Dobson | DaVanzo Study Shows Impact of Outpatient Site Neutral Off-Campus Provisions

Becker's Hospital CFO Report reports on a recent Dobson | DaVanzo study commissioned by The Integrated Health Care Coalition on the impact of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) outpatient site neutral off-campus provisions. Our analysis showed the 200 with the largest impact account for 73 percent of the total impact of the change in payment due to off-campus site neutral payments.  Our report was submitted as part of the Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) comments to CMS by The Integrated Health Care Coalition.

Dobson | DaVanzo Study Unveils High Savings to Medicare ACO Program

Dobson | DaVanzo’s evaluation of Medicare Shared Savings Program Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) found greater savings than the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) benchmark savings estimate.  The Dobson | DaVanzo study found positive net savings of $542 million for performance years (PY) 2013-2015 using a difference-in-differences analysis while the CMS benchmark calculations resulted in negative net savings of $344 million for PY2013-PY2015. Our study uses standard evaluation techniques typically employed by CMS in its evaluations of the Next Generation ACO (NGACO) model, Pioneer ACOs, and other programs that do not rely on the benchmark method to estimate program effects. View the full report and NAACOS press release.

The release announcing the success of the study was reported by several news outlets including POLITICO Pulse, Forbes, and Health Affairs Blog.

Dobson | DaVanzo Reports on Effects of Competitive Bidding Expansion

Dobson | DaVanzo was recently commissioned by the American Association for Homecare (AAHomecare) to conduct a survey amongst stakeholders experiencing consequences of the recent expansion of competitive bidding for durable medical equipment (DME).

The report produced by Dobson | DaVanzo describes the current perceptions of three groups of stakeholders: Medicare beneficiaries, home medical equipment (HME) suppliers, and hospital personnel responsible for discharge planning and case management. Each of the three groups described their challenges and experiences in accessing DME since the bid expansion. A recent Government Accountability Office (GAO) report on the same subject suggests that no such effects are apparent but adds that the effects of DME rate adjustments may take longer to appear in the data.

The use of different analytic methodologies and data for reporting on health services issues such are commonplace. Data lags and other structural features can contribute to studies having various findings. The Dobson | DaVanzo study reports on qualitative data collected recently from the field. Further examination of this issue is needed in order to aid the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) in releasing regulations that will best serve Medicare beneficiaries in their homecare needs, and industry staff in providing the best possible care to patients in the future.

Dobson | DaVanzo to Work Alongside LMI to Improve Medicare Quality

Dobson | DaVanzo, as a subcontractor to LMI, has been awarded a task order as part of a contract to support the Measure and Instrument Development and Support (MIDS) under the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) Center for Clinical Standards and Quality (CCSQ). The MIDS contract has an overall value of $1.6 billion over 10 years. We look forward to working alongside LMI to improve the quality of the Medicare program.

Dobson | DaVanzo Survey Referenced in New Competitive Bidding Study

HME News reported that Pacific Research Institute (PRI) referenced a 2016 survey conducted by  Dobson | DaVanzo in a new study titled “Reforming CMS’ Competitive Bidding Process to Improve Quality and Sustainability.”

The PRI study suggests that reforms should be made to the competitive pricing bidding process by CMS to encourage transparency and pricing equity in the durable medical equipment market in order to improve health outcomes for patients.  

Dobson | DaVanzo Reports Recent Trends in U.S. Drug Marketplace

In a recently released report, Dobson | DaVanzo discusses the role generic medicines play in decreasing the rate of increase in drug expenditures. Apart from unique and innovative introductions to the drug market, a conversion to generics has consistently reduced inflationary pressures in the U.S. drug marketplace.

Hospital Groups Announce Dobson | DaVanzo Estimation Study Showing Cumulative Federal Cuts to Hospitals to Reach $218 Billion by 2028

In a study for the Federation of American Hospitals and the American Hospital Association, Al Dobson, Joan DaVanzo, Randy Haught and Phap-Hoa Luu estimated that the cumulative federal payment to hospitals between 2010 and 2028 would exceed $218 billion.  The authors identified regulatory changes made by CMS as well as eleven legislative acts passed by Congress that have and will continue to result in these reductions over the specified time period.  The study can be accessed here.


Al Dobson, President of Dobson DaVanzo & Associates, Acknowledged by MedPAC for Contributing to the Commission’s June Report to Congress

MedPAC recently released their June 2018 Report to Congress in which they have acknowledged Al Dobson as a contributor. The Commission publishes two annual reports advising Congress on issues affecting the Medicare program. The latest report can be found here.

Joan DaVanzo and Randy Haught Co-Author Article in Value in Health on Medicare Spending on Wound Care

In the January 2018 issue of Value in Health, Joan DaVanzo and Randy Haught coauthored an article that presents findings from the first comprehensive study of Medicare spending on wound care. The study found that close to 15% of Medicare beneficiaries had at least one type of wound or infection and estimated the cost of wound care for Medicare beneficiaries to be nearly $32 billion.  This study has broad implications given that Medicare expenditures related to wound care are much higher than previously thought, and lays the foundation for future research and the development of more appropriate quality measures and reimbursement models.  The article can be accessed here, and the Alliance of Wound Care Stakeholders’ press release about the study can be found here.

Sarmistha Pal and Joan DaVanzo Co-Author Article in Surgery Technology International

Sarmistha Pal (lead author) and Joan DaVanzo co-authored a December 2017 article in Surgery Technology International on the impact of Neuromuscular Electrical Stimulation (NMES) on episode costs and post-acute care utilization in total knee replacement patients with disuse atrophy. NMES is a complement to conventional forms of physical therapy.  NMES involves the application of low-level electrical currents to targeted muscles which helps to strengthen the quadriceps muscle, thereby improving surgical outcomes and decreasing complications. The authors found that patients who used NMES had lower costs and a lower probability of readmission.  The article can be accessed here

Dobson | DaVanzo Releases Study for The Commonwealth Fund on Comparing the Affordable Care Act’s Financial Impact on Safety-Net Hospitals in States That Expanded Medicaid and Those That Did Not

In a study for The Commonwealth Fund, Al Dobson, Joan DaVanzo, Randy Haught and Phap-Hoa Luu examined how the Affordable Care Act’s Medicaid expansion affected the financial status of safety-net hospitals.  Using Medicare Hospital Cost Report data for federal fiscal years 2012 and 2015, the authors analyzed changes in Medicaid inpatient days as a percentage of total inpatient days, Medicaid revenues as a percentage of total net patient revenues, uncompensated care costs as a percentage of total operating costs, and hospital operating margins.  The authors found that the operating margins of safety-net hospitals in expansion states improved (in large part due to increased Medicaid revenues and reduced uncompensated care costs) while the operating margins of safety-net hospitals in non-expansion states declined.  The study can be accessed here.

Dobson | DaVanzo Releases Report on the Impact of Medicare Competitive Bidding

A Dobson | DaVanzo report entitled, "Access to Home Medical Equipment: Survey of Beneficiary, Case Manager, and Supplier Experiences", was released on October 12, 2017.

The analysis was based on a social media survey of beneficiaries, case managers/discharge planners, and suppliers. Over 1,000 responses were gathered in a 6-week time frame, indicating the power of social media to gather relatively large amounts of information in a short period of time. The report found that the Medicare Competitive Bidding (CB) process may require mid-course corrections in order to improve the beneficiary experience under CB. The report is available here.


Al Dobson Presents at the American Orthopedic and Prosthetic Association’s Centennial Celebration and World Congress

Al Dobson presented at the American Orthopedic and Prosthetic Association’s Centennial Celebration and World Congress on Saturday, September 9. Al’s presentation, “The Economic Value of Orthotics and Prosthetics Care to the Medicare Program: 2011 – 2014 Update” summarized Dobson | DaVanzo’s recent research on the financial benefit to government and private payers when a person with spinal injury or lower limb loss or impairment attains restored mobility through receipt of orthotic and prosthetic services. This research, which confirmed the findings of an initial study that used earlier years of data, suggested that the receipt of orthotic and prosthetic services leads to a reduction in health care utilization that equals or exceeds the cost of the services, thus increasing quality of life for the patient and reducing the cost to Medicare. To view the presentation, click here.

Dobson | Davanzo Assesses the Financial Impact of 340B Discounts on Drug Manufacturers

Al Dobson, Kennan Murray and Joan DaVanzo recently co-authored a report for 340B Health summarizing an analysis that assessed the financial impact of 340B discounts on drug manufacturers and evaluated the plausibility of claims that the 340B Program is a cause of pharmaceutical price increases, cost shifting, and reductions in private sector research and medical discovery. The analysis found that the 340B Program cannot plausibly be a major driver of U.S. drug spending or a major cause of cost shifting by drug manufacturers to make up for 340B discounts. The results of this analysis were published on the 340B Health website to view click here.

Al Dobson, Kennan Murray and Joan DaVanzo Co-Author Report, “Financial Challenges Faced by 340B Disproportionate Share Hospitals In Treating Low-Income Patients” Recently Released by 340B Health

Al Dobson, Kennan Murray and Joan DaVanzo recently co-authored a report for 340B Health which evaluated the financial challenges faced by disproportionate share hospitals participating in the 340B drug discount program due to their characteristics as safety net hospitals and their unique patient populations. The study analyzed whether 340B DSH hospitals incur higher drug spending than non-340B hospitals because they treat high levels of low-income patients and operate as safety net facilities. The analysis found that 340B DSH hospitals incur higher drug spending than non-340B hospitals due to the low-income patients they treat and the nature of the safety net facilities they operate. Read the report here.