Aug 29, 2017

Coordination among health care providers saved Medicare $1 billion

Eric Gay / AP

A new report from the Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General says accountable care organizations — groups of doctors, hospitals, and other providers that care for patients in a more coordinated manner — "show promise in reducing spending and improving quality."

ACOs that cared specifically for Medicare patients saved $1 billion and had better quality marks in the first three years of a program that was created by the Affordable Care Act, the inspector general's report said.

Yes, but: $1 billion over three years is a drop in the bucket for Medicare, which spends more than $646 billion annually. It's also not a huge savings total when only looking at the $168 billion in Medicare expenditures over the first three years of the ACO program — or 0.6% of spending. Better, safer care is good, but ACOs aren't really moving the needle on spending.

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In photos: India welcomes president with massive "Namaste Trump" rally

First Lady Melania Trump, President Trump and India's Prime Minister Narendra Modi attend the "Namaste Trump" rally at Sardar Patel Stadium in Motera, on the outskirts of Ahmedabad, on Monday. Photo: Mandel Ngan/AFP via Getty Images

India was honoring President Trump and members of the U.S. first family with massive celebrations after they arrived at Sardar Vallabhbhai International Airport in Ahmedabad in the country's northwest Monday for a two-day visit.

Why it matters: The countries are forging deeper ties as India’s location, size and economic growth making it the "obvious counterweight to China" for American policymakers, per Axios' Dave Lawler and Zachary Basu. Prime Minister Narendra Modi is demonstrating the importance of the visit by holding a "Namaste Trump Rally" at a packed 110,000-capacity Sardar Patel Stadium in Ahmedabad — the world's largest cricket venue.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 25 mins ago - World

Concern over coronavirus spread: Italy, South Korea and Iran report more cases

Data: The Center for Systems Science and Engineering at Johns Hopkins, the CDC, and China's Health Ministry. Note: China numbers are for the mainland only and U.S. numbers include repatriated citizens.

The number of novel coronavirus cases in South Korea, Italy and Iran jumped on Sunday as infections in mainland China continued to grow, the latest figures show.

The big picture: As South Korea and Italy stepped up emergency measures amid rising case numbers, World Health Organization officials expressed concern about infections with no clear link to China. COVID-19 has killed at least 2,619 people and infected almost 80,000 others, with all but 27 deaths occurring in mainland China.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 4 hours ago - Health

Sanders reveals free childcare plan for preschoolers

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders speaks during a campaign rally on Saturday in El Paso, Texas. Photo: Cengiz Yar/Getty Images

Democratic presidential candidate Sen. Bernie Sanders announced on CBS' "60 Minutes" Sunday a new plan to guarantee free child care and pre-kindergarten to all American children from infancy to age four.

Details: In the wide-ranging interview, Sanders told Anderson Cooper he planned to pay for universal childcare with a wealth tax. "It's taxes on billionaires," he said.

Go deeperArrowUpdated 5 hours ago - Politics & Policy