MTPR

Montana Healthcare Foundation

Healthcare professionals say that modern information sharing could improve healthcare and save money.
(PD)

There's a new effort underway in the state to better connect hospitals, doctors' offices and other health care providers. Like, through the internet. That's not really happening much now, and it's frustrating to doctors like Michael Vlases with Bozeman Health:

The Montana Healthcare Foundation says it's making grants available to support better healthcare for people with who have a combination of medical problems, mental illness and/or addiction.
(PD)

Half a dozen health care systems in Montana are sharing more than $700,000 in grants to make mental or behavioral health care easier to get. The Montana Healthcare Foundation says it's making the grants to support better healthcare for people who have a combination of medical problems and mental illness and/or addiction. It plans to award more than $3 million to the initiative over the next two years.

With healthcare jobs in Montana expected to grow by 40 percent in the next decade, educators are working to train the next generation of health professionals.
Alyssa Grant (CC-BY-NC-ND-2)

Hospitals and clinics across Montana have long had a hard time recruiting doctors and nurses to serve the state’s needs. That can be true of other healthcare professions, too, like therapists, pharmacists and technicians. A new analysis this year says demand for healthcare workers in Montana is going to grow by 40 percent in the next 10 years .

Christopher Ebdon (CC-BY-NC-2)

In a big, rural state like Montana, medical care is often far away. And because most hospitals here are small, people who experience serious trauma or need specialty care often have to fly to get it. The cost of that service is really expensive, and sometimes it isn't covered by health insurance.

In 2013, Blue Cross/Blue Shield of Montana, then a not-for-profit corporation, was sold to Health Care Services Corp, a Chicago-based insurance company. Under state law, the sale assets were transferred to a charitable trust, the Montana Healthcare Foundation , to be managed for the public benefit. To date, the MHCF has roughly $80 million in assets.

Community Medical Center, Missoula, MT
Josh Burnham

A Missoula Community Medical Center board member says the only issue left to resolve in the sale of the hospital is whether $10 million from the sale can go to the University of Montana Foundation. But Attorney General Tim Fox appears to be taking a broader view. Fox approved the sale late Monday. He has jurisdiction because Community is a non-profit hospital, and is being sold to a for-profit partnership between Billings Clinic and RegionalCare Hospital Partners. State law says the purchase...

Attorney General Tim Fox’s office said Tuesday a group of candidates have been nominated for the board of a new healthcare foundation created following the sale of Blue Cross Blue Shield of Montana to an out-of-state company. BCBS-MT sold to Illinois-based Healthcare Service Corporation this summer . State law dictates money from the sale must go toward creation of a non-profit with the broad focus of improving healthcare quality in Montana. The resulting Montana Healthcare Foundation...

The Montana Attorney General’s Office deposited a new $40 million check this week—money from the sale of Blue Cross, Blue Shield of Montana to an out of state company. Another $100 million or more may eventually be on the way as Blue Cross sells off its assets. Under state law, that money needs to go toward creating a non-profit foundation with the broad goal of improving the quality of healthcare in the state. Attorney General Tim Fox appointed former UM Law School Dean Ed Eck as the initial...