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Care Delivery

 

Racial discrimination was by far the most common reason cited by black patients for receiving poor service or treatment from physicians or hospitals, according to a study published in the Journal of General Internal Medicine. White and Hispanic patients, however, also reported “high rates of discrimination” for other reasons such as age, weight or income.

High-deductible health plans have been framed as a way to give healthcare consumers more “skin in the game,” leading them to avoid low-value services as a way to save money. According to researchers from the USC Schaeffer Center for Health Policy and Economics and the RAND Corporation, they’re having little to no impact.

PricewaterhouseCoopers' (PwC) Health Research Institute expects “persistent risks and uncertainties” to impact healthcare in 2017, ranging from policy changes under the Trump administration to how artificial intelligence (AI) will change workflows—and in the end, it may come out stronger because of those challenges.

The goal of accountable care organizations (ACOs), according to CMS, is to better coordinate care for chronically ill patients, avoiding unnecessary services and preventing errors. For ACOs in the Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP), however, those weren’t the reasons they saved money, according to a study published in the Dec. 2017 issue of Health Affairs.

The offerings on the Affordable Care Act’s health insurance exchanges for 2018 are dominated by narrow network plans, with higher deductibles for silver- and gold-level plans, according to an analysis from Avalere.

 

Recent Headlines

Patients rarely request clinically inappropriate tests

Fewer than 1 percent of encounters between clinicians and patients led to a request for medical services that were deemed clinically inappropriate, according to a study published online in JAMA Oncology, which examined oncology outpatient facilities at three Philadelphia-area hospitals between October 2013 and June 2014. 

A roadmap for a delivery system that partners with patients, families

A new roadmap developed by the Gordon and Betty Moore Foundation, in collaboration with the American Institutes for Research, aims to improve healthcare delivery through greater partnerships with patients and families.

ANA: U.S. will need 1.1 million more R.N.s by 2022 to head off shortage

The American Nurses Association (ANA) is urging immediate increased investment in nursing training to ensure a sufficient nursing workforce to meet anticipated future demand from an aging U.S. population and the newly insured under the Affordable Care Act’s coverage expansions.

Delaware hospital’s bedside addiction intervention program gets White House officials’ attention

One hospital’s program that puts peer counselors at the bedside of patients with addiction and substance abuse problems has earned it an invitation to the White House. Leaders from Christiana Care Health System in Wilmington, Delaware, were asked to present their early addiction intervention program, Project Engage, to officials from the White House Office of National Drug Control Policy.

Ohio hospitals show cutting HAIs requires cultural shift

Reducing hospital acquired infections significantly is possibly simply through better adherence to hand washing standards by clinical staff. However, making a hand-washing initiative stick is difficult because people naturally tend to become less adherent to standards over time without a culture that positively reinforces the standard, according to experts from Ohio’s MetroHealth Medical Center, University Hospitals and the Cleveland Clinic.

16 challenges in healthcare payment reform

The Bipartisan Policy Center (BPC) has issued a new report that seeks to identify the specific challenges and opportunities the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services faces in implementing healthcare reform. Notably, many of the problems identified in the report are the same as those pointed out by healthcare industry executives and the organizations that represent them.

Alliance with North Shore-LIJ lets Cleveland Clinics’ cardiovascular care program reach sizeable New York market

The Cleveland Clinic Heart & Vascular Institute is expanding its reach to include the New York metropolitan area, home to nearly 20 million people, through a unique alliance with the North Shore-LIJ Health System, which has 17 hospitals and more than 400 outpatient physician practices in the New York region.

Missouri to let medical students work as assistant physicians

Missouri Governor Jay Nixon has signed into a law a bill that makes it legal for medical students who have not yet completed a year of residency to work as “assistant physicians” within the state, delivering primary care services with 10 percent of their work reviewed by a physician.

HHS launches new initiative to help states reform Medicaid payment and delivery systems

Responding to recent recommendations made by the National Governors Association’s (NGA) Health Care Sustainability Task Force, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) is launching what it calls “a new innovative collaboration with states to improve care for Medicaid beneficiaries by accelerating efforts in reforming their health care systems to improve health and care while reducing costs.” 

New York provider consortium takes aim at Medicaid costs, and state grant money

More than 200 community-based organizations that provide various health services across the 14-county area around Rochester, New York, are teaming up to identify ways to reduce the state’s Medicaid costs while improving care quality. Along the way, they also hope to win some of the state’s Delivery System Reform Incentive Payment program, or DSRIP, $8-billion waiver from the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.

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