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Navigating Your Medicare

Strategic Framework on Multiple Chronic Conditions

On December 14, 2010, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services released its new Strategic Framework on Multiple Chronic Conditions. The intent of the framework is to provide a road map to stimulate change from the current approach focused on individual chronic diseases to one that achieves better health and function for people who have multiple chronic conditions. More than a quarter of all Americans — and two out of three older adults — have multiple chronic conditions, accounting for 65% of health care spending in the U.S. Learn more about the frame work here »

AHRQ Releases New Spanish Language Guides for Patients

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality at the Department of Health and Human Services recently released a series of free evidence-based guides designed to help Spanish speakers understand and compare the risks, benefits and side effects of treatments for eight health conditions. Click here to view the guides.

Important New Data Added to HealthCare.gov to Help Americans Understand the State of Quality at America's Hospitals

Hospital Compare Tool Compares More Than 4,700 Hospitals Across the Nation

Important new information about the quality of care available in America’s outpatient and emergency departments, including how well hospitals care for patients with heart attacks and protect outpatients from surgical infections, was added to the new HHS website HealthCare.Gov.

The information can be found as part of the Compare Care Quality link on the front page of the new site, HealthCare.Gov. It can also be found on the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services’ (CMS) Hospital Compare website.

Also CMS Issued a Fact Sheet with additional details, to be found here.

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New Patient’s Bill of Rights

President Obama just announced The Affordable Care Act’s new Patient’s Bill of Rights — a set of regulations that establishes strong consumer protections. Learn more here and read a statement from National Partnership for Women & Families President Debra L. Ness.

Medicare and the New Health Law — What it Means for You

This brochure from the Federal Government’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) outlines key provisions of the new health care reform legislation for Medicare beneficiaries and their families. The first benefit that many people with Medicare will receive as a result of the new law is a one-time check for $250, if they enter the Part D donut hole and are not eligible for Medicare Extra Help. Beginning next year, the Affordable Care Act ensures that Medicare beneficiaries will get preventive care services like colorectal cancer screening and mammograms, in addition to a free annual wellness visit without any co-pays. The law also includes new tools to help fight fraud by helping Medicare crack down on criminals who are seeking to scam seniors and steal taxpayer dollars.

The brochures can also be found here (English) and here (Spanish).

Your Discharge Planning Checklist

Transitions from hospital to home or another health care setting are often stressful for patients and their family caregivers. This updated "Discharge Planning Checklist" from the Federal Government’s Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) provides a list of important things to help patients and their families plan for a safe and smooth transition when leaving a hospital, nursing home or other health care setting. This checklist is also available on the Medicare.gov website. Print versions should be available for order in June. CMS plans to translate the document into Spanish in the near future.