Latest Kaiser Health News Stories

Despite Safety Violations Linked To Deaths, Psychiatric Hospitals Remain Fully Accredited By National Watchdog

KHN Morning Briefing

The Joint Commission, a nonprofit private body authorized by the government to review hospital performance, has long held an accrediting monopoly. It’s in charge of inspecting nearly 90 percent of the country’s psychiatric hospitals. But it revokes or denies accreditation to only a very small percentage of them. Other news on safety and quality comes out of Texas and Maryland.

Health Industry Groups: Congress Must Act To Protect Patients From Surprise Medical Billing

KHN Morning Briefing

“When doctors, hospitals or care specialists choose not to participate in networks, or if they do not meet the standards for inclusion in a network, they charge whatever rates they like,” wrote the groups, which include powerful lobbyists like the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association, America’s Health Insurance Plans, the National Business Group on Health, and the Consumers Union. “The consequence is millions of consumers receiving surprise, unexpected medical bills that can often break the bank.”

There’s A Revolutionary Procedure That Can Treat Severe Strokes, But Most Hospitals In U.S. Don’t Perform It

KHN Morning Briefing

Going to different hospitals only a few miles away from each other can make a profound difference on the chances of a patient recovering from a stroke. But sometimes local, state and regional rules dictate that ambulance drivers bring patients first to hospitals that don’t do the procedure before they can be transferred. Because the success of thrombectomies are dependent on how fast they are performed in relation to the stroke, that delay can mean a huge difference. Other hospitals news focuses on rural care, EHR improvements, surprise billing, and more.