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Jacquelyn Martin / AP

Health care consulting has been a lucrative business over the past few years, thanks in large part to the Affordable Care Act and other broader changes to the industry. But it's been a little more mixed as of late, with some large firms running into trouble because of the uncertainty over Obamacare repeal.

Read on for the status of a few large health care consulting firms.

  • The Advisory Board Company: Not good. Activist investor Paul Singer's hedge fund bought a large stake in the company, which has laid off 220 people and is now looking to sell. CEO Robert Musslewhite said in November that many health systems froze consulting budgets and were in "more of a wait-and-see mode."
  • Huron Consulting Group: Not good. Huron's health care revenue dropped 14% in 2016, and segment profit plunged 40%. CEO Jim Roth attributed the decline in part to the "uncertainty around the Affordable Care Act" as well as fewer contracts that manage hospitals' medical billing issues with health insurers and patients.
  • Navigant: Good. Navigant's health care consulting revenue and operating profit were each up more than 22% in 2016. The firm has nabbed a lot of the business that its competitors may have lost.

Keep in mind, there are hundreds of other smaller, niche health care consulting firms. Those that help companies understand government programs, namely Medicare and Medicaid, have been thriving more compared to others.

What to look for: Hospitals, doctors and other health care companies may have tapped the brakes on consulting expenses in an election year. But spending could just as easily ramp back up, since they will have to prepare for any Republican Obamacare replacement and comply with Medicare's new complex payment law known as MACRA.

Go deeper

1 hour ago - Health

Boris Johnson announces month-long COVID-19 lockdown in U.K.

Prime Minsiter Boris Johnson. Photo: NurPhoto / Getty Images

A new national lockdown will be imposed in the U.K., Prime Minister Boris Johnson announced Saturday, as the number of COVID-19 cases in the country topped 1 million.

Details: Starting Thursday, people in England must stay at home, and bars and restaurants will close, except for takeout and deliveries. All non-essential retail will also be shuttered. Different households will be banned from mixing indoors. International travel, unless for business purposes, will be banned. The new measures will last through at least December 2.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

The massive early vote

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

Early voting in the 2020 election across the U.S. on Saturday had already reached 65.5% of 2016's total turnout, according to state data compiled by the U.S. Elections Project.

Why it matters: The coronavirus pandemic and its resultant social-distancing measures prompted a massive uptick in both mail-in ballots and early voting nationwide, setting up an unprecedented and potentially tumultuous count in the hours and days after the polls close on Nov. 3.

Updated 2 hours ago - Politics & Policy

Coronavirus dashboard

Illustration: Sarah Grillo/Axios

  1. Health: Ipsos poll: COVID trick-or-treat.
  2. World: Greece tightens coronavirus restrictions as Europe cases spike — Austria reimposes coronavirus lockdowns amid surge of infections
  3. Economy: Conference Board predicts economy won’t fully recover until late 2021.
  4. Technology: Fully at-home rapid COVID test to move forward.
  5. States: New York rolls out new testing requirements for visitors.