Obamacare Focus Shifts from Washington to Vegas

Federal officials scattered across the country — from a Senate committee in Washington, D.C., to the Las Vegas strip — to assure lawmakers and representatives of the employer benefits community that the Obamacare enrollment website will be fully operative by the end of November, as the White House has promised.

“It’s no secret that the marketplace website has had problems – and it’s certainly not acceptable,” said Christen Linke Young,” director of coverage policy for the Department of Health and Human Services, Tuesday, during the 6th World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress, in Las Vegas. “We are under an aggressive effort to fix the problems.”

Meanwhile , almost a continent away before the Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions Committee, the federal official who heads the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, urged Americans to log onto the Obamacare website now because “it has improved,” with more people completing applications following a month of problems that besieged the botched rollout of HealthCare.gov. Continue reading “Obamacare Focus Shifts from Washington to Vegas”

Surgical Auctions: Going Once, Going Twice — Going to Medical Tourism

As costs escalate and healthcare reform sweeps across the insurance landscape, “going once, and going twice” sounds more like something out of EBay than ER protocol.

But, surgical auctions are exactly what some patients are looking at to take care of their health conditions and, in return, some doctors are more than willing to outbid each other to attain their services.

“People are saying we want more free market with price transparency and there’s demand for that out there,” said Dr. Marty Makary, assistant professor of surgery at Johns Hopkins University and author of “Unaccountable: What Hospitals Won’t Tell You and How Transparency Can Revolutionize Health Care.” “If you’re paying more, maybe you’re getting more quality, but people are hungry for price transparency out there in some fraction of the healthcare market.”

Makary, a keynote speaker at the 6th World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress, Nov. 3-6, in Las Vegas, said savvy healthcare shoppers are beginning to find these bargains through medical tourism, an opportunity in which patients travel – domestically or internationally – for affordable, top-notch procedures or treatments that they can’t find readily available in their neighborhoods.

Continue reading “Surgical Auctions: Going Once, Going Twice — Going to Medical Tourism”

Got Problems? Blow Whistle without Blowing Career

whistle blowersSo you think you’ve got problems? What about corporate executives, who may not know that employees have a tendency to turn a blind eye to unethical practices – big or small? They may be a problem in and of itself.

Joseph Grenny, best-selling author of “Crucial Accountability” and keynote speaker at the 6th World Medical Tourism & Global Healthcare Congress, Nov. 3-6, in Las Vegas, said potential whistle blowers who remain silent can produce grave consequences. Not all misdeeds are as obvious as others, like embezzlement, but any infractions in the workplace can have long-term effects when not brought to the attention of supervisors.

An online survey of 926 people backs up claims by the co-founder of VitalSmarts, who said whistle blowers are the exception rather than the rule. Grenny says that while 63 percent of the respondents regularly witness both minor and major ethical infractions, employees confront only half of the unethical behavior they witness at work.

Continue reading “Got Problems? Blow Whistle without Blowing Career”