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Quality

 

Operating revenue fell faster than operating expenses for two years at hospitals which had been merged into or acquired by a new system, with no evidence of improvement on quality measures, according to a report released by the Deloitte Center for Health Solutions and Healthcare Financial Management Association (HFMA).

Communication-and-resolution programs (CRP) at four Massachusetts hospitals led to lower medical liability costs and improvements in patient safety after adverse events, countering concerns that telling patients about errors would motivate more to file lawsuits.

Sacramento, California-based Sutter Physician Services found success in helping to reduce readmissions at its affiliated Sutter Health hospitals by coordinating follow-up appointments and check-in calls with recently discharged patients, but communication and C-suite engagement have been critical to making the effort work.

Oct. 2 is the deadline for clinicians to start collecting performance data for the new Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and still be eligible for a positive payment adjustment in 2019. With multiple sources showing clinicians and healthcare finance professionals feel unprepared for the first year of the new payment track, some eligible providers may settle for simply avoiding a negative adjustment.

Overall star ratings on the CMS Hospital Compare website will not be updated in October as previously scheduled, according to the American Hospital Association (AHA).

 

Recent Headlines

Joint Commission proposes changes to patient suicide risk policies

The Joint Commission has begun accepting comments on proposed revisions to National Patient Safety Goal (NPSG) requirements to “better identify and care” for patients who may be at risk of attempting suicide.

Mortality improves during surprise Joint Commission inspections

When Joint Commission inspectors are conducting hospital surveys, 30-day mortality rates “significantly” improve, according to a new study published in JAMA Internal Medicine.

IHI, National Patient Safety Foundation to merge

The Institute for Healthcare Improvement (IHI) and the National Patient Safety Foundation (NPSF) have announced plans to merge into a single organization to “help reset and reenergize the patient safety agenda.”

Bigger practices may not mean better care for high-needs patients

A larger practice doesn’t translate to better care for patients with multiple conditions, but having greater experience treating high-needs patients just might, according to a study published in the March issue of Health Affairs.

'Promising results’ for CMS initiative on reducing hospitalizations among nursing home residents

In 2012, CMS launched the Initiative to Reduce Avoidable Hospitalizations among Nursing Facility Residents in 143 long-term care (LTC) facilities across seven states. According to a study published in the March 2017 issue of Health Affairs, the approach appears to have been effective.

Joint Commission releases 11 tenets of safety culture in new alert

A new sentinel event alert has been released by the Joint Commission, urging leaders in healthcare to develop an “effective safety culture” at their organizations to cut down on adverse events like delays in treatment and wrong-site surgery.

HIMSS 2017: Patient-reported outcomes can boost value-based care—with the right design

Outcomes reported by the patient can bring actionable data to a provider and save money in the long run. Collecting that data, however, requires technology that patients can easily access and use.

HIMSS 2017: Embracing antimicrobial stewardship can lead to savings

Utilizing a multi-faceted antimicrobial stewardship (AMS) programs can not only help a facility combat antibiotic-resistant infections, but it can also lead to cost savings even when it’s not a focal point of those efforts.

‘Passive’ FDA reporting system to blame for dangerous surgical tool staying in use

A Government Accountability Office (GAO) report says physicians and hospitals failed to tell the Food and Drug Administration (FDA) of safety issues related to power morcellators spreading undiagnosed cancer cells in women. Those devices aim to make tissue removal easier through small incisions and are most often used during hysterectomies or to remove benign uterine tumors. 

Bundled payments didn’t increase volumes for joint replacement

Participation in CMS’s Bundled Payment for Care Improvement Program (BPCI) didn’t lead to more lower extremity joint replacement procedures being performed, according to a study conducted by the Altarum Institute’s Center for Payment Innovation.

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