Health Reform Hub

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Financial Alignment Demonstrations for Dual Eligible Beneficiaries: A Look at CMS's Evaluation Plan

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The Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation has released a new issue brief that describes the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services� plan to evaluate the demonstrations, via its contract with RTI International



Considerations for Integrating Behavioral Health Services within Medicaid Accountable Care Organizations

Medicaid accountable care organizations (ACOs) offer the potential to improve health care quality and control rising costs, particularly for complex, high-need beneficiaries. This brief outlines considerations to guide state Medicaid agencies in successfully integrating behavioral health services within ACOs.



Impact of health insurance on the survival of babies born with a heart defect

A new CDC study published in the American Journal of Public Health looked at the link between health insurance coverage and the survival of a baby born with a heart defect (a congenital heart defect).



ACAView: First Observations Around the Affordable Care Act

This first report from a new collaboration between the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and athenahealth found that health providers have not seen the spike in patient volume expected by some.



National Survey Finds 10.6 Million People Helped By Navigators and Assisters During the Affordable Care Act's First Open Enrollment Period

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An estimated 10.6 million people nationally received personal help from navigators and assisters during the Affordable Care Act's first open enrollment period, finds a new Kaiser Family Foundation survey of navigators and assister programs nationally.



Intensive Care Coordination Using High-Quality Wraparound for Children with Serious Behavioral Health Needs

This practical guide, made possible by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, profiles states and counties that have implemented intensive care coordination using high-quality wraparound for children and youth with serious behavioral health needs.



Conflicting Views of Supreme Court's Contraception Decision Cloud Other Cases

Kaiser Health News continues reporting on the Supreme Court's contraception coverage rulings, including the Hobby Lobby decision and temporary injunction for Wheaton College.



Investing in the Social Safety Net: Health Care's Next Frontier

A new Health Affairs blog post authored by participants in the Center for Health Care Strategies' Complex Care Innovation Lab focuses on the need to marry the nation's health and social safety nets to truly address social determinants of health issues at the ground level.



CCIIO issues FAQ on Essential Community Providers

A new FAQ released by the Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) addresses questions insurance issuers may have concerning Essential Community Providers (ECPs). The Affordable Care Act (ACA) requires issuers to contract with a sufficient number of ECPs, or providers that generally treat low-income and medically underserved patients. The FAQ describes specifics of the ECP requirements, how issuers can access the non-exhaustive ECP list, and how ECPs can actively pursue inclusion in insurance planes. The exclusion of Children's Hospitals as ECPs has been of concern to the disability community.



Missed Opportunities: The Consequences of State Decisions Not to Expand Medicaid

White House Council of Economic Advisors

This analysis, from the White House Council of Economic Advisers, discusses the economic and health consequences of states' decisions not to expand Medicaid.



'A Uniquely New Hampshire Approach' to Medicaid Expansion

New Hampshire became the 26th state today to embrace the expanded Medicaid program, with as many as 50,000 low-income residents expected to begin signing up. Coverage for those who enroll this month will take effect Aug. 15. Initially, most New Hampshire enrollees will join one of two Medicaid managed care plans in the state. But New Hampshire officials hope that up to 10 percent of those who sign up will eventually enroll in employer plans - using federal money to subsidize that coverage.



A State Policy Framework for Integrating Health and Social Services

This brief from The Commonwealth Fund, authored by the Center for Health Care Strategies, describes three essential components for integrating health - encompassing physical and behavioral health services and public health - and social services. These components are: (1) a coordinating mechanism; (2) quality measurement and data-sharing tools; and (3) aligned financing and payment.



Hobby Lobby Ruling Cuts Into Contraceptive Mandate

Kaiser Health News explains the 5-4 Supreme Court decision in Burwell v. Hobby Lobby



Legal Analysis of the Supreme Court Ruling on Hobby Lobby

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Legal analysis from the Kasier Family Foundation explains how the Religious Freedom Restoration Act applies in Burwell v Hobby Lobby.



The Medicaid Health Home Provision in the Affordable Care Act: An Overview

Section 2703 of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) went into effect on January 1, 2011. It is an optional provision of the ACA. States that create Medicaid Health Homes have an opportunity to integrate primary care, mental, behavioral, and substance use services for individuals with certain chronic conditions who are enrolled in Medicaid.

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