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Friday, September 25, 2009

Daily news & Analysis

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Hospitals Fined for Forgotten Surgical Devices, Wrong Surgeries, Burnt Patients

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, September 25, 2009

California health officials yesterday issued another 11 monetary fines to hospitals where staff made harmful and avoidable mistakes. The latest report of hospital mistakes includes $25,000 fines per facility for placing patients in immediate jeopardy or actually causing them serious injury or death. In at least three of the 11 hospitals, the incidents led to the patient's death.

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Senate Finance Rejects Filling Medicare Doughnut Hole

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, September 25, 2009

Discussions involving seniors and Medicare—including closing the gap in Medicare coverage known as the "doughnut hole"—predominated Thursday on the third round of hearings on the Senate Finance Committee bill on healthcare reform. Near the end of the morning session, three Democrats ended up joining 10 Republicans on the panel to defeat 10-13 a proposed amendment that essentially would have turned over the deal reached with pharmaceutical manufacturers earlier this year with the White House.

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Can Hospitals and Physician Practices Achieve a Win-Win on N95 Respirators?

By: David LaHoda, September 24, 2009

Since the spring H1N1 outbreak, the healthcare safety community has vigorously debated whether to protect healthcare workers with fit-tested N95 respirators or the more easily used surgical/procedure masks. A recent American Hospital Association letter urged the CDC to quickly reverse the current recommendations favoring N95s.

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Health Plan Members Pleased with Their HSAs

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, September 25, 2009

Most employers and account holders using health savings accounts and HSA-qualified health plans are satisfied with their coverage, spend less, and are more engaged in managing health benefits, two HSA industry-sponsored surveys indicate.

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Uninsured More Likely to Die

By: Karen M. Cheung, September 24, 2009

Individuals without private medical insurance are more likely to die, according to a new study. In fact, they have a 40% higher risk of mortality when compared to people who have insurance.

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The Physician of the Future

By: Elyas Bakhtiari, for HealthLeaders Media, September 24, 2009

Adapting to the transformation of the traditionally compliant patient into the well-informed medical shopper will be one of the most significant challenges physicians face in the coming years.

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Making the Jump to Value

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

A week ago, 28 senators sent a letter asking the president to emphasize that there is a need to "realign spending in the Medicare program to focus on providing more value to beneficiaries."

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