Jordan Rau

Hospitals Struggle To Beat Back Serious Infections

KHN Original

KHN reporter Jordan Rau spoke on NPR about data that say about 75,000 patients per year die from infections they got in the hospital. Nearly 700 hospitals around the U.S. have higher than expected infection rates.

One-Quarter Of ACOs Save Enough Money To Earn Bonuses

KHN Original

About a quarter of the 243 groups of hospitals and doctors that banded together as accountable care organizations under the Affordable Care Act saved Medicare enough money to earn bonuses, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced Tuesday. Those 64 ACOs earned a combined $445 million in bonuses, the agency said. Medicare saved $372 […]

CDC Survey Finds Drop In Uninsured

KHN Original

This KHN story can be republished for free. (details) UPDATED AT 12:10 P.M. The federal government’s first survey of the nation’s insured rate since the health care law’s new marketplaces began found a decrease in the number of adults without coverage, particularly among young adults. The National Health Interview Survey of people during the first […]

First Look At Medicare Quality Incentive Program Finds Little Benefit

KHN Original

One of Medicare’s attempts to improve medical quality –by rewarding or penalizing hospitals — did not lead to improvements in the first nine months of the program, a study has found. The quality program, known as Hospital Value-Based Purchasing, is a pillar of the federal health law’s campaign to use the government’s financial muscle to […]

Unfavorable Views Of Health Law Spike In July: Poll

KHN Original

The health law’s unpopularity among the public rose sharply in July with a surge of disapproval from people who had been agnostic about it in recent months, a poll released Friday shows. The law is as unpopular as it has been since it was enacted four years ago. The poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation […]

Poll: Americans Bristle At Penalties In Wellness Programs

KHN Original

Workers believe employer wellness programs should be all gain but no pain, according to a poll released Tuesday. The poll from the Kaiser Family Foundation found employees approve of corporate wellness programs when they offer perks, but recoil if the plans have punitive incentives such as higher premiums for those who do not take part. […]

Senators Offer Bill To Ease Readmission Penalties On Some Hospitals

KHN Original

A bipartisan group of senators introduced legislation on Thursday to make Medicare take the financial status of hospital patients into account when deciding whether to punish a hospital for too many readmissions. The bill attempts to address one of the main complaints about the readmissions program: that hospitals serving large numbers of low-income patients are […]

Some Costly Hospital Complications Not Tracked by Medicare, Analysis Finds

KHN Original

An analysis released Thursday identified dozens of potentially avoidable hospital complications that are not being tracked by the government even though some occur frequently and are expensive to treat. Premier, Inc., a consulting company that works with hospitals on improving quality, analyzed 5.5 million patient records to identify 86 common complications that occurred in the […]

Harvard: Overused Medical Services Cost Medicare Billions

KHN Original

Medical overtreatment is the inverse of former Supreme Court Justice Potter Stewart’s definition of pornography: while easy to define in concept, it can be hard to know it when you see it. A treatment that is appropriate for one patient can also be unnecessary or even counterproductive for another, depending on the patient’s condition. This […]

Doctors Think Others Often Prescribe Unnecessary Care

KHN Original

Three out of four physicians believe that fellow doctors prescribe an unnecessary test or procedure at least once a week, a survey released Thursday finds. The most frequent reasons that physicians order extraneous—and costly—medical care are fears of being sued, impulses to be extra careful and desires to reassure their own assessments of the patient, […]