Health Insurance

Financial and structural characteristics of the public and private programs that cover medical costs. LDI analyzes how to expand and improve coverage through insurance exchanges, employer-sponsored insurance, and public programs.

Narrow Networks Through A Pediatric Lens

Jul. 9, 2018

The adequacy of “narrow network” plans offered on the Affordable Care Act (ACA) Marketplaces continues to be a concern in the wake of exclusions of some high-cost providers and the incidence of “surprise medical bills” even in facilities that are in-network.

Comparison Of Hospitals Participating In Medicare’s Voluntary And Mandatory Orthopedic Bundle Programs

Jun. 6, 2018

Abstract [from journal]

We analyzed data from Medicare and the American Hospital Association Annual Survey to compare characteristics and baseline performance among hospitals in Medicare’s voluntary (Bundled Payments for Care Improvement initiative, or BPCI) and mandatory (Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Model, or CJR) joint replacement bundled payment programs. BPCI hospitals had higher mean patient volume and were larger and more teaching intensive than were CJR hospitals, but the two groups had similar risk exposure and baseline episode quality and cost. BPCI hospitals...

Shopping on the Public and Private Health Insurance Marketplaces: Consumer Decision Aids and Plan Presentation

Jun. 6, 2018

Charlene A. Wong, Sajal Kulhari, Ellen J. McGeoch, Arthur T. Jones, Janet Weiner, Daniel Polsky, ...

Abstract [from journal]

Background: The design of the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) health insurance marketplaces influences complex health plan choices.

Objective: To compare the choice environments of the public health insurance exchanges in the fourth (OEP4) versus third (OEP3) open enrollment period and to examine online marketplace run by private companies, including a total cost estimate comparison.

Design: In November–December 2016, we examined the

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What State Legislators Say About Medicaid, and Why It Matters

May. 29, 2018

Medicaid’s federal-state partnership structure has long permitted states to adopt modifications to coverage design, including benefits and cost-sharing. That structure, combined with an Administration signaling its support for greater state flexibility and funding constraints, could produce substantial shifts in state Medicaid policy.

The Future of Medicaid: State Legislator Views on Policy Waivers

Research Brief
May. 23, 2018

A survey of state legislators revealed clear partisan differences in Medicaid reform priorities and policy preferences that states are pursuing in Section 1115 waiver applications. While there was some agreement across parties on broad goals for the Medicaid program, such as reducing health care spending and increasing affordability of health care, there was little consensus on specific policy changes needed to meet these goals.

Trends in hospital-SNF relationships in the care of Medicare beneficiaries

May. 17, 2018

Joshua M. Liao, R. Tamara Konetzka, Rachel M. Werner

Abstract [from journal]

Improving the value of post-acute care at skilled nursing facilities (SNFs) has become a Medicare policy priority. Anecdotally, hospitals have responded by formally acquiring or pursuing tighter informal connections with SNFs. We evaluated the trend in connections between US acute care hospitals and Medicare-certified SNFs between 2000 and 2013 using vertical integration and two novel network-based measures (number of SNF partners, and...

Safeguards Needed in Medicaid Work Requirements

May. 10, 2018

In a push to encourage “personal responsibility,” the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has approved work requirements as a condition for receiving Medicaid benefits in four states - Kentucky, Indiana, Arkansas, and most recently New Hampshire, with applications from other states pending.

Being Uninsured in America

Apr. 26, 2018

For the nearly 30 million people in the United States who have no health insurance, gaining access to care and paying for that care can be a challenge.  A new “secret shopper” study explores whether the uninsured can get a new primary care appointment, and at what price.

Most Primary Care Physicians Provide Appointments, But Affordability Remains A Barrier For The Uninsured

Apr. 26, 2018

Brendan Saloner, Katherine Hempstead, Karin Rhodes, Daniel Polsky, Clare Pan, Genevieve M. Kenney

Abstract [from journal]

The US uninsurance rate has nearly been cut in half under the Affordable Care Act, and access to care has improved for the newly insured, but less is known about how the remaining uninsured have fared. In 2012–13 and again in 2016 we conducted an experiment in which trained auditors called primary care offices, including federally qualified health centers, in ten

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Shift in U.S. Payer Responsibility for the Acute Care of Violent Injuries After the Affordable Care Act: Implications for Prevention

Apr. 11, 2018

Abstract [from journal]

Background: Investment in violence prevention programs is hampered by lack of clearly identifiable stakeholders with a financial stake in prevention. We determined the total annual charges for the acute care of injuries from interpersonal violence and the shift in financial responsibility for these charges after the Medicaid expansion from the Affordable Care Act in

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Impact of Insurance Coverage on HIV Transmission Potential Among Antiretroviral Therapy-Treated Youth Living with HIV

Apr. 4, 2018

Sarah Wood, Sarah Ratcliffe, Charitha Gowda, Susan Lee, Nadia DowshenRobert...

Abstract [from journal]

Objective: To identify the prevalence of high HIV transmission potential in a cohort of youth living with HIV (YLWH), and determine the impact of insurance coverage on potential for HIV transmission.

Design: Retrospective cohort study of antiretroviral therapy (ART)-treated YLWH at a US adolescent HIV clinic, 2002–2015.

Methods: The primary exposure was presence or absence of insurance, defined as private, public or pharmacy-only coverage. The primary outcome was high HIV transmission...

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