Managed Care e-News
Dec. 23, 2014

2014 Innovation Award Winners

NAMCP, AAMCN and AAIHDS are pleased to announce the winners of the first annual Innovation Awards, which recognize a company or organization that is improving outcomes, costs or quality using an innovative method in the workplace. The award winners are as follows:

NAMCP Medical Directors Institute Innovation Award Winner: Keystone First, an affiliate of AmeriHealth Caritas

AAMCN Innovation Award Winner: MDWise

AAIHDS Innovation Award Winner: Yale-New Haven

Save the date: 2015 Spring Managed Care Forum

Save the date for the 2015 Spring Forum being held April 23-24, 2015 at Disney's Yacht & Beach Club. More information will be available shortly.More

ONC data shows money is a major motivator for EHR adoption
By Scott E. Rupp
According to a data brief released recently by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT, financial incentives and potential penalties are key motivators for physicians adopting electronic health records since 2009. The brief, based on data from the 2013 National Ambulatory Medical Care Survey, details why physicians have chosen to adopt — or not adopt — EHRs.More

Why most people won't shop again for health insurance
The New York Times
You may have noticed when you last subscribed to a magazine that the company put you on an automatic renewal plan. Instead of sending you a letter when your subscription was about to lapse and asking you to take steps to renew, most now keep your credit card on file and keep extending your subscription unless you take steps to stop it.More

Using technology to optimize population healthcare coordination outcomes
Healthcare Informatics
More than 2,600 hospitals will receive financial penalties in 2015 as a result of excessive numbers of hospital readmissions within 30 days of discharge. A recent analysis shows population health management initiatives can reduce readmissions, improve community healthcare outcomes, and increase revenues.More

New accountable care organizations bring health to communities
EHR Intelligence
Payers and healthcare providers continue to collaborate for value-based reimbursement and population health by forming new accountable care organizations and agreements. Providers in Michigan, Colorado, Connecticut, and Arizona announced partnership arrangements that will foster community health and coordinated care.More

Medical adviser shares secrets of ACO success
Advance Payment Model accountable care organizations have improved care quality and generated significant savings by analyzing high-risk patients, according to Becker's Hospital Review. ACOs operating under the Advanced Payment model are usually physician-led organizations formed in smaller, rural areas. More

Roche and Exelixis head to the FDA with their melanoma combo
Partners Roche and Exelixis are making their case to regulators with a melanoma-treating combination therapy, filing an FDA application for the fast-tracked treatment as they await European clearance.More

Algorithm identifies networks of genetic changes across cancers
Medical Xpress
The algorithm, called Hotnet2, was used to analyze genetic data from 12 different types of cancer assembled as part of the pan-cancer project of The Cancer Genome Atlas. The research looked at somatic mutations — those that occur in cells during one's lifetime — and not genetic variants inherited from parents. More

New way to turn genes on
MIT News
Using a gene-editing system originally developed to delete specific genes, MIT researchers have now shown that they can reliably turn on any gene of their choosing in living cells. This new application for the CRISPR/Cas9 gene-editing system should allow scientists to more easily determine the function of individual genes, according to Feng Zhang, the W.M. Keck Career Development Professor in Biomedical Engineering in MIT’s Departments of Brain and Cognitive Sciences and Biological Engineering.More

Study cures 9 of 10 early-stage Alzheimer's patients
By Lauren Swan
Alzheimer's is one of the most feared diseases in the U.S., and for good reason. It is the sixth-leading cause of death and affects approximately 5 million Americans per year. Alzheimer's is an unforgiving illness and has always been a hopeless situation for patients, who are completely aware of what will happen to them, and all they can do is wait. However, hope may be on the horizon as the results of a small study out of UCLA are extremely encouraging.More

RTL and its role in the treatment of stroke
By Dr. Afsaneh Motamed-Khorasani
Blood supply interruption in a part of the brain could cause oxygen deprivation, which will eventually lead to brain cell damage in minutes. This condition is called stroke, a medical emergency requiring timely treatment to minimize brain damage and any potential complications. Any attempt for immunotherapy following ischemia should aim for a reduction of inflammatory damage and, at the same time, should support peripheral immunity. These features prompted the use of recombinant T-cell receptor ligand, or RTL, in trying to provide potential treatment for stroke. More

UnitedHealthcare tests a flat rate for cancer treatment
The Wall Street Journal
UnitedHealthcare will pay MD Anderson Cancer Center a set sum of money for a year of treatment for certain patients, in the latest high-profile test of new cancer-care reimbursement models. The effort by the biggest U.S. insurer and the prominent Houston-based center focuses on patients newly diagnosed with head and neck cancer.More

Personalized mouse 'avatars' help fight cancer
The Associated Press via CBS News
Scientists often test drugs in mice. Now some cancer patients are doing the same — with the hope of curing their own disease. They are paying a private lab to breed mice that carry bits of their own tumors so treatments can be tried first on the customized rodents. The idea is to see which drugs might work best on a specific person's specific cancer.More

2 years after Newtown, some states are retreating on mental health funding
Stateline via The Huffington Post
Fewer states increased their spending on mental health programs this year compared to last year, when a spate of horrific shootings by assailants with histories of mental illness prompted a greater focus on the shortcomings of the country’s mental health system.More