Rhode Island health insurers have filed their requests for increases in premium rates next year. Some small businesses and individuals could see some significant hikes.
Small businesses could see their plan rates drop as much as 20 percent or spike as much as 40 percent. But the average Blue Cross increase is expected to be about 15 percent. Tufts asked for about 13 percent.
The Rhode Island Blood Center shipped blood to Boston hospitals to help victims of the explosions at the marathon. Now, the Center is looking for Rhode Island donors, but not for emergencies.
The Center said in a statement that it doesn’t anticipate needing to send more units of blood to Boston hospitals. What went to Boston didn't come from emergency donations, but what was already on the shelves.
Rhode Island is beginning a public effort to develop a statewide plan to improve the way we pay for health care. Lt. Governor Elizabeth Roberts is leading the effort.
With a $1.6 million dollar grant from the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation, Roberts launched the six-month planning initiative. A series of public meetings will gather input from experts and community members. Roberts says she wants a plan to help health care providers and insurers move away from payments for a particular treatment or service toward paying for improved health.
Rhode Island’s only agency focused on helping victims of sexual assault is observing its 40th anniversary. Day One hopes the state’s congressional delegation can secure the federal funding they need to continue.
Rhode Island’s first medical marijuana dispensary is set to open two weeks from today. The state health department has approved the permit for the Thomas C. Slater Compassion Center.
The facility plans to grow its own marijuana but the first batch of medicine will be purchased from growers who participate in the state’s medical marijuana program. That’s because Slater wasn’t allowed to have any marijuana on hand while it awaited its final permits.
Two other dispensaries – in Warwick and Portsmouth – are awaiting state approval.
The Rhode Island Department of Health has issued the state's first certificate to operate to a medical marijuana retail store. The Thomas C. Slater compassion center must tell the department when it expects to begin selling marijuana to patients who qualify. But today's announcement means the center can officially open for business.
Thousands of patients with qualifying medical conditions have registered to be able to buy the drug. They don't need a prescription but do need a doctor to certify they're eligible.
A new program has launched to help place new and unemployed nurses in health care facilities statewide for up to nine-month-long paid residencies. It's expected to start with 20 nurses and expand to 40 by the second year, with the first placements beginning this fall.