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Posted inCT Viewpoints

Gov. Malloy’s task force may get a jump on coming price hikes

Today is the second meeting of a task force established earlier this year by Gov. Dannel P. Malloy on Connecticut’s Certificate of Need (CoN) laws. Along with a parallel study by the Governor’s Health Care Cabinet, the task force is supposed to help formulate a 21st century body of laws to govern our complex healthcare system. The challenge to both bodies is to place at the center of every discussion the interests of patients; access, both geographic and financial, as well as outcomes.

Posted inHealth, Money, Politics

Hospitals say state puts them between a rock and a hard place

As hospital officials describe it, state policy is pushing them in two opposing directions. Higher state taxes and funding cuts have added to the factors pushing independent community hospitals to join larger health systems, they say. But at the same time, legislators concerned about the growth of large health systems have been pushing for new restrictions on changes in hospital ownership, which hospital officials say makes it harder for them to adapt.

Posted inHealth, Politics

Malloy orders review of health care oversight, delaying Yale-L+M decision

Updated 8:30 p.m.
Gov. Dannel P. Malloy has ordered the state Department of Public Health to postpone until next year any final decisions on certain hospital transactions – or reject them if state law requires a quicker decision – while a newly created task force examines the state’s oversight process for transactions and other major changes involving hospitals.

Posted inHealth

How well will new rules on health care cost transparency work?

Lisa Freeman recently tried an experiment: Before having a medical diagnostic test, she tried to figure out what it would cost. “It took no less than five phone calls, and I still never got to the end of the thing,” she said. A major transparency law intended to change that is taking effect this year. How will it work in practice? Health care providers say it might be bumpy at first.

Posted inCT Viewpoints

CT hospital mergers, purchases, need strict scrutiny

It is hard to turn on your computer or to check out your evening news without hearing highly paid hospital executives saying that the sky is falling and arguing that they are on the side of consumers. In reviewing the recent filings with state regulators, it appears that this may just be an effort to create a distraction as they go about radically changing the health care landscape in Connecticut. If unchecked it is likely to have a very harmful impact on cost and access.