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Tuesday, March 30, 2010

Daily news & Analysis

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27 Senators Tell CMS to Relax, Postpone Meaningful Use Rules

By: Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, March 30, 2010

Very few hospitals are able to satisfy the 23 electronic health record objectives or requirements necessary for federal incentives payments, says a bipartisan coalition of 27 U.S. senators, which wants CMS to allow a slower, more gradual implementation process and relax or change many other EHR mandates.

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DEA Proposes Allowing Biometrics to Identify E-Prescribing User

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, March 30, 2010

The Drug Enforcement Agency is posting in the Federal Register on Wednesday an interim final rule that would permit hospitals, healthcare providers, and pharmacies to use electronic prescriptions in the dispensing of controlled drugs. Comments on the rule will be open for 60 days. The rule is similar to a regulation proposed by DEA in June 2008 for e-prescribing.

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Banking on Shut Eye: Hospital Opens Sleep Medicine Program

By: Ben Cole, for HealthLeaders Media, March 29, 2010

Milton (MA) Hospital, an affiliate of Beth Israel Deaconess Medical Center, has entered a partnership with Sleep HealthCenters to develop a sleep medicine program that officials say is a response to increased awareness about how sleep deficiencies impact health. Through the program, Milton has a sleep medicine clinic where patients with possible sleep disorders can meet with a specialist and get diagnosed for their affliction.

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Quilters Design Hospital Gowns with More Personality, Privacy

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, March 30, 2010

It's not clear who invented the backless hospital gown, but evidently patient dignity was not part of the equation. The news this month that U.S.-born fashion designer Ben de Lisi's patient-friendly hospital gown redesign was among the winners of a competition by Britain's National Health Service got no small amount of media attention, in part, because everyone who's ever worn a standard hospital gown has vivid memories of that unsettling draft astern.

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Nursing Workforce Getting More Diverse, Older

By: Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, March 29, 2010

An extensive federal survey of nursing trends from 2004 to 2008 shows a growing diversity of backgrounds in an increasing registered nurse workforce. The report also reveals a trend of more highly educated, male, and foreign-trained nurses.

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Report Promotes Integration of Medical Home, Value-Based Insurance

By: Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media, March 30, 2010

Two health plan initiatives—the patient-centered medical home and value-based insurance design—can lead to lower health costs and improved employee health, say experts who contend that "obvious synergies" between the two programs often go unnoticed because they are carried out separately. The proposal was made in a report presented to a conference in Washington, DC, by authors from the National Business Coalition on Health, the Patient-Centered Care Collaborative, and the University of Michigan Center for VBID.

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OIG Report Affects Nursing Facilities

By: MacKenzie Kimball, for HealthLeaders Media, March 29, 2010

The Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Inspector General recently released its Compendium of Unimplemented Office of Inspector General Recommendations. A handful of the unimplemented recommendations included in the report are related to nursing homes.

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With Healthcare Reform the Law of the Land, Now Comes the Learning Curve

By: John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media, March 29, 2010

After more than one year of fighting, the healthcare reform legislation that President Barack Obama signed last week is now the law of the land. Get ready for the mother of all learning curves.

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Healthcare Reform: You've Got Questions; We'll Get Answers

By: Karen Minich-Pourshadi, for HealthLeaders Media, March 29, 2010

As of March 23, President Obama signed the Healthcare Reform Bill into law and now financial leaders are left to deal with the ramifications of that legislation in the years to come.

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