News Headlines

News Headlines
Health care news from around the state and nation

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Early, aggressive treatment needed to attack flu, CDC warns
Modern Healthcare

Providers should not hesitate to treat hospitalized patients suspected of having influenza with antiviral medications, given the severity of the current flu season, health officials said Friday.

“This flu season is shaping up to be a severe one, especially for older people and young children and those with underlying conditions,” said Dr. Tom Frieden, director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention during a call with reporters. “Antiviral flu medicines are underutilized, but if you get them early, they can keep you out of the hospital and might even save your life.”

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Healthcare Created 1 in 10 Jobs in 2014
HealthLeaders Media

Healthcare accounted for 311,000 or more than one in 10 new jobs created in 2014, which was the best year for job growth in the overall economy since 1999, Bureau of Labor Statistics data released Friday show.

The nation saw 2.95 million new jobs created in 2014. In the healthcare sector, there were 230,300 new jobs in ambulatory services, 47,300 jobs in hospitals, and 33,400 jobs in nursing and residential care.

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ACHE healthcare executive survey outlines ‘challenging times’
Modern Healthcare

Potential compromises to Medicare reimbursements, CMS audits and reduced operating costs rank among the top concerns for community hospitals in a new survey of more than 330 hospital CEOs. Leaders are in “challenging times,” as they try to do more with less, according to the report scheduled to be released Monday by the American College of Healthcare Executives.Trying to simultaneously reduce costs and improve quality is proving to be a complicated task, says Deborah Bowen, ACHE president and CEO.

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Medicare pays doctors to coordinate seniors’ chronic care
Redding Record Searchlight

Adjusting medications before someone gets sick enough to visit the doctor. Updating outside specialists so one doctor’s prescription doesn’t interfere with another’s.

Starting this month, Medicare will pay primary care doctors a monthly fee to better coordinate care for the most vulnerable seniors — those with multiple chronic illnesses — even if they don’t have a face-to-face exam.

The goal is to help patients stay healthier between doctor visits, and avoid pricey hospitals and nursing homes.

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Republicans seek to eliminate risk-corridor program
Modern Healthcare

Legislation to abolish the risk-corridor program, which provides financial protection to insurers participating in the Obamacare exchanges, has been introduced in the House and Senate.

The bills were introduced by Sen. Marco Rubio (R-Fla.), who is weighing a 2016 presidential bid, and Rep. Andy Harris (R-Md.), a physician.

“Taxpayers should not have to fund massive bailouts to protect the profits of the insurance companies that helped write Obamacare,” Rubio said in a statement.

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Happy days are here again for healthcare hiring, mostly
Modern Healthcare

Healthcare job growth rebounded in 2014, especially in the year’s final quarter. December marked another robust month of hiring, contributing to nearly average employment gains for the year after five years of below-average growth. “The fourth quarter has just been blockbuster,” said Ani Turner, deputy director of the Altarum Institute’s Center for Sustainable Health Spending. Healthcare added 36,000 jobs per month on average during the final quarter of 2014, she said. That’s compared with third-quarter average monthly hires of 27,000 employees.

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Job Offers Abundant for New Doctors
HealthLeaders Media

Physicians completing their final year of residency say they’re entering the job market with scores of job offers and most anticipate earning $176,000 or more in their first year of practice.

More than 60% of the 1,208 new doctors responding to an email survey from physician recruiters Merritt Hawkins say they’ve received 50 or more job offers during their residency, and 46% received more than 100 job offers.

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Hospitals, Urgent Care Centers Find Common Ground
HealthLeaders Media

Over the past decade, health systems and hospitals have been adapting to a challenging market reality: the rise of “retail medicine.”

Traditional healthcare provider organizations have faced vexing market dynamics on two fronts: retail clinics at sites such as pharmacies that offer a relatively limited suite of services, and urgent care centers capable of treating most non-life-threatening conditions.

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UCSF Receives $40M Gift For Medical Center At Mission Bay
UCSF Today

UC San Francisco has received a $40 million gift from angel investor and philanthropist Ron Conway, his wife Gayle, and sons Ronny, Topher and Danny, to help fund the outpatient medical building at the new UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay, which opens on Feb. 1 on UCSF’s world-renowned biomedical research campus. The outpatient medical building, a 207,500-square-foot facility that anchors the hospital complex, will house outpatient services for women, children and cancer patients.

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UCSF names new Mission Bay outpatient center after Ron Conway and family
San Francisco Business Times

UCSF Medical Center is naming the outpatient medical building at its new Mission Bay hospital in honor of angel investor and philanthropist Ron Conway and family, in recognition of their $40 million gift to help support ambulatory care at the facility. The 207,500-square-foot medical building is part of the new $1.52 billon UCSF Medical Center at Mission Bay, scheduled to open Feb. 1.

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