HealthLeaders Media HR - April 26, 2010 | Obama's Order on Visitation Rights Strikes a Blow for Decency, Healthcare Professionals Take it in Stride View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Obama's Order on Visitation Rights Strikes a Blow for Decency, Healthcare Professionals Take it in Stride
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media

President Obama's executive memorandum last week giving hospital patients the right to grant visitation to same-sex partners was as decent as it was overdue. But I was surprised when I tried to find someone in healthcare to speak out against the memo. Instead of controversy, I got acceptance. [Read More]
  April 26, 2010

Editor's Picks
2010's 1Q Hospital Mass Layoffs Keep Pace with 2009's Record Levels
More than anything, it's important to look at the big picture when it comes to hospital layoffs. Yes, the nation's mass layoffs of 50 people or more at hospitals in 2010 are maintaining the record pace set in the first quarter of 2009, a year that ended with 152 mass layoffs affecting more than 13,000 hospital jobs. But the big picture also tells us that hospitals created 33,400 jobs in 2009, at a time when there was virtually no job growth anywhere else in the economy. So, yes, we will see continue to see layoffs because the healthcare sector, while highly localized, is still subject to market forces, expansions, and contractions beyond its control. We will also continue to see job creation that will keep pace with the growing demand for healthcare services. [Read More]
Better Nurse-Patient Ratios Could Save Thousands of Lives Annually, Says Study
More kindling for the nurse staffing ratios debate: If California's mandatory nurse-patient ratios had been in effect in Pennsylvania and New Jersey hospitals in 2006, those states would have seen 10.6% and 13.9% fewer deaths among general surgical patients, according to a Pennsylvania researcher's analysis. That equated to 468 lives that might have been saved, says Linda Aiken, director of the Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research at the University of Pennsylvania School of Nursing and the study's lead author. Skeptics, of course, will note that the study was conducted by a nursing school, so the results could hardly be surprising. I doubt if this is the last word we'll hear in this debate. [Read More]
Insurers Agree to Cover Young Adults Under Parents' Plans
Here's a no-brainer. Kaiser Permanente, Blue Cross Blue Shield plans, and Humana will be added to the list of health insurance companies that will immediately continue coverage for adults less than the age of 26. Two other plans—UnitedHealthcare and WellPoint—said this month that they would also provide the coverage. Of course! Why wouldn't they do this? These are the so-called "young invincibles." They generally don't go in for knee or hip replacement surgeries, or renal dialysis. If you're a for-profit health insurance company, these are exactly the people you want to cover. [Read More]
Time to Tell Your Leadership Team's Story
The April 30 deadline is fast 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. [Read More]
Executives on the Move
PORTLAND, ME: Sanders named COO at Maine Medical Center
Jeff Sanders has been named executive vice president and COO for Maine Medical Center. Sanders, who most recently served at operating officer at Murray, UT-based Intermountain Healthcare, will begin his new duties on June 7. [Read More]

LUBBOCK, TX: Parks named CEO at Covenant Health System
Richard Parks has been named president/CEO of Covenant Health System. Parks comes to Lubbock from Jackson, TN, where he served as the president/CEO of West Tennessee Healthcare, one of the 10 largest not-for-profit public systems in the country with six hospitals and more than 5,500 employee associates. [Read More]

SALT LAKE CITY: Hatch named president of Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah
Regence, a non-profit health insurer, has named Robert Hatch as President of Regence BlueCross BlueShield of Utah. Hatch's appointment is effective June 1. He replaces long-serving President Scott Ideson, who retires in late summer. Ideson will work with Hatch during the transition. [Read More]

BIRMINGHAM, AL: Coltharp named CFO at HealthSouth
HealthSouth Corp. has appointed Douglas E. Coltharp as executive vice president/CFO, effective May 6. Since May 2007, Coltharp has been a partner at Arlington Capital Advisors and Arlington Investment Partners, LLC, a boutique investment banking firm and private equity firm. Before that, Coltharp served 11 years as CFO for Saks Incorporated. [Read More]

INDIANAPOLIS: Lee named COO at Riley Hospital for Children
Brett Daniel Lee joins Clarian Health as COO for Riley Hospital for Children today. Lee comes to Riley from Children's Medical Center Dallas, where he served as vice president of Operations and Clinical Services. Before that, he was vice president of Operations for Cook Children's Medical Center in Fort Worth, TX. [Read More]

SEBASTOPOL, CA: Palm Drive Hospital's new CEO withdraws
Palm Drive Hospital has announced that the person selected by its outside management company less than a month ago as the hospital's new CEO has been withdrawn. Brim Healthcare Unit, the Tennessee-based management company that took over operations at the hospital in August 2009, issued a letter to the hospital saying, "Please accept this letter as a formal withdrawal of Richard Robinson as our CEO candidate for the Palm Drive Hospital CEO position." No explanation was offered in the letter, addressed to the president and board of directors of Palm Drive. "We will continue to work diligently to identify a suitable CEO candidate for your facility in an expeditious manner," the letter said. [Read More]

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