Health Wonk Review, News Roundup & Super Bowl Special

January 30th, 2014 by Julie Ferguson

There’s a fresh new Health Wonk Review posted and it’s a good one! Brad Wright is hosting Health Wonk Review: The New Wright on Health Edition . With the Affordable Care Act implemtation process in full swing, it’s an exciting time to be a health polcy wonk. Whether you’re in the “pro” or “con” camp, there’s something for everyone in this roundup. Plu,s Brad alerts us that his blog will be expanding and taking on new bloggers and an enhanced mission. Check out his post!
And in other ACA news:
Jonathon Cohn: Rumors of Obamacare’s Death (Spiral) Are Greatly Exaggerated
Bloomberg News: Economists See Little Effect on Hiring From U.S. Health-Care Law
Sarah Kliff: The four most important states to watch on Obamacare’s Medicaid expansion
Union Members 2013 – Bureau of Labor Statistics: “In 2013, the union membership rate–the percent of wage and salary workers who were members of unions–was 11.3 percent, the same as in 2012, the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported today. The number of wage and salary workers belonging to unions, at 14.5 million, was little different from 2012. In 1983, the first year for which comparable union data are available, the union membership rate was 20.1 percent, and there were 17.7 million union workers.”
Risk & Insurance – Check out the sleek new look at Risk & Insurance – it’s a verry appealing layout. Here’s a summary of some of the changes you can expect to find. Plus, it’s a responsive design which makes it show up really well on whatever device you are vieiwing it on – it looks great on my iphone. And while there, be sure to vist the column by our friend Roberto Ceniceros: The Benefits of Change.
Tough times ahead for workers’ comp: Report – “According to a new report from Standard & Poor’s Ratings Services, revenues for the US workers’ comp sector will likely decline in 2014. The report identifies the continued high unemployment rate, coupled with potential gridlock in Washington over the reauthorization of the Terrorism Risk insurance Program Reauthorization Act, as the main drivers behind this trend.”
Combine Wellness with Risk Management to Help Curb Work Comp Costs – “A recent report from Lockton Insurance Brokers Wellness Programs: The Positive Impact on Workers’ Compensation Claims examines the role that health-risk (or “co-morbid”) factors, such as obesity play in workers compensation claims, and the steps that companies can take to reduce claims costs by improving employees’ health.”
Work exposure? At least four Marlboro Men have died of smoking-related diseases. KevinMD asks: Are e-cigarettes creating new generation of smokers?. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation presents a fascinating interactive look at 50 Years of Tobacco Control.
EHS Study: Effectiveness of Adjuster Decisions Regarding Medical PreAuth Requests – ” Effective Health Systems recently released a study that evaluated the effectiveness of experienced workers’ compensation claims adjusters at determining whether a medical treatment request should be approved or escalated to a higher-level review. The study found the effectiveness of adjusters in making a correct decision was less than would be expected from flipping a coin.”

And on the lighter side, we spotted this great “Bad Lip Reading at the NFL” clip over at New England Insurance Agent Blog
and thought it was perfect for the Friday before the big game.

If you enjoyed it, you can find an earlier NFL bad lip-reading clip here.