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The Official iCan Benefit Blog

Keeping you informed of current issues, thoughts and trends in the healthcare and insurance industries.

Thursday, December 1, 2011

More Children Are Getting Access to Care

USA Today has reported that in the last three years, the number of children who have access to healthcare has increased. This encouraging report comes despite a lagging economy, which had left some predicting a much gloomier outlook. The original study was conducted by Georgetown University, and it suggests that the primary reason for the increase in access has to do with states expanding eligibility for the children's Medicaid program.

Florida made the most progress, dropping from 667,758 to 506,934 during that time period, although the state still has one of the highest rates of uninsured children in the nation. Minnesota, Kansas and Wisconsin saw an increase in the number of uninsured children. Nevada has the highest rate of uninsured children while Massachusetts has the lowest, according to the report.

Wednesday, October 26, 2011

U.S. Healthcare Scores Badly

According to a recent report, the U.S. healthcare system is not improving much despite the fact that the cost of care is higher than ever. The U.S. scored a 64 out of 100 overall for key measures of healthcare performance that compared the nation as a whole with high-performing regions in the U.S., as well as against other countries.

The nation's overall score has declined slightly since the last such report in 2008. The scorecard measures the U.S. healthcare system across 42 indicators of healthcare quality, access, efficiency, equity, and healthy lives, and compares U.S. averages to rates achieved by the top 10% of states, regions, health plans, hospitals, other providers, and other top-performing countries.

For a more detailed review of the report by CBS, click here.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

See the Doctor Online with Telehealth via InteractiveMD

Have you come down with a cold recently? Or do you have symptoms of an illness and need a real diagnosis from a real physician? Well, you may not have known this, but iCan offers telehealth to its members through InteractiveMD (IMD). IMD is a revolutionary health care delivery system that provides on-demand access to licensed doctors via phone, email, or video chat. In other words, you get access to quality healthcare on your terms. No more waiting in doctors' offices or making late-night trips to the emergency room. Our care comes to you, wherever you are.

Here are a few of the features and benefits of telehealth through InteractiveMD:

- Anytime access to physicans
- Video capability for face-to-face interaction
- Availability in every state
- No more wait times or long drives to get care
- Access to transferable online health records
- Treatment and diagnosis for a wide range of common conditions

Tuesday, September 20, 2011

Number of Uninsured Climbs

The number of people who lacked health insurance last year climbed to 49.9 million, up from 49 million in 2009, the Census Bureau said Tuesday. Nationwide, 16.3% of the population was uninsured last year, statistically unchanged from 2009.

Three groups comprised the bulk of the uninsured in 2010, including foreign-born residents who are not U.S. citizens, young adults ages 19 to 25 and low-income families with an annual household income of less than $25,000.

Much of the declines in insured rates in recent years can be attributed to the loss of employer-provided coverage, which fell amid sustained unemployment and as employers continued to cut back on benefits.

Click here for the full story.

Friday, September 9, 2011

Start Saving on Medical Bills

Medicals bills can add up quickly, emptying your wallet and filling your life with stress. Sometimes the bills are over-inflated because of mistakes.  In such cases, it's important to get your medical bills audited to make sure you aren't being charged more than you should.  However, there are plenty of cases where healthcare providers have a little wiggle room, and if you're willing to negotiate, you just might be able to take a big chunk out of your bill.  In many cases, all you have to do is ask!

CBS just did a story on this topic. They called doctors' offices across the country to see what would happen when they tried to haggle for healthcare. In Manhattan, one of their staff got the price of an MRI on her knee down from $1,800 to $600 through haggling.  All they did was take the time to call around and offer to pay cash.

It's easier to negotiate when you have an understanding of the real costs of healthcare. Check out the Healthcare Blue Book -- they're a free consumer guide that helps you determine fair prices for healthcare in your area.

Never forget -- savings come to those who haggle!

Do you support the idea of government-run health care?