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On January 30, 2018, Amazon, Berkshire Hathaway, and JPMorgan Chase & Co. announced a new partnership dedicated to developing an independent, not-for-profit healthcare company for their respective employees. The project’s goals include creating simpler, higher quality, and transparent healthcare for the companies’ more than one million employees at lower costs, by using innovative technological solutions to address current problems seen in healthcare. The announcement created consternation among various healthcare industry giants, and was accompanied by an estimated $30 billion decrease in market shares for the top ten health insurance and pharmaceutical companies within two hours of its publication. This venture denotes Amazon’s first serious foray into the healthcare industry, though not its first effort to expand its innovative approaches across industry lines, e.g., the acquisition of Whole Foods in August 2017.  (Read more...)  

Four years after the implementation of Medicaid Expansion under the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 (ACA), researchers are now able to utilize available post-expansion data to evaluate its impact on hospitals and patients. Accordingly, several studies have been released over the last few months. One study published in the January 2018 issue of Health Affairs found that hospitals in Medicaid Expansion states were 84 percent less likely to close and had a significantly better payor mix, i.e., a higher ratio of Medicaid to uncompensated care patients, than hospitals in Non-Expansion states. This same study further found that hospitals in areas with the highest rates of uninsured individuals prior to the ACA, particularly rural hospitals, benefited the most, financially, from the Expansion. (Read more...)  

On January 18, 2018, four health systems – Intermountain Healthcare , Ascension , SSM Health , and Trinity Health , along with the U.S. Veterans Affairs Department (VA) – announced their intention to establish a non-profit, generic pharmaceutical company, with the goal of developing cheaper, more accessible drugs. In the years preceding this announcement, hospitals experienced artificially-induced drug shortages, which led to exceedingly high drug prices. In fact, between the years of 2006 and 2016, total prescription drug expenditures increased by nearly 50 percent. Further, drugs such as morphine and Nitropress , an essential heart medication, have encountered persistent shortages and abrupt price increases in the recent past.   (Read more...)  

Healthcare enterprises have grown their business by licensing the use of their trademarks and trade names to others, i.e., granting permission to a licensee (grantee) to use the trademark(s) and/ or trade names(s) owned by the licensor (grantor). This phenomenon has become common in the healthcare industry, with enterprises such as Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, and Johns Hopkins using affiliations with various other hospitals and physician practices to expand their reach beyond their Market Service Area (MSA) and across the U.S. This third installment of a four-part series, will review the economic benefits accruing to the grantee (licensee) of the trademark or trade name . (Read more...)  
Advanced Distance Education to Launch in 2018

The  Institute for Healthcare Valuation  (IHV) &  Consultants' Training Institute  (CTI) are pleased to announce premier healthcare valuation training through a distance education program, the Certificate of Educational Achievement (CEA) for Advanced Education in Healthcare Valuation. The program will launch in 2018 and will bridge the interdisciplinary nature of healthcare valuation to include: the Four Pillars of Healthcare (regulatory, reimbursement, competition, and technology); the market forces shaping the U.S. healthcare industry; and the valuation of healthcare enterprises, assets, and services. Legal professionals and healthcare providers, as well as those wishing to expand their scope of activities in healthcare valuation engagements and those seeking to enhance their current healthcare valuation service lines, will gain comprehensive knowledge through completing the expansive program. The program has been developed and is being presented by industry thought leader Health Capital Consultants , alongside a blockbuster faculty of healthcare subject matter experts from the legal, federal regulatory, and valuation professions.
HCC President, Todd Zigrang, is honored to have co-authored the chapter entitled, " The Threshold of Commercial Reasonableness ," in BVR/AHLA's newly published Guide to Valuing Physician Compensation and Healthcare Service Arrangements (2nd Edition).
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Health Capital Topics is a monthly e-journal written and published by the healthcare experts at Health Capital Consultants, featuring timely topics related to the reimbursement, regulatory, technology, and competition environments of the U.S. healthcare system.

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