Are you a busy provider looking for healthcare news? Check out The Rundown.
Privia has compiled a list of stories to keep you up to date on all things healthcare:
Alexander-Murray Bill Receives Good Reviews
The Bipartisan Health Care Stabilization Act of 2017, better known as the Alexander-Murray bill, just received a good report from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) according to Business Insider. Lead by Senators Patty Murray (D-WA) and Lamar Alexander R-TN), this bill would continue to fund cost-sharing reduction (CSR) payments while giving states more options to alter their Obamacare programs. The CBO report found that this bill would reduce federal spending by $3.8 billion from 2018-2027 and not change the amount of insured Americans. This report is expected to increase support from politicians from both sides, as Republicans are concerned with federal spending and Democrats worry about increasing the number of uninsured Americans. Despite this CBO report, the bill continues to remain in limbo until Trump declares his stance on the bill.
Opioid Crisis Declared a Public Health Emergency by Trump Administration
The Trump administration has declared a public health emergency to help fight the growing opioid crisis, according to a new report from NPR. Despite President Trump’s initial intention to declare this crisis a national emergency, the White House felt that declaring this crisis a public health emergency was more fitting. According to NPR, “President Trump is also expected to direct agency and department heads to use all appropriate emergency authorities to reduce number of deaths caused by the opioid crisis…”
What’s Medicare X?
Medicare X is a health plan proposed by Senators Michael Bennet (D-CO) and Tim Kaine (D-VA). Devised with the intention of providing coverage to all Americans, while favoring leaving existing sources of health insurance in tact in addition to the new option, if passed, “Medicare X would allow all Americans to buy a public health insurance plan. That plan would pay doctors the same prices that Medicare currently does, and it would allow patients to be seen at the offices and hospitals that Medicare has in network. But it would have a different benefit package from the public program that covers Americans over age 65. The Medicare X plan would cover things that Medicare does not, such as pediatrics and maternity care,” Vox reports.
Alzheimer Tsunami Threatens to Overwhelm Healthcare
The population of those over 65 is fueling what some health experts call an “Alzheimer’s tsunami,” reports the Daily NonPareil. “Unless a cure is found, by 2025, an estimated 7.1 million Americans age 65 and older could have Alzheimer’s, almost a 35 percent increase, according to the Alzheimer’s Association.” Simultaneously, some states have begun tightening Medicaid, the only government program that pays for nursing home care, in ways that will likely increase the burden on those with Alzheimer’s and their caregivers. Additionally, many states are likely to further slash Medicaid funding if Congress passes the Obamacare repeal legislation, leaving millions unprepared for the imminent crisis.