Tags: employers | healthcare benefits | OOP | PricewaterhouseCoopers | self-care | self-insured employers | wellness programs |
Bu Jane Sarasohn-Kahn
Medical costs will increase by 9% in 2011, a mere 0.5% less than 2010 cost growth. The fastest-growing components will be inpatient and outpatient costs, shown in the pie chart. 81% of premium costs are bound up in provider costs for hospitals and physicians — the two most significant factors of medical inflation.
And Americans will bear even more medical costs, out-of-pocket (OOP), in 2011 in the form of greater coinsurance and deductibles.
Behind the numbers: Medical cost trends to 2011 looks into employers’ crystal balls on health benefits for 2011. PricewaterhouseCoopers’ Health Research Institute surveyed 700 U.S.-based companies, small through jumbo sized, to gauge their perspectives on health care costs and benefits program priorities for 2011. Interviews were conducted in the first quarter of 2010.
While there are many uncertainties surrounding employers and health benefits, a few certainties emerged from this survey:
Employers will use more coinsurance at the point of care, moving away from co-payments, which will result in employees paying more out-of-pocket to health providers. Keep reading>>
Tags: FDA mHealth regulation | iPhone medical apps | MIMvista | mobile health regulation | wireless health regulation |
By Bradley Merrill Thompson
(Several friends commented on this draft, and I would like to thank them.)
Warning, this article contains explicit and sometimes graphic depictions of possible FDA regulation.
If you’ve been reading the prior articles in the series, you know I’ve been leading up to this last article in which I offer some predictions as to where FDA regulation will end up with regard to mHealth technology. Rather than just give you my predictions, however, I’m going to show you how I arrive at them. In this article, as the basis for my prediction, I use the political science equivalent of Newton’s second law of motion: the acceleration of an object is directly proportional to, and in a direction determined by, the net force acting on it. I also throw in a little portfolio theory, just to spice it up.
Borrowing from Newton’s law, I identify the vector forces that represent each of the primary social and political constituents affecting FDA regulation. As I identify them, I estimate both the magnitude and the direction of the force. Actually it’s easier to communicate this in a graph. Keep reading>>
Tags: BlackBerry | cardiogram | ECG | India | Research In Motion |
BlackBerry-maker Research in Motion (RIM), has teamed up with Vodafone Essar in India and healthcare IT company Maestros to launch the eUNO R10, a device for mobile paramedics thats aids in the early detection and prevention of heart attacks. The dedicated devices record the cardiogram, connect to the Internet and send the ECG up to a medical records server, which then automatically pushes a report to the doctor’s BlackBerry smartphone over the Vodafone Essar network. The physicians can also access the application on their smartphone and retrieve patient information.
The device has now been tested on 100 patients during the past year, but has launched commercially as of last week. Nanavati hospital in Mumbai, India will be the first to offer the device.
Frenny Bawa, managing director of India for RIM explained that in the Indian market RIM is well-positioned for growth especially in healthcare where RIM can help minimize the distance between the doctor and patient. Keep reading>>
Tags: Healthrageous | HopSkipConnect | payers | self-insured employers | Virgin Healthmiles |
“Health insurance is the only industry that doesn’t have a causal linkage to rates. In auto you pay more when you have accidents. This is the first time we’re doing this in health,” Virgin Healthmiles, CEO, Sean Forbes told ZDNet in a recent interview.
By using blood pressure monitors, pedometers and other devices, Virgin Healthmiles measures compliance closely and discounts are tweaked based on users’ actual participation. According to Forbes, companies that have offered the program to employees have managed to get as many as 40 percent of their employees to participate.
“They give people doing the right things 10 to 20 percent cuts in their next year premium, and layer on a corresponding increase in the portion of the population not doing the right thing. That allows them to do this on a cost neutral basis. It also allows them to create a causal link to the pricing of coverage,” Forbes said.
While Virgin may have its own unique approach, others are taking notice of the opportunity for employer adoption of wellness-related connected health devices. Keep reading>>
Tags: 5Star Emergency Response | AHA Heart Healthy Tips | GreatCall | Jitterbug | Jitterbug Live Nurse | Jitterbug Wellness Calls | mobile health services |
“Larger [wireless] carriers don’t think mobile health is ‘here’ yet,” Jitterbug parent company GreatCall CEO David Inns said during a presentation at the Mobile Health 2010 event at Stanford last month. “That’s great news for us.”
Inns explained that while the 65 year old and older demographic makes up about 15 percent of mobile users, the age group accounts for about 40 percent of all healthcare costs in the US.
“Getting people engaged at a simple level in their health can have a big impact,” Inns said. “What’s critical for gaining traction in the 65+ market is ‘service’.”
Inns pointed to a handful of Jitterbug’s recently offered mobile health services and ticked off the number of users for each as well as some other interesting stats and the new name for its forthcoming mPERS offering. Keep reading>>
Tags: AllScripts | Apple iPhone | Blausen Human Atlas HD | Eclipsys | HP-Palm | iPad medical apps | Mary Meeker | Palm WebOS | Syniverse | Text4Baby |
Allscripts and Eclipsys agreed to merge in a $1.3 billion deal today: Allscripts CEO Glen Tullman will become CEO of the combined company, while Phil Pead, president and CEO of Eclipsys will become its chairman. Both Allscripts and Eclipsys have been bullish about offering smartphone apps that enabled healthcare workers remote access to their electronic health records offerings. More
Human Atlas HD: Blausen launches Human Atlas HD for Apple’s iPad. More
UK Smart Home researchers explore health sensors for telecare: “People want to stay in their own homes for as long as possible and installing sensors is about helping them do that while also reassuring their families that Mum or Dad is okay.” More
Syniverse moves 1 million text messages for Text4Baby: Syniverse, a text message service provider noted that its the part of its business focused on the mobile enterprise services is growing at a steady rate thanks to consumer interest in application-to-person (A2P) solutions, such as mobile banking and mHealth. In the first quarter of 2010, Syniverse saw a 73 percent increase in the total number of enterprise messages delivered year over year. The company also “moved its 1 millionth message for the U.S.-based text4baby mobile health initiative in April 2010, another signal for increasing popularity of text-based A2P messaging communications among consumers,” according to a recent press release. More Keep reading>>