Health Costs

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How Much More Than Medicare Do Private Insurers Pay? A Review of the Literature

This brief reviews findings from recent studies that compare Medicare and private health insurance payment rates for both hospital and physician services.

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How Health Costs Might Change with COVID-19

As the coronavirus spreads rapidly across the United States, private health insurers and government health programs could potentially be burdened with higher health care costs. However, the extent to which costs grow, and how the burden is distributed across payers, programs, individuals, and geography are still very much unknown. A…

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Analysis Estimates Up To 2 Million Uninsured People Could Require COVID-19 Hospitalization

Patients Could Still Be on the Hook for Outpatient Costs, Costs If They Test Negative, and Cost Sharing A new KFF analysis estimates that between 670,000 and 2 million uninsured people around the country eventually could be hospitalized with COVID-19, the respiratory disease caused by the novel coronavirus. Reimbursing hospitals…

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Estimated Cost of Treating the Uninsured Hospitalized with COVID-19

This brief estimates the total amount that will be spent to reimburse hospitals for care for the uninsured with COVID-19, the disease caused by the coronavirus.

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Long-Term Trends in Employer-Based Coverage

As the economic consequences of COVID-19 continue to play out, many households may lose access to employer sponsored coverage. Recent data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics indicates a record number of jobless claims, suggesting a marked increase in unemployment over the next couple of months and potentially longer. Our…

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Why the U.S. Doesn’t Have More Hospital Beds

With much of the news focused on the surge capacity of the nation’s hospitals during the COVID-19 pandemic, Drew Altman’s Axios column examines why the nation has a shortage of hospital beds and what can be done about it.

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How Prepared is the U.S. to Respond to COVID-19 Relative to Other Countries?

Compared to most similarly large and wealthy countries, the U.S. has fewer practicing physicians per capita but has a similar number of licensed nurses per capita. Looking specifically at the hospital setting, the U.S. has more hospital-based employees per capita than most other comparable countries, but nearly half of these hospital workers are non-clinical staff.

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The U.S. Has Fewer Physicians and Hospital Beds Per Capita Than Italy and Other Countries Overwhelmed by COVID-19

A new analysis and chart collection finds that the U.S. has fewer hospital beds and practicing physicians per capita than many similarly large and wealthy countries with health care systems already strained by the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Compared to Italy and Spain, two countries in which hospitals have already been…

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How Much Could Medicare Beneficiaries Pay For a Hospital Stay Related to COVID-19?

As the coronavirus continues to spread, the number of people on Medicare admitted to the hospital for COVID-19 related illness is expected to rise. We analyze how much Medicare beneficiaries could pay out-of-pocket for an inpatient hospital admission under traditional Medicare (assuming no supplemental coverage) or Medicare Advantage plans.

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The Affordable Care Act’s Enduring Resilience

In this article in the Journal of Health Politics, Policy and Law, Larry Levitt examines the Affordable Care Act 10 years after it’s enactment. The article notes that the law has taken numerous blows, yet due to its policy design and the political forces it has unleashed, the law has shown remarkable resilience.

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