A new survey from The Commonwealth Fund and The Kaiser Family Foundation asked primary care providers—physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants—about their experiences with and reactions to recent changes in health care delivery and payment. Providers’ views are generally positive regarding the impact of health information technology on quality of care, but they are more divided on the increased use of medical homes and accountable care organizations. Overall, providers are more negative about the increased reliance on quality metrics to assess their performance and about financial penalties.
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Although many people require treatment for both physical and behavioral health conditions, our physical and behavioral health systems typically operate independently, without coordination. Medicaid has a significant stake in addressing this issue because physical and behavioral health comorbidity rates among beneficiaries are high. This brief examines five promising approaches currently underway in Medicaid to better integrate physical and behavioral health care.
Federal and State Standards for “Essential Community Providers” under the ACA and Implications for Women’s Health
Safety net providers such as community health centers and family planning clinics have served a significant role in the provision of primary care and reproductive health care services to low-income and uninsured people, particularly women. The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has a provision aimed at assuring that newly-insured individuals, as well as those without coverage, can continue seeing their trusted safety net providers, also called Essential Community Providers (ECPs). This brief reviews the definition of ECPs, examines the federal and state rules that govern the extent to which plans must include these providers in their networks, identifies the variation from state to state, and discusses the particular importance of these rules and providers for women’s access to care.
Community health centers see over 25 million patients in medically underserved rural and urban areas throughout the country. A key source of their federal funding expired September 30, 2017. This fact sheet looks at how health centers are responding to the funding delay and uncertainty.