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State highlights: Calif. gov. signs rural telehealth bill; Louisiana's ex-health secretary indicted

State highlights: Calif. gov. signs rural telehealth bill; Louisiana's ex-health secretary indicted

States around the country are taking advantage of a once little-used policy that allows them to bill Medicaid for the healthcare expenses of prisoners who leave a correctional institution for treatment. Since 1997, states have been allowed to bill Medicaid for the care of inmates who required treatment at a hospital or nursing facility for longer than 24 hours. The provision has drawn new attention this year as millions of Americans, including those serving time in correctional institutions, have become newly eligible for Medicaid under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (Dickson, 9/23). [More]
NIH awards grants to 11 research groups to establish AMP RA/Lupus Network

NIH awards grants to 11 research groups to establish AMP RA/Lupus Network

The National Institutes of Health has awarded grants to 11 research groups across the United States to establish the Accelerating Medicines Partnership in Rheumatoid Arthritis and Lupus (AMP RA/Lupus) Network. [More]
NIH, CSU scientists provide evidence that supports camels as primary carrier of MERS-CoV

NIH, CSU scientists provide evidence that supports camels as primary carrier of MERS-CoV

National Institutes of Health and Colorado State University scientists have provided experimental evidence supporting dromedary camels as the primary reservoir, or carrier, of Middle East respiratory syndrome coronavirus (MERS-CoV). [More]

More insurers to offer health exchange insurance plans

Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia Burwell announced that the number of insurers participating in the marketplaces this fall will increase 25 percent. [More]
Eurest introduces new food and nutrition concept to promote worksite health, sustainability

Eurest introduces new food and nutrition concept to promote worksite health, sustainability

National Institute of Health's contracted food service partner, Eurest, proudly introduced a new pioneering food and nutrition concept called 'Balance Kitchen' in the ACRF Cafe that is designed to foster and promote worksite health and sustainability. [More]
NIH awards $10.1 million in supplemental funding to study effects of sex in preclinical, clinical studies

NIH awards $10.1 million in supplemental funding to study effects of sex in preclinical, clinical studies

The National Institutes of Health has awarded $10.1 million in supplemental funding to bolster the research of 82 grantees to explore the effects of sex in preclinical and clinical studies. [More]
Viewpoints: Surgery surprise: Out-of-network doctors' bills; consequences of making Medicaid enrollees pay premiums

Viewpoints: Surgery surprise: Out-of-network doctors' bills; consequences of making Medicaid enrollees pay premiums

The New York Times' Elisabeth Rosenthal offered an important lesson in healthcare economics over the weekend that's a must-read for anyone about to undergo a major medical procedure. [More]
Elusys completes phase 3 clinical program of obiltoxaximab in healthy adult volunteers

Elusys completes phase 3 clinical program of obiltoxaximab in healthy adult volunteers

Elusys Therapeutics, Inc., a biopharmaceutical company developing antibody therapies to treat infectious disease, today announced it has completed three phase 3 healthy adult volunteer safety studies of obiltoxaximab (ETI-204). [More]
State highlights: Calif. readies new checks on foster kid psych meds; Kan. employment support for those with mental illness

State highlights: Calif. readies new checks on foster kid psych meds; Kan. employment support for those with mental illness

In a significant step toward curbing the overuse of psychiatric drugs in California's foster care system, doctors will soon be required to get extra authorization to prescribe antipsychotics, a new safeguard to protect some of the state's most overmedicated children. Beginning Oct. 1, a state pharmacist must verify the "medical necessity" of each antipsychotic prescription before the medications can be given to children who are 17 and younger and covered by Medi-Cal, the state's health program for the poor that also includes foster children (De Sa, 9/18). [More]
Obama orders plan to reduce peril of antibiotic resistance

Obama orders plan to reduce peril of antibiotic resistance

The measures include incentives to develop new drugs, tighter control of existing ones and better tracking of resistant microbes. [More]
State highlights: Los Angeles' new mental health program; N.C. considers Medicaid expansion; N.Y. nurses push for more staff

State highlights: Los Angeles' new mental health program; N.C. considers Medicaid expansion; N.Y. nurses push for more staff

The $756,000 initiative marks one of the county's most significant attempts to find a better way to treat people who have mental illness and wind up in the criminal justice system by offering them transitional housing, medical treatment and job-hunting help. Officials say the pilot program will start in Van Nuys and initially help 50 people at a time, but it is expected to spread throughout the county and could accommodate up to 1,000 people at once (Gerber, 9/17). [More]
Viewpoints: Election victory could bring difficult decisions for GOP; Burwell 'presses reset'

Viewpoints: Election victory could bring difficult decisions for GOP; Burwell 'presses reset'

But if the GOP controls both the Senate and the House, its members will be under pressure to govern. At least in the Senate, where 60 votes are needed to move major legislation, they'll even have an incentive to compromise .… But that won't be easy. [More]

Coordination pays off for about a quarter of ACOs

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services reported that 64 of 243 accountable care organizations -- a new health care delivery model created by the health law -- earned bonuses by saving the Medicare program money. Four ACOs overspent and now owe the government money. [More]

Missing paperwork puts coverage at risk for tens of thousands of people

According to the Obama administration, as many as 115,000 people could lose the new insurance they obtained under the health law because they did not prove they were legal immigrants or U.S. citizens who were eligible for that coverage. Another 363,000 people must submit documentation to verify their incomes by Sept. 30 or lose their subsidies. These two numbers combined represent about 10 percent of the people who signed up through the online insurance marketplaces. [More]
Covered California unveils ad campaign, awards $14.6M for outreach

Covered California unveils ad campaign, awards $14.6M for outreach

And new enrollment numbers for that state show a growing individual insurance market, officials said. Meanwhile, a Nebraska woman recounts her experience as a navigator, and Oregon officials say a tax credit error will affect fewer people than expected. [More]

Medicaid: 25 ways states game the system

The Department of Health and Human Services has identified the key problems the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services need to address to ensure that states pay their fair share of the state-federal low income insurance program. [More]

Health clinics getting new $295 million for primary care through health law

The money will go to expanding primary care services, as well as helping health centers stay open longer and provide expanded services not always available at the clinics across the United States. [More]
Six research institutions awarded NIH grants to create database of human cellular responses

Six research institutions awarded NIH grants to create database of human cellular responses

Building on a successful three-year pilot project, the National Institutes of Health has awarded more than $64 million to six research institutions to create a database of human cellular responses, the Library of Integrated Network-based Cellular Signatures. [More]
Groups get $3.2 million to enroll minorities in Obamacare

Groups get $3.2 million to enroll minorities in Obamacare

Federal health officials award grants to 13 community organizations to sign up racial and ethnic minorities in health plans through online insurance marketplaces. Meanwhile, a group of South Florida hospitals raises money to help low-income patients pay their insurance premiums, and Massachusetts details plans to re-enroll 450,000 residents. [More]
HolaDoctor launches new Interactive Health Insurance Center to educate Hispanics

HolaDoctor launches new Interactive Health Insurance Center to educate Hispanics

HolaDoctor.com, the leading health website in the Hispanic digital market, launched a new Interactive Health Insurance Center which aims to inform and educate Hispanics on how to apply for and acquire health coverage in 2015. [More]