Entries in Announcement (132)

Tuesday
Jul192016

Cost of a data breach in health care reaches $355

By Claire Thayer, July 19, 2016

The Ponemon Institute released a few new reports this summer on the cost of data breaches as well as ability of companies to adequately mitigate online incidents and cyber attacks. While the reports cross all major industries, noted below are a couple of important highlights pertaining to healthcare.

In terms of analyzing external threats that arise outside the company’s traditional security perimeter, and use of online channels – email, social media, mobile apps, or domains, as primary attack vehicles, a July 2016 Ponemon Institute report finds that only 29 percent of respondents in health and pharma believe they indeed have the necessary tools and resources to mitigate external threats:

In addition to concerns on how best to mitigate external threats, the Ponemon Institute’s  2016 Cost of a Data Breach Study finds that the average global cost of a data breach per lost or stolen record reached $355 for healthcare, compared to $158 for all industries. 

The complete Ponemon Institute 2016 Global Cost of a Data Breach Study includes:

  • The average costs and consequences related to experiencing a data breach incident.
  • Seven global mega trends in the cost of data breach research.
  • The most common factors that influence and can limit the cost of a breach.
Tuesday
Jul122016

Factors attributed to medication non-adherence

By Claire Thayer, July 12, 2016

Medication non-adherence has a huge impact on overall public health. Isolating factors attributed to nonadherence presents opportunities for providers and pharma organizations to not only step up to improve patient health outcomes, but also eliminate wasted medications. An Express Scripts study on this topic found that 69% of medication nonadherence is due to behavioral issues, for a variety of reasons such as forgetfulness or procrastination, 16% of nonadherence was due to cost, and 15% say that medication side effects contributed to non-adherent behaviors.

These and other findings are the focus of a recent MCOL infographoid, co-sponsored by LexisNexis Health Care, highlighted below:

MCOL’s weekly infoGraphoid is a benefit for MCOL Basic members and released each Wednesday as part of the MCOL Daily Factoid e-newsletter distribution service – find out more here.

Tuesday
Jun072016

Insurance spending on behavioral health: Up for Mental Health / Down for Substance Use

By Claire Thayer, June 7, 2016

The June 2016 issue of Health Affairs takes a deep dive into behavioral health from several different vantage points, including public and private health spending, veteran’s mental health service use, quality measurement, mental illness and gun violence, drug monitoring, suicide prevention, along with trends in media coverage.

Here are a few highlights of several of the articles in the June 2016 issue:

On the health spending spectrum, a long-term longitudinal Health Affairs study finds a increase in the total mental health treatment expenditures financed by private insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid increased from 44 percent in 1986 to 68 percent in 2014. While the share of spending for substance use disorder treatment financed by private insurance, Medicare, and Medicaid showed almost no increase, was 45 percent in 1986 and 46 percent in 2014.

Another article in the June 2016 issue examines gun violence, gun-related suicide and violent crime in people with serious mental illnesses, and whether legal restrictions on firearm sales to people with a history of mental health adjudication are effective in preventing gun violence.

State prescription drug monitoring programs were reviewed based on findings from a national survey to assess the effects of these programs on the prescribing of opioid analgesics and other pain medications in ambulatory care settings. In this study overview, researchers found that the implementation of a prescription drug monitoring program was associated with more than a 30 percent reduction in the rate of prescribing of Schedule II opioids.

Tuesday
May312016

Blue Shield of California Releases Executive Pay Report

By Claire Thayer, May 31, 2016

This week, Blue Shield of California released its first report on executive pay, thanks in part to a state audit that raised questions on the amount of executive pay and large cash reserves, along with mounting public pressure to be more transparent on executive compensation.  It pays to meet incentive plan goals - the CEO’s compensation jumped 40% in less than two years in doing so. 

The report includes components of the executive compensation program –including base salary and incentives tied to short and long term goals. Compensation paid to their top ten executives is listed, details on the CEO's individual pay package, along with comparison of how their exec pay ranks compared to their peers (Centene, Aetna, United, Anthem, Humana and Kaiser).

For further reading:

Blue Shield of California 2015 Executive Compensation Summary [May 2016]

Blue Shield ‘Lifts The Veil’ On Executive Pay [Kaiser Health News, May 26, 2016]

Blue Shield reveals executive compensation [BenefitsPro, May 27, 2016]

Monday
May232016

How are health plans meeting behavioral health needs of members?

By Claire Thayer, May 23, 2016

There’s been a lot of awareness about mental health lately, especially during the month of May – officially recognized as Mental Health Month, via Mental Health America .  In the spirit of this awareness, AHIP recently released a new 28-page issue brief on behavioral health benefits and mental health coverage from collective case studies of 11 member health plans. This new issue brief, Ensuring Access to Quality Behavioral Health Care: Health Plan Examples, identifies innovative approaches to these key areas:

  • Awareness and Education
  • Identification and Outreach
  • Timely access to care
  • Quality measurement
  • Evidence-based clinical criteria
  • Care Coordination and integration
  • Programs targeting opioid use

Health Plans profiled in the report include:

  • Anthem
  • Beacon Health Options
  • Blue Shield of California
  • CareFirst
  • Cigna
  • Health Care Service Corporation
  • Health Partners
  • Highmark
  • Humana
  • Kaiser Permanente
  • Wellcare

To read this complete Issue Brief: Ensuring Access to Quality Behavioral Health Care: Health Plan Examples