Health News Roundup

Week of January 29, 2018

health care innovation

Homeless patients get novel treatment from Chicago hospitals: housing
Miles Bryan, WBEZ News Chicago, January 5 

Glen Baker has severe asthma and other chronic medical issues. But he’s quick to admit he often ends up in this hospital not because he was sick, but because he was homeless. Baker says that last winter he spent about 20 nights every month checked into different Chicago hospitals. Over the past year, the University of Illinois Hospital started trying something different to care for Glenn Baker and its other “superutilizers.” The hospital is paying to get them out of the emergency room and into housing.

Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway and JPMorgan team up to try to disrupt health care
Nick Wingfield, Katie Thomas, and Reed Abelson, The New York Times, January 30 

The three companies will create a new venture with the goal of simplifying coverage for their employees, in a move that unsettled the health care world.

What could this mean? Vox tries to explain:

health care access

No car, no care? Medicaid transportation at risk in some states
JoNel Aleccia, Kaiser Health News, January 30

Multiple times each month, 5 year-old Maddie Holt sees a team of specialists at Seattle Children’s Hospital who treat her for the condition that has left her nearly blind and deaf, with frequent seizures and life-threatening liver problems. The only way Maddie can make the trip, more than an hour each way, is through a service provided by Medicaid, the nation’s health insurance program started more than 50 years ago as a safety net for the poor.

first person

For community health centers, a catastrophe in the making
Suzanne Lagarde, CT Viewpoints, January 29 
Nationwide, community health centers care for over 27 million people annually. That’s one in 10 children, one in 13 adults. In Connecticut, the statistics are even more staggering with over 375,000 residents receiving their care from a health center in 2017. Unless Congress acts soon, Connecticut stands to lose over $40 million in revenue for the 16 health centers scattered throughout the state. For Connecticut, the estimate is that 90,000 patients will lose access to care.

Ensuring healthy children become healthy adults
Lisa Honigfeld, CT Health Blog, January 30

In a two-part blog series, Lisa Honigfeld, vice president for health initiatives for the Child Health and Development Institute of Connecticut, discusses the need to reform pediatric payment models to ensure healthy children become healthy adults.