CLASS Act The Promising Health Care Reform

The Community Living Assistance Services and Supports Act (CLASS Act) is the recent nationwide program that strives to restore the interest of millions of Americans to finance their own care despite of the increasing costs of facilities and Medicaids inefficiency in funding long term care. This program provides opportunity for people, who become functionally disabled and require community living assistance and support, to afford long term care insurance by contributing a very low amount of premium. The effective date will be on January 1, 2011, but the payout for the benefits will happen on or after 2017. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is responsible for the program and will issue any guidelines with regard to the benefits and enrolment.

Who Can Join?
Residents over the age 18 and earns income may enrol in the CLASS Act program. Employees will be automatically enrolled, but they reserve the right to decline their involvement in the program. Self-employed individuals may enrol in the program through an alternative method that will be established by HHS. However, employers are not obliged to offer CLASS act program or get any funds from their employers. Qualifying for CLASS Act is a lot easier than any private insurance because it does not require strict underwriting. Thus, any pre-existing condition does not hamper an individual from enrolling in the program.

Who is Eligible for the Benefits?
Adults with multiple functional limitations or related impairments (as determined by HHS) will be entitled to receive benefits after they have paid the monthly premiums for at least five years. Individuals who are incapable of doing activities of daily living or have cognitive impairment that persists for more than 90 days are also eligible for the benefits. Activities of daily living or ADL are bathing, dressing, moving, eating, and toileting.

What are the Benefits that Eligible Individuals Should Expect?

Eligible individuals will receive cash benefit they can use to purchase non-medical services and support. Institutional care can be also availed using the benefits. The benefits do not follow certain age-based limits, but follow a certain degree of impairment or disability. This requires members to pay an average of $50 per day and will increase annually in line with inflation. The benefits may be paid either daily or weekly basis and will be deposited in a debit account for each participants.

Who Pays for the CLASS Act Program?

Unlike Medicaid, the funds for the Long Term Care CLASS Act program are not gathered from tax payers, but come from the voluntary members who have paid for the premiums. The premiums will be placed in a trust fund or pool. The monthly premiums will depend on the members age; meaning, younger members will pay less premiums than older participants. In case a member skips paying premiums for three months, the premiums will be adjusted once the participant re-enrols. The premiums will then vary on the persons age at the time of re-enrolment. Low-income earners and students below the age 22 but are actively employed will pay cheaper premiums to about $5 per month.

A Brief Introduction To Healthcare Software

The most vital issue that is faced by any health care entity today is providing quality services in a constraint bound budget. This had brought about the need for a catalyst, a change that will open up a whole new spectrum for the healthcare sect. With the advent of hospital management software that issue has been dissolved completely. The advent of this phenomenal software has reduced the paperwork by making the billing process electronic for numerous hospitals and clinics.

The use of healthcare software:

Healthcare software is used for numerous purposes, some of which are used strictly for maintaining medical data of patients, such as dates and medical records of tests. Some other types of software have the potential to link billing data with medical data, further restructuring the long process of coding documents for billing. In addition, there is a wide variety of software that is available, many of the programs that enable customizing to fit the needs of your hospital or clinic.

The benefits rendered by healthcare software:

1. It allows doctors and nurses to access a patients medical history with complete ease.

2. It saves a lot of the crucial time of a doctor or medical practitioner as getting through to the patients medical records can be carried out with simply hitting a search, instead of going through hundreds of documents and paperwork.

3. The doctor also gets a quick update on all the medications being taken by the patient over his/ her treatment period.

4. Healthcare software has also helped by cutting costs, as the tedious process of organizing, securing, storing as well as filing paper documents is done with, removing the scope of errors as well.

5. Numerous acclaimed hospitals also state that having electronic healthcare records is much more private and secured than paper records.

Therefore, for a hospital or clinic that is planning about employing this health care system, be aware that medical professionals will need to face a significant a learning curve to get acquainted with the same. In addition, you should also be aware that some of the noted software in the healthcare management system includes, hospital management software and hospital IT solutions.

Last but not the least, having such well-equipped software in your hospital or clinic will give you the opportunity of ensuring quality healthcare to your patients, as all the required information and data is easily accessible with barely any wait time. Specialists and primary care doctors should definitely reap the benefits that are being offered by technology.

Healthcare Expenses Increasing Faster than Personal Revenue

According to the Commonwealth Fund, health insurance costs are rising faster than personal income in all 50 states. Deductibles and other out of pocket expenses continue to go up, while incomes are going down. The Commonwealth Fund’s study discovered several reasons for the rise in health care costs over recent years. Among the findings, it was discovered that employers are charging their employees higher costs to participate in health care plans. In addition, deductibles have risen 98 percent since 2003. This means that most people will have to pay for their own healthcare costs out of pocket for a greater length of time before their coverage kicks in. in addition, total premiums that employees pay annually average $3,721.

This news hits close to home for many Americans who are dealing with other economic problems already. With employment rates mostly stagnating, foreclosures going up, student loan debt reaching one trillion dollars, and incomes going down, it’s not getting any easier for most Americans to stay financially solvent in these trying times. For many Americans, the rise in health care costs is beginning to make the very idea of survival economically prohibitive. .

Many Americans, on the other hand, are being forced to discover creative new ways to pay for their health care costs. For example, some individuals whose incomes are preventing them from getting covered may take out short term loans in order to meet rising medical costs. Many short term loans are available, each coming with its distinct set of pros and cons. Payday loans, for instance, are one of the most popular types of short term loan. However, for most Americans they’re not a feasible option for paying medical costs since they are usually only for a small amount and come with a short repayment period. This may influence some to turn instead to collateral loans, which offer a more robust amount in exchange for some piece of the borrower’s property. One type of collateral loan that’s becoming increasingly popular is called a car title loan. Motorists may find these to be a better option than other short term loans since they typically charge lower interest and come with longer repayment periods. Consumers who are interested in more information about car title loans can access sites such as and

While there may be more than one way to skin the cat of health care costs, one thing is certain. Americans are going to need to take all the financial help they can get as health care costs continue to make themselves out of reach. It’s simply irresponsible to live without health insurance, even if you find that it takes a chunk out of your discretionary income. To pay for ever rising health care costs, Americans will just have to budget more wisely.

Health Care Reform’s Effects on Employers

I came across this paper written in July of 2010, and it still applies (at least until January 20th of next year). It outlines what is scheduled to occur in 2014 with small employer premiums under PPACA. First of all, a small employer is defined as any company with fewer than 50 employees. Large employers (50+) will have to pay penalties if they do not offer group health coverage. As far as I know, there is no penalty for small employers not offering it. There are some factors in California that may mitigate big premium hikes. Actually, we have had small group reform here for the past 19 years. It began in 1993 with a requirement that all employers with 5 or more employees be issued guaranteed coverage. In 1994 the minimum was lowered to 4 employees, and by 1996 it was lowered to 2 or more. The impact of this has been to stabilize the market over the long term. Group rates are already higher than individual rates because every employee that is eligible cannot be declined and all group plans must offer maternity coverage. Since the mandated addition of 100% free preventative care to all plans as a result of PPACA, premiums have not gone up as much as I thought they would, and in some cases have gone down. Keeping people healthy by early detection of problems should have a beneficial long-term impact.

What probably will have a negative impact on rates is the shrinking of the rate categories based on age. For example, rates are now broken up into 5 or 6 age groups, under 30, 30-39, etc. In 2014 there can be no more than a 3:1 difference between what is charged a 64 year old and an 18 year old. So if the premium for an 18 year is $150, the rate for the 64 year old could be no more than $450. The paper also talks about the removal of gender-based ratings, but California hasnt had them since the early nineties.

Will premiums go up? Of course they will, but I think California is better positioned than some other states. I have read comments by some that say “why should I pay for the people that dont want coverage and wont buy it?” My answer is that we all are already paying for the uninsured that either cant or wont get coverage, because they still use the health care system. And they use it for free. The rest of us pay for them in the form of higher health care costs and higher insurance premiums. From my point of view, and that of many on both sides of the issue, the biggest problem with the individual mandate provision that is before the Supreme Court (aside from the question of its constitutionality) is that it is not stiff enough. It is actually cheaper to go without insurance and pay the penalty than to buy coverage. But that was the result of political compromise. Too bad, because the one common element of every stable health care system worldwide is covering nearly everyone.

Of course all of this may be moot if Mitt wins. If he does, we may see some big changes to the Act. That might not be such a bad thing, but it should be noted that the health insurance industry has already priced many of the anticipated changes into their products, and some have said that it would actually cost them more to make changes once again so soon. Well just have to wait and see what happens. Hope this is helpful.

Health Care Reform – Seen through the eyes of the typical American Citizen

When suits like this are initiated the insurance companies have to hire or pay their lawyers to defend the doctors in these law suits, and the never ending circle of legal chicanery continues in perpituity. The lawyers have us all caught in a no win situation. They sue doctors and file frivolous suits, then they demand that people have rights to file these suits in order to protect themselves. Certainly no one would argue that people have such rights, in fact they do and should, but only in real cases. Not cases initiated simply to acquire money, and argued with a paid expert, paid witnesses, paid examining physicians, and sometimes plaintiffs who are simply lying.

Filing so many frivolous suits and so frequently, the legal profession has become a major contributing factor to the exceptionally high malpractice insurance fees that doctors have to pay. Thirty years ago if I wanted to see my doctor, he would show up at my home and charge me a fair price to see me. Now I cannot see him or her without first having insurance. I is absurd.

So we say, let’s start this medical cost reform with a healthy dose of tort reform. Let’s have recourse on attorneys who file frivolous suits, let’s have tort reform where doctors can sue attorneys for any lawsuit they file which the attorney loses and where the doctor was found to have committed no wrongdoing or malpractice. Certainly if the initiated suit discredits the doctor or puts them through unnecessary legal action, then the initiating attorney should be held accountable. Let’s start there and see how dramatically these frivolous suits drop off.

As for the next aspect of rising health care costs, the problem comes when the public and/or certain organizations that assist the public, abuse the system. You may ask; How does this happen? Let’s take a look at real life example of this. Sleep Apnea is a sleep disorder characterized by pauses in breathing during sleep. Each episode, called an apnea, lasts long enough so that one or more breaths are missed, and such episodes occur repeatedly throughout sleep. The standard definition of any apneic event includes a minimum 10 second interval between breaths, with either a neurological arousal (a 3-second or greater shift in EEG frequency), a blood oxygen desaturation of 3-4% or greater, or both arousal and desaturation. Sleep apnea is diagnosed with an overnight sleep test called a polysomnogram, or a “sleep study”. This condition can lead to high blood pressure, heart problems and conditions, and in extreme cases even death.

Treatments include wearing a mask conencted to a machine (Called a CPAP machine) which blows air through the nose or nose and mouth thereby maintaining an open airway and eliminating the apnea’s. The CPAP machine, mask, and accessories can cost from a few hundred dollars to a couple thousand dollars. When one is diagnosed with sleep apnea and a CPAP prescribed, one’s insurance may cover the cost of the machine and accessories. However, in many instances the insurance companies are forced to significanlty overpay for these devices for their insured individuals. The reason is that many of the suppliers also sell this equipment to medicare or medicaid patients. In doing so, they charge them the maximum allowed for a machine by those programs. Still, the program rules are that if they sell to medicare or medicaid patients at a specific price, then they are not allowed to sell at a lower price to others, else they risk losing their ability to provide to medicare or medicaid patients.

Get the Best Healthcare in India

Health is a primary concern in any country and India is no exception. Healthcare sector in India has witnessed tremendous growth recently, making large markets for India healthcare products. As it was noticed in the past few decades, the hospital services have registered a rapid progress, giving rise to various super specialty hospitals in the country.

As a result, medical tourism has received a boost. All these hospitals focus on the concept of giving state of the art facilities to patients, thereby offering quality services to them. The rise of healthcare is equally contributing to the growth of a prosperous pharmaceutical industry in the country. A study entitled, Indian Healthcare has offered a thorough research with a rational approach regarding the current scenario and future of the India healthcare sector. The highlight of the research is that pharmaceutical and medical tourism the two segments in the India healthcare sectors, which are the most lucrative ones in the country. The report provides an analysis on market trends, and presents detailed information about various segments and their determinants in India healthcare sector.

Further the report predicts that Medical tourism industry is supposed to produce a 26% CAGR (Compound Annual Growth Rate) spanning the period 2011-2014. CAGR takes regard the year wise growth rate of an investment over a particular period of time. It reveals that PE (private equity) funds have invested US$ 2.53 Billion in India till now in 216 health care deals since 2005. Especially the market for hospital services is extremely bright, anticipating a double growth during the period taken. Moreover, India will get a large amount of doctors, if taken into account the huge population in India. The growth of population will eventually lead to growth of doctors as they will seek treatment for various diseases.

Healthcare in India presents a complex picture. Sedentary lifestyle gives birth to various new diseases in urban areas which is a matter of concern. The rural health in India is always seeking attention to the government. Healthcare is the rural sector is still far from satisfactory, because of poor infrastructure, ignorance and several other reasons. Diseases are persistent in rural areas. The government has been taking initiatives to promote rural health by various schemes since independence; still the success rate of such schemes is not satisfactory. On one hand, India healthcare sector is progressing at a rapid rate, but the government has filed to provide good healthcare in the primary level, in the rural parts of India where a vast number of population live.

Continue Reading to know more about Healthcare Services in India.

Britons Go Abroad For Healthcare

Britons go abroad for healthcare.

While Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards was out marching to protest against NHS plans to downgrade his local hospital in Chichester a few weekends ago aptly named St. Richards record numbers of Britons continue to fly abroad for medical treatment.

Last year Britons spent 60m on overseas treatments. Main reasons were lower prices, NHS waiting lists, a better choice of alternative medical treatments and cosmetic surgery clinics such as those in Marbella where many patients choose to combine procedures with a break in the sun to return home looking better on the outside and feeling better on the inside. With many increasingly concerned about the rise in hospital superbugs, more people are also choosing to recuperate overseas in a warmer climate following surgery.

Market researchers Mintel recently reported money spent by Britons going abroad for treatments will increase 150% by 2011. According to the survey a quarter of Britons would seriously consider recuperating abroad after an operation and one in eight would go overseas for surgery.

“This sector (medical tourism) is a thriving industry as a growing number of well-off baby boomers take their health needs into their own hands and pursue the elixir of eternal youth,” said Richard Cope, senior Mintel analyst.

But what happens when you fall ill abroad? One of the largest holiday resort companies on the Costa del Sol, Club La Costa, offers onsite medical care at its California Beach Resort near Mijas. Now, thanks to a new contract negotiated between the modern, high tech Xanit Hospital in Benalmadena which opened in 2006, and Club La Costa, the hospitals state-of-the-art facilities and highly trained medical staff are available to both CLC members and staff in Spain.

Richard Fletcher, Resort Director at Club La Costa Resorts & Hotels, said: Weve always made it a priority to have medical provision on site, but our new agreement with Xanit means that should any of our members need medical treatment while on holiday, not only do we have access to one of the top hospitals in southern Spain, its literally minutes away.

As for alternative therapies and keep-fit, Britons seem to be increasingly looking overseas for a better deal. Last year, Britons spent about 25m on going abroad for yoga holidays, holistic healing, health farms beauty treatments and spa visits, according to the Mintel report.

Spain is one of the most visited destinations in Europe for surgery, especially for patients who want to combine medical treatment with a wellness holiday; also popular are Hungary, Turkey, Germany and Poland.

Healthcare Industry China Animal Feed Industry Research Report

Animal products such as meat, milk and eggs are an expensive source of food as compared to stable crops. Due to this, the consumption of animal protein in the developing nations is well below the world average. However, the transition in the economies of these countries has lead to growth in disposable income, purchasing power and the consequential rise in demand for animal protein. Food consumption level is now considered a clear indicator of the size of a country’s population and the health of its economy. China is by far the best example to highlight the validity of this point.

China continues to develop and is rapidly becoming a stronger economy. The sophistication and rising standard of living of the population has resulted in a change in dietary patterns. China is the world’s largest consumer of meat and is nearly self sufficient in meeting its requirements. Livestock production has been growing faster than any other agricultural sub-sector in China in recent decades, mainly due to the substantial growth of pig and poultry industries. To support its large number of livestock, the country requires animal feed in quantity and quality. This is the most important reason behind the growth of the animal feed industry in China.

The 6 broad categories of animal species for which feed is specifically manufactured in China are pig, boiler poultry, layer poultry, aquatic animals, ruminant and feed for other animals such as horses and pets. Since China is the largest market in the world for pork, pig feed is the major segment within animal feed in the country. Furthermore, the consumption of chicken is increasing rapidly, thereby amplifying demand for boiler poultry. However, feed for aquatic species is the fastest growing segment owing to the booming aquaculture sector in China.

-Due to the development of China’s economy, the population is increasingly being able to afford animal protein and is constantly adding the same to their diets. Subsequently, animal feed is required both in quantity and in quality to support the livestock in the country.– according to the research report -China Animal Feed Industry Review to 2018- Thriving Aquaculture Sector to Accelerate Growth’ by Ken Research

The report provides detailed overview on compound feed, concentrate feed and premixes and additives, in addition to feed for specific animal species in China and helps readers in identifying the ongoing trends in the key segments of the industry and anticipated growth in future depending upon changing industry dynamics in coming years. The report will aid industry consultants, animal feed companies, marketing companies and other stakeholders to align their market centric strategies according to ongoing and expected trends in future.

Read More:

Contact Person: Ankur Gupta

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Parenting begins before conception – The importance of preconception health care.

The birth of a child is a time of great joy and one of life’s most profound experiences. This joy is increased when there are no adverse outcomes and both mother and baby have come through a trouble free and healthy pregnancy, birth and infancy.

I have been professionally involved with mothers and babies for over 30 years now and, as a naturopath, have been treating couple with fertility problems for the past 22 years. While I am increasingly concerned at the number of couples now needing assistance in this area, I have also had the incredible privilege of being able to help so many couples in their quest for a health pregnancy and have been able to share in their joy with the arrival of a healthy baby.

In the last few decades there has been a worrying increase in reproductive health problems and infertility.

Recent research shows that

The incidence of infertility has tripled during the last 30 years

One couple in six now considered to be infertile One woman in five will have a miscarriage One woman in three will suffer some degree of post natal depression One baby in ten is born prematurely One child in thirty will be born with some type of congenital defect One child in ten is likely to have either learning or behavioral problems One child in five is likely to develop asthma, allergies or recurrent infections Unfortunately, the reasons for these alarming statistics are often dismissed with phrases such as “nobody really knows” or “it’s just one of those things”. The thing is that nearly every aspect of your reproductive health is adversely affected in some way by 21st century living conditions, diet and lifestyle!

The good news is:–

The combined evidence of many eminent researchers has shown that conditions such as sub fertility miscarriage, poor foetal health, breast-feeding difficulties, behavior & learning problems, allergy and poor immunity are preventable and treatable with sound preconception health care programs which are then combined with continued healthcare throughout pregnancy.

What is preconception care?

A program for both prospective parents aimed at increasing the likelihood of conception, improving your pregnancy outcomes and optimizing the health of your baby. Focus is on restoring optimum health and, in the case of infertility, to address and remedy the causes of your problem rather than just override it. Aims at ensuring an adequate supply (through diet, lifestyle & supplementation) of all essential nutritional factors known to be vital for the health of your sperm and ova and for optimum foetal development Reduces exposure (through lifestyle changes, environment, detoxification) to those factors known to compromise your health in general and are harmful to sperm, ova and foetal development Begins at least four months prior to intended conception to ensure health of sperm and ova (take 100 -116 days to generate and mature) is optimal well before conception. Is achieved through the use of natural medicines such as nutritional supplements, individualized herbal formulations, education re dietary and lifestyle changes, cycle charting and timing techniques. Who should use preconception care programs?