HEALTH TRAIN EXPRESS What do you know about the use of social media and email to increase the communication potential for your business? A treasure trove of health data about every county in Kentucky is available to journalists and community planners looking to draw a statistical picture of their area. They also must show that they tried to get care in their home county first and may have a longer wait than Jefferson County patients. The changes do not affect patients who come seeking care for trauma, high-risk pregnancies, strokes or cancer care. The biggest cost containment challenge is in the fundamental cost of health care itself.
Last year, the university got nearly $69 million to cover indigent care, but that care cost it $89 million. The study also concluded that Medicaid recipients got outpatient care 35 percent more often than those who don’t have insurance. The companies are Coventry Health Care, based in Bethesda, Md.; WellCare Health Plans of Illinois; and Centene Corp. Moving to managed care is the Beshear’s administration’s answer to fill a $166 million hole in the Medicaid budget, created by a lack of expected federal funding.
The Democratic House sided with Beshear’s plan, but the Republican-led Senate fought it, saying managed care would not save the money Beshear promised. The free webinar, which starts at 3 p.m. EST next Wednesday, will teach listeners how to navigate the Kentucky Health Facts website and point listeners to other resources like the Kentucky Cancer Registry. Lately supporters have said this bill is the solution to the recent big individual health insurance rate increases we have been reading about in the press. That the Obama health care reform plan would cost between $50 and $65 billion a year is highly doubtful.
But there is little in this bill that will mitigate or control any such increases because so little would be done to impact underlying health care costs. The Democratic health care bill makes little if any systemic changes to the health care system—certainly not at the level we need. Proponents of the Democratic health care bill make the claim that it will make health insurance affordable, improve our deficit outlook, and make our health insurance system sustainable. Mandating that families cover all children through either a private or public health insurance plan.
Barack Obama’s health care plan follows the Democratic template—an emphasis on dramatically and quickly increasing the number of people who have health insurance by spending significant money upfront. The Obama campaign estimates his health care reform plan will cost between $50 and $65 billion a year when fully phased in. He assumes that it will be paid from savings in the system and from discontinuing the Bush tax cuts for those making more than $250,000 per year. Health information technology investment aimed at reducing unnecessary spending that results from preventable errors and inefficient paper billing systems.