Posts Tagged - ‘medicine’

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New Trend: Lump Sum Health Insurance Payments

Friday, April 30th, 2010
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An increasing number of doctors and health insurance companies are considering lump-sum reimbursement. As opposed to being paid for every procedure they perform, health care providers will be paid a certain amount to treat a particular condition or perform a particular surgery.

Proponents of the strategy believe that it promotes preventative care and more cooperation. It also makes costs more predictable for your health insurance plan.

Some worry that bundled payments will penalize doctors who deal with complicated cases and chronic conditions. Despite those concerns, several major health insurers in California are already on board.

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How Would Doctors Lower Health Insurance Costs?

Tuesday, March 30th, 2010

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Whether or not healthcare reform ends up reducing health insurance costs, it is clear that it will not do so alone. Medical expenses make up one-sixth of the U.S. GDP. Doctors are on the front lines of this predicament; so what are their suggestions?

  • Some believe that health savings accounts (HSA plans) should be more prevalent; similar to auto insurance, they mainly insure catastrophes instead of routine care. However, the bill goes further in the other direction.
  • The specter of medical malpractice lawsuits hangs over many doctors, causing them to order unnecessary tests. Despite receiving little notice, there is a provision in the health insurance reform bill that encourages states to develop alternatives. It’s not the tort reform some have called for, but it’s a start.
  • Paying attention to the prevention of conditions before they get worse (and more expensive to treat): nipping childhood obesity in the bud before those children grow up to become obese adults with health problems, and counseling on nutrition.
  • Educating patients on the downsides of overtreatment, whether they are healthy or near the end of their life
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