Posts Tagged - ‘partners healthcare’

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Should Hospitals Pay For Small Business Health Insurance Plans?

Monday, May 17th, 2010

For now, this is only happening in Massachusetts, but it could spread nationwide: hospitals are now required to make a one-time contribution to a fund that subsidizes the purchase of health insurance plans by small businesses. They will pay the insurers directly, and the health insurance companies will refund eligible businesses for two years.

After only one major hospital system–Partners HealthCare–agreed to contribute voluntarily, the State Senate President included a provision that forces them to pay $100 million to the fund. The amounts will be split based on the hospitals’ profit margins and the makeup of their patient populations.

According to supporters, small business health insurance premiums will drop by 2.5% as a result of the subsidy–although they acknowledge that it’s only a temporary solution. Detractors, including the Massachusetts Hospital Association, are worried that the mandatory assessments will negatively impact the finances of and quality of care from their facilities.

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How Could Hospitals Reduce Health Insurance Rates?

Wednesday, April 14th, 2010

Image: tahitianlime under CC 3.0

Health insurance companies are often blamed for increasing premiums. In turn, they point the finger at hospitals. According to them, hospitals demand ever-increasing reimbursement rates, which must be passed onto policy holders.

A group of teaching hospitals in Massachusetts, Partners HealthCare, is trying to lessen their impact on costs. They are putting $40 million towards a proposal intended to reduce the cost of a small group health insurance plan for small businesses. Insurers will receive the money, and be required to use it to decrease premiums.

State Senate President Therese Murray also plans to propose a change to the current fee-for-service system that encourages uncoordinated care, where hospitals get paid on a per-procedure basis.

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