Pre-snowmadgeddon update

The weather forecasters here in DC are predicting a big snowstorm for the weekend. Preparing for the storm can be more disruptive than the storm itself.  In any event,  following up on a couple of items mentioned recently in the FEHBlog:

  • Health Care IT News reports on HHS’s effort to provide more details on its plans to transition the meaningful use program which the medical community detests to a new program “focused on care” rather than electronic medical record clicks. 
  • HHS announced reductions in the number of special event that allow people to enroll in ACA exchange plans outside of the ACA Open Season which ends  on January 31.  
  • Senate leadership announced its plans to pass several “small bore” bills in lieu of the House’s titantic 21st Century Cures Act. The FEHBlog certainly favors small bore legislation as a general rule. 
JAMA Internal Medicine reported on a study concluding that

Simply increasing a deductible, which gives enrollees skin in the game, appears insufficient to facilitate price shopping. Members of HDHP and traditional plans are equally likely to price shop for medical care, and they hold similar attitudes about health care prices and quality. Despite considerable focus on increasing price transparency, HDHP enrollees express interest in greater access to health care price information.

Healer heal thyself. It’s up to the medical community to provide more price transparency.  

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