Latest Kaiser Health News Stories

Patients Are Confessing Suicidal Thoughts To Apps Meant To Manage Health Problems Like Diabetes, Leaving Startups To Grapple With What To Do

KHN Morning Briefing

“To be honest, when we started this, I didn’t think it was as big an issue as it obviously is,” said Daniel Nathrath, CEO of Ada Health. The phenomenon, though, is, in some respects, no surprise: There’s a large body of research showing that people are more willing to confess potentially taboo thoughts to a computer than to a fellow human a few feet away.

The Dark Side Of Artificial Intelligence: Increased Efficiency Comes With Ominous Threat Of Vulnerability To Hackers

KHN Morning Briefing

A report warns that artificial intelligence can be easily duped with tiny pieces of data. The authors say bad actors could hack into records and make it seem like there’s an illness there that isn’t. But more likely is that doctors, hospitals and other organizations could manipulate the A.I. in billing or insurance software in an effort to maximize the money coming their way. In other health technology news: a day of reckoning is coming for digital health, the FDA calls for tighter security of electronic health records following a KHN report, and data breaches from the states.

Podcast: KHN’s ‘What The Health’ Surprise! Fixing Surprise Medical Bills Is Harder Than it Looks

KHN Original

Joanne Kenen of Politico, Anna Edney of Bloomberg News and Alice Miranda Ollstein of Politico join KHN’s Julie Rovner to discuss the efforts to curb “surprise” medical bills to patients who inadvertently get out-of-network care; a look at where the 2020 presidential candidates stand on health; and the Trump administration’s efforts to end HIV in the U.S. Also, Rovner interviews Food and Drug Administration Commissioner Scott Gottlieb, who is leaving his job in early April.

Lengthy Training, Licensing That Health Care Occupations Require Creating Significant Skill Gap For Those Looking For Jobs

KHN Morning Briefing

“There just aren’t enough places and schools to get trained for how many people we need in those roles,” said economist Tara Sinclair. An aging population and increase in wealth has contributed to higher demand for health care services, and the skills gap is only going to have a greater impact on the booming industry as it grows. In other health industry news: costly insurance, a hospital whistleblower case, health stocks, state employee premiums, cheating doctors and more.

Billionaire-Backed Health Venture ‘Haven’ May Find Itself Facing Legal Challenges Over Name

KHN Morning Briefing

There are already dozens of companies named “Haven,” with a large handful that deliver or facilitate health services. “It seems very risky to me,” said Jonathan Bell, managing director of Want Branding, a firm that advises companies on name selection. In other health industry news: health savings accounts, hospitals’ religious policies, cost disclosures, and minimum wage increases.

Electronic Consults With Specialist Doctor Can Free Up Capacity In Crowded Health Systems

KHN Morning Briefing

The first place in the U.S. to adopt an eConsult system, in 2005, was the San Francisco Department of Public Health. Wait times fell, and a large majority of primary care doctors said it improved care. “A safety net system can’t afford to hire enough specialists to meet demand — eConsults get around that problem by increasing access through enhancing efficiency,” said Dr. Mitchell Katz, who was director of the San Francisco Department of Public Health when eConsults began there.

Can Apple Watch Really Detect Cardiac Problems? Results Of Big Study From Stanford Just A Heartbeat Away

KHN Morning Briefing

At the upcoming annual meeting of the American College of Cardiology, researchers will unveil the first results of a study of 400,000 people wearing the device. Cardiology is becoming a testing ground for new tech. Other health technology stories include news on the Cleveland Clinic’s new artificial intelligence center and Amazon’s latest product for sale–modular hospital rooms.

Hospitals, Health Industry Question Trump Administration’s Legal Authority To Require Price Transparency

KHN Morning Briefing

The Trump administration is considering requiring hospitals and insurers to reveal the true costs of medical services, which have always been tightly held, confidential secrets by the parties involved. The industry says the administration lacks the authority to mandate such disclosures, while also pointing out that they wouldn’t do much to help consumers.