“An Arm and a Leg” is updating a story, first reported in 2019, about how insulin got to be so expensive. The latest news is more encouraging than expected.
A student sought counseling help after feeling panicked when she had trouble paying a big tuition bill. A weeklong stay in a psychiatric hospital followed — along with a $3,413 bill. The hospital soft-pedaled its charity care policy.
Marilyn Bartlett, credited with saving Montana’s state employee health plan millions of dollars, is a busy consultant now, as states, counties and big businesses try to use her playbook to bring down hospital costs.
State officials recently unveiled a “master plan” to address the needs of California’s rapidly aging population, from housing to long-term care. Kim McCoy Wade, director of the state Department of Aging, vows it will not end up on a shelf gathering dust.
A video on the social media platform TikTok explains how consumers can “crush” their hospital bills using charity care policies. This won’t work for all medical bills, but it might be a good place to start.
The measures would impose taxes on increases in the price of drugs that don’t reflect improved clinical value and set the rates paid by state-run and commercial health plans to a benchmark based on prices in Canada.
Legislators in statehouses across the U.S. face the dual challenge of budgeting in a covid-crippled economy while planning for the pandemic’s long-term effects on mental health and substance abuse services.
Jeff Bloom, a lawyer who used to represent medical-bill collectors in court, is sharing what he knows. “I was a bad guy, for sure,” he said. Then, a few years ago, he switched sides.
Lawmakers answered pleas from strained health facilities in rural areas, agreed to cover the cost of training more new doctors, sought to strengthen efforts to equalize mental health coverage with that of physical medicine and instructed the federal government to collect data that could be used to rein in high medical bills.
Charlie Kjelshus needed neonatal intensive care for the first seven days of her life. The episode generated huge bills, and left her parents in a tangle of red tape that involved two insurers, two hospitals and two states.