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In this issue

Provider Supply Series  

Part IV of IV

Government agencies, physicians, associations, and policy writers have long attempted to understand and make predictions regarding the supply of, and demand for, the U.S. healthcare workforce. HC Topics' four-part Provider Supply Series will address the history of provider regulation and its relation to the impending shortage of physician providers given looming demand. The first article in the series introduced the Graduate Medical Education National Advisory Committee (GMENAC) report, published in 1980, recommending that medical school enrollment should be limited to prevent a surplus of providers. The second and third articles in the series examined development of, and failure of governmental policies to meaningfully address, the perceived shortage. The fourth and final article considers the future projections regarding the provider supply and present day policies to counteract the worsening shortage.

Provider Supply Series Part IV - The Physician Workforce: What the Future Holds     

This final installment of HC Topics' Provider Supply Series considers current predictions regarding a massive physician shortage, along with the measures being undertaken to resolve the developing problem. Given that the ACA places an additional burden on an already strained healthcare workforce, whether the measures designed to offset the impending shortage will be successful remains to be seen.  (Read more...) 


Medicaid Expansion: A Fiscal Decision to Ensure Access to Care    

Following the June 28, 2012 U.S. Supreme Court's modifying the ACA provision that mandated states to expand their Medicaid programs or lose all matching federal funds, states must now choose whether to opt in to the Medicaid expansion in exchange for significant federal assistance, or to maintain their Medicaid programs' status quo and deny access to potentially millions of poor and uninsured constituents. While some states have already decided whether to opt-in or opt-out of the expansion, many other remain undecided and are scrambling to evaluate all the financial considerations involved. ; (Read more...) 


Value-Based Payment Modifier: Another Step Toward Value-Driven Healthcare 

On July 30, 2012, CMS published a proposed rule for the most recent initiative, the Physician Value-Based Payment Modifier (VBPM), which would impact physician fee-for-service payment rates based on the quality and cost of care provided to traditional Medicare beneficiaries. Though the initiative is still in the early stages of its development, the VBPM is expected have a significant impact on physician reimbursement, as Medicare is the largest insurer in the U.S. and similar programs by commercial insurers will likely not be far behind.  (Read more...)   


Update on Pediatrics  

As healthcare reform initiatives place increased emphasis on primary and preventive care, the healthcare industry is likely to experience increased demand for pediatric services in the coming years, especially considering the new payment structures and models of care being implemented under the ACA that may cause reimbursement rates to rise. (Read more...)  



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