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Dec
17

Friday update

Apologies for lack of posts this week; this was the annual father-son hunting trip, and work is strictly banned.

Here’s what happened this week…

News hit the wire that Enlyte (aka Mitchell Genex Coventry) is for sale. Owner Stone Point Capital (deep experience in workers’ comp) is reportedly “exploring a sale” of the company which is generating about $450 million in earnings (I’d be a bit careful about that figure as sellers almost always include stuff in “earnings” that doesn’t usually “count” as such.)

There aren’t too many potential buyers for a deal this big as we’re talking a “multi-billion dollar” deal.

HomeCareConnect was bought by Paradigm – more on this later, but my initial take is this is a smart move by the big cat case management company as it brings a well-regarded DME and home health provider into the fold, allowing Paradigm to capture all that revenue and margin on their financials.

Research

The fine folk at WCRI have just released a very helpful report on the use and reimbursement of telemedicine in work comp.  The report is free to members; non-members get their copy for a nominal fee.

From WCRI; the report addresses:

evaluation and management and physical medicine services. It investigates the patterns of telemedicine utilization among these services in workers’ compensation during the early months of the pandemic (primarily March–June 2020) across 28 states. It also examines the actual prices paid for the most frequent services delivered via telemedicine versus in person across the study states.

NCCI researchers collaborating with various other agencies published a summary report on the impact of COVID on workers comp. Download a copy at the link…

Key takeaways include:

  • Covid claims are cheap – as in a LOT less costly than non-COVID claims
  • There’s a “new” claim category – “Indemnity only” that accounted for a plurality of claims.

Interestingly,  more and more insurers have stopped waiving member payments for COVID treatment.

Oh, and costs varied a LOT across states – $49k for non-complex hospitalizations in Maryland vs $129k in New Jersey. That’s likely largely due to Maryland’s very smart hospital charge regulation policies.

from FairHealth

The median length of complex hospitalization declined from a peak of 13 days in April 2020 to 7 days in July of this year…which is likely a big contributor to lower treatment costs.

What does this mean for you?

The investment community’s fascination with workers’ comp will be put to the test.

If you get COVID, you’re gonna pay a lot for your care – if you go into the hospital. 


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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