California Healthcare News

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The Avis Of Hospital Accreditation Agencies Premium Content
May 17, 2017

In another in an occasional series of interviews, Payers & Providers editor Ron Shinkman spoke with Patrick Horine, chief executive officer who co-founded what is now known as DNV GL- Healthcare (DNV GL) with his mother-in-law Becky Wise in the basement of their home.

California Lawmakers Move To Preserve Family Planning Services Premium Content
May 17, 2017

As national Republican leaders continue to try to defund  Planned Parenthood, California and other states are considering steps to protect access to family planning services.

Kaiser Family Foundation Say 6.3 Million With Pre-Existing Conditions Could Be Vulnerable Premium Content
May 17, 2017

A new analysis by the Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) say 6.3 million Americans could be forced to pay more for insurance due to pre-existing medical conditions.

DMHC Fines Anthem Blue Cross $65,000 Premium Content
May 17, 2017

The Department of Managed Health Care has issued an administrative penalty against Anthem Blue Cross of California and fined the insurer $65,000 for dropping coverage of 224 members without providing them an appropriate grace period.

California Healthcare Leaders Unhappy With AHCA Premium Content
May 11, 2017

California’s healthcare leaders expressed disappointment at the passage of the American Health Care Act by the GOP-controlled House of Representatives last week, the first step toward what the Republican party has promised would be a “repeal and replace” of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

            The American Health Care Act (AHCA) passed narrowly through the House on a party-line vote. It is now headed to the U.S. Senate, where it is expected to be extensively rewritten to gain any hope of passage in that more deliberative body.

Bill Would Restrict Drug Company Influence Premium Content
May 10, 2017

A new California bill aims to reduce the pharmaceutical industry’s influence in medical decision-making by restricting payments and gifts from drug companies to doctors and other medical providers.
            State Sen. Mike McGuire (D-Healdsburg), who authored the bill, said that when drugmakers woo physicians with meals and other enticements they generate brand loyalty, which can raise health care costs and even compromise patient safety.

Sutter Health Creates Initiative To Improve Mental Health Services Premium Content
May 10, 2017

Sacramento-based hospital system Sutter Health is teaming with the employer coalition One Mind at Work and the Steinberg Institute to rethink how employee mental health services are delivered.

            The three organizations said they would develop and provide education and training resources; advocacy services; and help employers improve and transform their employee assistance programs. No specifics were immediately disclosed. May is Mental Health Awareness Month in the United States.

Journalist Arrested For Questioning HHS Secretary Premium Content
May 10, 2017

A journalist for the Public News Service was arrested at the West Virginia Capitol building on Tuesday for allegedly breaching security protocols while asking a question of Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price.

            Daniel R. Heyman was taken into custody after repeatedly asking Price whether or not domestic violence would be considered a pre-existing condition as part of the proposed Republican overhaul of the Affordable Care Act.

A Shakeup At Molina Healthcare Premium Content
May 4, 2017

The chief executive officer and chief financial officer of Long Beach-based Molina Healthcare have left abruptly, the company announced on Tuesday.

            CEO J. Mario Molina, M.D. and his brother CFO John Molina departed after working for decades at the health insurer their father C. David Molina founded 37 years ago. Both remain on the Molina board of directors.

More State Reports Slam ACA Repeal Scenarios Premium Content
May 4, 2017

As the Republican-controlled Congress voted narrowly on Thursday to overhaul the Affordable Care Act, the state that has perhaps embraced the healthcare reform law the most vigorously continues to generate unsettling analyses of what changes might wreak.

AHCA Narrowly Passed In House Premium Content
May 4, 2017

The U.S. House of Representatives voted narrowly on Thursday to replace portions of the Affordable Health Care Act.

            The House voted along party lines to pass the American Health Care Act. The final vote tally was 217-213. Twenty Republicans voted against passage. All 193 Democrats voted against the bill.

Blue Shield CEO Blasts AHCA Premium Content
May 4, 2017

The top executive at one of California’s largest health plans openly criticized the American Health Care Act this week, saying it would likely leave millions of state residents without health insurance.

            Paul Markovich, chief executive officer of San Francisco-based Blue Shield of California, said he and his organization could not support the American Health Care Act, the putative legislation intended as a “repeal and replace” vehicle for the Affordable Care Act.

CDPH Issues 17 Penalties To 14 Hospitals For Medical Errors Premium Content
Apr 26, 2017

The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) last week issued 17 penalties to 14 hospitals in Northern and Southern California that included fines topping $1.1 million, among the largest sums ever assessed by the agency in a single period.

            It’s the second set of fines and penalties issued by the agency this year, after going nearly a year without announcing any penalties or fines at all. In January, it issued 15 penalties to 14 hospitals and fines totaling $913,550.

Kaiser Study Raises Warning For Those At Risk of Colorectal Cancer Premium Content
Apr 26, 2017

A new extensive study of Kaiser Permanente enrollees has concluded that the risk of colorectal cancer rises when there is a significant delay between a positive fecal screening test and a followup colonoscopy.

DMHC Fines Health Plan of San Mateo $17,500 Premium Content
Apr 26, 2017

The California Department of Managed Care (DMHC) has fined the Health Plan of San Mateo $17,500 for the mishandling of enrollee grievances.

Covered California Raises Concerns About Fate of Cost-Sharing Reductions Premium Content
Apr 20, 2017

The Covered California health insurance exchange has estimated that its enrollees would encounter double-digit premium increases should the Trump administration eliminate cost-sharing reductions that were introduced as part of the Affordable Care Act.

California Hospitals Lose Ground On Safety Premium Content
Apr 20, 2017

Nearly half of California hospitals received a grade of C or lower for patient safety on a national report card aimed at prodding medical centers to do more to prevent injuries and deaths.

DMHC Issues Additional Missed Deadline Penalties Against Arcadian Health Premium Content
Apr 20, 2017

The Department of Managed Health Care has fined Medicare Advantage insurer Arcadian Health Plan $50,000 for failing to inform the regulator of multiple material changes in its operations in a timely manner.

            The penalty was imposed after the DMHC determined that Arcadian had failed to notify it of three plan-to-plan transactions, primarily to expand the number of in-network providers.

California Cities Lead Nation With Polluted Air Premium Content
Apr 20, 2017

Cities in California held the majority of the top 10 cities in the United States with ozone and particulate matter pollution, according to new data from the American Lung Association.

Consumer Complaints To DMHC Double Premium Content
Apr 13, 2017

The Affordable Care Act has delivered health insurance to millions of Californians over the past four years, but that does not necessarily mean the recipients are completely happy with their change in situation.

            That’s borne out by data from the Department of Managed Health Care, which indicated that complaints to the agency about health plans essentially doubled between 2013 and 2015.