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Popular Medicare News and Current Events, Medicare News Articles.
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MD Anderson study evaluates need for biopsies during follow-up care in women with early breast cancer
In an analysis of more than 120,000 women diagnosed with and treated for early-stage breast cancer, researchers from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center determined the rate of additional breast biopsies needed for these patients during their follow-up care. (2018-01-31)
Medicare claims show long-term prostate cancer prevention benefits of finasteride
Men who take the medication finasteride get a prostate cancer prevention benefit that can last 16 years -- twice as long as previously recorded, according to SWOG clinical trial analysis that made innovative use of Medicare data. (2018-03-20)
Health insurance plans may be fueling opioid epidemic
Health care insurers including Medicare, Medicaid and major private insurers have not done enough to combat the opioid epidemic, suggests a study led by researchers at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. (2018-06-22)
Telemedicine as effective as in-person care for Parkinson's disease
New findings from a nationwide program that links neurologists with patients with Parkinson's disease in their homes via video conferencing shows that telemedicine can successfully deliver quality care. (2017-08-16)
ICU care for COPD, heart failure and heart attack may not be better
Does a stay in the intensive care unit give patients a better chance of surviving a chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) or heart failure flare-up or even a heart attack, compared with care in another type of hospital unit? (2017-02-17)
Healthcare spending in late life is not wasteful, predictive model shows
End-of-life health care spending in the United States is not wasteful, a new study says; many recipients of such expenditures aren't, in fact, certain to die, as the thinking goes. (2018-06-28)
New study uncovers major differences in billing complexity among US health insurers
One frequently proclaimed advantage of single-payer health care is its potential to reduce administrative costs, but new research from the Vancouver School of Economics calls that assumption into question. (2018-04-02)
Local economic factors affect opioid prescribing to disabled Medicare beneficiaries
For non-elderly Americans on disability, local prescribing of opioid pain medications is significantly related to county-level economic factors like unemployment and income level, reports a study in the January issue of Medical Care, published by Wolters Kluwer. (2017-12-27)
Patients who get opioids in the ER are less likely to use them long-term
Compared to other medical settings, emergency patients who are prescribed opioids for the first time in the emergency department are less likely to become long-term users and more likely to be prescribed these powerful painkillers in accordance with The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) guidelines. (2017-09-26)
Multidisciplinary care likely cost-effective for chronic kidney disease patients
Medicare-funded multidisciplinary care programs in the US are likely to be cost-effective in patients with mild to moderate chronic kidney disease (CKD), according to a new study published this week in PLOS Medicine by Eugene Lin from Stanford University, California, USA, and colleagues. (2018-03-27)
Study says some nursing homes gaming the system to improve their Medicare star ratings
A new study of nursing homes in California, the nation's largest system, by faculty at Florida Atlantic University and the University of Connecticut, found that some nursing homes inflate their self-assessment reporting to improve their score in the Five-Star Quality Rating System employed by Medicare to help consumers. (2018-01-17)
Hospitals in Medicare ACOs reduced readmissions faster
The Accountable Care Organization model of paying for health care appears to help reduce hospital readmissions among Medicare patients discharged to skilled nursing facilities, a new study suggests. (2017-01-09)
Lack of communication puts older adults at risk of clashes between their medicines
Most older Americans take multiple medicines every day. But a new poll suggests they don't get -- or seek -- enough help to make sure those medicines actually mix safely. (2017-11-29)
UC researchers examine racial and gender disparities in dialysis patients
UC researchers are examining racial and gender disparities in dialysis patients as well as the impact of poor functional status and pre-dialysis hospitalizations on elderly dialysis patients. (2017-11-03)
Loss of employer-based health insurance in early retirement affects mental, physical health
The loss of private health insurance from an employer can lead to poorer mental and physical health as older adults transition to early retirement, according to a study by Georgia State University. (2016-07-18)
Study examines opioid use in patients with rheumatoid arthritis
A new analysis indicates that the use of opioid pain medications in older US rheumatoid arthritis patients peaked in 2010 and is now declining slightly. (2017-06-21)
New RISE registry dashboard will help rheumatologists monitor MIPS quality scores
Quality measures reported by rheumatology practices using the RISE registry significantly varied in the first quarter of 2017, with financial repercussions for practices through the new Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), according to research presented at the 2017 ACR/ARHP Annual Meeting. (2017-11-04)
Program to reduce hospital readmissions linked with increased risk of death among HF patients
Implementation of a program designed to reduce hospital readmissions was associated with a reduction in the rate of readmissions, but also an increase in the rate of death among Medicare patients hospitalized with heart failure. (2017-11-12)
Hospital rankings: More than meets the eye
Medicare's pay-for-performance program ranks and rewards hospitals according to how well they meet certain guidelines for clinical care. (2008-10-21)
Pre-Medicare years bring health insurance worries for many, U-M/AARP poll finds
With the dawn of a new year, most Americans have just started a new health insurance coverage period -- whether they receive their coverage through a job, buy it themselves or have a government plan. (2019-01-03)
Commentary: Modifications to Medicare rules could support care innovation for dialysis
Public health researchers suggest adjustments to recently proposed rule changes on how Medicare pays for dialysis services. (2019-04-19)
Small-cell lung cancer patients face barriers to receiving standard-of-care treatment
Despite decades of clinical research establishing chemotherapy with thoracic radiation as the standard-of-care for the initial management of non-metastatic small-cell lung cancer (SCLC), a large percentage of US patients do not receive these treatments and in turn have lower overall survival, according to research from The University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center. (2018-01-04)
Study reveals racial differences in the use of rehabilitation services
In a Journal of the American Geriatrics Society study of 6,309 community-dwelling Medicare enrollees (1,276 of whom reported receiving rehabilitation services in the previous 12 months), the likelihood of receiving rehabilitation services was 1.4-times greater in whites than in blacks. (2017-11-08)
For leukemia patients, transfusion needs may delay hospice care
Researchers report that thousands of leukemia patients who received frequent transfusions had very short stays in hospice at the end of life, suggesting that transfusion dependence presents a barrier to making meaningful use of palliative care. (2017-12-09)
New AI technology significantly improves human kidney analysis
The ability to quantify the extent of kidney damage and predict the life remaining in the kidney, using an image obtained at the time when a patient visits the hospital for a kidney biopsy, now is possible using a computer model based on artificial intelligence (AI). (2018-01-11)
Older adults with small social networks less likely to get cataract surgery
A new study by University of Michigan Kellogg Ey Center links familial relationships to the likelihood older adults will get needed cataract surgery -- a procedure with broad implications for health. (2018-03-09)
COPD patients rarely receive pulmonary rehabilitation despite its health benefits
Only a tiny fraction of patients hospitalized for COPD, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, participate in a pulmonary rehabilitation program following hospitalization, even though such programs are recommended and Medicare covers their cost, according to new research published online in the Annals of the American Thoracic Society. (2018-11-12)
Hip replacement improves function, saves money, at any age
Seniors with osteoarthritis who undergo total hip replacement are twice as likely as those who do not to show improvements in physical functioning and increased ability to care for themselves, according to researchers at Duke University Medical Center. (2008-06-16)
Not having a regular doctor affects healthcare quality for older adults
About five percent of older adults on Medicare don't have a 'personal physician,' and this group scores lower on measures of healthcare quality, reports a study in the April issue of Medical Care, published by Wolters Kluwer. (2018-03-16)
VA delivers higher quality care than other health providers, study finds
Examining a wide array of commonly used measures of health care quality, researchers have found that the VA health care system performs similar to or better than non-VA systems on most measures of inpatient and outpatient care quality. (2018-04-26)
Heart's pumping function is not an indicator of heart failure survival rates
Contrary to popular practice, a measure of the heart's pumping function known as 'left ventricular ejection fraction' is not associated with the long-term outcomes of hospitalized heart failure patients, a UCLA-led study of Medicare patients has found. (2017-11-12)
Study examines differences in hip fracture rates among nursing homes
In a nationally representative study, researchers found considerable variation in the rates of hip fractures across US nursing home facilities. (2018-01-22)
Air pollution associated with acute respiratory distress hospitalization of elderly
In a new study, researchers found significant associations between seniors' long-term exposure to two types of air pollution and hospitalization for acute respiratory distress syndrome (ARDS). (2018-05-23)
Women more likely to use other preventive health services after mammography
Medicare beneficiaries who undergo breast cancer screening with mammography are more likely than unscreened women to undergo other preventive health services like screening for cervical cancer and osteoporosis, according to a major new study. (2018-06-05)
Older adult falls lead to substantial medical costs
In 2015, the estimated medical costs attributable to both fatal and nonfatal falls in older US adults was approximately $50 billion. (2018-03-07)
Medically underserved women in the Southeast rarely receive BRCA tests
Medically underserved women in the Southeast diagnosed with breast cancer or ovarian cancer missed out on genetic testing that could have helped them and their relatives make important decisions about their health, according to new research from Vanderbilt-Ingram Cancer Center. (2018-08-14)
Palliative, hospice care lacking among dying cancer patients, Stanford researcher finds
Medical societies, including the American Society of Clinical Oncology, recommend that patients with advanced cancer receive palliative care soon after diagnosis and receive hospice care for at least the last three days of their life. (2016-05-27)
Care management program reduced health care costs in Partners Pioneer ACO
Pesearchers at Partners HealthCare published a study showing that Partners Pioneer ACO not only reduces spending growth, but does this by reducing avoidable hospitalizations for patients with elevated but modifiable risks. (2017-05-01)
Federal policy to reduce re-hospitalizations is linked to increased mortality rates
Federal policymakers five years ago introduced the Hospital Readmission Reduction Program to spur hospitals to reduce Medicare readmission rates by penalizing them if they didn't. (2017-11-12)
Veterans health administration hospitals outperform non-VHA hospitals in most markets
In a new study, researchers from The Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice and the White River Junction VA Medical Center in White River Junction, Vermont, used the most current publicly available data to compare health outcomes for VA and non-VA hospitals within 121 local healthcare markets that included both a VA medical center and a non-VA hospital. (2018-12-10)
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