State Roundup: Calif. Budget Cuts; Texas Hospitals Cry Foul Over Funding Plan
A selection of health policy stories from California, Texas, Colorado, Oregon and Rhode Island.
Los Angeles Times: Specifics Of California's Budget Cuts
Spending on welfare, child care and home care for the elderly and disabled would be reduced but not by as much as Brown wanted. CalWORKs, the state welfare program, is facing the biggest hit at $428 million. … In-Home Supportive Services, which allow some elderly residents to avoid being moved into nursing homes, would be reduced by about $90 million. The cut means 3.6 percent fewer hours of care for beneficiaries (Megerian and York, 6/16).
Texas Tribune: Private Hospitals Angry Over Funding Plan
Three days before Health and Human Services Commissioner Tom Suehs announced his upcoming retirement, the chief executives of Texas’ five biggest private hospital systems asked Gov. Rick Perry for a sit-down meeting ... In the letter, the presidents and chief executives ... suggested that state deliberations over how to reimburse private hospitals for caring for the indigent -- including the details of a federal Medicaid waiver -- favored public hospitals in a way unfair to private hospitals. ... It's the latest salvo in a running back-and-forth between public and private hospitals (Ramshaw, 6/15).
Texas Tribune: Texas-Based Projects Win Health Care Innovation Awards
Texas-based health care projects have been selected to receive about $38.8 million in federal money through an initiative that aims to support projects designed to deliver quality medical care and save money. Winners of the U.S. Health and Human Services Department's Health Care Innovation Awards were announced Friday by the federal Centers for Medicaid and Medicare Services. In addition to the direct awards, about $61.6 million will go to other projects that affect Texas (Luthra, 6/15).
Denver Post: Denver Health Wins $19.8 Million To Manage High-Risk Cases
Denver Health won $19.8 million from a highly competitive federal grant to hire "navigators" and information specialists who can sort high risk cases to cut costs and improve care. Denver Health believes it can extend the complex services to 15,000 new patients, saving $40 million over three years by reducing ER visits and expensive procedures through better primary medicine and mental health coordination (Booth, 6/16).
The Oregonian: Health Reform: Portland Collaborative Lands $17.3 Million Health Innovation Award
Portland-area health providers have landed a $17.3 million federal innovation award to build a more coordinated system for taking care of low-income people with complex health problems. The goal is to step-up support services and preventive care for people to reduce their need for emergency room visits and hospital admissions. Planners hope to save about $32.5 million over three years (Rojas-Burke, 6/15).
Modern Healthcare: R.I. Governor To Let Legislation On Hospital Deals Become Law
Rhode Island Gov. Lincoln Chafee said that he will allow legislation to amend the state's Hospital Conversions Act become law without his signature. The bill will amend the state law to allow for-profit companies to acquire more than one hospital in Rhode Island every three years. The Rhode Island House and Senate passed the legislation this week (Lee, 6/15).