Markian Hawryluk

Shot of shelves stocked with various medicinal products in a pharmacy

Pharmacies Face Extra Audit Burdens That Threaten Their Existence

KHN Original

Pharmacy benefit managers have curtailed in-person audits of pharmacy claims during the pandemic, switching to virtual audits done by computer. That has markedly increased the number of claims they can review — and the chances for payment denials — squeezing pharmacies and bringing in more cash for the benefit companies.

Bus Stop by Bus Stop, Denver-Area Officials Microtarget Vaccine Hesitancy

KHN Original

Using detailed maps that show vaccination rates down to the ZIP code or census tract level, health departments highlight areas of greater Denver where vaccinations lag behind state or county averages, then partner with community organizations to overcome barriers. Can this be a model for President Joe Biden’s “neighborhood by neighborhood” approach?

Denver State Capitol Building with Mountain View

What a Difference a Year Makes in Colorado’s Case for a Public Option Plan

KHN Original

Before the pandemic, Colorado was building momentum to pass what’s known as a “public option” health plan that would lower insurance premiums and force hospitals to accept lower payments. But now with hospitals and health care providers enjoying support as front-line heroes in the pandemic, state legislators have stripped the option from their bill.

Amid Covid Health Worker Shortage, Foreign-Trained Professionals Sit on Sidelines

KHN Original

Hospitals dealing with staff shortages during the current covid surge are unable to tap into one valuable resource: foreign-trained doctors, nurses and other health workers, many with experience treating infectious diseases. Colorado, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York and Nevada are the only states to have eased credentialing requirements during the pandemic.

Not Pandemic-Proof: Insulin Copay Caps Fall Short, Fueling Underground Exchanges

KHN Original

Although sharing prescription medicines is illegal, many people with diabetes are turning to underground donation networks when they cannot afford their insulin. Caps on insulin copays enacted in Colorado and 11 other states were designed to help. But the gaps between insulin costs and many patients’ financial realities are only widening amid the economic crisis of the COVID pandemic.