[cross-posted with US News]
In June, we described the first attempt to measure, in a consumer-friendly way, the breadth of physician networks offered by all silver plans on the 2014 health insurance marketplaces. We estimated network size based on the fraction of office-based physicians participating in the network within relevant rating areas in the state. We categorized networks using "T-shirt" sizes: x-small (less than 10%), small (10%-25%), medium (25%-40%), large (40%-60%), and x-large (more than 60%). We found that nationally, 41% of all networks were either “small” or “x-small”.
In Diagnosis, John Barbieri, Benjamin French and Craig Umscheid investigate whether the use of a differential diagnosis (DDX) generator within a health care system leads to an increase in unnecessary testing and specialty consultation. By providing access to a broad differential, DDX generators can potentially help clinicians overcome cognitive biases by directing them to diagnoses they might not have considered otherwise. However, as the tool suggests numerous potential diagnoses, its use could result in an increase in unnecessary testing and specialty consultation, and...
Although health reform has reduced many financial barriers to care, it has done little to overcome geographic barriers. Two recent studies by LDI Senior Fellows examine disparities in geographic access to specialty care in the United States, specifically gynecologic cancer care and comprehensive stroke treatment. They assess the potential impact of these disparities on health outcomes, and suggest population-based planning as a way to improve access to specialty care.
“Science has delivered solutions. The question for the world is: When will we put it into practice?”
In the mid-eighties, I coordinated a medical genetics clinic at Johns Hopkins Hospital. We shared our outpatient unit, the Moore Clinic, with the AIDS Care Program, which began in 1984. Every week, I would see the devastating and shockingly rapid decline of robust young men—men my age—in the waiting room outside my office. I came to recognize the pattern: two men would walk in, one weaker, one stronger.
Twitter has been abuzz with commentary about ProPublica’s Surgeon Scorecard, which reports on how individual surgeons perform on in-hospital mortality and readmission (complication) rates for eight common elective procedures. Amidst the pointed criticisms of the Scorecard, there exists moderate agreement that it provides some value in helping consumers select a surgeon.
Not every health system can be Kaiser Permanente, but many try. Kaiser’s model of integrated health delivery is highly regarded for high-quality and efficient health care.
Fifty years ago, on July 30, 1965, President Lyndon Johnson signed Medicare and Medicaid into law. Over the next two years, more than 29 million people gained health coverage through these programs. By 1967, as Alice Rivlin recalls, economists were sounding an alarm about rising Medicare costs and reporting to the President that projected growth would be unsustainable.
I recently attended the AcademyHealth Annual Research Meeting (ARM) thanks to the support of the Alice S. Hersh Scholarship and the Leonard Davis Institute (LDI). At the ARM, two themes stood out for me: the re-emergence of managed care as a vehicle for replacing volume with value, and behavioral economics.
There’s been a lot of talk about "narrow" networks in ACA plans, which trade off limited provider coverage for lower premiums. Using a new integrated dataset of physician networks in plans on the federal and state marketplaces, our latest LDI/RWJF Data Brief describes the breadth of physician networks across all silver plans sold in 2014.
The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has prompted health plans to increase their use of “narrow networks” of providers as a cost containment strategy. The Leonard Davis Institute of Health Economics (LDI) has assembled the first integrated dataset of physician networks for the plans offered on the ACA marketplace. This data brief uses this new resource to describe the breadth of the physician networks in plans sold on the state and federal marketplaces.