HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - April 23, 2010 | Payment Cut: If It's Truly That Bad, Hospitals Should Drop Government View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Payment Cut: If It's Truly That Bad, Hospitals Should Drop Government
Philip Betbeze, Senior Editor-Leadership

If their lobbying group is truly representative of its membership, hospitals are very unhappy with a hospital inpatient and long-term care prospective payment system proposed rule for fiscal 2011 that would cut average inpatient payments by 0.1%. Unhappy, but not desperate. A tenth of a percent cut doesn't sound like much, but the American Hospital Association says if the proposed rule is allowed to stand as is, billions of dollars would be taken out of the system just as hospitals are grappling with sweeping changes and payment reductions contained in the new health reform legislation.
[Read More]
  April 23, 2010

 
Editor's Picks
Southwest Healthcare: How Could So Much Be So Wrong?
This is a great cautionary tale written by my colleague Cheryl Clark about a hospital that faces a cutoff of all federal reimbursement as of June 1 following three state fines for causing "immediate jeopardy" to its patients. Essentially, it's being shut down by the state too, assuming it doesn't immediately get its act together. Its parent company is Universal Health Services Inc. of King of Prussia, PA, which did not return phone calls. Yikes. [Read More]
Hospital Mortality Is Not the Way to Judge Quality
My colleague Cheryl Clark writes about a new study by hospital safety guru Peter Pronovost, MD—who is also professor of anesthesiology and critical care medicine at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine—showing that mortality rates are a poor judge of hospital quality. Instead, he says, hospitals would do better to look at avoidable events such as bloodstream infections, which kill 31,000 people annually in the U.S., rather than at mortality rates. [Read More]
Feds Open Public Comment Period for Proposed Merger Guideline Changes
This story doesn't pertain specifically to healthcare, but given the rash of mergers and acquisitions that some are predicting among hospitals under health reform, it qualifies as required reading for CEOs and general counsel. Essentially, now is the time to reflect on how these proposed rules might affect your future acquisition plans, and perhaps to influence the final rules. [Read More]
Time to Tell Your Leadership Team's Story
The deadline is approaching to enter the seventh annual Top Leadership Teams in Healthcare Awards—a program that celebrates stories of great healthcare leadership in hospitals, health plans, and medical group practices. There are five categories: large hospitals and health systems (500 or more licensed beds); community and mid-sized hospitals (100 to 499 licensed beds); small hospitals (fewer than 100 licensed beds); health plans (state, regional, and national); and medical group practices (physician-owned, single- or multi-specialty groups employing 25 or more physicians). Winners will be announced nationally and profiled in an issue of HealthLeaders magazine. [Learn More]
This Week's Headlines
Legislation Expands Scope of EHR Meaningful Use Eligibility
Andrea Kraynak, for HealthLeaders Media - April 21, 2010
Sanford Health, Rady Children's Hospital-San Diego Plan Pediatric Clinic
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - April 21, 2010
Jackson Health System unions say no to more pay cuts
Miami Herald - April 22, 2010
Two Massachusetts health insurers ordered to use 2009 rates
Boston Globe - April 22, 2010
New rules on Medicaid discounts a bummer for states
Wall Street Journal Health Blog - April 22, 2010
Cuomo accuses Senate leader of diverting millions from clinics
New York Times - April 21, 2010

Webcasts/Audio Conferences
Integrated Compensation Plans to Enhance Physician Performance (May 13)
Five Proven Steps to Improve Patient Satisfaction Scores (May 19)
Seamless Systems of Care: Better Alignment, Coordination, and Outcomes (June 2)

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The lack of care coordination for those with autism is costly for patients and providers alike. [Read More]
View from the Top

How Hospitals and Federally Qualified Health Centers Should Collaborate: Drowning in losses from uncompensated emergency room care? Collaborative relationships between hospitals and federally qualified health centers can benefit both provider types by allocating scarce resources effectively and efficiently to lift the health status of a community and decrease hospital losses from avoidable ER visits. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Create Extra Capacity, Without Extra Expense: Many healthcare leaders think their hospital is seeing all the patients they can, but what if you could add extra capacity without the expense of staffing up or building new capacity? Wayne Keathley, president of New York's Mt. Sinai Medical Center, was able to add 10,000 patient discharges per year by working on accountability and efficiency in patient throughput. [Listen Now]
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