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PA will See Major Employment and Economic Strains under Proposed American Health Care Act

June 14, 2017

Today, The Commonwealth Fund released its economic and employment assessment of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) on the United States. According to the study, enactment of the AHCA would lead to nearly 85,000 jobs lost in Pennsylvania by 2026 and more than $14 billion lost in business output.

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The Importance of Trauma Centers in Pennsylvania

June 12, 2017

The Pennsylvania General Assembly returned this week to continue work on the 2017–2018 state budget. The commonwealth faces a projected revenue shortfall for the current fiscal year of $1.2 billion and a growing structural deficit for next year, placing some supplemental hospital payments at risk for reduction, including payments that support life-saving trauma care.

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PA Providers to Senators Toomey and Casey: AHCA Hits PA Harder than Other States

June 08, 2017

News Release:  Ahead of possible Senate action on the American Health Care Act (AHCA), a group of 27 health care providers and organizations from across Pennsylvania sent a joint letter to Senators Pat Toomey and Bob Casey about how the AHCA “severely disadvantages Pennsylvania...”

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The Importance of Funding for PA’s Burn Centers

June 07, 2017

Proposals for the 2017–2018 state budget have mostly protected funding for hospital care. But some supplemental hospital payments are at risk for reduction, including payments that support life-saving burn care.

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Pennsylvania Expects Only Single-Digit Increases for Health Insurance in 2018

June 02, 2017

Yesterday, Pennsylvania’s Insurance Commissioner Teresa Miller announced that all five health insurance companies participating in Pennsylvania’s marketplace will continue to offer policies during 2018, and next year’s aggregate rate increases would average 8.8 percent for individual plans, and 6.6 for small group plans.

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New Data Predicts Skyrocketing Costs for Chronic Diseases in the U.S.

June 01, 2017

A new RAND Corporation analysis and related chart pack predicts that chronic disease in the U.S. will cost the nation as much as $42 trillion from 2016 and 2030. In Pennsylvania during the same period, the projected total cost of chronic disease is $1.7 trillion.

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Public Opinion Polling Shows Little Support for AHCA

May 31, 2017

The Kaiser Family Foundation’s most recent Health Tracking Poll shows that most of the public—55 percent—has an unfavorable view of the American Health Care Act (AHCA) which was recently passed by the House; less than a third (31 percent) of the respondents had a favorable view of the AHCA; and, the public has more favorable views of the Affordable Care Act at 49 percent, than unfavorable views at 42 percent.

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Social Security Numbers to be Removed from all Medicare Cards by April 2019

May 31, 2017

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will remove Social Security numbers from Medicare cards and is on schedule to begin mailing new Medicare beneficiary cards during April 2018.

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Start of Joint Replacement Model and 340B Final Rule Delayed

May 19, 2017

This week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a final rule that further delays to January 1 the start date for its Cardiac and Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement Bundled Payment Model. In addition, Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) delayed to October 1 the effective date of its final rule on 340B drug ceiling prices and civil monetary penalties for manufacturers.

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Nationally Insured Coverage Relatively Stable Between 2015 and 2016; Pennsylvania Uninsured Dropped

May 16, 2017

The National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS), part of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, released the 2016 findings from their national survey, which found that there was relatively no change in the uninsured between 2015 and 2016 nationally. However, in Pennsylvania, the survey reflects a continued drop in the percentage of uninsured from 2013 through 2016.

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New Study About Medicare Beneficiaries Emphasizes Importance of Access and Affordability

May 12, 2017

A new report issued by The Commonwealth Fund found that more than one-fourth of Medicare  beneficiaries—an estimated 15 million elderly and disabled people—spent 20 percent or more of their household income on out-of-pocket medical expenses and monthly premiums during 2016.  

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New Poll Measures Voter Sentiment About ACA Repeal and Replace

May 10, 2017

As the United States Senate determines its approach to a repeal and replace of the Affordable Care Act (ACA), a new poll looks at voter sentiment about the issue.

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FDA Delays Rule That Promotes Healthier Living; Hospital Programs Help Address Healthy Eating and Fight Hunger

May 08, 2017

The Food and Drug Administration will delay implementation of the Menu Labeling Rule aimed at addressing the obesity epidemic and the importance of healthy living.

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HAP: AHCA Vote Threatens Coverage For More Than 1.1 Million Pennsylvanians

May 04, 2017

News Release:  Today, the U.S. House of Representatives approved the American Health Care Act (AHCA), a measure to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

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Congress Passes Stopgap Spending Plan to Avoid Government Shutdown

April 28, 2017

Both houses of Congress approved a one-week stopgap spending measure today. This short-term continuing resolution easily cleared both the House and the Senate.

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