Avicenna Medical Blog

Care Management Weekly News Update 2/28/24

Posted by DeAnn Dennis on Wed, Feb 28, 2024 @ 11:45 AM

Veterans' advocates are pushing for another hefty increase in the Veterans Affairs budget next fiscal year, saying the funding is needed to keep pace with increased medical care demands and complete long-overdue upgrades to department facilities. On Thursday officials from Disabled American Veterans, Paralyzed Veterans of America and the Veterans of Foreign Wars of the United States released their annual Independent Budget report, arguing for continued investment into VA programs and priorities in the years ahead.

More than 40% of veterans, or 2.5 million patients enrolled in VA health care, rely on telehealth for at least part of their care, according to the VA. Army veteran Andy Butzler said he prefers to attend medical appointments at the Department of Veterans Affairs via online conference calls rather than drive an hour from his home in Osceola, Wis., to the regional veterans clinic. Osceola is a rural town and there are no brick-and-mortar VA clinics to provide in-person medical care. 

The National Association of Attorneys General sent a letter to Congressional leaders on behalf of 39 attorneys general who urge the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives to reform the current practices of pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs). The bipartisan letter, authored by the Attorneys General of Arkansas, North Carolina, Ohio and Pennsylvania, demands that Congress take decisive action to reform the way PBMs conduct business and bring more transparency to their work.

Hospitals want the Biden administration to take its proposed overhaul of reimbursement disputes a step further with more insight into how payers are calculating their starting point for negotiations as well as greater oversight of payers who delay payouts after a dispute has been settled. Last October, the administration released a proposed rule with several new requirements for payers, providers and third-party arbitrators settling out-of-network billing disputes under the No Surprises Act's independent dispute resolution (IDR) process.


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