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Thursday, January 28, 2010

Daily news & Analysis

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13 Health Leaders Respond to Obama's State of the Union Address

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, January 28, 2010

Even though he talked more about jobs and the economy, President Barack Obama said he remains devoted to healthcare reform during his State of the Union address Wednesday. HealthLeaders Media asked health officials with a variety of perspectives on health reform to provide their comments on what Obama did say, didn't say, or should have said about health reform.

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California Hospitals Fined for Alleged Immediate Jeopardy Mistakes

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, January 28, 2010

California health officials fined 13 hospitals a total of $650,000 Wednesday for 16 "immediate jeopardy" medical mistakes that caused or could have caused patient harm, including at least three that may have led to patient deaths. "In issuing these administrative penalties, our goal . . . is to improve the quality of healthcare at all California hospitals," said Kathleen Billingsley, deputy director of the California Department of Public Health. "We want California hospitals to be successful in their efforts to reduce hospital acquired infections, decrease medical errors and eliminate surgical errors."

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Apple's New iPad: Does the Hype Extend to Healthcare?

By: Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, January 28, 2010

The high-tech frenzy over the Apple's new tablet computer, the iPad, includes the specter of improved healthcare efficiency, with the prospect of doctors dashing off memos with their fingertips, while saying goodbye to patient charts filled with illegible handwriting. "Anything that could take doctor's time away from administrative duties, I imagine there would be a benefit," says Matt Fenwick, spokesman for the American Hospital Association, when asked about Apple's new tablet that was announced Wednesday.

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New Meaningful Use Interim Standards Require Encryption Capabilities

By: Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

HIPAA privacy and security officers need not revamp their entire policy and training program because of the "meaningful use" of electronic health records guidelines published this month in the Federal Register. The EHR standards simply enable you to carry out certain aspects of HIPAA and HITECH better, such as encryption.

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AHA Outlines How Hospitals Can Survive Future Workforce Changes

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, January 28, 2010

Hospitals must prepare for the retirement of the aging Baby Boomer workforce, improve efficiency and staff satisfaction to retain existing workers, and make the healthcare industry an attractive job choice for a new generation of workers as the labor market tightens in the coming decade, recommends a new long-range report released this week by the American Hospital Association.

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Employers, Employees Concerned Health Reform Would Lead to Higher Overall Costs

By: Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, January 28, 2010

A significant majority of employers believe that the current healthcare reform proposals in Congress would lead to higher costs for both employer-sponsored benefit programs and healthcare services overall, according to the survey conducted by Towers Watson and the National Business Group. The survey focused on 507 employers nationwide that employ a total of 11.5 million workers.

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Nurses Debate Whether Hospital Shouldn't Hire Smokers

By: Sarah Kearns, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

Smokers may not want to apply to work for Memorial Hospital in Chattanooga, TN. As part of a new hiring policy listed on the hospital's Web site, beginning February 1, the hospital will no longer hire employees who smoke or test positive for nicotine.

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Carilion Labs, Spectrum Laboratory Network Announce Merger

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

Carilion Labs, a for-profit affiliate of Roanoke, VA-based Carilion Clinics, will merge with Spectrum Laboratory Network to form one of the nation's largest regional hospital lab companies. The merger, which is expected to close by the end of February, will create a new company serving 37 hospitals and 14,000 physicians in eight states, with more than 2,600 employees and annual revenues above $300 million, according to the two companies.

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Joint Commission Issues Alert About Preventing Maternal Death

By: Heather Comak, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

The Joint Commission issued its latest sentinel event alert Tuesday about preventing maternal death. The alert highlights maternal death in the U.S. as a serious, although rare problem to which hospitals and caregivers should be paying more attention.

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Critical Access Hospitals Could Benefit from Drug Discounts

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

A Senate Finance health reform proposal would, for the first time, allow critical access facilities to participate in the federal 340B program.

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Lack of Health Insurance Could Have Young Adults Singing the Blues

By: Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

In 90 some odd days, my son Ben is graduating from college. As a family, we haven't come to terms with Ben's health insurance, never mind the full-time space requirements of him back at home.

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The State of Healthcare Marketing ROI

By: Gienna Shaw, for HealthLeaders Media, January 27, 2010

When healthcare marketers talk about measuring the success of their campaigns, they tend to lump all measurement under the heading ROI—even when it isn't.

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