Welcome to the MCOL Blog

Please join the discussion with our panel of experts, as we cover a wide range of important topics shaping the business and future of health care.


Three Questions for Gary Word, Ph.D., Vice President, Network and Payment Solutions, Change Healthcare: Post-Webinar Interview

By Chaire Thayer, October 23, 2018

Recently, Gary Word, Ph.D., Vice President, Network and Payment Solutions, Change Healthcare, participated in a Healthcare Web Summit webinar discussion on Ways to Leverage Financial Tools to Optimize Digital Member Engagement. If you missed this informative webinar presentation, watch the On-Demand version here. After the webinar, we interviewed Gary on key takeaways from the webinar: .........Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Chaire Thayer, October 19, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:.........Click to continue


Imagining the Future Us

By Kim Bellard, October 17, 2018

One of the most thought-provoking articles I've read lately is Tom Vanderbilt's Why Futurism Has a Cultural Blindspot in Nautilus.   In it, he discusses how our technological visions of the future seem to do much better on predicting the technology of that future than they do the culture in which they will be used.........Click to continue


The State of BPCI

Clive Riddle, October 12, 2018

CMS announced that “1,299 entities have signed agreements with the agency to participate in the Administration’s Bundled Payments for Care Improvement – Advanced (BPCI Advanced) Model.  The participating entities will receive bundled payments for certain episodes of care as an alternative to fee-for-service payments that reward only the volume of care delivered. The Model participants include 832 Acute Care Hospitals and 715 Physician Group Practices – a total of 1,547 Medicare providers and suppliers, located in 49 states plus Washington, D.C. and Puerto Rico.” ........Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

Chaire Thayer, October 12, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:..........Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

Chaire Thayer, October 5, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:..........Click to continue


Eighteen Things to Know from the 2018 KFF Employer Benefits Survey

By Clive Riddle, October 4, 2018

The Kaiser Family Foundation 2018 Employer Benefit Survey, an annual 200+ page definitive report of the state of employer health benefits since 1999, includes these eighteen things to know that KFF highlights:..........Click to continue


NCQA Health Plan Ratings: What About the 25% With No Rating?

By Clive Riddle, September 28, 2018

NCQA has released its 2018-2019 Health Insurance Plan Ratings. The ratings are a key tool used by stakeholders in evaluating health plans. NCQA tells us they “studied nearly 1,500 health plans and rated 1,040: 445 private (commercial), 418 Medicare and 177 Medicaid” and that “of the 1,040 rated plans, 85 (8%) received a top rating of 4.5 or 5.0 out of 5. Twenty-five (2%) earned the ratings of 1.0 to 2.0.”............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Chaire Thayer, September 28, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Chaire Thayer, September 21, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:.............Click to continue


In China, It’s the 21st Century

by Kim Bellard, September 21, 2018

It is 2018 everywhere, but not every country is treating being in the 21st century equally. China is rushing into it, even in healthcare, while the United States is tip-toeing its way towards the future. Especially in healthcare: Let’s look at a few examples:.............Click to continue


Post ACA  Operating Margins: Health Systems and Health Plans

By Clive Riddle, September 14, 2018

Navigant this week released an eight-page report: Stiffening Headwinds Challenge Health Systems to Grow Smarter,  that provides “an analysis of a three-year sample of the financial disclosures of 104 prominent health systems operating 47% of U.S. hospitals,” in which Navigant  “found broad-based and significant deterioration of operating earnings.”.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, September 14, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


20 Interesting Takeaways From the CMS NORC Next Generation ACO First Annual Report

By Clive Riddle, September 7, 2018

The recently released 111-page Next Generation Accountable Care Organization (NGACO) Model Evaluation First Annual Report prepared by NORC on behalf of CMS provides a treasure trove of ACO tidbits, as CMS uses the report to tout emphasizing higher risk sharing arrangements. Here’s the NGACOs examined in the report, followed by twenty selected interesting takeaways:......Click to continue


Provider Directories – What’s Next for Provider Data Exchange?

By Claire Thayer, September 5, 2018

The U.S. spends a staggering $2.1B annually across the healthcare industry chasing and maintaining provider data – and as much as 75% of this cost is duplicative. Maintaining and facilitating exchange of accurate provider data is a critical component to payers being able to operate effectively and ensure their members have access to the care they need. But a key challenge remains: inaccurate provider data......Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, August 31, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


First, Let’s Blow Up All the Hospitals

By Kim Bellard, August 27, 2018

A few recent stories are, I believe, reaffirming one of the big problems about healthcare: hospitals are 19th century institutions operating under 20th century business models in the 21st century. It’s time to rethink what we want a “hospital” to be................Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, August 24, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Out of Network Services: Not Just Surprise Medical Bills, They Also Erode Care Coordination and Patient Retention

By Clive Riddle, August 23, 2018

Last week, Kaiser Family Foundation released a study of medical bills in large employer plans that found "a significant share of inpatient hospital admissions includes bills from providers not in the health plan’s networks, generally leaving patients subject to higher cost-sharing and potential additional bills from providers."...............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, August 17, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Healthcare costs – not grandchildren gone wild – the top retiree concern

By Clive Riddle, August 17, 2018

What’s the top concern about retirement years voiced by retirees as well as retirement plan sponsors?...............Click to continue


25 Things to Know About The CMS Medicare ACO Proposed Rule: Pathways to Success

By Clive Riddle, August 10, 2018

Here are 25 major points to note in the CMS Pathways to Success Proposed Rule introduced on August 9th::...............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, August 3, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Medicare Part D Premiums and Enrollment by the Numbers

By Clive Riddle, August 3, 2018

CMS this week announced that Part D premiums are expected to fall from $33.59 this year to $32.50 in 2019. Of course it’s not that simple. First of all, $32.50 is the “basic” premium rate. What Medicare beneficiaries actually pay is income adjusted on a sliding scale. Here are the 2019 “income-related monthly adjustment amounts” just released by CMS:...............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, July 27, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


The Sounds of Silence

By Kim Bellard, July 25, 2018

Listen closely, healthcare organizations and professionals: those sounds you are not hearing are the voices of people not speaking up, including patients. And that’s a problem. Let’s start with the elephant in the room: a new study found that even when physicians actually asked patients why they were there, on average they only listened to the patient’s explanation for eleven — that’s 11 — seconds before interrupting them...............Click to continue


Friday Five: 5 healthcare business news from the MCOL Weekend Edition

by Claire Thayer, July 20, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue 


Consumers and Digital Technology: What’s the Deal With Healthcare?

by Clive Riddle, July 20, 2018

The Deloitte Center for Health Solutions has just released some preliminary findings from their 2018 Survey of U.S. Health Care Consumers, which will be published in August, on the heels of their recently released Deloitte 2018 Survey of U.S. Physicians. Deloitte shares that “consumers and physicians typically agree that virtual health care holds great promise for transforming care delivery. Yet many physicians remain reluctant to embrace the technologies, worried about reimbursement, privacy and other issues.”....Click to continue


The Physician's Role in Today's Healthcare Costs

by Clive Riddle, July 13, 2018

Influencing consumer behavior to reduce healthcare costs via cost sharing and engagement strategies, and purchaser cost containment strategies of all stripes have seemingly dominated discussions of regarding the cost of healthcare. So how to physicians feel about their role in the cost equation today?....Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

by Claire Thayer, July 13, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

by Claire Thayer, July 6, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

by Claire Thayer, June 29, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week:...............Click to continue


Five Questions for Kelly Proctor, Physical Environment Sector Lead, DNV GL Healthcare: Post-Webinar Interview

by Claire Thayer, June 28, 2018

Recently, Kelly Proctor, Physical Environment Sector Lead, DNV GL Healthcare, participated in a Healthcare Web Summit webinar discussion on Workplace Violence, Security Vulnerability Analysis, and Ensuring Sound Security Management...............Click to continue


My Care. Your Rights

by Kim Bellard, June 27, 2018 

I have, it seems, been laboring under a misconception. All these years I liked to believe that the healthcare system was about the patient. That was naive...............Click to continue


A Visit to Planet Gawande

By Clive Riddle, June 22, 2018

We still don’t know much at all about what the heck the Amazon-Berkshire-JPMorgan healthcare triumvirate will be doing. But we do now know who will be running it. The renowned Dr. Atul Gawande has been appointed its Chief Executive Officer.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, June 15, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


Healthcare Organization Mobile Device Use: Check That Pager

By Clive Riddle, June 15, 2018

The list of benefits derived from mobile device use by clinicians and staff at healthcare organizations is a long one. But the challenges exacted comprise.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, June 8, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


The 260 Page Annual Medicare Trustees Report and the Part D Rx Share of the Pie

By Clive Riddle, June 7, 2018

This week CMS released the 2018 Annual Medicare Trustees Report, which provides a financial/actuarial analysis of the current.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, June 1, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


Anthem, IngenioRx and Taking a Total View of the Prescription Drug Trend

By Clive Riddle, June 1, 2018

In the crossover worlds of national pharmacy chains, PNMs and health plans, we have witnessed the emergence of CVS-Aetna , Cigna-Express Scripts, and.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, May 25, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


Too Many Poor Excuses

By Kim Bellard, May 23, 2018

I am so tired of reading yet another story about how we — Americans — cannot afford things. Not luxury item. Increasingly, it seems like too many of us can’t afford.............Click to continue


Six Things To Know From Deloitte Research on Health Plan Government Business

By Clive Riddle, May 18, 2018

This week, Deloitte Center for Health Solutions’ Andreea Balan-Cohen, Ph.D., and Maulesh Shukla gave a presentation on Medicare Advantage and.............Click to continue


Medication Nonadherence: Data and Analytics Can Make an Impact

By Claire Thayer, May 16, 2018

Over two-thirds of hospital readmissions are directly due to medication nonadherence. Many factors contribute to patients not taking their medications, including fear ofside effects, out-of-pocket costs, and.............Click to continue


The Disconnect with Consumers and Health Plan Costs

By Clive Riddle, May 11, 2018

eHealth this week released a new eleven page report: Costs and Consequences in the ACA Market: A Survey of Individual and Family Health Insurance Consumers, presenting findings from more than 1,700 consumers who.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, May 11, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


Welcome to Lifestyle Medicine

By Clive Riddle, May 4, 2018

The May issue of Circulation includes the research article: Impact of Healthy Lifestyle Factors on Life Expectancies in the US Population, which presented findings from a study that aimed “to estimate the impact of lifestyle factors on premature mortality and life expectancy in the US population.”.............Click to continue


Friday Five: Top 5 healthcare business news items from the MCOL Weekend edition

By Claire Thayer, May 4, 2018

Every business day, MCOL posts feature stories making news on the business of health care. Here are five we think are particularly important for this week: .............Click to continue


Click to see previous posts...


MCOLBlog Team

Kim Bellard
KB Consulting
Columbus, OH

Krista Burris
Healthcare Strategy Consultant
San Francisco Bay Area

demarcosm.jpg

William DeMarco
President
DeMarco and Associates
Rockford, IL

Sandhya Gardner.jpg

Sandhya Gardner, M.D.
Chief Medical Officer
RELIAS

gelbsm.jpg

Laurie Gelb
Vice President
ORC International
Seattle, WA

Dan Juberg
Vice President, West
Lumeris
Los Angeles, CA

Nate Kaufman
Managing Director
Kaufman Strategic Advisors
San Diego, CA

Cyndy Nayer
Founder and CEO
Cyndy Nayer's Center of Health Engagement
CyndyNayer.com

Lindsay Resnick
Chief Marketing Officer
KBM Group: Health Services

Clive Riddle
President
MCOL
Modesto, CA

Marshall Riddle
Senior Analyst
MCOL
Modesto, CA

Claire Thayer
Vice President
Business Development
MCOL
Portland, OR

Tomas Gregorio
Senior Executive Director
Healthcare Systems Innovation NJII, NJ