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Friday, July 24, 2009

Daily news & Analysis

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Five Reasons Why Healthcare Reform Is Being Delayed

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, July 24, 2009

Senate Democrats announced Thursday that they will not meet their self-imposed August 7 deadline to vote on a marked-up healthcare reform package on the Senate floor. No announcement has been made yet on whether the House will vote by July 31—its selected deadline. However, the lack of hearings since Monday by the House Energy and Commerce Committee on the Tri-Committee's reform bill (H.R. 3200) may imply that momentum has slowed down on the House side as well to get a bill voted on by Congress' summer recess.

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Feds Find Many Docs Are Using Ultrasounds Too Often, Possibly Fraudulently

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, July 24, 2009

More evidence that doctors in certain geographic areas order a lot more unnecessary tests comes from a new federal report suggesting questionable ultrasound scans for Medicare patients in 20 counties where they are performed more often per beneficiary. The recent U.S. Office of Inspector General report, which looked at 2007 numbers, could mean another specialty field may be targeted for more scrutiny and spending cuts in an effort to rout out inefficient health spending and waste.

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Health Information Exchanges See 40% Growth from Previous Year

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, July 23, 2009

The number of community-based health information exchanges that transfer data electronically among physicians, hospitals, health plans, and patients increased by nearly 40% from the previous past year, according to a new survey.

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Live from the AHA Leadership Summit

By: Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media, July 24, 2009

Robert Reich may be short in stature, but he's not above poking fun at himself, or the healthcare industry. "The economy wore me down," said the diminutive former Clinton administration labor secretary, who now is professor of public policy at the University of California, Berkeley. "Eighteen months ago I was six-foot-two." In one of the two keynote speeches at the American Hospital Association's annual Leadership Summit in San Francisco, Reich told the crowd of about 1,000 senior healthcare leaders that the economy's recovery will come soon, but it'll be shallow, and he's not ruling out a further dip later on.

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Live From the AHA Summit: Tom Peters' 14 Steps to Prevent the Awful Hospital Experience

By: Jim Molpus, for HealthLeaders Media, July 24, 2009

Management guru-visionary-grump Tom Peters told the assembled leaders of the American Hospital Association's annual Leadership Forum Thursday that they have no more excuses for poor performance. He had personal evidence. He spent 5.5 hours recently waiting in an emergency room while his wife suffered from a broken ankle.

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Six Must-know Tips to Implement an Effective EHR

By: Lisa Eramo, for HealthLeaders Media, July 23, 2009

Several industry experts weighed in on this question: What is the single most important tip you could provide to someone regarding an effective EHR implementation?

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How to Keep Teaching Faculty Happy

By: Julie McCoy, July 23, 2009

As reimbursements decrease and department budgets are slashed, hospital leaders may want to work a little harder to ensure teaching faculty members are still feeling fulfilled.

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AMA Delegate Accused of Forwarding Doctored Photo of Obama

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, July 24, 2009

An outspoken American Medical Association delegate from Florida has landed in a boiling cauldron of controversy after being accused of forwarding to opponents of government-mandated healthcare reforms a picture of President Obama depicted as a witch doctor with a caption reading "funny stuff."

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Are Doctors Better Off Without the SGR?

By: Elyas Bakhtiari, for HealthLeaders Media, July 23, 2009

The AMA's endorsement last week of the House healthcare reform bill caught some by surprise.

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Value Indexing: Mayo Wants to Reform Healthcare Quality

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, July 23, 2009

When it comes to quality healthcare, is it possible to put an actual value on it when paying for it?

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