Health Care Costs

Startup Companion Diagnostics trying to work through bankruptcy

September 8, 2014
J.K. Wall
Companion Diagnostics Inc., a biotech company that relocated to Indiana from Connecticut in 2010, has entered bankruptcy reorganization while it tries to develop a therapy for inflammation.
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Franciscan cuts its way to higher profits

August 25, 2014
J.K. Wall
Franciscan Alliance, which operates three hospitals in the Indianapolis area, is seeing fewer patients this year but is making more money due to expense cuts.
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Online insurance brokerage sets sights on Indiana

July 21, 2014
J.K. Wall
Obamacare could, according to some health insurance experts, cause most small businesses to end their group health plans. Now a new venture-backed company opening up shop in Indiana is trying to make that prediction a reality.
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Obamacare generates windfall for insurersRestricted Content

July 5, 2014
J.K. Wall
Obamacare’s tax credits are pumping nearly $400 million into the coffers of health insurers in Indiana this year, according to data released by the federal government and the insurance companies.
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Fishers health analytics firm to expand, add workers

June 24, 2014
 IBJ Staff
Healthiest Employers LLC plans to move software development to its Fishers headquarters in an expansion that will add up to 90 jobs by 2017.
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IU Health to merge 2 downtown hospitals

June 20, 2014
J.K. Wall
Indiana University Health wants to merge two of its big downtown hospitals—University and Methodist—into one location, meaning either one or both would close or be converted to another use.
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OurHealth to add employer clinics, 450 jobs by 2018

May 28, 2014
J.K. Wall
The 5-year-old firm has pledged to invest $20 million to double the size of its corporate headquarters in Indianapolis and lease real estate for a series of 3,500-square-foot health clinics across the state.
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Zimmer-Biomet deal could stanch their bleeding at hospitals

May 5, 2014
J.K. Wall
Hospitals, which have forced orthopedic implant makers to lower their prices in recent years, may have a harder time doing so when the combined Zimmer-Biomet controls nearly 40 percent of the market.
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Hospitals might limit executives' pay hikes after run of big increases

May 3, 2014
J.K. Wall
Before local hospitals slashed staff and expenses last year, they had been boosting the pay packages of their top executives faster than hospitals around the country. Seven of every 10 senior executives at the major hospital systems in Indianapolis saw their total compensation rise more than 10 percent from 2010 to 2012.
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Roche battles payment cuts while growing diagnostics business

April 28, 2014
J.K. Wall

Life Sciences Burris
                           interview Watch VideoNew tests have helped Roche Diagnostics grow its North American revenue, excluding its troubled diabetes care business, 23 percent over the past five years. But the money for diagnostic tests continues to go down in key areas, noted CFO Wayne Burris.

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Hospitals rethinking a la carte pricingRestricted Content

April 26, 2014
J.K. Wall
Indianapolis hospitals have begun to offer joint replacement surgeries to employers and insurers using “bundled prices.” That means, instead of billing piecemeal for each individual service and supply, the hospitals wrap everything needed from just before to just after surgery into a package deal.
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Hospitals might chip in to expand Medicaid

April 5, 2014
J.K. Wall
If Indiana hospitals want an expansion of insurance coverage for low-income Hoosiers, Gov. Mike Pence thinks they should contribute toward the hundreds of millions of dollars it would cost.
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IU Health suffers small decline in 2013 profit

March 31, 2014
J.K. Wall
Indiana University Health’s business deteriorated last year in nearly every area. But price hikes and a surge in outpatient visits to Indianapolis-area facilities mostly offset those problems.
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Obama says more than 6M signed up for health care

March 27, 2014
Associated Press
Like much else about Obama's health care law, the milestone comes with a caveat: The administration has yet to announce how many consumers actually closed the deal by paying their first month's premium.
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Indiana’s hospitals face Obamacare timing problem

February 24, 2014
J.K. Wall
The Obama administration's delays of Obamacare's employer mandate penalties mean it will be another year or two before hospitals see the additional revenue the law was supposed to bring them.
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New tiered network trips up IU Health, UnitedHealthcare talks

January 27, 2014
J.K. Wall
In spite of offers to strike a short-term extension, UnitedHealthcare and Indiana University Health are still hung up in contract negotiations on one key point: Minnesota-based UnitedHealthcare wants to create a multi-tiered network of providers and services that would offer the lowest co-pays and deductibles for favored hospital systems—which IU Health is not.
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NEWSMAKERS: Joe Swedish

December 28, 2013
J.K. Wall
When Joe Swedish was named the next CEO of WellPoint Inc., investors frowned. At first.
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TABLER: Market is driving trend toward 'public health'

November 23, 2013
Norman Tabler / Special to IBJ
The movement toward a “public health” model may be the most important current trend in American health care. Because the trend is more a result of market forces than of the Affordable Care Act, repealing Obamacare won’t stop it.
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Health law fuels modest rise in costs

October 26, 2013
J.K. Wall
It’s long been known that Obamacare would make health benefits more expensive for most employers. Now, it’s finally becoming clearer by how much: about 9 percent, on average, according to a series of actuarial studies.
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Franciscan hospitals to eliminate 925 full-time positions

October 23, 2013
J.K. Wall
The Indiana-based system that operates three hospitals in the Indianapolis area said it is trying to cut its expenses by as much as $500 million, or 20 percent.
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VC headwinds continue for life sciences firms

October 21, 2013
J.K. Wall
Indiana life sciences companies trying to raise venture capital continue to do so with a national wind in their faces, according to the third-quarter venture capital data.
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Technology on track to dramatically change health care

October 5, 2013
J.K. Wall
Cost pressures are forcing health care providers to extend the reach of limited resources.
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Health Care & Benefits Power Breakfast TranscriptRestricted Content

October 5, 2013
Read the discussion of experts gathered by Indianapolis Business Journal.
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Anthem prez: Expect 'crickets chirping' on Oct. 1

September 30, 2013
J.K. Wall
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield President Rob Hillman expects a slow start to the Obamacare exchanges, with fewer than one-third of uninsured people buying coverage there.
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Analysis: Obamacare exchanges will push Anthem's premiums lower

September 9, 2013
J.K. Wall
Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Indiana expects the average premiums it charges on the health insurance exchanges being created by Obamacare to be about $60 per year less for each of its health plan members than they would have been without the law.
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  1. You are correct that Obamacare requires health insurance policies to include richer benefits and protects patients who get sick. That's what I was getting at when I wrote above, "That’s because Obamacare required insurers to take all customers, regardless of their health status, and also established a floor on how skimpy the benefits paid for by health plans could be." I think it's vital to know exactly how much the essential health benefits are costing over previous policies. Unless we know the cost of the law, we can't do a cost-benefit analysis. Taxes were raised in order to offset a 31% rise in health insurance premiums, an increase that paid for richer benefits. Are those richer benefits worth that much or not? That's the question we need to answer. This study at least gets us started on doing so.

  2. *5 employees per floor. Either way its ridiculous.

  3. Jim, thanks for always ready my stuff and providing thoughtful comments. I am sure that someone more familiar with research design and methods could take issue with Kowalski's study. I thought it was of considerable value, however, because so far we have been crediting Obamacare for all the gains in coverage and all price increases, neither of which is entirely fair. This is at least a rigorous attempt to sort things out. Maybe a quixotic attempt, but it's one of the first ones I've seen try to do it in a sophisticated way.

  4. In addition to rewriting history, the paper (or at least your summary of it) ignores that Obamacare policies now must provide "essential health benefits". Maybe Mr Wall has always been insured in a group plan but even group plans had holes you could drive a truck through, like the Colts defensive line last night. Individual plans were even worse. So, when you come up with a study that factors that in, let me know, otherwise the numbers are garbage.

  5. You guys are absolutely right: Cummins should build a massive 80-story high rise, and give each employee 5 floors. Or, I suppose they could always rent out the top floors if they wanted, since downtown office space is bursting at the seams (http://www.ibj.com/article?articleId=49481).

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