Insight, analysis & opinion from Joe Paduda

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Mar
26

Friday catch-up

Swamped with WCRI’s annual confab (more posts to come on that event) and client work. And the ubiquitous Zoom/Teams/Webex meetings…my high is 6 in one day.

Hoping that’s more than you – for your sake.

Okay, here’s a few items of note.

WCRI’s sessions are recorded and available to registrants here. There’s a ton of great info on fee schedules, the impact of state regs on opioid usage, projections on the future of employment, and treatment for COVID.

Risk transfer

Tuesday I’m co-hosting with Carisk Partners’ CEO Joe Berardo a webinar on Risk Transfer Strategies. We will dive into the key to successful risk transfer programs – behavioral health. Usually it’s not the medical that’s the real issue – it takes a unique approach to get to the real drivers.

If you’re a claims exec, claims or risk manager, or medical director please join us; take a brief survey here before hand so we can be sure to cover the issues you’re most concerned with.

Vaccine effectiveness

Very good news indeed out this week – Medscape reported:

Testing (in California) showed new cases among 2.5% of those tested within the first week after the first dose, 1.2% during the second week, 0.7% in the third week, 0.4% during the week after the second dose was given and less than 0.2% in the second week after the second dose.

In North Texas, where workers were also vaccinated in the midst of the largest COVID-19 surge the region had seen, 2.61% of unvaccinated employees developed the infection versus 1.82% of partially-vaccinated workers and 0.05% of fully-vaccinated employees.

Put another way, you’re fifty times more likely to get COVID if you aren’t vaccinated than if you’re fully vaccinated.

I’ve got my first – hope you have both.

If you’re not at the table, you’re on it.

Great piece in Harvard Business Review on the impact of the pandemic on health system consolidation. This is going to be a major driver of facility costs for workers’ comp. Key excerpt:

Studies to date tend to rebut the argument that acquisitions improve efficiencies, reduce costs, and lead to better care coordination. Instead, they show that consolidation increases prices and fails to improve the quality of care. For example, hospitals’ acquisitions of physicians’ practices in California has been linked to higher prices for primary care and specialist services and to increases in insurance premiums.

Back to work next week – enjoy the last weekend in March.


Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates

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A national consulting firm specializing in managed care for workers’ compensation, group health and auto, and health care cost containment. We serve insurers, employers and health care providers.

 

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