HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - May 1, 2009 | When Cost and Culture Collide View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
When Cost and Culture Collide
Philip Betbeze, Senior Editor-Leadership

CEO Michael Young recently cut about 140 employees from Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta—a public safety net hospital that has lost gobs of money over the past several years. We see hospital layoff news just about every day. Most are attributed to the economy, and Grady's leadership certainly could have hid behind economic problems as justification for the cuts. But they didn't. The cuts were more about culture than anything else.
[Read More]
  May 1, 2009

 
Editor's Picks
An affordable fix for modernizing medical records
In the push to digitize America's hospitals, Midland Memorial Hospital in Texas faced a need for information technology to replace archaic paper records, but a shortage of funds to pay for it. But Midland Chief Executive Russell Meyers found an unexpected freebie of sorts: the software used to power the electronic medical record system of the Veterans Health Administration. As a side note, it's fun to have written a story two years ago that the Wall Street Journal apparently just found out about. Yes, I'm tooting my own horn, but this doesn't happen often. Besides, methinks CEO Russell Myers is doing a little horn-tooting of his own, as the source for my story was his CIO, who claimed credit for researching and bringing the free EMR to the hospital's attention. Whoever gets the credit ultimately, good for Midland Memorial. [Read More]
What happens when healthcare reform "sunsets?"
Here's an interesting take on President Obama's healthcare reform plan that I haven't seen anywhere else. Basically, when legislation is approved via the budget reconciliation process, which is how most people think the president will get his budget passed, it has to "sunset" within 10 years of passage. That's why the Bush tax cuts will "sunset" in 2011 absent any other legislation to extend them. And that's why, if Congress passes healthcare reform via this process, legislation affecting one-seventh of the U.S. economy will also "sunset," presumably in 2021. Something to think about. [Read More]
Lawsuit alleges RACs break CMS regulations
My colleague Andrea Kraynak has found an interesting challenge to the legality of the Recovery Audit Contractor program that was rolled out nationwide this month by CMS. Palomar Medical Center in Escondido, CA, says in a lawsuit against HHS that RACs violate CMS' own rules. The challenge stems from a longstanding concern—many healthcare organizations believe the RACs bent CMS' own rules during the demonstration project, which included the states of California, Florida, and New York. [Read More]

This Week's Headlines
Reform Means Leaner Hospitals
Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media - April 28, 2009
Two senators offer bipartisan healthcare proposal
Los Angeles Times - April 29, 2009
Senate Finance Committee Considers Reform Options in Closed Sessions
Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media- April 30, 2009
Hospitals see fewer uninsured patients
The Tennessean - April 29, 2009
Congress approves Obama's $3.4 trillion spending blueprint
Washington Post - April 30, 2009
Florida House passes bill targeting healthcare fraud
Miami Herald - April 29, 2009
Minnesota hospital cited for neglecting two patients
Minneapolis Star Tribune - April 29, 2009

Webcasts/Audio conferences
Top 5 Healthcare Jobs
Chief Executive Officer: Brim Healthcare, Banning, CA. Qualified candidates must have at least five years of hospital CEO experience, and possess a Bachelor's degree in business or healthcare administration . . . [Read More]
Chief Clinical Officer: Triumph Healthcare, El Paso, TX. Responsible for the development and implementation of clinical services policies and procedures . . . [Read More]
Chief Medical Officer: United HealthGroup, Jackson, MS. Provides medical oversight, expertise, leadership and direction for the administration of the MississippiCAN health services and medical management program . . . [Read More]
Director, Performance Improvement & Risk Management: Fremont Hospital, Fremont, CA. Responsible for providing leadership, directing and monitoring the facility-wide risk management, quality improvement assessment and performance improvement programs . . . [Read More]
Chief Development Officer: St. John Health, Warren, MI. Serves as senior fundraising executive for assigned hospital(s), specifically Providence and Providence Park . . . [Read More]

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From HealthLeaders Magazine
Jump . . . or Get Pushed

HealthLeaders November 2008
The tough decisions you don't want to make now—but may have to. [Read More]
Service Line Management
Redefining Cardio

The cardiovascular service line remains a dependable revenue generator for many hospitals. But a shifting market full of new options for patients means organizations must find ways to differentiate themselves. [Read More]
View from the Top

New Leadership Needed to Tackle Healthcare's Adaptive Challenges: Healthcare executives are under enormous stress. Trying to improve quality and safety, increase access, and reduce costs is exhausting. There is great pressure to satisfy many conflicting and competing interests. We all agree that deep systemic change is needed, and the gap between the current reality and where we want to be continues to widen. Yet many of the key parties behave as though they want their part in the current system to continue. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Partners in the Cardio Service Line: Peggy Naas, M.D., helps hospitals develop strategies to work with their physicians for VHA Inc. A growing trend for hospital leaders involves taking on physicians as employees, but describing the strategic importance of the trend as physician employment only misses a big part of the equation. Peggy and I talk about various ways to structure service lines in ways that partner with physicians rather than directing them as in a traditional employer/employee relationship. She will join me, along with the founders of the Minneapolis Heart Institute on May 12 for a Service Line Strategies Workshop webinar on cardiovascular physician alignment. [Listen Now]
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