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  • One percent of the U.S. population accounts for nearly 23 percent of overall health care spending, and 5 percent are responsible for a full 50 percent of spending. In stark contrast, the lowest-spending half of the population generates less than 3 percent of total spending—or only about $234 per person, per year.

  • Improving health outcomes for our nation’s children requires coordinated care that promotes recommended health services, prevents unnecessary hospitalizations and bridges across the multiple systems serving children and families.

  • Washington, DC – November 11, 2014 - The National Institute for Health Care Management (NIHCM) Foundation has awarded four new grants totaling approximately $270,000 to support investigator-initiated health services research.

  • BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee Health Foundation gives $1M to construct a neonatal abstinence syndrome treatment center. The Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council call attention to the surprisingly poor health profile of young adults.

  • Population aging and recent coverage expansions have fueled concerns about physician shortages in primary care, leading several influential groups to recommend that nurse practitioners take on a larger role.

  • Most children’s health system experience is limited to the pediatrician’s office, but those with chronic or complex medical needs often deal with care that is fragmented, duplicative and crisis-driven. This leads to stress on families and wasteful utilization.

NIHCM

Expert Voices: Out of Whack: Pricing Distortions in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

Robert A. Berenson, MD, Institute Fellow, Urban Institute
 

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September 2010

While there is near universal agreement that we need to move away from Medicare’s fee-for-service physician payment system, Dr. Berenson argues that in the short term we still need to focus on improving the current physician fee schedule.  Not only are the value-based payment systems that most reformers envision still many years from widespread reality, the existing fee schedule prices will serve as the building blocks for some of the newer aggregate payment approaches. In this essay, Dr. Berenson offers thoughts on how to improve the system in ways that both address current payment system woes and serve as a step toward future value-based payment systems.

Other recent Expert Voices essays include:

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