Medicare

By Jonah Comstock April 17, 2018
Medicare reimbursement for telehealth services is notoriously patchy. Much to the chagrin of telehealth vendors and healthcare providers, and despite many attempts to change the status quo through legislation, CMS still has a lot of restrictions on the geography of users and provider (rural versus urban, at home versus at a clinic, etc.) and on the technology used (video is reimburseable, for...
By Jonah Comstock January 31, 2018
A new large-scale study shows that interactive, tailored text messages can improve medication adherence by 14 percent. "The program results far exceed our expectations with 44 percent refill rate in the text message group as compared to 30 percent in the non-text group," Rena Brar Prayaga, the paper’s corresponding author and a behavioral data scientist at mPulse Mobile, said in a statement. "In...
By Jonah Comstock October 2, 2017
According to a new survey of 500 Medicare plan members, 77 percent of Medicare beneficiaries have used digital health tools. Yet just nine percent of respondents indicated that their health plan integrated data from those tools. Looking specifically at the 70 percent of beneficiaries with one or more chronic conditions, just eight percent said digital health tool data was used by their health...
By Jonah Comstock September 19, 2017
A new survey from HealthMine of 500 Medicare users aged 65 and older suggests that most Medicare beneficiaries still either don’t have access to telemedicine options or aren’t aware of those options. Since the survey data is self-reported, it’s hard to tell which is the case. Fifty-seven percent of seniors told HealthMine they didn’t know whether their plan offered telemedicine, while 31 percent...
By Dave Muoio September 15, 2017
Care1st Health Plan Arizona has launched a pilot program offering Pacify Health’s live video chat app to new and soon-to-be mothers enrolled in the state’s Medicaid program. The Pacify service, which is also available to consumers on Android and iOS platforms, quickly connects users to lactation consultants, dietitians, and other pregnancy management specialists. The video chat service is now...
By Jonah Comstock August 2, 2017
It was good news for Dexcom in January when the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced they would reimburse for Dexcom’s — and initially only Dexcom’s — continuous glucose monitor. Now the rollouts to Medicare patients are starting, although the company isn’t exactly rolling in that government money. In fact, CEO Kevin Sayer said on a recent earnings call that they’ve yet to see a...
By Jeff Lagasse July 31, 2017
While the Senate’s efforts to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act imploded last week, that hasn’t stopped lawmakers from introducing bills that would make tweaks to the healthcare system in smaller ways. One such bill, sponsored by Reps. Doris Matsui, (D-California), and Bill Johnson, (R-Ohio), would expand the use of telemedicine to reduce costs.   The bill, the Evidence-Based Telehealth...
By Heather Mack May 3, 2017
A group of US Senators introduced a new version of a bipartisan bill today seeking Medicare-covered expansion of telehealth and remote patient monitoring services nationwide. The bill was previously introduced by the six-Senator group, which is headed by Brian Schatz (D-HI), in February. Called the Creating Opportunities Now for Necessary and Effective Care Technologies (CONNECT) for Health Act,...
By Heather Mack April 27, 2017
While it is impossible to call any one method of patient engagement “tried and true,” texting as a means of getting people to play an active role in their healthcare has been a successful strategy in many cases, ranging from diabetes management to depression. That’s Encino, California-based mPulse Mobile’s forte, and the company has now attracted the attention of Harvard Medical School...
By Jonah Comstock March 7, 2017
Google-backed Quartet Health, which uses technology to promote collaborative care for mental health conditions, will work with Humana to improve the mental and physical health of New Orleans residents. The initiative is part of Humana's Bold Goal initiative to make its communities 20 percent healthier by 2020. Humana and Quartet chose New Orleans because it has a high incidence of chronic...

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