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New Dartmouth study offers roadmap for better risk adjustment in Medicare

New Dartmouth study offers roadmap for better risk adjustment in Medicare

The methodology Medicare uses to adjust the billions of dollars it pays health plans and hospitals to account for how sick their patients are is flawed and should be replaced, according to a new study by Dartmouth investigators published in the journal BMJ that weighed the performance of Medicare's methodology against alternatives. [More]
Taking a close-to-home look at the Medicare billing data

Taking a close-to-home look at the Medicare billing data

Other news outlets offer localized takes on the Medicare data, including the Miami Herald's coverage of a physician who emerged as the federal program's top-paid doctor, the Philadelphia Inquirer's look at an ambulance business' billing patterns and the Seattle Times' examination of ophthalmologists. [More]
President of ASN urges Congress to spur scientific innovation in kidney research through federal prize competition

President of ASN urges Congress to spur scientific innovation in kidney research through federal prize competition

Today the President of the American Society of Nephrology (ASN) urged Congress to spur scientific innovation in kidney research through a federal prize competition. [More]
First Edition: April 10, 2014

First Edition: April 10, 2014

Today's headlines include a range of stories taking additional looks at the Medicare physician payment data released yesterday by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. [More]
NextGen earns ONC 2014 Edition criteria certification for Emergency Department Solution

NextGen earns ONC 2014 Edition criteria certification for Emergency Department Solution

NextGen Healthcare Information Systems, LLC., a wholly owned subsidiary of Quality Systems, Inc. (NASDAQ: QSII) and a leading provider of healthcare information systems and connectivity solutions, announced today that NextGen® Emergency Department Solution version 6.0 is compliant with the ONC 2014 Edition criteria and was certified as an electronic health record (EHR) Module on March 7, 2014 by the Certification Commission for Health Information Technology (CCHIT®), an ONC-ACB, in accordance with the applicable Hospital certification criteria adopted by the Secretary of Health and Human Services. [More]

Spike in mortality after cardiac surgery is associated with 30 days survival measurement

Analyzing a national database of hospital inpatient records, a team of researchers reports an expected spike in mortality six days after cardiac surgery, but also a more surprising and potentially troubling jump in deaths at the 30-day mark. [More]

Health law: Attack ad fuel for midterms

The Wall Street Journal reports on three ads that focus on health care with roots in the 2008 presidential election, while the Koch brothers have launched health law ads against Democratic senators they deem vulnerable. And many health law critics have accepted the law's subsidies. [More]

Study finds pharmacist-patient telephone consultations appear to reduce hospitalizations

Having a pharmacist call patients at home to go over their medications can identify many medication-based problems. However, a new study in Health Services Research found that pharmacist-patient telephone consultations only appear to reduce hospitalizations in patients who are least at risk. [More]

Viewpoints: Sebelius' questionable arithmetic; Rand finds 9.3 million gained insurance; new numbers on your doctor

In setting the 2015 calendar parameters for health plans and employers, Kathleen Sebelius, the secretary of health and human services, quietly did some creative but questionable arithmetic that forced taxpayers to give still more help to businesses and people who buy health insurance (Casey B. Mulligan, 4/9). [More]

Democrats and GOP lock horns over Paul Ryan's budget

Democrats and Republicans clashed Tuesday over the proposals in Paul Ryan's budget which includes $5 trillion in cuts over the next decade to several programs, including Medicaid. It also would repeal the health law. [More]

CMS releases trove of Medicare physician billing data

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is making this information available for the first time in 35 years. Meanwhile, in their first run at the data, news outlets report that a small number of doctors account for a large share of Medicare costs. [More]
Siemens, NKF form new alliance to improve screening for kidney disease in high-risk individuals

Siemens, NKF form new alliance to improve screening for kidney disease in high-risk individuals

Siemens Healthcare and the National Kidney Foundation (NKF) announced today a new strategic alliance focusing on education, awareness and screening for kidney disease in high-risk individuals. This important collaboration will leverage the latest testing recommendations from the NKF to improve detection among the 73 million Americans at risk for kidney disease. [More]

Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans continue to grow

Medicare Advantage Special Needs Plans (SNPs) continue to grow according to Mark Farrah Associates', www.markfarrah.com, latest Business Strategy report. [More]
bioTheranostics, Prime Health Services sign contract to expand genomic tests

bioTheranostics, Prime Health Services sign contract to expand genomic tests

bioTheranostics, Inc., the leading genomic solutions provider for cancer diagnosis, has signed a contract with Prime Health Services, Inc., a national preferred provider organization network, to cover the company's genomic tests for breast cancer patients and patients with metastatic disease. [More]
Two new dementia care models seek to improve quality of care for older adults

Two new dementia care models seek to improve quality of care for older adults

The number of older adults with dementia in the United States is forecast to more than double over the next 40 years. Caring for these individuals will have a significant impact on caregivers as well as the health care system and its workforce. [More]
First Edition: April 9, 2014

First Edition: April 9, 2014

Today's headlines include coverage of the release of Medicare billing and utilization data, as well as early insights into who enrolled in health coverage as a result of the health law. [More]

FDA approves Teva Pharmaceutical's Generic Lovaza Capsules

Teva Pharmaceutical Industries Ltd. announces the approval of the generic equivalent to Lovaza® (Omega-3-Acid Ethyl Esters Capsules, USP), in the United States. [More]
New policies needed to address the growing demands of Alzheimer's disease

New policies needed to address the growing demands of Alzheimer's disease

To address the burgeoning demands of Alzheimer's disease that will affect generations, new policies will have to be adopted to acknowledge the complex and unique needs of people with dementia. [More]

Majority of Medicaid sign-ups centered in 10 states

An analysis from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services found that 80 percent of the 3 million people who enrolled in Medicaid since Oct. 1 were located in 10 states. Also in the news, specific enrollment tallies from Michigan and the latest on Virginia's legislative stalemate over the expansion. [More]
Healthy Aging Brain Center care model improves health outcomes and quality of care in older adults

Healthy Aging Brain Center care model improves health outcomes and quality of care in older adults

Studies have shown that a new patient and caregiver centered model of innovative, coordinated brain care for older adults improves health outcomes and quality of care for those with cognitive impairment. [More]