The Lund Report

Dr. Charles Kilo Believes Competition Drives Up Healthcare Costs

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Calling himself a dyed in the woods capitalist, he suggests we focus on the social determinants of health rather than spending more on healthcare services

January 18, 2012 -- As policymakers wrestle with transforming Oregon’s healthcare system to control costs and improve quality, competition stands in the way, according to Dr. Charles Kilo, chief medical officer at Oregon Health & Science University.

Consumer Groups Begin Showing Support for Insurance Exchange

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Last session, when Senate Bill 99 passed the Legislature, consumer groups expressed disappointment because the exchange wouldn’t have the ability to negotiate insurance rates

January 12, 2012 — Leaders of some of Oregon’s most progressive consumer groups signed onto a letter this week advocating for six priorities the staff and board of directors of Oregon's health insurance exchange should have this year as they work to create the exchange.

OSPIRG Says Regence BlueCross BlueShield Must Justify Proposed Rate Increase

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If approved by the Insurance Division, small businesses will see their rates increase by 4.5% in April and, jump by 8 percent starting in July

January 12, 2012 -- Before the Insurance Division approves the rate request for small employers by Regence BlueCross BlueShield, it needs to justify those increases, according to Laura Etherton, healthcare advocate for OSPIRG Foundation.

Legislators Expect to Consider Malpractice Reforms in February Session

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Three consultants from Harvard Kennedy School of Government are looking at the role of defense medicine and overutilization on medical costs

January 12, 2012— Malpractice reform has caught the attention of healthcare professionals at the national level because of its economic impact on reducing costs. A study conducted in 2010 by Amitabh Chandra, PhD, an economist and professor of public policy at Harvard Kennedy School of Government, estimated that 2.4% or approximately $60 billion annually could be attributed to malpractice claims.

Salem Health Hires Mark Nelson

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He’ll represent the two-hospital system in the February legislative session

January 11, 2012 -- Mark Nelson, president of Public Affairs Counsel, has been hired to represent Salem Health, a regional two-hospital network that includes Salem Hospital and West Valley Hospital.

Healthcare Remains the 2012 Election Riddle

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Healthcare costs are the primary driver of the federal budget deficit. Congressional Budget Office projections for 2020 show that healthcare spending will consume more than 27 percent of federal budget.

OPINION: January 9, 2012 -- This election ought to be about one issue, a referendum on health care reform.

Coos Bay Group Seeks to Eliminate Childhood Dental Disease

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Cavity Free Coos Bay is assessing all school children in the district for dental health

January 6, 2012 – A coalition led by Dr. Dane Smith in Coos Bay County is determined to  eliminate dental disease among its children.  

“I’ve heard it said that holes in people’s teeth reflect holes in their heart, and I think there’s truth to that,” said Smith, an oral surgeon in Brookings. “People who have high self-esteem and high expectations for their lives have fewer cavities.” That’s why it takes a whole community to address the issue.

Health Policy Board Makes Strides on Business Plan for Coordinated Care Organizations

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With time running out to finalize that plan, the board wrestled with the requirements when it met on Tuesday

December 15, 2011— As the Oregon Health Policy Board develops the requirements that coordinated care organizations (CCOs) must meet to deliver care to more than 600,000 Oregonians, they’re faced with finding the right balance between prescriptiveness and flexibility.  

Those requirements will become part of the business plan legislators will consider when they meet in February. 

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