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Continued Upward Momentum in Memphis Hospital Safety Grades

In the fall 2019 round of The Hospital Safety Grade, the percentage of Memphis hospitals with an “A” (40%) continued to surpass the national average (33%)! And, the percentage of Memphis hospitals with an "A" and "B" (60%) also surpassed the national average (58%).  Just two years ago, only 10% of Memphis area hospitals received an "A" and only 20% received an "A" and "B".  "We are pleased to see this... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, December 2, 2019

Want to Reduce Waste in Health Benefits?

A meta-analysis of 54 peer-reviewed publications, government reports, and the "gray literature" estimates that 25% of total healthcare spending can be classified as waste ( Shrank WH, Rogstad TL, Parekh N. Waste in the US Health Care System: Estimated Costs and Potential for Savings. JAMA. Published online October 07, 2019. doi:10.1001/jama.2019.13978; accessed 10/10/19). This publication advances our understanding of where this waste is actually occurring,... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, October 17, 2019

On the Minds of Health Benefits Managers: Health Plan Design and Management Tips

Questions abound as health benefits managers rise to meet the challenges of changing health landscape, so we sat down with Joseph McCool, Principal of The McCool Group and moderator of the Employer Panel at Validation Institute’s Memphis Health Care Benefits Summit, to talk through some of the hot-button topics we’ve heard from employers while out on the road. Ensure employees have access to outcome-driven primary care physicians to reduce costs over time Healthcare... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, June 4, 2019

Memphis Surpasses National Average for "A" Hospitals

In this round of The Hospital Safety Grade, the percentage of Memphis hospitals with an “A” and “B” increased from 46% to 55%. Last year at this time only 20% of Memphis hospitals had an "A" and "B". Memphis now surpasses the national average (32%) with 36% of our hospitals receiving an "A". In the greater Memphis area, 11 hospitals were graded, and four (4) earned an “A,” two (2) earned a “B,” four... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Wednesday, May 15, 2019

Implement a Mental Health Strategy

Over 80 stakeholders participated in  MBGH's April 24, 2019 session  designed to explore the components of a comprehensive worksite mental health strategy. Moving from component to component in small groups gave attendees a chance to share and learn from each other and think strategically about how to design benefits and well-being programs to support emotional health. Take these steps to implement a comprehensive mental health strategy and consider adopting actions shared by... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, May 13, 2019

What About Mental Health and Substance Use Spend?

The spend picture for inpatient mental health and substance use looks different. Spend is being driven by both an increase in utilization and an increase in price. Inpatient substance use increased utilization (18%) combined with significant prices increases (39%) increased spending per person by 64%! Inpatient mental health utilization remained relatively stable until 2017 when it increased 6%. A 14% increase in prices resulted in a 20% increase in spend. MBGH's evaluation of... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, April 18, 2019

Really Want to Control Your Health Spend?

1) Understand  that price is the major driver behind spend.  The Health Care Cost Institute's 2017 Health Care Cost and Utilization Report  found that the total cumulative change in price from 2013-2017 was a 17.1% increase while utilization remained relaitvely stable. Overall spend increased 16.7% for this same time period.  (2) Continue  effective traditional approaches to control cost.  Willis Towers Watson's 2018 23rd Annual Best... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, April 18, 2019

Are Flawed Denial Guidelines Being Used for Your Behavioral Health Coverage?

A recent court ruling found that United Behavioral Health (UBH), a division of United Health Group, used overly strict criteria for denying care, potentially excluding significant number of members, including children and adolescents, from accessing behavioral health services. Specifically, the court ruled that UBH violated it's fiduciary responsibilities and also failed to recognize chronic and complex behavioral health conditions and needs. Read the  article   on the... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Tuesday, March 19, 2019

How Ending Medicare Drug Rebates Impacts You

Check out these resources to get a clearer picture of how the Trump Administration's proposed regulations ending drug rebates for Medicare Part D plans and Medicaid managed care plans (assuming they are finalized) impact you.  HHS Fact Sheet on the Proposed Reguations:  Check out the section on "What This Means for Private Plans" for the nuances of OIG rules and possible impications for you. Modern Healthcare "Azar Suggests Commercial Plans Will Ditch... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Thursday, February 14, 2019

Are Your Mental Health Benefits Effective?

Employers play a critical role in promoting and supporting employees and their families mental health as it impacts productivity, health status, quality of life, and health benefit costs.  MBGH believes it is important for mental health and well-being to sit equally along-side physical health. In 2019 MBGH is focusing on understanding how Memphis employers are addressing mental health in your health benefits and well-being programs and we are offering specific... Read More
Posted by Cristie Travis at Monday, January 7, 2019


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