Sunday, April 7, 2019
Health Insurance and Medicare Essay Example for Free
health restitution and Medic be EssayI. insane asylumThe Patient Protection and Afford fitting C ar Act (PPACA) was signed into law on contact 23, 2010 by President Barack Obama. Along with the health divvy up and Education propitiation Act (HCERA), it represents the momentous trans forgeation of the U.S. wellness c atomic number 18 system. Its main goal is to decrease the amount of uninsured citizens as well as to master the oerall tolls of health care. It is a vastly complex cleanse that give impinge on more hatful in aspects of their health care, costs, and the country. There are many opinions ab step forward how this reform go forth affect the nation, some saying it willing make us better off, early(a)s saying we will be worse off, and those who do not hold it will make a difference. But regardless of these opinions, what the majority does couple on is that these laws may be difficult to understand and that many are not unconstipated cognizant of the se changes.There are many problems that the health care industry is facing. The cost of health care may arguably be the most important factor that people are concerned about. Many think that health care policies and premiums are too expensive. Coupled with the fact that our population is aging, significance that there will be more elder people with more health problems, health care costs are rapidly growing and take up a huge chunk of the federal budget. There are also many loopholes within the current health care system. exclusives who are looking to buy restitution can be denied ground on their pre-existing conditions. Some insurance policies even dumbfound a lifetime limit on benefits. What all these examples basically sum up is that the people who are in need of health care the most are those who are also the most unlikely to be insured, or are under insured.In an attempt to address these issues, the PPACA and Reconciliation Act were established. The Health Care and Educa tion Reconciliation Act was enacted to amend the PPACA. It is divided into two titles, one addressing the health reform and the other addressing student loan reform. It makes changes to some parts of the PPACA. That is why many people commonly refer to the overall health reform as just the PPACA. The most differentiated change this bringsis that it requires almost all citizens to have health care insurance, or to pay a penalty.Some examples and cases regarding this issue will be discussed posterior on. The PPACA also considerably expands public insurance as well as funds private insurance concealmentage. It will close loopholes much(prenominal) as setting life time limits as well as reservation it illegal to reject reporting for those with pre-existing conditions. In terms of affordability, the PPACA will expand Medicaid to cover low-income families and undivideds across the nation. It also aims to cut down and reconstruct Medicare disbursement, which will be the main focus of this paper.II. The Impacts of the PPACA and HCERA on Medicare and Health PhysiciansThe PPACA is make up of 10 titles. I will be discussing selected cookerys in entitles II, III, IV, and V regarding Medicare. These include program modifications and payment to Medicares fee-for-service program, the Medicare Advantage, prescription drug programs, Medicares payment process, changes to address, waste, fraud, and abuse, and other confuse Medicare changes. As for the HCERA, the origin title has provisions detailing health care and revenues. Subtitle B of Title I involves provisions that change provisions PPACA relevant to those listed above (Medicare Advantage, fee-for-service, and prescription drug programs). Subtitle D has provisions regarding decreasing fraud, abuse, and waste in Medicare. Subtitle E discuses revenue related provisions such as a provision that changes Medicare value provision in PPACA.A. Impacts on MedicareAccording to the tellingional cipher Office (CBO), t he provisions in PPACA as amended by the HCERA will reduce direct spend by an estimated $390 billion (CRS, 2010). The provisions that are predicted to produce the largest savings include the hobby (1) developing an separate Payment advisory Board to create changes in Medicare payment order is presumed to save about $16 billion (2) decreasing Medicare payments to infirmarys that aid a vast number of low-income patients, is expected to reduce expenditures by an estimated $22 billion (3) permanent deductions to Medicares fee-for-service payment rates (4) ever-changing the lavishly-income adjustment for pause B premiums, and (5) making maximum payment rates in Medicare Advantage closer to spending in fee-for-service Medicare. However, it is critical tonote that these are just estimates.Medicare is made up of four parts that are each accountable for nonrecreational for sundry(a) benefits, dependent on different eligibility criteria. below traditional Medicare, reference A and spot B services are usually paying(a) by a fee-for-service basis (services supplied to a patient is reimbursed through with(predicate) a separate payment). Part A supplies insurance coverage for skilled nursing facility (SNF) services, inpatient hospital services, hospice care, and home health care, which are subject to some limitations. Provisions that reduce Part A spending make up a large part of the savings related to this legislation through every payment changes or constraining payment updates. PPACA will alter Medicares payment updates to Part A hospitals to account for cost savings, which will significantly reduce Medicare spending in the next 10 years.Under PPACA (Title III Subtitle A Section 3001), beginning for discharges on October 1, 2012 hospitals will acquire value- base incentive payments from Medicare. The first year of the value based purchasing (VBP) program will aim at collecting information and assessing performance. Starting in 2013, adjustments to hospita l payments will be made based on performance by the VBP program. There will also be VBP standards established (i.e. levels of improvement and accomplishments), as well as a method for assessing how hospitals perform. Hospitals with the highest score will obtain the biggest VBP payments. Those that meet or go beyond the standards are able to receive an increased DRG payment for each discharge within the year. However, to provide for these VBP incentive payments the DRG payments will be reduced by a certain percentage 1.0% in 2013 1.25% in 2014 1.5% in 2015 1.75% in 2016 and 2.0% in 2017.An alternate choice to receive covered benefits would be Medicare Advantage (MA). Private health juts are gainful a per person amount to supply all Medicare-covered benefits to those who enroll in the plan under MA. The payments made to MA plans are decided by comparing the maximum amount Medicare will pay for benefits with a plans cost of providing those required benefits. If the plans cost is belo w the maximum, then it is paidthe cost plus a rebate equal to 75% of the difference to the maximum.But if the plans cost is above the maximum, then it is paid and must also charge the enrollee the difference amid the cost and the maximum. PPACA modifies how the maximum payment is decided. dispirit out in 2012, it will implement benchmarks (maximum amount Medicare will pay for benefits) deform out as a percentage of per capita FFS Medicare spending. It will also increase benchmarks depending on the fictional character of the plan. Those with a high quality rating will get an increase in their benchmark plot of ground new plans or those with lesser enrollments may also qualify to get an increase. PPACA will also vary the plan rebates based on quality with new rebates set from 50% to 70%.In regards to changes affecting Medicares prescription drug benefits, the health reform makes a some changes to the Medicare Part D program. PPACA increases the premiums held by higher income e nrollees. The income standards are set to be at the same manner and level as that in Part B. Beginning in 2011, those enrolled in Part D will have a 50% discount for drugs during the coverage cracking. In extension, HCERA will supply a rebate of $250 to those who enter the gap in 2010. Hopefully this phases out the donut hole (coverage gap) by slowly lessening the cost-sharing and coverage gap for generic and brand stimulate drugs.Medicares finances are operated through two trust funds, the Hospital Insurance (HI) and the Supplementary aesculapian Insurance (SMI) trust fund. The main supplier of income to the HI fund, which pays for Medicare Part A, is the payroll taxes paid by employers and employees. Medicare Part B and D are funded by customary revenues and monthly premiums. In addition to all the precedent provisions addressing Medicares financial issues, there is another precautionary step being taken. The PPACA has a provision to establish an self-governing Payment Adv isory Board with the goal of decreasing Medicare spending.B. Impacts on PhysiciansThe PPACA and HCERA make various changes to the Medicare program, which in turn affects physicians and how they practice. Some of these provisions have clear consequences, such as immediately changing physician reimbursement, while others have indirect influences on how physicians may practice in thefuture by modifying the incentives to improve the delivery and quality of care.PPACA broadens the Medicare Physician Quality and Reporting Initiative (PQRI) incentive payments though 2014 and administers a penalty for those who fail to report quality nibs starting in 2015. It also supplies for a further bonus to physicians who meet the requirements of an assessment program, such as the Maintenance of Certification Program, while penalizes the physicians who fail to meet those standards in the future. Under Section 3002 of Title III, Medicare claims data will be used to provide reports to physicians that m easure resources used to provide care for Medicare beneficiaries.Under Section 3007 of Title III, the Secretary of HHS is obliged to create and administer a separate payment modifier to the Medicare physician fee schedule. This payment should be based on the congener cost and quality of the care provided by physicians. The quality of care should be assessed based on risk-adjusted measure of quality determined by the Secretary. Costs are also assessed based on measures determined by the Secretary. Risk factors such as ethnicity, demographic, socioeconomic characteristics, and health status should be taken into account. By January 1, 2012 these manifest measures of cost and quality, along with implementation dates of the adjusted payments should be published.III. Regulations ImplementationWith such significant changes and provisions being made, there should be a way to keep track of how each is being regulated and apply. I will discuss the regulations, time limits, and effective d ates on how each are being done so by year.The first changes of 2010 start with Medicare provider rates. This includes reductions in the annual market basket updates for hospital services. Currently, there have been productivity adjustments added to market basket update in 2012. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) have issued these updates for varying provider types starting in August 2010. Theimplementation of the Medicare Beneficiary drug rebate, which supplies a $250 rebate to those in the Part D coverage gap, started January 1, 2010. In May 2010, the CMS published a brochure containing information about the coverage gap in Medicare Part D. As of March 22, 2011, about 3.8 million people have certain the $250 rebate (HHS, 2011). As for closing the Medicare drug coverage gap, on declination 17, 2010 CMS sent a garner to pharmaceutical companies addressing guidelines to the Medicare Coverage Gap Discount Program. This program became effective on January 1, 2011.M oving onto provisions implemented in 2011, Medicare payments for primary care will provide a 10% bonus payment for services. It will also provide the same bonus to general surgeons working in areas with a shortage of health professionals. This is being implemented starting in January 1, 2011 through December 2015. As for the MA payment changes, they will reconstitute payment to private plans and prohibit higher cost-sharing requirements. This has been in effect since January 1, 2011. The CMS issued a notice to MA plans in April 2010 addressing the freeze in 2011 payment rates at 2010 levels. A Medicare Independent Payment Advisory Board made up of 15 individuals to arrange proposals and recommendations to decrease the per capita rate of growth in spending if it exceeds targeted rates was planned to be established. On October 1, 2011, funding was made available and the first proposals are referable January 15, 2014.In 2012, the second part of the MA plan payments, which reduce rebat es paid and provide bonuses to high quality plans, went into effect on January 1, 2012. On February 28, 2012 the CMS sent out a letter to MA plans addressing the payment rates for 2012. Fraud and abuse prevention was also implemented on January 1, 2012. It establishes procedures for screening and reporting those who participate in Medicare. On March 23, 2011 CMS issued a notice addressing the fee that providers would have to pay to fund the screenings. Later on in the year, on October 1, 2012 Medicare value based purchasing was put into effect. This creates a program to pay hospitals based on their quality of performance.This coming year in 2013, there will be a few provisions to come into effectstarting off the new year. On January 1, 2013 the Medicare tax increase (increases the Medicare Part A tax rate on wages by 0.9% on incomes of $200,000), Medicare bundle payment pilot film program (program to create and assess payments for certain services), and the latter part of the presc ription drug coverage gap (reducing coinsurance) will be put into effect.As for 2014, the last of the Medicare provisions will be implemented. The Medicare Advantage plan loss ratios are mandated to be no less than 85% this will begin at the start of the year on January 1, 2014. The second implementation for that year will be Medicare payments for hospital-acquired infections it will decrease payments to those hospitals for their hospital-aquired conditions by 1% and this process will continue onto 2015.IV. Cases Challenging PPACAWhen the PPACA and HCERA were signed into law, many people opposed and sued claiming that the reform was unconstitutional for a number of reasons. The most controversial was the mandate that require most citizens to obtain health insurance coverage, and if failing to do so would have to pay a penalty in the form of an individual tax. Another debated provision was the expansion of the Medicaid program to cover even more individuals, such as those with low in come. All of these separate cases were then merged into a single case, The National Federation of Independent problem v. Sebelius, 567 U.S. (2012).When ruled, it was a momentous Supreme hail decision in which the dally maintained Congresss authority to enact the provisions of the Affordable Care Act and the Reconciliation Act. In December 2011, it was announced that there would be a 6 hour oral argumentation heard by the Court over a time span of three days beginning on March 26, 2012 and ending on March 28, 2012 discussing varying debatable topics of these provisions. By a vote of 5 to 4, the Court maintained the Individual Mandate aspect of the PPACA as a binding exercise of Congresss authority to lay and collect taxes. The critical characterization of this financial penalty as a tax is what passed the mandate as constitutional.Preceding this landmark case there were many previous hearings held, allhaving alike(p) conflicting opinions. The eleventh Circuit was also dealing wit h arguments in relative cases challenging PPACA. While it was fictive that the Fourth Circuit, which had heard oral arguments before the Eleventh Circuit, would issue a decision on PPACA first, the Eleventh Circuit was actually the second to issue its opinion, on August 12, 2011. In Florida ex rel. Bondi v. U.S. Department of Health Human Services (2011) the plaintiffs of the case were two private individuals, the National Federation of Independent Business, and 26 individual states.The Eleventh Circuit then published a 300-plus page opinion finding by a 21 majority that the Individual Mandate (requiring health insurance coverage) is unconstitutional, and thus created a distinguish of authority between the two Circuits. The Eleventh Circuit heard this appeal from the United States District Court for the Northern District of Florida, which saw the Individual Mandate to be an unconstitutional exercise of Congresss authority. The district court also found that the Individual Mandate was not applicable to the rest of the PPACA, meaning that the whole act was invalid. The plaintiffs in the district court case also debated that the PPACAs expansion of Medicaid was unconstitutional, alone the district court granted the government judgment on that issue and the Eleventh Circuit concord to that courts decision.These two cases show how divided opinions can be and how difficult it was and is to pass a health reform law. Opinions are good-tempered divided, concerning many aspects such as the Medicaid expansion, the Commerce Clause, and the Necessary and proper(a) Clause. On the issue of Medicaid expansion, no one, single opinion had the support of the majority of the Justices. Also, on the issue of if the Individual Mandate was within the authority of Congress under the Commerce Clause and the Necessary and Proper Clause, over again there was no single opinion that was supported by the majority of the Court. Despite all these controversies, and even though the act has passed, there are still those who are continuing to pursue litigation in order to repeal and defeat the PPACA.V. ConclusionMedicare spending has been increasing much more rapidly compared to the general economy, and this definitely raises concerns about Medicareslong-term sustainability. The provisions in the Affordable Care Act and the Reconciliation Act were established to decrease Medicare program costs by about $390 billion over the following 10 years through modifications in payments to various providers, by leveling payment rates between fee-for-service Medicare and Medicare Advantage, and by boosting efficiencies of how health services are delivered and paid for. Overall, the PPACA and HCERA are momentous pieces of legislation that will restructure the future of the U.S. health care system. It is still unclear of how well these provisions have been implemented, with some still having yet to be so.The main concern is probably how well costs will be contained or reduced. Wi th all of these new taxes, hopefully the reform will actually reduce the federal deficit over the next ten years that these provisions are being implemented. There is still much work to be done within the next few years, to see how this reform works out. Many people are glad that it has passed and support this reform as well as encourage it to be expanded, while others oppose the reform arguing that it creates too much government involvement in the issue.But since it has passed and is enacted in the present, people should make use of what is being provided. Some are not even aware of the changes in the health care industry and are oblivious to how they are being affected. That is why it is important to nonplus informed and make decisions, after all this is what directly affects your future.ReferencesCRS Analysis of CBO (March 20, 2010). Estimates of the effects of PPACA and the Reconciliation Act combined. congressional Budget Office. Retrieved October 31, 2012 from http//www.cbo.g ov/ftpdocs/113xx/doc11379/AmendReconProp.pdf Barrett, Paul M. (June 28, 2012). Supreme Court Supports Obamacare, Bolsters Obama. Bloomberg Businessweek. Retrieved November 3, 2012 from http//www.businessweek.com/articles/2012-06-28/supreme-court-supports-obamacare-and-bolsters-obama Congressional Budget Office (March 2009). An Analysis of Health Insurance Premiums Under the Patient Protection andAffordable Care Act. Letter to the Honorable Evan Bayh. Congressional Budget Office, Washington, DC. Retrieved November 3, 2012 from http//www.cbo.gov/doc.cfm? king=10781. Kaizer, J. (2010). Implementation Timeline. Health Reform Source. Retrieved November 5, 2012 from http//healthreform.kff.org/timeline.aspx Hilgers, David W. (February 2012) Physicians post-PPACA not going bust at the healthcare buffet. The Health Lawyer, Vol. 24. Retrieved November 4, 2012 from http//www.americanbar.org/ nub/dam/aba/publishing/health_lawyer/health_mo_premium_hl_healthlawyer_v24_2403 Pozgar, George D. (2009 ). Legal essentials of health care administration. Missisauga, Ontario Jones and Bartlett Publishers, Michael Brown. National Federation of Independent Business v. Sebelius, Secretary of Health Human Services567 U.S. (2012) No. 11-393 Argued March 26-28, 2012 Decided June 28, 2012 Florida ex rel. Bondi v. U.S. Department of Health a Human Services, 780 F.Supp. 2d. 1256 (N.D. Fla. 2011), order clarified by 780 F.Supp. 2d. 1307. (N.D. Fla. 2011).