HealthLeaders Media Community and Rural Hospital Weekly - July 9, 2008 View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free

Bringing Your
Mission to Life
Carrie Vaughan, Editor, Community Hospitals
Having a communication strategy is not new to the healthcare industry. But how well do you really communicate your hospital's goals? Do your employees know the hospital's mission, or perhaps most importantly, do they know what their role is in achieving that mission? [Read More]
July 9, 2008
Editor's Picks

Rural health center among 4% of U.S. practices that have an EMR
Capstone Rural Health Center in Parrish, AL, is proof that you don't need to be a large, big-city medical practice to have an electronic medical record. But you may need some federal assistance to make it work. Capstone implemented its EMR in 2003, but struggled for years to train staff and transmit computer signals between exam rooms and offices. Then it became a federally qualified health center in 2007, which enabled it to hire an IT manager to oversee the computer system and move into a new building. Now, Capstone has a fully functioning EMR. [Read More]

Wadsworth-Rittman Hospital joins Ohio-based Summa Health System
Earlier this year, I spoke with Wadsworth-Rittman's President and CEO Jim Pope about their affiliation with Summa Health and their plans to merge with the six-hospital system. Unlike other community hospitals that fight to retain their autonomy, Pope viewed this merger as the best way for the 113-staffed-bed hospital to meet the needs of its community and compete in an area that's dominated by large health systems. Summa Health plans to invest about $8 million to upgrade Wadsworth-Rittman's intensive care unit, emergency department, and surgical suites. [Read More]

Panel recommends rebuilding San Francisco hospital
After four months of investigation, a special panel is recommending that St. Luke's Hospital in San Francisco be rebuilt as a 60- to 80-bed community, acute-care hospital next to its existing site. The new facility would cost California Pacific Medical Center, which runs St. Luke's, an estimated $120 million. [Read More]

HRSA Awards $7.2 Million to State Offices of Rural Health
The Health Resources and Services Administration announced the renewal of $7.2 million in annual operating grants to public and private agencies that monitor rural healthcare trends. This year, 36 state health departments, 11 academic institutions and a variety of nonprofit groups will receive about $147,000 each in federal grants. Among these programs is the Rural Recruiting and Retention Network, which has attracted 734 health professionals to serve in rural communities. [Read More]

Making the most of your community's healthcare dollars
This story focuses on Jefferson County, FL, which is focusing its limited tax dollars on prevention and transportation as the best ways to improve the health of its citizens. The county is looking to establish a more "walkable" community by developing more local parks and designing a more walker-friendly downtown. In addition, the county is trying to secure inexpensive methods of transportation to shuttle their residents to doctors' appointments. [Read More]
Leaders Forum

The Financial Case For a Transitional Care Unit
Few things in the delivery of healthcare services have been so obfuscated by uncertain health policy, regulation, and reimbursement as have Medicare-certified hospital-based skilled nursing facilities. Hospitals that sought to operate units have been frustrated in their mission and denied the opportunity to serve the common health. But consultant Matt McGillick says hospitals can use a transitional care unit to achieve the same purpose at greater profitability. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines

Massachusetts measure curtails hospital expansion
Boston Globe – July 9, 2008
Doctors press Senate to undo Medicare cuts
New York Times – July 7, 2008
Changes begin at Cape Cod Healthcare
Boston Globe – July 8, 2008
CMS proposes quality improvements and other changes for hospital services
Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services – July 7, 2008
Ohio-based Mercy Hospital gets $50K for ICU
Cincinnati Enquirer – July 3, 2008
Silver Cross gets Illinois panel's OK for new hospital
Chicago Tribune – July 2, 2008
Some psych patients wait days in hospital ERs
AP/Yahoo News – July 7, 2008
Healthcare providers hit by ailing economy
Atlanta Journal-Constitution – July 7, 2008
From HealthLeaders Magazine
Weaning Your Hospital Off of Medicare
  How can your hospital maintain its level of service and its margin? It's time to get creative. [Read More]