Republicans support Americans with pre-existing conditions, Trump says | Rule scaling back ACA birth control coverage could be issued soon | Providers share concerns about Medicaid buy-in proposals
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October 19, 2018
AHIP Solutions SmartBrief
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Republicans support Americans with pre-existing conditions, Trump says
Less than 20 days before the election, President Donald Trump tweeted Thursday that all Republicans support people with pre-existing conditions, and "if they don't, they will after I speak to them." Trump sent the tweet as GOP candidates are under fire across the country for their efforts to repeal or scale back the Affordable Care Act and its protections for people with pre-existing illnesses.
The Hill (10/18),  CNN (10/18) 
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Rule scaling back ACA birth control coverage could be issued soon
The Trump administration could soon issue a final rule scaling back the Affordable Care Act's coverage requirements for birth control by permitting more employers to stop covering contraceptives on moral and religious grounds, despite injunctions issued by courts in California and Pennsylvania targeting an interim final rule. The rule is now being reviewed by the Office of Management and Budget, and an HHS spokesperson didn't provide a timeline for its release.
MedPage Today (free registration) (10/18) 
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A CMO's Perspective on Value in Healthcare
It's time to take a pragmatic approach to value in healthcare. In a newly published perspective, a physician executive discusses what value really means today, best approaches for creating it and shares experiences on collaborating across the health system. Read now.
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Providers & Suppliers
Providers share concerns about Medicaid buy-in proposals
Health care providers at this week's AHIP conferences outlined concerns about state proposals to allow people who do not qualify for Medicaid to buy into the program. Issues with buy-in programs included the potential for shifting costs to the commercial insurance market and the impact on state budgets and Medicaid physician networks.
Modern Healthcare (tiered subscription model) (10/17) 
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3 Steps To CDH Success
Learn about the communication framework, best practices, mistakes to avoid, and the tools required to achieve the full potential that Consumer-Directed Healthcare (CDH) offers. Get the white paper.
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Medical Update
Researchers examine effect of poverty on heart health in teens
Adolescents from low-income families were at a greater risk of developing heart disease and were more likely to be obese or to smoke than those from affluent families, according to a study in Pediatrics. Researchers evaluated data on 11,557 youths ages 12 to 19 and found that 22% of teens from low-income families and 26% of those from middle-income families were obese, compared with less than 15% of adolescents from high-income families.
Reuters (10/17) 
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Beta-blockers in first trimester don't up congenital malformation risk
Researchers found that infants whose mothers took beta-blockers during the first trimester of pregnancy didn't have a significantly higher likelihood of developing congenital malformations, cardiac or central nervous system defects, and cleft lip or palate, compared with those whose mothers weren't exposed to beta-blockers during gestation. The findings were published online in the Annals of Internal Medicine.
Medscape (free registration)/Reuters (10/17) 
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Set the Stage for 2020 - Gain market share early
Identify how to improve outcomes, reduce readmissions and engage members with a home-delivered meals program. Our free E-guide describes details of the CHRONIC Care Act and how expanded supplemental benefits, including home-delivered meals, can meet the needs of chronically ill Medicare Advantage enrollees. Learn More
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Emerging Trends
CDC: US fertility rate declines, age of first-time moms rises
CDC: US fertility rate declines, age of first-time moms rises
(Pixabay)
A report in the National Center for Health Statistics Data Brief found that from 2007 to 2017, US fertility rates decreased 12% in rural areas, 16% in small and medium cities, and 18% in metro counties. During the same time, the average age among women having their first child increased from 23 to almost 25 in rural areas, from 24 to 26 in small or medium cities, and from 26 to 28 in large cities.
HealthDay News (10/17) 
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Health care looms large for voters in midterm elections
A Kaiser Family Foundation survey found 71% of people said health care was very important to their decision about which congressional candidates they will vote for in the upcoming midterm elections, and 30% said it was the most important issue. Results from Florida and Nevada, considered battleground states, showed voter support for maintaining the Affordable Care Act's protection for people with pre-existing conditions.
Kaiser Health News (10/18) 
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Fight the rising tide of chronic disease care costs
TeleHealth has long attracted interest for its potential to enable new and better models of care. Learn how remote patient monitoring can help reduce costs of chronic disease management while improving quality of care. Read the white paper.
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Health Insurance Provider Company News
Solutions Provider News
Find health care’s best and brightest
Ordinary job sites have their pros and cons. Ours is nothing but pros. And, with data tools that get you from post to placement faster, it's the better way to target health care's best and brightest. Start posting today.
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Pharma News
Valsartan prices double after recall
Valsartan prices double after recall
(Pixabay)
The cost of two valsartan doses, used to treat high blood pressure, increased more than any other drug in the US last month after pharmaceutical ingredient manufacturer Zhejiang Huahai Pharmaceutical pulled valsartan from the US market following discovery of a probable carcinogen. Prices more than doubled over August rates.
Reuters (10/16) 
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Policy Watch
Members of Congress ask CMS to consider adding dental care to Medicare
Rep. Gus Bilirakis, R-Fla., is among those who signed a letter to HHS Secretary Alex Azar and CMS Administrator Seema Verma asking them to consider adding coverage of medically necessary dental treatment and oral health care to Medicare.
WFTS-TV (Tampa, Fla.) (10/16) 
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Va.'s expanded Medicaid program to start enrollment Nov. 1
Virginia Gov. Ralph Northam said the state will start accepting applications for enrollment in its newly expanded Medicaid program on Nov. 1, with coverage scheduled to begin next year. About 400,000 low-income adults are now qualified to enroll in the program.
The Associated Press (10/18) 
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AHIP News
Get a solid understanding of Disability Income insurance
Grow your expertise in Disability Insurance (DI) -- with a focus on how it fits into retirement, estate, and long-term care planning -- by earning an impressive professional designation from AHIP. To start, take three online courses to earn your Disability Income Associate (DIA) designation then build from there! Choose two electives to earn your Disability Income Fellow (DIF). Enroll today.
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Must-attend webinars. Register today.
Join us, Tuesday, Oct. 23, 2 to 3 p.m. ET, for "Transforming Price Transparency" to discuss price transparency and its impact on the patient journey experience from provider/prescriber to pharmacist. Join us, Thursday, Nov. 1, 1 to 2 p.m. ET, for "It's in the Stars: 2019 CMS Star Ratings" and learn strategies that will help drive meaningful improvements in future clinical quality outcomes and Star Ratings performance. 
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Career next step? AHIP's Young Professionals Network
AHIP's Young Professionals Network is designed for health care professionals aged 35 and under. It's filled with resources including educational sessions, idea sharing through social media, and networking events. Be part of the online discussions at #AHIPYoungPro and visit the website for details.
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