How the new infrastructure bill could impact Tri-State residents

Doctors and hospitals ask patients to pay up before treatments
Posted at 5:29 AM, Aug 26, 2021

The House of Representatives voted to advance a $3.5 trillion "human" infrastructure bill, but the budget still needs to be worked out. Here is one major way the bill could impact the Tri-State.

One of the provisions in the bill expands standard Medicare coverage to include vision, dental and hearing. Vision, dental and hearing plans have been part of Medicare Advantage plans for decades and account for about 31% of Medicare coverage in Ohio, Kentucky and Indiana.

"If you've got poor vision, or poor hearing, or poor oral care, things like that can lead to isolation, they can lead to poor health outcomes," Terri Hanlon-Bremer, the senior vice president of population health for TriHealth, said. "All of these benefits help someone stay, you know, healthy, mobile, viable and really out of the healthcare system, which is ultimately the goal."

Hanlon-Bremer said Tri-Health has focused on "better care, better cost, better health, better value" for thousands in the Tri-State.

"If there's anything that I hope that comes out of the debate, it is advancing value-based care," Hanlon-Bremer said. "We need every health system in this nation to really embrace population health and value-based care, so we can truly and collectively make an impact on overall health of our people that come and seek care from us."

September 15 is the deadline for Senate committees to draft specific language for the budget, but provisions could still change in the bill before a final vote.