Care Delivery

The overprescription of antibiotics is a runaway problem in the healthcare industry, increasing antibiotic resistance globally.

Medicare fee-for-service improper payments dropped to their lowest level since 2010 this year, CMS Administrator Seema Verma announced on Nov. 16.

Expanded benefits could include paying for housing among Medicaid beneficiaries, according to HHS Secretary Alex Azar, who spoke about the impact of social determinants of health during a speech with the Hatch Foundation for Civility and Solutions on Nov. 14.

In the shift toward value-based care, at least one health insurer is making good on its goals to convert its contracts, according to the fifth annual value-based care report by Humana.

CMS sent state Medicaid directors an email on Nov. 13 announcing new opportunities to design service delivery systems for treating mental health. The announcement eases previous prohibitions against using Medicaid funding to pay for short-term residential treatment in an institution for mental disease.

CMS issued its year one performance results for participants in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), revealing that 93 percent of eligible clinicians received at least some positive payment adjustment for their 2017 performances.

Medicaid work requirements, which have been approved by CMS in a handful of states, could have dire consequences for the thousands of people who have lost their healthcare insurance coverage as a result of the programs, according to a non-partisan legislative branch agency.

Superbug infections could claim 2.4 million lives across Europe, North America and Australia over the next 30 years unless more is done to limit the growing antibiotic resistance. Fortunately, the issue could be stemmed for about $2 per person by investing in measures such as handwashing and prudent antibiotic prescription, according to the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development (OECD).

Three more states elected to expand Medicaid in the midterm elections, including Idaho, Nebraska and Utah, NBC News reported.

Medicare Advantage plans were allowed new flexibilities in 2019, but only a small number of plans will offer the additional supplemental benefits, according to AARP.

Approximately 72,000 people died in the U.S. last year as a result of an opioid overdose. While Americans and lawmakers both agree that more needs to be done to improve the opioid abuse epidemic, the FDA approved yet another potent opioid on Nov. 2.

Hospitals are becoming healthier places for patients, as healthcare-associated infections among hospital patients are declining, according to a recent CDC survey published in the New England Journal of Medicine.