August 30, 2018

Around the nation: Wisconsin panel restores health services coverage for transgender state employees

Daily Briefing

    The Wisconsin Group Insurance Board's decision overturns a previous vote that banned public workers' insurance from covering gender confirmation surgery and hormone treatment, in today's bite-sized hospital and health industry news from Idaho, Michigan, and Wisconsin.

    • Idaho: St. Luke's Health System this month opened a 35,000-square-foot "virtual hospital" in Boise. A team of physicians, nurses, allied health professionals, and IT staff will operate the system's telehealth programs from the new location using two-way cameras and remote monitoring equipment to treat patients. The program will focus on clinic consultation, hospital consultation, and home monitoring (Cohen, Becker's Hospital Review, 8/28).

    • Michigan: Henry Ford Health System is planning to add two new outpatient medical centers and two expanded medical centers to its 28-center network in the Detroit area. The "multi-year" project will address the health system's "geographic gaps and capacity issues" in multiple clinical areas, according to Bob Riney, president and COO of the health system (Greene, Modern Healthcare, 8/28).

    • Wisconsin: The Group Insurance Board, which oversees the public workers' insurance program in Wisconsin voted last week to extend insurance coverage to transgender state employees in need of gender confirmation surgery and hormone therapy. The board's 5-4 vote will overturn a current state policy that bans the treatments. The new rule will take effect Jan. 1, 2019 (Huetteman, Kaiser Health News, 8/29).

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