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  July 17, 2013 Follow us on FacebookFollow us on TwitterJoin us on LinkedInRSS feed

Senators: Rural Hospitals Hobbled by Digital Divide

John Commins

Members of the U.S. Senate Finance Committee suggest that Farzad Mostashari, MD, the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, has little or no idea of the challenges rural healthcare providers face as they grapple with Meaningful Use requirements. >>>

 

Editor's Picks

U.S. News & World Report Names Top Hospitals

The most well-known of a series of hospital rankings is a powerful marketing tool, but one observer says he is troubled that none of the various "rating schemes" use state and federal inspection data in their evaluations. >>>

Observation Status Costly for Hospitals

Hospitals take a financial hit when patients are assigned observation status. Surprising study results show that "though the cost of hospital observation care costs less, reimbursement per encounter is proportionally a lot less." >>>

How Safety-Net Hospitals Are Improving the Patient Experience

Despite some unique challenges, safety-net hospitals are achieving strong patient satisfaction results by focusing on compassionate care and quality outcomes. >>>

Winners and Losers in Proposed Medicare Doc Pay

Some of the biggest cuts are aimed at independent testing laboratories, which see 26% of their fees slashed, followed by radiation therapy centers, which may lose 13% under CMS's "particularly complicated," proposed changes. >>>

Business Roundup: Tenet's Vanguard Buyout Raises Bar for Independent Hospitals

Tenet Healthcare's deal to acquire Vanguard Health strengthens Tenet's ability to make acquisitions of not-for-profit hospitals and "might prompt smaller, stand-alone hospitals to consider some sort of alignment," Moody's Investors Service says. >>>

9 Pioneer ACOs to Leave Program

Seven of the nine participants in CMS's pilot program for accountable care organizations are applying to transition to the Medicare Shared Savings Program, while two are abandoning the program completely. >>>

SGR Repeal Effort to Resume in House

A house subcommittee will have another chance next week to amend a draft proposal to kill the sustainable growth rate formula. Without a "doc fix" in place, physicians who treat Medicare patients will face a 24.4% cut in reimbursement rates in 2014. >>>

Health Economist Blasts Wellness Programs

Disease management expert and author Al Lewis lays out his case against health-contingent wellness programs: The concept of health risk assessments "is advice opposite of what doctors tell you to do. The arithmetic can't save money. Every vendor who reports savings lies." >>>



Toolkit

Strategic Toolkit for Patient-Focused Solutions — Save 66%

Three exclusive research reports explore peer-tested strategies and best practices for improving patient experience, safety, and clinical quality. Titles include: •"Patient Experience and HCAHPS: Little Consensus on a Top Priority," •"ED Solutions: Preparing for Increased Volume and Decreased Margins,"  •"Clinical Quality: Data Is Key to Survival." Purchase Today >>>



News Headlines

2 hospital networks agree to merge, raising specter of costlier care

The New York Times, July 17, 2013

MI insurer could cut ties to 2 hospital systems

News & Observer / Associated Press, July 17, 2013

Baptist Health to lay off 170 across company

News & Observer / Associated Press, July 17, 2013

Growth of freestanding EDs raises concerns about cost

USA Today / Kaiser Health News, July 16, 2013

Inside doctors' prescribing habits

Los Angeles Times, July 16, 2013

Regulators' crackdown on doctor's hospitals took years

The Dallas Morning News, July 15, 2013

2 FL hospitals seeking smoke-free workers

The Miami Herald / Associated Press, July 15, 2013

Workers fired in privacy breach at L.A. hospital popular with stars

Reuters, July 15, 2013

Healthcare technology blossoms in hospitals, clinics

NewsObserver.com / Kansas City Star, July 12, 2013

Health centers getting $150M to sign up uninsured

Miami Herald / Associated Press, July 11, 2013



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Multimedia/Events

Webcast: Reining in Disruptive Docs—Strategies to Manage Risk and Reduce Turnover

Date: August 27, 2013, 1:00–2:30 p.m. ET

According to a 2011 study, 77% of physicians are concerned about disruptive behavior at their facilities. Join physician management experts from DePaul University and Florida Hospital to learn peer-tested strategies for confronting and resolving disruptive physician behavior. Register Today >>>




From HealthLeaders Magazine

Making Patients Happy, Even the Poorest and Sickest

Despite some unique challenges, safety-net hospitals are achieving strong satisfaction results by focusing on the patient and quality outcomes. >>>

 

Reform and the Revenue Cycle

 

Identifying Solutions to Patient ID



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