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Health Policy

Physicians’ groups call for immediate halt to recent policy limiting use of anesthesia during cataract surgery A policy change made by health insurer Anthem, Inc. could result in increased risk for many patients – up to and including blindness – if not immediately rescinded, according to physicians’ groups. The California …

On January 17, CMA launched a new coalition of more than 100,000 California physicians, dentists, nurse practitioners, community clinics and pharmacists to protect the gains California has made under the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and improve California’s health care system. The Coalition to Protect Access to Care will actively oppose efforts in Washington, D.C., …

Governor Brown released his state budget proposal for the 2018-2019 fiscal year. General Fund revenues are up $5.9 billion as compared to the 2017 Budget Act.  Because of a “healthy, one-time surplus” the Administration proposes to fund several key priorities including: A $3.5B supplemental deposit to fully fund the state’s …

CMA will be hosting a webinar on Wednesday, January 24 (12:15-1: 15 pm) with Arthur Lurvey, M.D., FACP, FACE, the Contractor Medical Director for Noridian Healthcare Solutions, examining changes to the Medicare program for 2018. The program will include an overview of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) new Targeted Probe and …

Effective January 1, 2018, a number of State Disability Insurance (SDI) program changes took effect, including an increase in the wage replacement rate and an elimination of the seven-day non-payable waiting period. The changes apply to both disability claims and Paid Family Leave (PFL) claims. Patients can use the Employment Development …

The United States continues to struggle with an epidemic of firearm violence. Physicians are in a unique position to assess risk, provide education and change behaviors related to gun violence, and they may also address this issue more broadly as a consumer safety and public health issue. The California Medical …

By Janus L. Norman, CMA Senior Vice President “Impossible is just a big word thrown around by small men who find it easier to live in the world they’ve been given than to explore the power they have to change it.” -Muhammad Ali In modern California politics, there is no …

The U.S. House of Representatives, with the leadership of California Congressman Jeff Denham (R-Modesto), recently passed HR 3922, “The Community Health and Medical Professionals Improve our Nation (CHAMPION) Act of 2017,” which would reauthorize for two years the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education program (THCGME) that trains primary care …

Previously, small businesses across California came together to purchase health insurance in order to obtain cheaper rates with their larger pool of enrollees. However, after a sequence of these “association health plans” failed, state legislators worked tirelessly to pass laws throughout the 1990s that nearly eradicated these bands. Today, President …

Anthem Blue Cross recently notified physicians in several states of upcoming changes to the payor’s reimbursement policies and claims editing software, called ClaimsXten. As part of the policy changes, scheduled to become effective on January 1, 2018, Anthem will begin reducing reimbursement of evaluation and management (E/M) services billed with modifier 25 under …