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Surprise Medical Bills are Ending, But Controversy Continues

In this column for the JAMA Health Forum, Larry Levitt examines how the No Surprises Act that prohibits unexpected out-of-network charges for patients could lead to lower payment rates and revenues for some doctors and other care providers.

Unvaccinated COVID patients cost the U.S. health system billions of dollars

This updated analysis for the Peterson-KFF Health System Tracker estimates that the preventable costs of treating unvaccinated patients in hospitals total $13.8 billion during the six-month period from June through November when the delta variant led to a surge in admissions.

“Breakthrough” COVID-19 Hospitalizations Among Fully Vaccinated Patients Occur Most Often among Older Adults and Involve People with Chronic Health Conditions

“Breakthrough” hospitalizations involving COVID-19 among people who are fully vaccinated against the disease most often affected older adults and people with other chronic health conditions, finds a new analysis of hospital data from June through September by KFF and Epic Research. More than two-thirds (69%) of breakthrough COVID-19 hospitalizations occurred…

Health Employment Continues Slow Recovery Since the Beginning of the Pandemic

Unlike past recessions, the health sector saw a big drop in employment in early 2020 similar to other sectors as the COVID-19 pandemic shut down much of the nation’s economy and remains below expected employment levels through November 2021, a new KFF chart collection shows. The chart collection takes a…

No Surprises Act Implementation: What to Expect in 2022

The “No Surprises Act,” which establishes new federal protections against most surprise out-of-network medical bills when a patient receives out-of-network services during an emergency visit or from a provider at an in-network hospital without advance notice, will take effect next month. A new KFF brief outlines what to expect in 2022.

KHN and Guardian US Win National Press Club Award for “Lost on the Frontline”

KFF’s Kaiser Health News (KHN) and Guardian US have won the National Press Club’s top award for online journalism for their “Lost on the Frontline” investigation. The year-long project documented the lives of more than 3,600 health care workers in the U.S. who died after contracting covid-19 on the job.…

Vaccines Are Free. Covid Care Is Not. Who Should Pay?

In this commentary for Barron’s, Cynthia Cox explores the impact to the American public as the U.S. health insurance system adjusts to the COVID-19 pandemic. She uses the experience of the past year and a half to raise questions about broader issues of fairness in the distribution of health care costs in the country.

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