News Headlines

News Headlines
Health care news from around the state and nation

News Headlines Article

Medicare Reform Strategy Floated by House Committees
Health Leaders Media

A discussion paper released last week by two influential House committees outlines a Medicare reform strategy focused on deductibles, coinsurance and a cap on out-of-pocket spending. The proposals reflect many of the topics discussed during House committee meetings held in recent months. Modernizing Medicare for the 21st Century is the first paper in a series of Medicare policy proposals expected to be released over the coming months by the House Energy & Commerce and House Ways & Means committees.

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Using Data Analytics for Better Financial Outcomes
Health Leaders Media

As healthcare becomes increasingly data-driven, provider organizations find themselves inundated with more information than ever before. Figuring out what to do with all the data may not be easy, but for healthcare finance executives it is a challenge worth tackling because the hospitals and health systems that successfully implement a data analytics program can significantly enhance their economic outcomes and fiscal stability.

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Avoidable infections potential source of savings for hospitals, JAMA study says
Modern Physician

Common avoidable infections cost the U.S. health system $9.8 billion annually, a potential source of significant savings for hospitals that increasingly absorb the cost, a newly released study said.

The research, published in the journal JAMA Internal Medicine, estimated the cost for a handful of the most pervasive infections that have been identified as largely avoidable though hand washing and other strategies to disinfect and check the spread of potentially lethal bugs.

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Healthcare-Associated Infection Costs Detailed
Health Leaders Media

Hospital leaders can claim some success in preventing healthcare-associated infections in the past few years, but more than 440,000 adult patients still get these serious adverse events annually, at a cost to the healthcare system of between $9.8 billion and $11.4 billion.

“It’s critical to get these numbers out there, because they’re always much higher than people appreciate,” says lead author Eyal Zimlichman, MD, of the Center for Patient Safety Research and Practice at Brigham & Women’s Hospital. “Actually, these numbers are staggering.”

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Report says elective surgery rate is double state average
Times-Standard

A multi-pronged community report to figure out what to do about North Coast surgery rates that are more than double the rest of the state’s on some elective procedures made its way to the Board of Supervisors on Aug. 27. The presentation by Dawn Elsbree, executive director of Headwaters Fund, and Jay Reed, general partner at Aalfs, Evans & Company, explained the yearlong Surgical Rate Project to the board and outlined four community group recommendations to address rates that Supervisor Estelle Fennell called “alarming.”

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How Health Plan Risk Adjustment Models May Change Under the ACA
The Health Care Blog

Risk adjustment is a key mechanism to ensuring appropriate payments for Medicare Advantage plans, Medicare Part D drug plans, and Medicaid health plans. Since health plans vary in their mix of healthy and sick enrollees, risk adjustment modifies premium payments to better reflect the projected costs of members served and compensate plans that enroll high-cost patients.

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Home care key to new program by Sutter Health
Merced Sun-Star

Sutter Health has brought a new approach to care for people in advanced stages of chronic illness to the Northern San Joaquin Valley.

The program emphasizes care at home and is designed to prevent avoidable repeated hospital stays that are costly for government health programs such as Medicare. Such programs could become the model for millions of baby boomers who will rely on Medicare during their final phase of life.

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Final UC Davis medical school dean candidate up for public forum
Sacramento Business Journal

Dr. Richard Carmona, a former U.S. Surgeon General under George W. Bush, is the fourth and final candidate to be featured in a series of public forums showcasing finalists for the job of new medical school dean and vice chancellor of health and human services at UC Davis. The event will be held Wednesday from 4 to 5:30 in Room 1222 in the Education Building at 4610 X St. on the UC Davis campus in Sacramento. Four candidates are vying to replace Dr. Claire Pomeroy, who left University of California Davis on June 2 for a job at the Albert and Mary Lasher Foundation.

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