In follow up to a much earlier post, the FEHBlog notes that the New York Attorney General reached a settlement earlier this week with seven insurance companies over the timing of coverage of the new Hepatitis B drugs. "As a result of these agreements, nearly all commercial health insurance plans in New York State will cover treatment for chronic Hepatitis C without requiring members to develop advanced disease, such as liver scarring, and will not deny coverage because the member uses alcohol or drugs, or because the authorizing physician is not a specialist."
The Washington Post reported yesterday on the skyrocketing costs of emergency surgeries.
In a paper published in JAMA Surgery on Wednesday, researchers found a surprising pattern. In an analysis of 421,476 patient records from a national database of hospital inpatients, they discovered that a mere seven procedures accounted for approximately 80 percent of all admissions, deaths, complications and inpatient costs related to emergency surgeries. The sample included only adults who underwent a procedure within two days of admission from 2008 to 2011.Hmmm.
The seven dangerous and costly procedures are mostly related to the organs of the digestive system: removing part of the colon, small-bowel resection, removing the gallbladder, operations related to peptic ulcer disease, removing abdominal adhesions, appendectomy and other operations to open the abdomen.
Finally, the Health Care Cost Institute confirmed with a new study that the prices of medical procedures vary.