FTC Orders Hospital, Health System, and Five Insurers in Two States to Share Vast Amounts of Data on Their Customers and on Past Acquisitions and Mergers

Lab leaders may recall similar requests for data from other government agencies and wonder if FTC will take steps to investigate pricing and competition among clinical laboratories as well It appears that the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) is ready to look into hospital consolidation, as evidenced by the extent of data—including pricing and managed care contracts—it requested from healthcare providers and health insurers last fall. This may not seem unusual to clinical laboratory leaders who...

Federal Government Is Sending Nearly $11 Billion to States for COVID-19 Clinical Laboratory Testing and Testing-Related Activities

Questions remain, however, over how much of the funding will actually reach hospital and health system clinical laboratories For many cash-strapped clinical laboratories in America, the second round of stimulus funds cannot come soon enough. Thus, lab leaders are encouraged by news that Congress’ $484-billion Paycheck Protection Program and Healthcare Enhancement Act (H.R.266) includes almost $11 billion that will go to states for COVID-19 testing. But how much of that funding will reach the...

Because of the COVID-19 Outbreak, AACC Reschedules Its Annual Conference to December in Chicago and Executive War College Reschedules Its Conference in New Orleans to July

Two major clinical laboratory conferences reschedule, as the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic continues to disrupt long-planned events; Many labs are losing money as fewer patients visit physicians This week, the ongoing Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome Coronavirus 2 (SARS-CoV-2) pandemic was responsible for two important developments in the clinical laboratory industry. Both involved the rescheduling of major annual conferences. In both cases, conference organizers are placing different bets on when they...

Direct Primary Care is Emerging as a New Healthcare Model in the US, But Are Clinical Laboratories Prepared to Bill Patients Directly?

If insurance plans are removed from the billing cycle for primary care, it’s not clear how clinical laboratories will be reimbursed for their services Direct Primary Care (DPC) is gaining popularity in the United States. This emerging movement enables primary care providers to bill patients directly for services rendered, bypassing traditional health plans. On a large scale, employers can contract with primary care practices directly for their employees’ primary care coverage. The idea is to...

New Year of 2020 Brings Issues That Fully Challenge All Clinical Laboratory and Anatomic Pathology Leaders

Changes in reimbursement models and federal compliance, as well as tougher payer audits, make it critical clinical laboratory managers are fully informed and prepared for what lies ahead in 2020 Not only does January 1st bring the new year of 2020, but it also brings tough challenges for leaders of the nation’s clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups. Most of these challenges are triggered by the ongoing transformation of the American healthcare system. “Healthcare’s transformation...

Harvard Researchers Study Whether Joint Commission Accrediting Results in Better Outcomes for Patients and Whether Accredited Hospitals Produce Better Outcomes than State-Reviewed Hospitals

In response to Harvard’s conclusions, the Joint Commission claimed the study contained “factual errors” and “multiple methodological flaws” in strong rebuttals to findings Today’s emphasis on value-based healthcare rewards hospitals, physicians, clinical laboratories, and other healthcare service providers for improved patient outcomes. But does hospital accreditation play a role in those improved outcomes? A study published in the British Medical Journal (BMJ) suggests that hospital...