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Predictive Analytics Aid Fraud Recovery; Some Call for More Efforts

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 14:15

Some experts say CMS should use new methods to improve its predictive analytics fraud-detection system, similar to those used in the credit card industry. However, others caution that health care data are more complex and need to have a higher level of accuracy. Modern Healthcare.

Categories: Making Sense of Meaningful Use

Vendors Report Lower Earnings, Plan Changes as EHR Spending Falls

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 14:06

Health IT vendors are reporting lower earnings as health care providers begin to spend less on electronic health records and focus more on other health IT tools. To offset falling revenues, some health IT vendors plan to focus more on consulting services related to the areas on which providers plan to spend more money. Health Data Management.

Categories: Making Sense of Meaningful Use

Mississippi Serving as Telehealth Model for Other States, U.S.

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 13:46

Mississippi has passed several bills to boost telehealth adoption, and the state’s only academic hospital is now remotely connected to 165 sites and provides about 8,000 telehealth visits each month. The state’s experience has helped facilitate telehealth adoption in neighboring Arkansas and is influencing the federal debate over telehealth. Politico.

Categories: Making Sense of Meaningful Use

Judge Rules Oracle Must Continue Hosting Oregon’s Medicaid System

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 13:17

An Oregon judge is requiring health IT vendor Oracle to continue hosting the state’s Medicaid enrollment system until at least February 2016 while a new system is implemented, even though the company’s contract to host the Medicaid system expires this weekend. AP/San Francisco Chronicle.

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CMS: Latest End-to-End ICD-10 Testing Results Show Progress

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 12:48

Yesterday, CMS released the results of its most recent ICD-10 end-to-end testing, showing that the agency accepted 81% of claims, up from 76% during the last testing period in November 2014. CMS says the results show it is ready for ICD-10, while other stakeholders are wary of the how prepared stakeholders are for the transition. Health Data Management et al.

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3 Reasons to Tailor Emergency Departments for Seniors

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 12:33

Hospitals and health systems are already containing costs and improving outcomes for other patient populations with specific needs. Stratifying emergent care for seniors is another opportunity to do the same.

Categories: Healthcare News

New Care Continuum Partnerships

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 10:56

Leaders at hospitals and skilled nursing facilities recognize a need to develop effective partnerships.

Categories: Healthcare News

Intractable <em>C. Difficile</em> Infection Linked to Multiple Care Settings

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 08:07

Researchers find evidence of the deadly infection in care settings outside the hospital and in numbers greater than previously estimated.

Categories: Healthcare News

Slideshow: Physician Compensation in the Value-Based Era

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 08:04

Four senior healthcare leaders discuss how physician compensation will change as the healthcare environment shifts from fee-for-service to value-based care.

Categories: Healthcare News

MA Gov. Baker calls for resignation of Jonathan Gruber from Health Connector Board

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:49

WBZ-TV's Jon Keller reported Wednesday that Gov. Charlie Baker demanded and received resignations from four members of the Massachusetts Health Connector board. According to reports, the resignees were John Bertko, Rick Jakious, George Gonser, and Jonathan Gruber, all of whom served under former Gov. Deval Patrick. Gruber, a professor of economics at Massachusetts Institute of Technology, is perhaps most notable in this group for advising the Obama administration in the creation of the Affordable Care Act. Prior to that, he advised then-Gov. Mitt Romney in developing health care reform in Massachusetts. The New York Times even nicknamed him 'Mr. Mandate.'

Categories: Healthcare News

Patient, 18, sues medical-scope maker tied to UCLA superbug outbreak

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:46

In the first lawsuit stemming from the superbug outbreak at UCLA, an 18-year-old patient accused a major healthcare device maker of negligence for selling a medical scope prone to spreading deadly bacteria. Aaron Young, a high-school student still hospitalized at UCLA for his infection, sued Olympus Corp. of the Americas in Los Angeles County Superior Court, alleging negligence and fraud. Young and his San Fernando Valley family declined to comment on the suit filed late Monday, said attorney Pete Kaufman. The teenager was exposed to a contaminated duodenoscope at UCLA in October and again in January, according to his lawsuit.

Categories: Healthcare News

At VA hospitals, training and technology reduce nurses' injuries

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:44

Bernard Valencia's room in the Jerry L. Pettis Memorial Medical Center in Loma Linda, Calif., illustrates how hospitals across the country could fight a nationwide epidemic. As soon as you enter the room, you can see one of the main strategies: A hook hangs from a metal track that runs across the ceiling. This isn't some bizarre way of fighting hospital-acquired infections or preventing the staff from getting needle sticks. The contraption is a ceiling hoist designed to lift and move patients with a motor instead of muscle. As NPR has reported in our investigative series Injured Nurses, nursing employees suffer more debilitating back and other injuries than almost any other occupation — and they get those injuries mainly from doing the everyday tasks of lifting and moving patients.

Categories: Healthcare News

Albany Med to open accelerator this spring

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:42

Albany Medical Center has four biomedical startup companies in the queue to join the center's incubator when it opens this spring. The 8,000 square-foot biomedical acceleration and commercialization center will open in May or June, says Kevin Leyden, senior vice president of business development and strategic partnerships. The center, at the second-largest hospital system in the Albany area, has space in the incubator for between eight and 10 companies. The incubator at Albany Med is among several accelerators in the region that are aiming to tie research to commercialization and create a regional support system for entrepreneurs.

Categories: Healthcare News

MS emerges as leader in telemedicine

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:41

Mississippi has a sickly reputation. The Magnolia State ranks at or near the bottom in most health rankings: worst infant mortality and most kids born with low birth weight; second-to-highest rate of obesity and cancer deaths; second from the last in diabetes outcomes. But the state is a leader in one aspect of health care: telemedicine. The state's only academic hospital has remote connections with 165 sites, providing specialized services to some of the state's most far-flung, medically deprived cities and towns. Mississippi's telemedicine program, ranked among the seven best in the country, has inspired neighboring Arkansas to take bigger steps in some areas of the field, and the impact of its success is making waves in Washington as well.

Categories: Healthcare News

PeaceHealth (OR) hospital doctors sound alarm

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:38

The number of hospitalists treating patients at PeaceHealth's Sacred Heart Medical Centers in Springfield and Eugene has fallen to dangerously low levels at a time of peak demand, local hospitalists say. There are far fewer hospitalists — doctors who care for patients in the hospital around the clock — at the Sacred Heart hospitals than there were last summer, Sacred Heart hospitalists say. The hospitalists' criticism comes on top of complaints from Sacred Heart nurses, who have said a shortage of nurses is putting patients at risk. "We're very concerned about patient safety. That's our No. 1 goal to ensure that," said Dr. Brittany Ellison, a hospitalist at Sacred Heart and communications director for the recently formed Pacific Northwest Hospital Medicine Association — the first hospitalist union in the United States.

Categories: Healthcare News

Investigation: Surgical mistakes kept secret by hospitals

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 07:35

Mistakes at hospitals happen more often than the public knows, and health care systems pay millions of dollars to keep it that way. They're called "secret settlements" or "confidentiality agreements," and they prohibit patients from telling anyone about hospital wrongdoing. In a Channel 9 investigation, anchor Sarah Rosario learned what's being done to limit secret agreements and also spoke with an Allegany County woman who said hospital negligence ruined her life." There was so much anger. So much hurt from being deceived," Debbie Pennington said. Pennington is finally speaking out and calling for changes 20 years after a surgical sponge was left in her body during a partial hysterectomy at Hugh Chatham Hospital in Elkin, North Carolina.

Categories: Healthcare News

Nurses win big in new contract with St. Vincent Hospital

Healthcare News - Thu, 02/26/2015 - 06:38

The nurses at St. Vincent Hospital are celebrating a recently ratified three-year contract that provides better health benefits, a raise, and commitments to grow staffing levels in different departments. The 700 union nurses at the Worcester hospital, which is a part of the nationwide hospital system Tenet Healthcare, have been negotiating a new contract since November 2013. After more than 20 negotiating sessions, the hospital and the union reached an agreement on Feb. 3, which was ratified by the nurses on Feb. 18. Considering the economic climate many hospitals find themselves in, with dwindling reimbursements and mounting technology needs, the contract is a surprising win for nurses of the public, for-profit institution.

Categories: Healthcare News

Opinion: EHR Vendors Will Lower Data Exchange Prices or Close

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Wed, 02/25/2015 - 14:00

Brookings Institution Center for Technology Innovation Fellow Niam Yaraghi in an opinion piece argues that the “best solution” for addressing the “outlandish” charges by electronic health record vendors to exchange health data is for the government “to do nothing.” He writes that vendors will eventually have to lower the prices they charge for providers to exchange data or go out of business. Brookings Institution’s “TechTank.”

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CMS Grants Eligible Professionals More Time for EHR Attestations

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Wed, 02/25/2015 - 13:54

Today, CMS said it has delayed the Medicare meaningful use 2014 attestation deadline for eligible professionals until March 20. The agency also has extended the submission deadline for certain Physician Quality Reporting System reporting methods. Health Data Management et al.

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Most U.S. Adults Want To Use Apps, Wearables for Health Management

Making Sense of Meaningful Use - Wed, 02/25/2015 - 13:43

A survey by Makovsky Health and Kelton finds that 79% of U.S. adults are interested in using wearable devices and about 66% are interested in using mobile applications to help manage their health. In addition, 88% say they would be willing to share their personal health data to improve treatment options and care. MobiHealthNews, Makovsky Health/Kelton release.

Categories: Making Sense of Meaningful Use