Health Care Reform

Few employers say they'll drop health coverage

November 21, 2011
J.K. Wall
Few employers in Indiana say they’re likely to drop health benefits after state insurance exchanges are formed in 2014, according to a new survey by the health benefits firm Mercer.
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Kaiser: Lack of competition endemic

October 31, 2011
J.K. Wall
In a new study, Indiana ranked as the 19th least-competitive state for individual health insurance and the 27th least-competitive for small-employer health insurance.
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Q&A

October 31, 2011
J.K. Wall
As an Eli Lilly and Co. lobbyist in Washington, D.C., Jay Bonitt is hoping the Congressional “super committee” charged with trimming the federal budget doesn’t turn to the Medicare prescription drug program, known as Part D, to do so. Bonitt, Lilly's vice president of federal affairs, said the program is under budget and helps spur drugmakers to further innovation.
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Insurance mandate lacks teeth, WellPoint CFO says

October 24, 2011
J.K. Wall
As constitutional challenges to the health reform law’s mandate to buy insurance advance, WellPoint Inc.’s chief financial officer reiterated that the company does not object to the mandate, just to its lack of penalties.
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Hospitals scrambling to buy nursing homesRestricted Content

October 22, 2011
J.K. Wall
The hospitals owned by Boone and Hamilton counties are following the lead of Indianapolis-based Wishard Health Services and its parent organization by acquiring far-flung nursing homes, hoping the strategy proves as lucrative.
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Best and worst of times for new docs

October 10, 2011
J.K. Wall
Medical residents are getting more job offers than before, yet greater numbers of them say if they had it to do over again, they would not go to medical school.
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IU Health, Howard Regional call off merger talks

October 4, 2011
J.K. Wall
The integration of the two not-for-profit hospital systems, approved by Howard Regional's board in late May, is now dead, the two hospitals announced Monday.
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Private exchange could boost WellPoint profits

October 3, 2011
J.K. Wall
WellPoint Inc.'s participation in buying a majority stake of the private health insurance exchange operator Bloom Health could help it get back to its roots as a health insurer—and make a bit more money in the process.
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PANEL: Reforms to rapidly reshape health careRestricted Content

October 1, 2011
Reform-induced changes dominate health care panel of health care experts convened by Indianapolis Business Journal.
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Accountable care 'savior' of doc groups

September 26, 2011
J.K. Wall

Health_care_park_watch_videoIndianapolis’ largest independent physician group, American Health Network, doesn’t want to sell to a hospital, but its CEO hopes it can hold on until accountable care kicks in.

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Firm tries again with personal health records

September 26, 2011
J.K. Wall
Even though Google Inc. has given up on the business of electronic personal health records, Fort Wayne-based NoMoreClipboard.com is launching a new service it thinks will crack open the market.
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WellPoint buying private health insurance exchange

September 20, 2011
Bloomberg News
The deal helps WellPoint compete for employers with the U.S. state-run marketplaces set to open in 2014 under President Obama’s health-care overhaul.
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Roche hopes to prosper from austerity

September 19, 2011
J.K. Wall
Executives at Roche Diagnostics expect the wave of austerity measures being taken by western governments—including the United States—to as much as double its sales of fluid- and DNA-based tests in the next three years.
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Will ACOs really get off the ground?

September 19, 2011
J.K. Wall
The hype over accountable care organizations—something every major hospital in Indianapolis is moving to become—is increasingly being laced with skepticism as the economics behind the idea get more scrutiny.
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Gloomy outlook for medical device makers

September 12, 2011
J.K. Wall
The next four years could be rough for makers of medical devices and orthopedic implants, including Bloomington-based Cook Medical Inc. and Warsaw-based Zimmer Holding Inc. and Biomet Inc.—and not because of the 2010 health reform law.
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Study: Hospital-doc hookups raising costs

August 22, 2011
J.K. Wall
Indianapolis doctor tell researchers that hospitals are paying more than $1 million a year to employ some cardiologists.
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Q&A

August 22, 2011
J.K. Wall
Angela Smith, an attorney for hospitals and physicians at Indianapolis-based Hall Render Killian Heath & Lyman P.C., spoke about Medicare’s value-based purchasing program, a federal initiative that will attempt to shift health care payments from the fee-for-service model to one based on health outcomes. On July 1, hospitals began being scored on their performance in 13 categories, including processes, patient outcomes and patient satisfaction surveys. How hospitals score could boost or diminish all their Medicare payments by as much as 1 percent, beginning in October 2012.
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WellPoint spent $1.3M on federal lobbying in 2nd quarter

August 18, 2011
Associated Press
WellPoint lobbied on issues tied to the overhaul's implementation and regulations for accountable care organizations, which are networks of hospitals, doctors, rehabilitation centers and other providers that coordinate a patient's care.
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Five individual insurers leaving Indiana

August 8, 2011
J.K. Wall
Hartford-based Aetna Inc. and Philadelphia-based Cigna Corp., the nation’s third- and fifth-largest health insurers respectively, have announced their departure from Indiana’s individual health insurance market.
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WellPoint fails to profit on consumer pullback

August 1, 2011
J.K. Wall
With recession-weary Americans going to the doctor less, health insurer WellPoint Inc. should be enjoying higher profits. But it isn’t working out that way.
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Consumers grow allergic to health care costs

August 1, 2011
J.K. Wall
Deloitte found that 20 percent of consumers have cut back on health care spending and 75 percent say the economic slowdown has had some impact on their willingness to spend on health care.
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WellPoint insures two-thirds of Hoosier workers

July 25, 2011
J.K. Wall
Indianapolis-based WellPoint claimed 63 percent of all employees covered by small-group employers and 66 percent of the workers at large-group employers, according to Seattle-based actuarial firm Milliman Inc.
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Primary care gets a new approach: prevention

July 20, 2011
Associated Press
A budding model for primary care that encourages the family doctor to act as a health coach who focuses as much on preventing illness as on treating it has shown promising results and saved insurers millions of dollars.
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Not-for-profits vying with WellPoint may get $3.8B in loans

July 18, 2011
Bloomberg News
Not-for-profits that compete with insurers such as WellPoint Inc. are eligible for $3.8 billion in U.S. financing under the health law, and the government expects more than a third of the loans not to be repaid.
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Exchange could snag 1.1M Hoosiers

July 18, 2011
J.K. Wall
An estimated 1.1 million Hoosiers will obtain health insurance through a yet-to-be-created online exchange, according to the latest estimates from the task force guiding Indiana’s response to the 2010 health reform law.
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