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The Economy and Medical Care

Various market watchers have reported that the use of health care services has not been growing recently as it had in the past, resulting in lower than expected health care claims for people with private insurance and higher than expected earnings for insurers. A look at physician office visits by…

Health Reform and State Workforce Challenges: An Early Look at Five States

This report provides an early look at state efforts to prepare for health reform, examining the experiences to date in five states (Connecticut, Michigan, Massachusetts, North Carolina and Washington). The report finds that the state political environment and expected leadership transitions create uncertainties and are already factoring into state strategies…

Behavioral Health: Can Primary Care Help Meet the Growing Need?

The health reform law has specific provisions covering mental health and substance use conditions, as well as general provisions to benefit those in need of behavioral health services. While addressing unmet needs, the reform law provisions raise new challenges. Given their budgetary constraints, will states be able to expand capacity…

Medigap: Spotlight on Enrollment, Premiums and Recent Trends

Medicare supplemental insurance, also known as “Medigap,” is an important source of supplemental coverage for nearly one in four people on Medicare. Traditional Medicare has cost-sharing requirements and significant gaps in coverage; Medigap helps make health care costs more predictable and stable for beneficiaries by covering some or all Medicare…

Quick Take: Medicaid: 3 Key Issues to Watch in 2013

2013 will be a historic year for Medicaid with the implementation of major provisions to expand coverage and streamline enrollment in the Affordable Care Act (ACA) less than a year away, a surge in activity around care delivery reforms that seek to improve care and potentially reduce costs, and the…

From Crunch to Crisis: State Budgets, Medicaid and the Economy

Medicaid programs are feeling the strain as enrollment grows while state revenues come in lower than projected. How are Medicaid directors coping? How is the recession affecting low-income individuals and families? This briefing, cosponsored by the Alliance for Health Reform and the Kaiser Commission on Medicaid and the Uninsured, addressed…