By Sam Baker and Elise Viebeck - 04/16/13 10:50 PM EDT
Arkansas moves ahead: The Arkansas House passed the state's controversial plan Tuesday, after some last-minute lobbying that followed a failed vote on Monday. Arkansas wants to use the funding from ObamaCare's Medicaid expansion to move poor residents into private coverage through the state's insurance exchange (also a part of the healthcare reform law). It's an unorthodox approach that has piqued the interest of several conservative states, who are largely waiting to see how things work out for Arkansas. With the legislature now on board, all eyes will be on the negotiations between Gov. Mike Beebe and the Obama administration.
IT troubles: The push for electronic medical records isn't going so well, according to a new report from Senate Republicans. The report, led by Sen. John Thune (R-S.D.), details flaws in the implementation of a 2009 law to boost the use of electronic records. The program appears to have increased healthcare costs rather than reducing them, the report says, and there are major hurdles standing in the way of a seamless, interoperable system. Healthwatch has the story here, and you can read a copy of the report here.
Profits from pain: Hospitals make roughly $30,000 more from patients who suffer at least one complication than they do from patients whose procedures go smoothly, according to a study published Tuesday in the Journal of the American Medical Association.
Surgical complications not only boost hospitals' revenues, but also their profit margins, the study found. Although complications usually require additional treatments, hospitals' profit margins tripled when a privately insured patient suffered a complication.
Healthwatch has more.
The House Energy and Commerce Committee will mark up a bill to strengthen ObamaCare's Pre-Existing Conditions Insurance Plan.
The House Small Business Committee will hold a hearing on how the healthcare is affecting small businesses.
State by state
J M Burkman & Associates / Chapman House
Mehlman Vogel Castagnetti / CenseoHealth
Policy Development Group / Scottsdale Healthcare
Troutman Sanders Public Affairs Group / Corizon Health
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