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Monday, January 4, 2010

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Daily news & Analysis


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Marathon of Meaningful Use, EHR Standards Just Beginning

By: Dom Nicastro and Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, December 31, 2009

CMS and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Improvement Technology have released two anxiously awaited regulations providing both the definition of "meaningful use" for electronic health records and the standards to improve the efficiency of health information technology used nationwide by hospitals and physicians.

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Provider Organizations Unhappy with Proposed Health IT Rules

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, January 4, 2010

Hospital and provider groups are leveling criticism against the two long-awaited proposed regulations released last week by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Improvement Technology to fund expansion of health information technology. Hospitals have "serious concerns that the new health information technology rules severely limit hospitals' ability to access federal financing for health information technology that is used to improve patient care," American Hospital Association Executive Vice President Rick Pollack said.

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GAO: Some Hospitals Are Overpaid with DSH Payments

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, January 4, 2010

Despite changes in the laws, some hospitals may have been receiving supplemental payments from states for uncompensated costs of care for uninsured and Medicaid patients—better known as disproportionate share hospital payments—that was far higher than what they should be paid, according to a new General Accountability Office report.

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Stay Vigilant to Comply with HIPAA's Internal Sanction Regulation

By: Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media, December 31, 2009

In light of new federal laws and regulations in the past year and a compliance date looming in February, HIPAA officers should add one more "to-do" to their checklist: Comply with HIPAA's internal sanction regulation.

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OSHA Protections May Include Airborne Infectious Disease, Safe Patient Handling

By: David LaHoda, for HealthLeaders Media, January 4, 2010

OSHA recently solidified leadership for the agency and has provided a clearer picture of the regulatory horizon. David Michaels, PhD, MPH, assumed his position as head of OSHA when the Senate confirmed his nomination as assistant secretary of Labor for occupational safety and health. Nominated by President Barack Obama on June 28, the Senate acted on the nomination December 3. Agency watchers assumed that any work on new, and perhaps controversial, standards, would await the establishment of a permanent director.

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Medicare Fraud Enforcement More Than Window Dressing

By: Philip Betbeze, for HealthLeaders Media, December 31, 2009

Even if the media feeding frenzy moves on from healthcare, some legacies, like the recent increase in Medicare fraud enforcement, aren't so easily jettisoned.

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Physicians Must Adapt, Evolve in 2010

By: Elyas Bakhtiari, for HealthLeaders Media, December 31, 2009

In 2010, providers should start getting a clearer picture about the future of healthcare. Adapting and preparing for these changes will be the big challenge for the coming year.

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2009: The Year that Redefined How We Provide Quality Healthcare

By: Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media, December 31, 2009

This past year brought to the forefront new ways we can provide—and yes, even pay for—quality healthcare.

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