Tag Archives: medicare

CMS initiatives may be good news for some beneficiaries

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Photo: moodboard via Flickr

This post was co-written by Joseph Burns (@jburns18), a Massachusetts-based independent journalist and AHCJ’s topic leader on health insurance. He welcomes questions and suggestions on insurance resources and tip sheets at joseph@healthjournalism.org.

You may have seen the April 2 press release from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services that highlighted the steps it is taking to, among other efforts, advance a more patient-centered approach, reinterpret standards for supplemental benefits under Medicare Advantage plans, lower prescription drug prices and address the opioid crisis. While that’s a lot to promise in a page and a half, more details are available in CMS’ 2019 Medicare Advantage and Part D Rate Announcement and Call Letter. Be forewarned, however, that many journalists may need experts to interpret the implications of what CMS calls its call letter. Continue reading

OPTIMISTIC program reduces avoidable hospitalizations

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Photo: SalFalko via Flickr

A nursing home demonstration project in Indiana has reduced avoidable hospitalizations among residents by a third, according to a recently released independent evaluation of OPTIMISTIC, (Optimizing Patient Transfers, Impacting Medical quality and Improving Symptoms: Transforming Institutional Care).

OPTIMISTIC is a Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) demonstration program designed to improve chronic disease management and boost staff education and training.

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Verma participates in first of promised series of ’roundtables’ with reporters

Kimberly Leonard

About Kimberly Leonard

Kimberly Leonard (@leonardkl) is a member of AHCJ’s Right to Know Committee and co-chair of the Washington, D.C., chapter. She covers Congress, the White House, and the Department of Health and Human Services as a health care reporter for the Washington Examiner.

Seema Verma

Seema Verma, the administrator for the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, held her first on-the-record, in-person meeting with reporters in Washington, D.C., on Thursday as the agency pledged to make her more accessible, through both smaller and larger gatherings.

Verma spoke with 10 reporters for one hour, beginning the conversation by discussing the sustainability of Medicare and then answering reporters’ questions on Medicaid expansion, value-based care, and the Affordable Care Act. Continue reading

How the new budget package may affect older adults

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Photo: Anne Worner via Flickr

The massive $1.3 trillion omnibus spending bill was signed by President Trump on Friday and is now law. Several provisions within the 2,200-plus pages of legislation maintain or increase funding for programs and services that benefit older adults.

The spending bill provides $4.5 million in health promotion for Alzheimer’s disease and $2 million for initiatives to prevent falls among older people, according to a story in McKnight’s Senior Living. Continue reading

Reporters highlight the budget bill’s impact on older adults

Liz Seegert

About Liz Seegert

Liz Seegert (@lseegert), is AHCJ’s topic editor on aging. Her work has appeared in NextAvenue.com, Journal of Active Aging, Cancer Today, Kaiser Health News, the Connecticut Health I-Team and other outlets. She is a senior fellow at the Center for Health Policy and Media Engagement at George Washington University and co-produces the HealthCetera podcast.

Photo: V.T. Polywoda via Flickr

President Trump last week signed a budget bill that is likely to affect the health of older adults in a variety of ways. Here’s an overview to help guide coverage in your community.

Thanks to the tenacious work of many of my colleagues, you can probably skip over much of the 600-plus pages of legislationese and go straight to the highlight reel. In a comprehensive New York Times piece, Margot Sanger-Katz, Brad Plumer, Erica L. Green and Jim Tankersley explain key provisions. Continue reading