Heading to the hospital? Even with insurance, it may cost you $1,000 or more, new study finds

Even if you have good health insurance through your employer, a hospital stay might end up costing you $1,000 or more out of your own pocket, according to new findings from IHPI researchers published in JAMA Internal Medicine. And that amount is 37 percent higher now than it would have been just a decade ago ---- a rise that outpaces the growth in insurance premiums and U.S. healthcare spending. It's the first time anyone has been able to study what patients with private insurance are actually billed, made possible by data acquired by IHPI through the Health Care Cost Institute (a consortium of private insurance). The study received media coverage in the New York Times, the Washington Post, Forbes, and elsewhere.
A rising, but uneven, tide of in-home care for seniors with disabilities

More seniors are getting help from family, friends and hired helpers to keep them in their homes, despite disabilities that keep them from total independence, a new study finds. But that increase isn't happening evenly across all groups. And the rising demand may have implications for the lives and careers of caregivers, and for policies that aim to support at-home caregivers. In the new issue of JAMA, a University of Michigan Medical School team reports that 50 percent of seniors with disabilities had some form of in-home help in 2012. That's up nearly 20 percent, or 8 percentage points, since the start of the study in 1998.

Accounting for Social Risk Factors in Medicare Payment---- National Academies committee releases report

The Committee on Accounting for SES in Medicare Payment Programs has released its third report, Accounting for Social Risk Factors in Medicare Payment: Criteria, Factors, and Methods. The report provides guidance on which social risk factors could be considered for Medicare accounting purposes, criteria to identify these factors, and methods to do so in ways that can promote health equity and improve care for all patients. IHPI Director John Ayanian is a member of the ad hoc committee, convened by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine.
Joining 'The Conversation' on healthcare

In the last month, IHPI faculty members have launched new discussions on everything from the ethical considerations around what happens to donated biobank samples, to the measures needed to reduce hospital infections, to the "public option" included in Hillary Clinton's healthcare proposals, to physician pay-for-performance. They've even discussed the lessons about evaluating risks and benefits through the lens of public health messaging around eating raw cookie dough. These pieces ---- and many more ---- appear on The Conversation, a new web platform for research-based content.

Water might be a secret weapon for dieters, research involving nearly 10,000 adults suggests. "Those who were inadequately hydrated had higher body mass indexes (BMIs) than those who were adequately hydrated," said study lead  Tammy Chang, M.D., M.P.H., M.S., an assistant professor of family medicine at the University of Michigan Medical School. The study received wide media coverage, including  Spanish language outlets such as Univision.



Mott Poll director
P arents are more confident their preteen child would know what to do if there were a house fire or tornado than whether the child would avoid playing with guns if home alone,  according to a new report  from the  C.S. Mott Children's Hospital National Poll on Children's Health.  Four out of five parents of kids age 9 to 12 say they are very confident their child would appropriately handle an emergency like a storm (82 percent) or a fire (78 percent). Sixty-four percent of parents are confident their child would know when to call 911. Fewer parents (53 percent) are very confident their tween would not play with guns when adults weren't home.

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The Institute brings great minds together to address healthcare's biggest challenges. More than 470 investigators come to IHPI from U-M's top-ranked schools of medicine, nursing, public health, engineering, social work, law, business, and public policy, among others, as well as members of affiliated local research organizations.
Chronic disease management coverage could see boost through bipartisan bill

Newly introduced bipartisan legislation may offer some patients managing chronic conditions financial relief as well as increased access to healthcare services and medications. On July 7, Representatives Diane Black (R-TN) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) introduced (H.R. 5652) to allow high deductible health plans the flexibility to provide coverage for services that manage chronic disease prior to meeting the plan deductible. The "Access to Better Care Act of 2016" would amend Section 223(c)(2) of the Internal Revenue Service (IRS) Code to make this provision. Mark Fendrick, M.D., U-M professor of internal medicine and director of the U-M Center for Value-Based Insurance Design (V-BID), worked closely with Congressional staff on the proposed legislation. The American College of Physicians recently recommended the implementation of V-BID as a potential solution to make patient cost-sharing more equitable.


Michael Fetters, M.D., M.P.H., M.A., professor of family medicine, has been named a 2016 Fulbright Distinguished Chair in Social Sciences. He will spend five months in Beijing teaching and leading a joint research project with colleagues at Peking University Health Science Center (PUHSC), U-M's partner school in the Joint Institute for Translational and Clinical Research.

Ellimoottil named to CMS expert panel on resource use measures

Chad Ellimoottil, M.D., M.S., U-M assistant professor of urology, has been selected to serve as a member of the CMS MACRA Episode-Based Resource Use Measures Technical Expert Panel. These panels provide technical input on the development, selection, and maintenance of quality measures for which CMS contractors are responsible.
Ayanian presents to Midwest healthcare journalists

IHPI Director John Ayanian spoke to a group of healthcare journalists from Great Lakes states at a forum convened by the Association for Health Care Journalists on July 22 in Detroit. His presentation focused on the Affordable Care Act and health disparities.

Donabedian's seminal work on measuring the performance of health care published 50 years ago

U-M School of Public Health professor Avedis Donabedian's landmark article "Evaluating the Quality of Medical Care" was published in the summer 1966 supplement issue of The Milbank Quarterly, establishing the widely used structure-process-outcome framework. In the New England Journal of Medicine earlier this month, IHPI Director John Ayanian and Howard Markel, M.D., Ph.D., a U-M professor, physician, and medical historian, reflected on the paper and its long-lasting legacy.

Check out more historic milestones in U-M health professional education, health services research, and health policy through our interactive timeline.
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