Blue Shield of Calif. to acquire Care1st; Colorado's Connect for Health wasting taxpayer money;

News From Around the Web

> Blue Shield of California and Care1st Health Plan announced an agreement Monday for Blue Shield to acquire Care1st. The joint venture intends to provide more Californians better access to affordable healthcare through Medicaid. Announcement

> Vermont Gov. Peter Shumlin's (D) plan to roll out his new Green Mountain Care plan at the end of this month worries advocates for single-payer healthcare, who are concerned about how Shumlin intends to pay for the program, reports the Burlington Free Press. Article

> Colorado's insurance exchange, Connect for Health Colorado, is wasting taxpayer money, according to an audit released Monday. The report identified more than $32 million in issues with procedure in their sampling of exchange payments and contracts. Audit (.pdf)

Health Finance News

> Hospital hiring, which stayed mostly stagnant for several years as part of the uncertainty surrounding the Affordable Care Act, has blossomed back to life over the past year, according to data from the Bureau of Labor Statistics and the Altarum Health Institute's Center for Sustainable Health Spending. Article

> The American Hospital Association has appealed directly to the chief administrative law judge of the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals to assist in reforming a system currently overloaded with appeals of recoupments made by recovery audit contractors. Article

And finally … Here in the District of Columbia, it's raining. So here's a cute pug taking a bath in a sink. Video