Weekly News Recap
- Kaufman Hall spins off its enterprise performance management software division as Syntellis Performance Solutions.
- Public health officials in Austin, TX blame COVID-19 case counts that vary wildly by day on labs that are sending test results by fax.
- The American Hospital Association loses its bid to stop the federal government from requiring hospitals and insurers to publish their negotiated prices, but will appeal.
- Massachusetts eHealth Collaborative shuts down after 15 years.
- CMS begins publishing a monthly Medicare COVID-19 Data Snapshot.
- CMS announces the creation of CMS’s Office of Burden Reduction and Health Informatics.
- Russian President Vladimir Putin calls for the healthcare system there to roll out out digital systems and to use artificial intelligence.
Best Reader Comments
While in theory I like the idea of requiring hospitals and insurers to publish their prices, I’m somewhat skeptical of the actual benefit this may provide to patients. To the majority of patients in this country who are insured by a commercial payor or CMS, unless the anticipated out of pocket costs are also provided, I suspect the published price itself will be ineffective in driving patients to lower cost alternatives … with health system monopolies and the ubiquity of employer-provided health insurance, patients simply don’t have much of a choice either where they get their care or who their insurance provider is, which will only cause prices to continue to rise. (Dr. Gonzo)
Administrator Verma’s heart seems to be in the right place and the tweets carry a lot of bite. But I am skeptical that asking current health systems players to take on the role of addressing social and economic factors of their patients is going to work. Those who know the system know very well that American health system has had its knee on the neck of racial minorities and economically disadvantaged for a long time. You don’t get to be a part of $4,000,000,000,000 annual industry without shattering a few million middle class dreams. (SeismicShift)
I would question how many companies are as worried now about how to “strategically reallocate those unused marketing dollars” but rather how to use those funds to meet a demanding payroll and to stay afloat until the markets are open and the economy levels out. (Just Wondering)
Healthcare is but one symptom of a system ripe for correction. What can we say about the richest nation in world history with currently 48 million of us lacking nutritious food on a regular basis, including 16.2 million children? USA needs to look long and hard at its fantasy that we all are existing on a level field. (Kevin Hepler)
Watercooler Talk Tidbits
Readers funded the Donors Choose teacher grant request of Mr. H in Georgia, who asked for a robotic center for his school’s media center. He reported in February, “Thank you for your generous donation. It has truly exposed boys and girls in a variety of grade levels to how coding can be a fun learning experience. We have built the robots, practiced building block languages, and have even implemented different movements with the Kamigami Robots. An activity the students always look forward to in the program is playing tag with the robots. Each student has to use the coding language to try and disable the other robot in a specific time session. I am working to continue to create authentic and innovative activities that will promote their knowledge of computer science. The smiles on the students’ faces would not have been possible without your support.”
Dermatologist and YouTube star “Dr. Pimple Popper” Sandra Lee, MD unsuccessfully tries to hide her social media tracks after insulting nurses everywhere.
In Russia, a nurse whose hospital employer reprimanded her for showing up for work in a see-through PPE gown with a sports bra and short underneath because she was getting overheated lands a modeling contract.
Columbia University ED doctors describe how to tame your email inbox using crisis resource management techniques:
- Have one person summarize multiple status reports into a single email that is sent at the same time each day and with the same subject, format, and section headings.
- Include the titles of everybody who is sent a group email or is added to thread.
- If a recipient is being included just as an FYI for one message in a thread, use BCC so they don’t get future group messages.
- Don’t just make broad requests for help – assign tasks to specific individuals with timelines and expectations on reporting back. Otherwise “email is commonly abused as a tool for putting work on somebody else’s desk without having to confirm that they can take it on.”
- Add action requests to the subject line in brackets “[respond EOD].”
- Ask why you are being added to an existing email chain and what expectations are involved.
- Use the SBAR concept (situation, background, assessment, recommendation) to make communications concise.
- Encourage people to speak frankly.
The former CEO of Union General Hospital (GA) and one of its doctors are sentenced to federal prison for their roles in scheme in which the doctor prescribed the CEO 15,000 doses of opioids in return for being paid for additional hospital work and being placed on its board.
A Colorado anesthesiologist gives up his medical license and serves 30 days in jail after turning off all the patient monitors in a hospital’s recovery room with a rant about how the noise creates alarm fatigue for nurses, then choking a nurse who told him to leave the machines alone.
In Case You Missed It
- News 6/26/20
- EPtalk by Dr. Jayne 6/25/20
- News 6/24/20
- HIStalk Interviews Suresh Venkatachari, CEO, Healthcare Triangle, Inc.
- Readers Write: Major Trade Shows Continue to Cancel or Go Virtual, So Now What?
- Curbside Consult with Dr. Jayne 6/22/20
- Monday Morning Update 6/22/20
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