HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - February 19, 2010 | In Defense of a Healthcare Slasher View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
In Defense of a Healthcare Slasher
Philip Betbeze, Senior Editor-Leadership

Listen to Michael Young talk for a little while, in his rapid staccato bursts, and you would be forgiven for thinking he leaves a little something to be desired in the "heart" department—and I'm not talking about bypasses or stents. At least, that's what his critics would have you believe. But the CEO of Atlanta's Grady Health System is a man on a mission, and that mission is keeping the city's safety net institution from falling irrevocably into ruin.
[Read More]
  February 19, 2010

 
Editor's Picks
CMS Announces Re-alignment to Focus on Three Key Areas
My colleague Les Masterson reports that CMS will realign to focus on beneficiary services, program integrity, and strategic planning. It's a confusing array of changes to Medicare's administrative structure, but what I found most interesting about this piece of news is that it looks like CMS acting Administrator and Chief Operating Officer Charlene M. Frizzera will continue in that role for some time to come. I'm reading that to mean that presumably, the Obama administration is in no hurry to name a permanent administrator to CMS. Am I alone in thinking that's strange? The administration is well into its second year, and no permanent administrator has been named to head an organization that controls a huge portion of the federal budget, not to mention that healthcare reform had been the administration's top goal until recently. [Read More]
Reform Would Increase Healthcare Spending, But Millions More Would Have Insurance, Says RAND
For anyone who was under the illusion that the healthcare reform bills that passed late last year would reduce costs, you can forget it. That's according to a RAND Institute study that will be the basis for President Obama's Feb. 25 healthcare summit in Washington. RAND estimates the house bill would increase healthcare spending by 3.3% while the bill passed by the Senate would increase spending by 2% by 2019, reports my colleague Janice Simmons. But to be fair, that increase is far less than what we're used to in healthcare, where annual cost increases have far outpaced inflation for decades. Whether the estimates are accurate or whether the summit will result in any level of cooperation that will get a reform bill passed into law is a much dicier question. [Read More]
Are Hospitalist Physician Assistants the Answer to Shortages?
My colleague Karen Cheung takes a look at the increasing interest in physician assistants to help mitigate the physician shortage in hospitals. Turns out, PAs have been used in hospitals for years, but they're getting a renewed push from some forward-thinking organizations as the hospitalist PA movement is supported by a growing body of evidence that PAs provide equal, if not better, care than traditional house staff services. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines
Physicians Play Key Role in New Joint Venture Hospital
Ben Cole, for HealthLeaders Media - February 18, 2010
Moody's: Nonprofit Healthcare Downgrades Continue to Outpace Upgrades
Les Masterson, for HealthLeaders Media - February 17, 2010
Nurse-on-Nurse Hostility Remains an Issue
Sarah Kearns, for HealthLeaders Media - February 17, 2010
Medical Practice Leaders Frustrated About Medicare's PQRI Data Requirements
Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media - February 18, 2010
BayCare Opens New Hospital in Tampa Area
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - February 17, 2010
St. David's HealthCare to Acquire Heart Hospital of Austin
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - February 17, 2010
No Longer Waiting for Feds, States Jumpstart Health Reform
Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media - February 17, 2010
Does Guaranteed Payment Guarantee Benefit?
Karen Minich-Pourshadi, for HealthLeaders Magazine - February 2010
Georgia governor's hospital tax strongly opposed
Atlanta Journal-Constitution - February 17, 2010
UT Southwestern in Dallas starts planning a new hospital
Dallas Morning News - February 17, 2010
A doctor's problem with electronic records
Wall Street Journal Health Blog - February 17, 2010

Webcasts/Audio Conferences
ED Overhaul: Reduce costs, improve quality, and increase satisfaction (February 23)
Physician Compensation Models in a Strained Economy (March 8)
Beyond ROI: Prove the Success of Your Marketing Efforts (March 31)

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From HealthLeaders Magazine
Beyond Meaningful Use

HealthLeaders February 2010
Technology can help the healthcare industry achieve better outcomes and cost savings, but only if providers incorporate decision-support tools and a coordinated approach to delivering care. [Read More]
Service Line Management
Imaging After the Recession

After freezing capital spending during the recession, hospitals are investing in imaging again. But reimbursement cuts and reform have changed the focus of the service line. [Read More]
View from the Top

The New Sheriff in Town: The Unique Role of an Interim Manager: Part 1: Charles Van Sluyter has served as an interim healthcare executive for 15 hospitals in nine states. Interim management positions offer a "test drive" period for both the person hired and the client hospital for potentially converting to a permanent role, he says. In part one of his column, Van Sluyter addresses the interim manager's lifestyle, how to find interim work, and how to best assess a potential client hospital before signing on. [Read More]
The New Sheriff in Town: The Unique Role of an Interim Manager: Part 2: In part two of his column, Van Sluyter provides advice from his experience regarding interim work and helps you avoid common mistakes that might potentially sink the engagement. [Read More]
Audio Feature

CEOs Get the Cost Message Loud and Clear: Chris Jedrey, a partner with the law firm of McDermott Will & Emery, discusses the setback on healthcare reform legislation and whether that will also set back health organizations' focus on cost and quality issues. Jedrey expects consolidation will come from cost and quality pressures regardless of whether reform is addressed legislatively. [Listen Now]
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