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Healthcare and Insurance News Headline Updated on 09 Apr 2020

The headline on 09 Apr 2020

As hospitals move more and more services to alternative sites of care, CMS has put out new guidance on how hospitals can ensure infection control at those sites. Source: Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)

A new report from the Chartis Group paints a dire picture of intensive care capacity in rural areas. Rural America is home to about 20% of the U.S. population but 63% of rural hospitals don’t have any ICU beds at all. Source: The Rural Health Safety Net Under Pressure: Understanding the Potential Impact of COVID-19

American Medical Association leaders will host a live virtual town hall today at 2 p.m. ET to discuss challenges and concerns facing physicians during the COVID-19 crisis. Participants can tweet questions to @AmerMedicalAssn and register here.

A system to effectively track and trace COVID is a prerequisite for gradually reopening the economy, a group of notable healthcare leaders including Scott Gottlieb and Farzad Mostashari said in a recent paper. Source: Duke Today > FORMER FDA LEADERS, HEALTH EXPERTS URGE ACTION NOW TO CONTAIN COVID-19 IN FUTURE

Centene has launched a new program aimed at assisting providers in applying for grant funding and small business loans as their finances thin due to COVID-19. Source: Centene Announces Provider Support Program To Assist Providers With Grant Writing, Small Business Loan Applications

Livongo Health beat projections on first-quarter revenue. Heather Landi has more. Source: IBD Stock Of The Day Tops 2 Buy Points On A ‘Rare Event’ Amid Covid-19

Insurer stocks rallied Wednesday after Sen. Bernie Sanders, a staunch supporter of single-payer healthcare, dropped out of the Democratic presidential race. Source: Health insurers add to rally as Sanders suspends campaign

The headline on 08 Apr 2020

CMS said late Tuesday that it’s paid out nearly $34 billion in advanced and accelerated provider payments in the past week amid the pandemic. Plus, UnitedHealth Group said it would offer $2 billion in financial supports as well. Source: UnitedHealth Group Accelerates Nearly $2 Billion in Payments and Support to Health Care Providers to Help with COVID-19 Financial Challenges

A new report from the Kaiser Family Foundation suggests that the costs of treating uninsured COVID-19 patients could be as high as $41 billion. Source: KFF > Estimated Cost of Treating the Uninsured Hospitalized with COVID-19

Prime Therapeutics has launched a new solution to help plan sponsors shoulder the cost of gene therapies. Source: Prime Therapeutics launches PreserveRxSM gene therapy financial protection

In the first quarter of 2020, digital health companies raised more than 1.5 times the total funding in the first quarter of any previous year. Find out what investors had to say on the outlook for digital health funding in the coming months. Digital health companies raised more than $3 billion across 107 deals in Q1, just in the nick of time. Find out what investors have to say about the impact of COVID-19 on startup funding in 2020. Source: Rock Health > Amidst a record $3.1B funding in Q1 2020, digital health braces for COVID-19 impact

To help people manage the emotional toll of the COVID-19 pandemic, Express Scripts will make SilverCloud Health’s digital mental health tools available to members for free. Also, wellness startup Hims & Hers has expanded into virtual mental health services. Express Scripts will make SilverCloud Health’s behavioral health platform available to its members for free. Here’s why. Source: Cigna Newsroom > EXPRESS SCRIPTS ENABLES ACCESS TO SILVERCLOUD HEALTH DIGITAL PROGRAM TO HELP MEMBERS COPE WITH COVID-19 PANDEMIC

The headline on 07 Apr 2020

President Trump announced that $30 billion will be distributed to hospitals this week as more and more systems furlough workers. Read more on the latest news in our Coronavirus Tracker. Source: Tyto Care Raises $50M to Expand Its Telehealth Exam and Diagnosis Offering Globally T

The Washington Post profiles New Zealand’s elimination approach to coronavirus rather than containment. The country isn’t just flattening the curve—it’s squashing it. Source: The Washington Post > New Zealand isn’t just flattening the curve. It’s squashing it.

Severe shortages of testing supplies, lack of PPEs and inconsistent guidance from federal officials have greatly limited hospitals’ ability to respond to the COVID-19 pandemic, hospital administrators around the country told a federal watchdog. Source: Hospital Experiences Responding to the COVID-19 Pandemic: Results of a National Pulse Survey March 23–27, 2020

The headline on 06 Apr 2020

As job losses continue to grow nationwide, a new study aims to put a number on just how many people could drop out of employer-sponsored coverage amid the COVID-19 outbreak. Source: Microsoft Word – HMA Estimates of COVID Impact on Coverage public version for April 3 830 CT

As hospitals shift more employees to remote work, ransomware operators are trying to find vulnerabilities in hospital network devices like gateway and virtual private network (VPN) appliances, Microsoft warns. Source: Microsoft Security > Microsoft works with healthcare organizations to protect from popular ransomware during COVID-19 crisis: Here’s what to do

Kaiser Permanente is teaming up with Livongo to offer members free access to the myStrength mental health app. Source: Digital tools for emotional wellness

The coronavirus pandemic has left many physician practices struggling to stay afloat. Telehealth will be the key to the survival of many cash-strapped practices, writes Joanne Finnegan. Source: Non-Emergent, Elective Medical Services, and Treatment Recommendations

The headline on 03 Apr 2020

Humana will relax some administrative requirements on providers, such as prior authorization, in an effort to ease their fight against COVID-19. Source: Humana Announces Health Care Provider Initiative to Help Ease Financial and Administrative Stress During Coronavirus Pandemic

The Pew Charitable Trusts is urging HHS to move forward with a pair of interoperability rules, though payers and providers have expressed concern about the timeline of the rollout amid the coronavirus pandemic. Source: Pew Urges HHS Secretary to Implement Health IT Rules to Help in Light of Coronavirus

The headline on 02 Apr 2020

As healthcare organizations move their non-essential employees to work remotely during the COVID pandemic, ransomware operators are trying to find vulnerabilities in network devices, Microsoft warns. Source: Microsoft Security > Microsoft works with healthcare organizations to protect from popular ransomware during COVID-19 crisis: Here’s what to do

As one Italian doctor wrote in the Annals of Internal Medicine this week, one of the most wrenching impacts of the coronavirus pandemic has been the separation of dying patients from their families. Source: Annals of Internal Medicine > Love in the Time of Corona FREE

UnitedHealthcare and Anthem have joined Aetna, Cigna and Humana in offering waivers for cost-sharing related to COVID-19 treatment. Source: UnitedHealthcare > We’re here to help with your COVID-19 concerns

A new report from the Urban Institute argues that expanded Medicaid will be critical as more people lose their jobs amid the pandemic. Source: Robert Wood Johnson Foundation > Unemployment, Health Insurance, and the COVID-19 Recession

If you needed further proof of the spread of COVID-19, half of U.S. doctors say they have treated at least one patient with coronavirus symptoms but couldn’t easily test for the virus. Source: Physician views on the coronavirus pandemic response

The headline on 01 Apr 2020

The ongoing health crisis could be the tipping point for remote monitoring technology such as Xealth and Twistle, healthcare leaders say.

Express Scripts’ suite of SafeGuardRx programs saved its plan sponsors $4.8 billion last year. Here’s how they did it. Source: SafeGuardRx Saved Enrolled Plans $4.3 Billion in 2019

Some health systems have started to furlough workers and staff as they struggle with increased demand for services from COVID-19 and a lack of revenue from canceled elective procedures. Source: Boston Medical Center furloughs 10 percent of its workforce as part of cutbacks across the health care industry and Update: Baptist Health to Begin Furloughing Workers

There is some good news for U.S. teaching hospitals: the U.S. State Department says it will resume processing visas needed by international doctors to enter the country. Source: Update on Visas for Medical Professionals

Alex Lim is a certified IT Technical Support Architect with over 15 years of experience in designing, implementing, and troubleshooting complex IT systems and networks. He has worked for leading IT companies, such as Microsoft, IBM, and Cisco, providing technical support and solutions to clients across various industries and sectors. Alex has a bachelor’s degree in computer science from the National University of Singapore and a master’s degree in information security from the Massachusetts Institute of Technology. He is also the author of several best-selling books on IT technical support, such as The IT Technical Support Handbook and Troubleshooting IT Systems and Networks. Alex lives in Bandar, Johore, Malaysia with his wife and two chilrdren. You can reach him at [email protected] or follow him on Website | Twitter | Facebook

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