Hidden Health Tax” for Family Health Coverage Climbed to $1,017 in 2008 – The “Hidden Health Tax” Is the Undisclosed Premium Surcharge that Pays for the Uncompensated Health Care Costs of the Uninsured. – The so-called “hidden health tax” for family health coverage grew to $1,017 in 2008 according to a report released today by the consumer health organization Families USA.

70% women are uninsured or underinsured

Seven of 10 Women Are Uninsured or Underinsured, Have Medical Bill or Debt Problems, or Problems Accessing Care Because of Cost, New Study Finds. – Women are more likely than men to feel the pinch of rising health costs and eroding health benefits, with about half (52%) of working-age women reporting problems accessing needed care because of costs, compared to 39 percent of men, a new Commonwealth Fund study finds.

US Universal health insurance might not save many lives

The number of deaths in the United States probably wouldn?t change a lot if everybody gets health insurance. – A new analysis suggests that universal health insurance might not save many adult lives – or any – if the United States actually puts it into place.

New Medicare health plan would save $35 billion

Avalere Health Finds New Plan to Reform Medicare Post-Acute and Long Term Care System Could Save U.S. Approximately $35 Billion Over Ten Years – Saying the opportunity now exists for the Obama Administration and Congress to both enhance U.S. seniors’ care choices as well as save approximately $35 billion over ten years by adopting a new Medicare post-acute and long term care reform plan, the nation’s leading long term care advocacy organizations today warned any broad-based reform of the nation’s health care system in the months ahead will be incomplete without including long term and post-acute care.

Health Newstrack