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NJ hospitals pioneer cost-cutting model

Asbury Park Press / Associated Press, February 19, 2013

When a patient was moved from the intensive care unit to a regular hospital bed, it used to be routine for Dr. Anthony Granato to order 24 hours of heart monitoring, just in case. A few years ago, his thinking changed: If the patient was in good enough condition to be out of the ICU, he would not need the extra monitoring at a cost of more than $1,000 per day. The main reason for the shift for Granato, a pulmonary critical care doctor, is a program introduced in a dozen New Jersey hospitals in 2009, including Jersey Shore University Medical Center in Neptune, Monmouth Medical Center in Long Branch and CentraState medical Center in Freehold Township. It pays doctors when they save money for the hospitals as they treat patients covered by Medicare.