Health care services (81 - 90 of 353 items)
Medicare Physician Services: Use of Services Increasing Nationwide and Relatively Few Beneficiaries Report Major Access Problems
GAO-06-704: Published: Jul 21, 2006. Publicly Released: Jul 21, 2006.
Congress, policy analysts, and groups representing physicians have periodically raised concerns that Medicare's efforts to control spending on physician services by limiting annual updates to physician fees could have an adverse impact on beneficiaries' access to physician services. These concerns were heightened in 2002 when Medicare's formula for setting physician fees required a 5.4 percent red...
U.S. Insular Areas: Multiple Factors Affect Federal Health Care Funding
GAO-06-75: Published: Oct 14, 2005. Publicly Released: Oct 17, 2005.
Five insular areas of the United States--American Samoa, the Commonwealth of the Northern Mariana Islands (CNMI), Guam, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands--benefit from federal health care financing and grant programs that help fund health care services to their over 4 million residents. However, notable differences exist in how the programs are funded or operate in the insular areas, such a...
Specialty Hospitals: Information on Potential New Facilities
GAO-05-647R: Published: May 19, 2005. Publicly Released: Jun 9, 2005.
Beginning in the 1990s, there was a substantial increase in the number of short-term acute care hospitals that primarily treat patients with specific medical conditions or who need surgical procedures. Advocates of such hospitals, commonly referred to as specialty hospitals, contend that their focused missions and dedicated resources can both improve quality and reduce health care costs. Critics c...
Medicare Fee-for-Service Beneficiary Access to Physician Services: Trends in Utilization of Services, 2000 to 2002
GAO-05-145R: Published: Jan 12, 2005. Publicly Released: Feb 9, 2005.
In the 1990s, several reforms to Medicare physician fees were implemented to help control spending growth in the traditional Medicare program, known as fee-for-service (FFS) Medicare. Concerns were raised that these reforms might have a negative impact on Medicare beneficiaries' access to physician services, but at the end of the decade, there was little or no evidence of nationwide access problem...
Medicare Physician Fee Schedule: CMS Needs a Plan for Updating Practice Expense Component
GAO-05-60: Published: Dec 13, 2004. Publicly Released: Dec 13, 2004.
Medicare's payments for the costs physicians incur in operating their practices are based on two sets of estimates: total practice expenses and resource estimates for individual services. Total practice expense estimates were derived from American Medical Association (AMA) physician surveys, which the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) refines with supplemental data submitted by medica...
Medicare Chemotherapy Payments: New Drug and Administration Fees Are Closer to Providers' Costs
GAO-05-142R: Published: Dec 1, 2004. Publicly Released: Dec 1, 2004.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) required the Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to change the payment rates for chemotherapy-related drugs and chemotherapy administration services. These changes followed reports that Medicare payments for chemotherapy-related drugs were much higher than physicians' costs to acquire them, and on...
Medicare Demonstration PPOs: Financial and Other Advantages for Plans, Few Advantages for Beneficiaries
GAO-04-960: Published: Sep 27, 2004. Publicly Released: Sep 27, 2004.
Preferred provider organizations (PPO) are more prevalent than other types of health plans in the private market, but, in 2003, only six PPOs contracted to serve Medicare beneficiaries in Medicare+Choice (M+C), Medicare's private health plan option. In recent years, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the agency that administers Medicare, initiated two demonstrations that include a...
Medicare: Past Experience Can Guide Future Competitive Bidding for Medical Equipment and Supplies
GAO-04-765: Published: Sep 7, 2004. Publicly Released: Sep 7, 2004.
The Medicare Prescription Drug, Improvement, and Modernization Act of 2003 (MMA) requires the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to conduct large-scale competitive bidding for durable medical equipment, supplies, off-the-shelf orthotics, and enteral nutrients and related equipment and supplies provided to beneficiaries. The Balanced Budget Act of 1997 mandated that GAO study an earlier...
Milwaukee Health Care Spending Compared to Other Metropolitan Areas: Geographic Variation in Spending for Enrollees in the Federal Employees Health Benefits Program
GAO-04-1000R: Published: Aug 18, 2004. Publicly Released: Aug 23, 2004.
Health care spending varies across the country due to differences in the use and price of health care services. Understanding the reasons for utilization and price variation may contribute to developing methods to control health care spending. This report provides preliminary results from our work on geographic variations in health care spending and prices. Congress asked us to examine geographic...
Medicare Dialysis Facilities: Beneficiary Access Stable and Problems in Payment System Being Addressed
GAO-04-450: Published: Jun 25, 2004. Publicly Released: Jun 25, 2004.
Medicare covers about 90 percent of patients with end-stage renal disease (ESRD), the permanent loss of kidney function. Most ESRD patients receive regular hemodialysis treatments, a process that removes toxins from the blood, at a dialysis facility. A small percentage dialyzes-at home. From 1991 through 2001, the ESRD patient population more than doubled, from about 201,000 to 406,000. As the nee...