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HealthBiz

There are many reasons health care costs so much in America. Steve Brill’s explanation: Hospitals and pharmaceutical companies charge way too much and, except for nurses and doctors, the people who run health care in America make too much money.

Metro Health Corp.’s decision to partner with Community Health Systems Inc. came down to wanting to maintain “some local control.”

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan and Priority Health each plan to trim health insurance premiums for small businesses beginning with the third or fourth quarter policy renewals.

Continued efforts to better manage medical costs and implement a new economic model are credited for lifting Priority Health’s bottom line for 2014.

North Ottawa Community Health System’s plan to implement a new model for emergency care along with development of a $9.7 million facility follows a broader movement in health care to prevent unnecessary and costly ER visits.

Seven years ago, Michigan had 14 entries on an annual list of the 100 best-performing hospitals in the U.S. In the prior year, 16 Michigan hospitals made the list.

Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan posted strong results for 2014, both in terms of financial performance and member growth.

Steering the focus to major investments that can affect the market, Alliance for Health has altered its criteria for reviewing health care projects that require state certificate-of-need approval.

Priority Health has another way for members to calculate what an upcoming medical test or procedure will cost, and then maybe shop around for a better bargain.

A $66.4 million expansion and renovation project provides Mary Free Rehabilitation Hospital the space to grow and to become a national destination for care.

Metro Health Corp.’s proposed deal with Community Health Systems Inc. would bring to Grand Rapids a major new player in health care that has the means to alter the competitive landscape.

Research indicating the start of a migration by West Michigan small businesses away from offering group health coverage stems in part from the option now available for individuals to buy coverage on their own through public health exchanges created under the Affordable Care Act.

West Michigan for years has been touted as a market that offers high-quality health care at a lower cost than many other regions of the state or the nation.

Bringing West Michigan Heart fully into Spectrum Health’s physician group comes with a new emphasis on improving the cost of cardiac care as health care undergoes a shift in its long-held economic model.

Both sides remain hopeful that they can reach an agreement within the next month that would keep Bronson Methodist Hospital in Kalamazoo and sister hospitals in Paw Paw and Battle Creek in Blue Cross Blue Shield of Michigan’s care network.

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