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Unfinished Business: An All Payer Claims Database

The 2014 legislative session ended on August 31, and one piece of legislation that we had been watching closely was AB 1558 (DeLeon). The bill would establish an All Payer Claims Database (APCD) in California by requesting that the University of California establish a dataset that would collect information about […] more

Newsflash: The Sky is Not Falling

The annual survey of employer health benefits by the Kaiser Family Foundation for 2014 reports the following: The average premium for employee only coverage increased 2%; the average premium for family coverage increased 3%, and the average worker’s wages increased by 2.3%. Covered workers pay 18% on average as their […] more

Will Local Hospitals Survive Cuts to Funding for Indigent Care Programs?

Since the beginning of 2013, twenty-four rural hospitals have closed across the country, and many observers believe that more closures will occur. They blame this on the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The ACA aims to extend coverage to the most vulnerable populations by offering states the option to expand their […] more

A Step in the Right Direction

Governor Tom Corbett has made a big step in the right direction with approval of Pennsylvania’s Medicaid expansion, dubbed Healthy Pennsylvania (PA). Estimates suggest between 300,000 to 500,000 individuals will now be eligible for health insurance. Since Healthy PA is not traditional Medicaid expansion, it had to be approved by […] more

ER Visits Slowing at LA County Public Hospitals

A recent analysis of 75 hospitals by the Los Angeles Times found that visits to Los Angeles County ERs slowed in the first three months of ACA implementation. Between January and March of 2014, ER visits by patients who didn’t require hospitalization increased 1.7% at county facilities, a slowed increase […] more

Covered California August 2014 Board Meeting

After the cancellation of July’s meeting, the Board of Covered California had a number of topics to address yesterday at the organization’s new offices. Here is a review: Resolving Eligibility Inconsistencies In line with the federally administered Exchanges, Covered California is contacting enrollees whose self reported citizenship/immigration status and income […] more

Are Physicians Willing to Accept Medi-Cal Patients?

Looking at California’s remarkable Medi-Cal enrollment numbers, the million-dollar question is whether there will be enough physicians available to meet increased demands. Traditionally, physician participation in the Medi-Cal program, especially among non-primary care physicians, is low. One arguable reason for low participation is low reimbursement rates. Physicians may be unable […] more

Get ready for Cal Index! It’s more revolutionary than it sounds.

Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of California announced last week that they are launching Cal Index, a digital health information system that shares patients’ health data among all of the two plans’ contracted providers. The two insurers have set up the entity as a nonprofit organization, with $80 million […] more

No, not that CHCF

Have you heard of the California Health Care Facility? Aside from it sharing an acronym with the California HealthCare Foundation, you may not know much about this almost-purposefully-blandly-named facility. But if you knew more about it, you may develop some strong feelings on the matter. Some facts. 1. It is […] more

2015 Covered California Prices Revealed

Last week Covered California announced the 2015 plan rates. Good news: prices stayed low with a modest 4.2% increase statewide and even rate decreases in some area. The price changes vary across regions. San Francisco and Orange will see higher rate increases (6.6% and 6.3%, respectively), while Alameda (2.8%) and […] more