Modern Healthcare - - Regional News -


North Dakota be­came the first state to be de­nied an ex­emp­tion from the med­i­cal-loss-ra­tio pro­vi­sion of the health­care re­form law. The MLR pro­vi­sion in the Pa­tient Pro­tec­tion and Affordable Care Act re­quires that in­surance com­pa­nies in the in­di­vid­ual mar­ket spend at least 80% of pre­mium dol­lars on med­i­cal care, or else pro­vide re­bates to their cus­tomers in 2012. Cur­rently, 12 states and Guam have asked HHS to ex­empt them from the re­quire­ment. The agency de­nied North Dakota’s ap­pli­ca­tion be­cause the mar­ket did not ap­pear to be desta­bi­lized, Steve Larsen, di­rec­tor of the CMS’ Cen­ter for Con­sumer In­for­ma­tion and In­surance Over­sight, said in a con­fer­ence call with re­porters. “This should be viewed as a good thing for North Dakota and not a bad thing,” Gary Co­hen, di­rec­tor of CCIIO’s of­fice of over­sight, said on the call. “It means con­sumers are al­ready see­ing the ben­e­fits of the Affordable Care Act and the MLR pro­vi­sion.” HHS granted re­prieves to Iowa and Ken­tucky, and pre­vi­ously did so for Maine, Ne­vada and New Hamp­shire. Ap­pli­ca­tions for Delaware, Florida, Ge­or­gia, Guam, In­di­ana, Kansas and Louisiana are pend­ing.


U.S. Health­Works Med­i­cal Group, Va­len­cia, Calif., has ac­quired North­Works Oc­cu­pa­tional Health cen­ters, a trio of oc­cu­pa­tionalmedicine cen­ters in the Min­neapo­lis area, ac­cord­ing to a U.S. Health­Works news re­lease. The newly ac­quired fa­cil­i­ties are U.S. Health­Works’ first in Min­nesota; they bring the com­pany’s port­fo­lio to 156 med­i­cal and work­site cen­ters na­tion­wide, ac­cord­ing to the re­lease. The Min­nesota fa­cil­i­ties of­fer diagnosis and treat­ment for in­jury and ill­ness, preven­tive ser­vices, pre­em­ploy­ment and post-job-of­fer ex­ams and screen­ing and re­turn-to-work re­ha­bil­i­ta­tive care. Fi­nan­cial terms of the deal were not dis­closed. Founded in 1995, U.S. Health­Works op­er­ates in


Ed­ward Hos­pi­tal in Naperville is team­ing up with a Michi­gan am­bu­lance ser­vice to pro­vide non­emer­gency trans­porta­tion in the west and south­west sub­urbs of Chicago, sis­ter pub­li­ca­tion

re­ported. Un­der the joint ven­ture be­tween South­field, Mich.-based Com­mu­nity Emer­gency Med­i­cal Ser­vice Corp. and the 320-bed hos­pi­tal, 30 emer­gency me­dial tech­ni­cians and paramedics will be hired and trained by Ed­ward to run four new am­bu­lances. The fi­nan­cial terms of the deal were not dis­closed. The ser­vice will op­er­ate 24 hours a day, seven days a week be­gin­ning Sept. 1. The joint ven­ture will be man­aged by Paras­tar, a South­field-based emer­gency med­i­cal ser­vices man­age­ment and con­sult­ing firm.

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