Who won?

Modern Healthcare - - News -

WIN­NERS Providers:

With Med­ic­aid ex­pan­sion gain­ing mo­men­tum and the threat of over­haul­ing the Af­ford­able Care Act off the ta­ble for the next two years, providers’ bal­ance sheets will ben­e­fit from lower costs re­lated to care for the unin­sured and hos­pi­tals can plan for a some­what more pre­dictable fu­ture. Mas­sachusetts providers also avoided a costly mea­sure that would’ve re­quired them to raise their nurse staffing lev­els and likely in­crease their pay.

Unin­sured con­sumers:

An es­ti­mated 331,000 low­in­come in­di­vid­u­als in Idaho, Ne­braska and Utah will be cov­ered by the Med­ic­aid ex­pan­sion. That be­ing said, con­sumers are ex­pected to bear more out-of-pocket costs, which can still limit ac­cess to care and in­crease providers’ bad debt. Eyes are now on pro-Med­ic­aid ex­pan­sion gov­er­nors in Kansas, Maine and Wis­con­sin.

Generic drug man­u­fac­tur­ers:

A House con­trolled by the Democrats gives generic-drug man­u­fac­tur­ers more sup­port for the Cre­ates Act, which aims to help more generic drugs get to mar­ket by re­mov­ing some bar­ri­ers that phar­ma­ceu­ti­cal com­pa­nies use to limit ac­cess to sam­ples of branded prod­ucts. More com­pe­ti­tion typ­i­cally trans­lates to lower prices, which could also ben­e­fit con­sumers.

Cal­i­for­nia dial­y­sis providers and Stan­ford Health Care:

Dial­y­sis gi­ants DaVita and Fre­se­nius Med­i­cal Care staved off a Cal­i­for­nia mea­sure that would have capped charges at 15% above the di­rect costs of dial­y­sis treat­ment. Stan­ford Health Care in Liver­more and Palo Alto, Calif., won’t have to cap charges at 115% of di­rect treat­ment costs, as pro­posed by a union.

LOSERS Dial­y­sis and Bay Area pa­tients:

On the other hand, dial­y­sis pa­tients and Stan­ford Health Care pa­tients could still be sub­ject to higher charges.

Branded-drug man­u­fac­tur­ers:

They may have to en­dure a more bona fide at­tack on drug pric­ing from the Trump ad­min­is­tra­tion with the sup­port of a Demo­crat-con­trolled House. Bol­ster­ing com­pe­ti­tion by adding more generic drugs would also eat away at their prof­its.

Home-care pa­tients:

Maine vot­ers last week re­jected a bal­lot ini­tia­tive that would have es­tab­lished an un­prece­dented pro­gram of uni­ver­sal, no-cost home care for se­niors and dis­abled peo­ple.

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