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EvergreenHealth, Valley General Hospital approve final phase of alliance agreement

EvergreenHealth, Valley General Hospital approve final phase of alliance agreement

EvergreenHealth and Valley General Hospital announced today that their respective Boards of Commissioners have voted to approve the third and final phase of an alliance agreement in which Valley General Hospital in Monroe, Washington will become part of the Kirkland-based health care system and managed by EvergreenHealth. [More]
Hospice care lowers hospitalization, ICU admissions and invasive procedures for Medicare patients

Hospice care lowers hospitalization, ICU admissions and invasive procedures for Medicare patients

Medicare patients with poor­ prognosis cancers who received hospice care had significantly lower rates of hospitalization, intensive care unit (ICU) admissions and invasive procedures at the end of life, along with significantly lower health care expenditures during the last year of life, according to a study in the November 12 issue of JAMA. [More]
DaVita HealthCare Partners, Centura Health to jointly help optimize health care in Colorado, Kansas

DaVita HealthCare Partners, Centura Health to jointly help optimize health care in Colorado, Kansas

Centura Health and DaVita HealthCare Partners Inc. today announced a new joint venture that will offer a differentiated health care delivery model to help optimize health care value and lower costs for consumers in Colorado and Kansas. The two partners will combine their expertise to provide enhanced resources that increase coordination of care, equip care providers with sophisticated analytical tools and focus on prevention. [More]
First Choice Emergency Room named 2014 Guardian of Excellence Award winner

First Choice Emergency Room named 2014 Guardian of Excellence Award winner

First Choice Emergency Room, an Adeptus Health company, is proud to announce it has been named a 2014 Guardian of Excellence Award winner by Press Ganey Associates, Inc. The Guardian of Excellence Award recognizes top-performing facilities that consistently achieved the 95th percentile of performance in Patient Experience nationwide. [More]
Vibratory insoles improve balance stability for elderly fallers

Vibratory insoles improve balance stability for elderly fallers

Findings published in the Archives of Physical Medicine and Rehabilitation show that imperceptible vibratory stimulation applied to the soles of the feet improved balance by reducing postural sway and gait variability in elderly study participants. [More]
Long-term care costs weigh heavily on middle-class families

Long-term care costs weigh heavily on middle-class families

CBS News reports that for many seniors and their families, home care needs create a serious financial bind. [More]
Study: Nursing home care quality not associated with risk of hospital readmission or death

Study: Nursing home care quality not associated with risk of hospital readmission or death

Nursing home care quality does not impact the likelihood of patients being readmitted to the hospital or dying within 30 days of discharge from hospital to nursing home, according to a new analysis of Medicare data and nursing home performance measures by Penn Medicine researchers. [More]
UCSF study: Smoking takes $18.1 billion toll in California

UCSF study: Smoking takes $18.1 billion toll in California

Smoking took an $18.1 billion toll in California – $487 for each resident – and was responsible for more than one in seven deaths in the state, more than from AIDS, influenza, diabetes or many other causes, according to the first comprehensive analysis in more than a decade on the financial and health impacts of tobacco. [More]
Elsevier announces availability of Mosby's Home Health Care

Elsevier announces availability of Mosby's Home Health Care

Elsevier, a world-leading provider of scientific, technical and medical information products and services, today announced the availability of Mosby's Home Health Care. This resource combines trusted home healthcare nursing content with convenient competency management functionality to provide a single comprehensive resource for home healthcare nurses, nurse educators and other home care professionals. [More]
Johns Hopkins Medicine starts Healthy Beverage Initiative to improve community health

Johns Hopkins Medicine starts Healthy Beverage Initiative to improve community health

Johns Hopkins Medicine announces the start of its Healthy Beverage Initiative, a program designed to ensure that beverages containing relatively low levels of sugar are more readily available in the hospital cafeterias, vending machines and retail outlets on many Johns Hopkins Medicine campuses. [More]
Viewpoints: Walmart and Obamacare; negative views continue of health law; Ebola preparedness

Viewpoints: Walmart and Obamacare; negative views continue of health law; Ebola preparedness

Walmart announced today that as of the beginning of next year it will be dropping health insurance for 30,000 employees who work less than 30 hours per week. Many liberals will react to the news by saying that it's just a profit-hungry corporation once again screwing over its employees. Conservatives are likely to say that this just shows what a mess Obamacare has created and why it should be repealed (Paul Waldman, 10/8). [More]
International Biophysics files patent protection for revolutionary AffloVest

International Biophysics files patent protection for revolutionary AffloVest

International Biophysics Corporation of Austin, Texas announces its filing of U.S. patent protection for its revolutionary AffloVest. The company has also recently confirmed exclusive ownership rights concerning the manufacture, sale and distribution of the AffloVest in its markets. [More]

Obama administration delays home-care worker minimum-wage, overtime protections

In a Tuesday announcement, the administration said it won't enforce this rule, which involves an estimated 2 million home-care workers, for the first six months after its Jan. 1, 2015, effective date. [More]
COMS Interactive, PointRight partner to integrate advanced clinical services and predictive analytics

COMS Interactive, PointRight partner to integrate advanced clinical services and predictive analytics

PointRight Inc., the industry-standard analytics leader for healthcare providers and payers, and COMS Interactive, also known as Clinical Outcomes Management Systems, the leading disease management software provider in the post-acute care marketplace, announce that the two companies will leverage their collective clinical strengths and sales and marketing resources. [More]
Viewpoints: Another troubled website rollout; insurers fight consumer measures in Calif.

Viewpoints: Another troubled website rollout; insurers fight consumer measures in Calif.

If the federal government's new Open Payments website were a consumer product, it would be returned to the manufacturer for a full refund. Open Payments is the government's site for publishing payments made to doctors and teaching hospitals by drug and medical device manufacturers. It includes 4.4 million payments, worth $3.5 billion, to more than half a million doctors and almost 1,360 teaching hospitals (Charles Ornstein, 10/1). [More]
Agingcare.com introduces Prescription Drug Assistance Locator tool

Agingcare.com introduces Prescription Drug Assistance Locator tool

Paying for prescription medications just got easier for families who frequent AgingCare.com, the go-to destination for family caregivers. [More]
Bridgestone Group to donate $1M to combat Ebola outbreak in Liberia

Bridgestone Group to donate $1M to combat Ebola outbreak in Liberia

The Bridgestone Group (Bridgestone) today announced it will donate one million dollars (USD) to critical efforts underway in Liberia and the region to combat the Ebola outbreak. [More]
Viewpoints: Hospitals helped by Medicaid expansion; why GOP candidates back OTC contraceptives

Viewpoints: Hospitals helped by Medicaid expansion; why GOP candidates back OTC contraceptives

Now the Department of Health and Human Services has issued a report showing that ... thanks to the Affordable Care Act, hospitals across the country will save $5.7 billion in uncompensated care costs in 2014. [More]
Viewpoints: 'Feud' over health care compact; humane end-of-life care

Viewpoints: 'Feud' over health care compact; humane end-of-life care

Never has an issue of The Best Times, Johnson County's monthly magazine for seniors, been so eagerly awaited. I know I've been on the edge of my seat. At first the draw was to read the article that had gotten some Kansas legislators so worked up that 11 of them stormed en masse into a meeting to berate the volunteer members of the Johnson County Commission on Aging for writing it. [More]

Medicaid expansion concept gains momentum in some initially reluctant states

Reuters reports that this development has to do with financial pragmatism -- especially in GOP-led states that were at the forefront of opposition to the health law. The Associated Press provides a status check on Indiana's expansion request. [More]