Double-Digit Increase in Medicare Advantage Plan Growth May Be Good News for Seniors but Bad News for Local Clinical Laboratories and Pathology Groups in 2019

Popularity of Medicare Advantage Plans fuels influx of new companies into the marketplace with anticipated enrollment of more than 22.6 million beneficiaries, or more than one-third of Medicare-eligible consumers Continuing enrollment growth in Medicare Advantage plans is expected in 2019 and beyond. The projections are for double-digit percentage increases in Medicare Advantage enrollees. This is not auspicious for clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups because it means a...

Excessive $48,329 Charge for California Patient’s Outpatient Clinical Laboratory Testing Calls Attention to Chargemaster Rates and New CMS Price Transparency Rule

Studies show medical laboratories may be particularly hit by adjustments to hospital chargemasters as hospitals prepare to comply with Medicare’s New Transparency Rule Recently, Kaiser Health News (KHN) published a story about a $48,329 bill for allergy testing that cast a spotlight on hospital chargemaster rates just as healthcare providers are preparing to publish their prices online to comply with a new Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rule aimed at increasing pricing...

Milliman Medical Index Predicts Families Will Spend More for Healthcare in 2018 Than Previous Years; Growth Trend Could Impact Clinical Laboratories Unprepared to Collect Fees at Time of Service

Employers and consumers continue to pay more for health benefits from one year to the next, continuing a trend that is not auspicious for clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups Most clinical laboratories don’t have the capability to collect payments from patients at time of service the same way patients pay doctors during office visits. Thus, Milliman’s annual report which details the increasing amounts patients are expected to pay out of their own pockets should be of interest to...

CMS Finalizes Rule Rebranding ‘Meaningful Use’ Program to ‘Promoting Interoperability’

Ongoing federal regulatory push for EHR interoperability requires medical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups to have strategies for ensuring seamless interfaces with providers and hospitals What difference does a name make? Clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups soon may know the answer to that question following the renaming of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) “Meaningful Use” program to “Promoting Interoperability” (PI). CMS first announced the...

Are Patients Becoming the New Payers? Analysis by TransUnion Suggests This Might Be the Case and the Implications for Clinical Laboratories Could Be Profound

Healthcare revenue cycle consultant Jonathan Wiik suggests healthcare providers must prepare their organizations for patients who need help paying increasing medical costs When patients cannot pay their bills, all of healthcare—including clinical laboratories and anatomic pathology groups—also struggle. And, according to experts, medical laboratories already complying with federal value-based payment programs and precision medicine directives should expect increased pressure from patients...

With Reduced Reimbursement from Medicare, Anatomic Pathology Groups and Clinical Laboratories Must Learn to Optimize Collections from Managed Care Payers to Stabilize Financials and Survive the Industry Shift

As PAMA brings estimated Medicare reimbursement cuts of up to 30% over the next three years to a range of typically high-volume tests and diagnostics, medical laboratories that wish to stay competitive must understand the needs of managed care payers and learn how to optimize collections, reduce denials, and communicate value effectively or risk their financial health In what experts have called the biggest financial upheaval for the healthcare industry in three decades, the onset of new...