Study may rewrite how addiction meds are made
Addiction drugs with fewer side effects may be on the docket if the latest findings from The Scripps Research Institute prove their clout in testing to come. MORE

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Task force recommends hepatitis C screening for baby boomers June 25, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
Task force recommends hepatitis C screening for baby boomers
HCV infection is most prevalent among baby boomers -- a population of approximately 80 million individuals -- and many of them are unaware that they are infected. The USPSTF rating of "B" on the recommendation paves the way for payment by Medicare and private insurers with no co-pay by patients.
Link between Guillain-Barre syndrome and vaccination still not prevalent June 24, 2013 | Madelyn Kearns - Associate Editor
A Kaiser Permanente study has uncovered that within any six-week vaccination period following any vaccination type — influenza included — patients are no more susceptible to Guillain-Barré syndrome.
Mostashari discusses ICD-10 June 24, 2013 | Diana Manos
Mostashari discusses ICD-10 and other key concerns
The national coordinator for health IT spoke with Healthcare IT News Senior Editor Diana Manos June 17 at the HIMSS Media ICD-10 Forum in National Harbor, Md. With his typical candor and energy, Mostashari commented on several healthcare IT issues and about ICD-10 -- the focus of the forum and the topic of the keynote talk he had delivered earlier in the day.
Study shows variable impact of EHR use on Medicaid costs June 24, 2013 | Anthony Brino - Contributing Writer
Study shows variable impact of EHR use on Medicaid costs
Evidence from Massachusetts community providers suggests that EHRs can facilitate increases or decreases in medical costs, and that in Medicaid, the technology may fit best with capitated payments.
Analytics project takes on breast cancer June 21, 2013 | Mike Miliard - Managing Editor
UPMC analytics project takes on breast cancer
When the first phase of the multi-year, $100 million project is completed in the spring of 2014, many researchers, clinicians and administrators will have secure, real-time access to data and analytic tools that fit their particular interests and needs.
Hoven takes AMA helm June 21, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
Infectious disease specialist takes AMA helm
Ardis Dee Hoven, MD, the new president of the nation's largest physician organization, will focus on improving health outcomes, accelerating change in medical education, and enhancing physician satisfaction and practice sustainability.
EHR usability: A small-practice imperative June 21, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
EHR usability: A small-practice imperative
A recent report from industry research firm KLAS rated athenaClinicals highest among ambulatory EMR systems in terms of go-live and current-state usability. In the following Q&A, Jasmine Gee, director of product marketing for athenahealth, explains why usability is "absolutely key" in the small-practice realm.
Consumers seek mobile connections June 20, 2013 | Erin McCann - Contributing Writer
Consumers seek mobile connections with doctors
A newly released survey conducted by Harris Interactive and HealthDay reveals that one-third of Internet-using adults would like to use smartphones or tablets to make appointments, receive medical test results or communicate with their physician.

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What not to believe about remote patient monitoring March 26, 2013 | David Lee Scher, MD
There are conflicting study results regarding the utility of remote monitoring preventing hospital readmissions. RPM is seen as a way of remaining in physiologic contact with these patients who might be managed at home via care systems. Some studies show no decrease in hospitalizations, and others see a significant benefit. Consider the following five fallacies about RPM.
Using Direct for secure communications March 25, 2013 | Andy Nieto - Health IT Strategist at DataMotion
Running a practice should not require having an IT staff (and budget) comparable to a hospital's just to consult with specialists and advise patients. What is needed is a way to ensure secure exchange of patient data, regardless of the EHR system being used.
How to apply for Medicare's ACO March 22, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has scheduled two National Provider Calls in April to explain the Shared Savings Program application process for Medicare fee-for-service providers who wish to participate in accountable care organizations.
Priorities for a primary care overhaul March 20, 2013 | Mary Mosquera - Contributing Editor
Michael Porter, Harvard Business School professor, researcher and author, explained value-based healthcare delivery in conjunction with outcome measurement during a presentation at the Nashville Health Care Council on March 15. He described six ways to reshape primary care delivery to achieve value.
CMS provides guidance on certified EHRs March 13, 2013 | Frank Irving - Editor
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services announced on March 12 that its FAQ System contains three new and three updated entries pertaining to the agency's EHR Incentive Programs. Read on for the latest queries and click through to read the corresponding answers.
5 cloud computing considerations March 12, 2013 | Rick Kam, CIPP - President and Co-founder, ID Experts, Doug Pollack, CIPP - Chief Strategy Officer, ID Experts
Cloud computing manages data, secures it and makes it available when and wherever needed -- but it is not without risks. Here are 5 things an organization should do before implementing systems that migrate protected health information and personally identifiable information into the cloud.
How EHRs boost behavioral health March 07, 2013 | Stephanie Bouchard - Associate Editor
The benefits of using electronic health records in behavioral health settings are many, but there are challenges, too, say those in the field.
ACPE reiterates 9 steps to safer patients March 07, 2013 | Madelyn Kearns - Associate Editor
In the latest effort to ensure that patient safety remains paramount, the American College of Physician Executives (ACPE) has sided with RAND Corp. and AHRQ research, adding its own spin on matters by trumpeting nine essential elements — closely related to the RAND/AHRQ’s 10 patient safety strategies for hospitals to follow — in ensuring patient sanctity.

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Do Canadian primary care offices really discriminate against the poor? February 28, 2013 | David Williams - Health Business Blog
A new study purports to demonstrate that primary care physician offices in Ontario are less likely to offer appointments to poor patients. My assessment is that the study methodology is biased.
Doctor-patient teamwork not quite what it could be February 26, 2013 | Jeff Rowe - Contributing Writer
A new study finds that collaboration isn't happening to the extent it could be, and the reason may be that the technology isn't ready to do its part.
5 ways of achieving patient engagement: Part 2, with technology February 22, 2013 | David Lee Scher, MD
Technology that promotes patient engagement might be in the form of a health/medical app, a patient portal, information derived and transmitted via sensor or other type of digital health technology.
One way or another, patient portals continue to grow February 20, 2013 | Jeff Rowe - Contributing Writer
Will the growth of patient portals happen in small, sideways steps rather than in a straight march forward?
EHRs and improper billing: Should we worry? February 19, 2013 | David Williams - Health Business Blog
Concerns are emerging that the adoption of electronic health records is leading to inappropriate increases in billings to payers, including Medicare, and that these higher billings could undermine or even overwhelm any cost savings generated by the digitization of providers. The concerns are legitimate but overall I’m not worried about this phenomenon.
If one looks at communications revolving around healthcare these days, the term "patient engagement" is invariably found as one of the cornerstones of the conversation.
What's in a name? February 13, 2013 | Jeff Rowe - Contributing Writer
Is an EHR primarily a storage mechanism? On one level, obviously. But, ideally, it will be accessible to so many people over the course of a lifetime that it will be a storage mechanism with the mother of all open-door policies.
Ethics or innovation: Which comes first? February 08, 2013 | Jeff Rowe - Contributing Writer
Was enough study conducted on the potential benefits and risks prior to the decision, in the form of the HITECH Act, to push, pull and cajole healthcare providers across the digital frontier?

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Numera announced today the launch of HealthPort, its next-generation remote health communications hub. HealthPort will provide telehealth connectivity for virtually any patient, transmitting personal health information through cellular networks, home broadband, digital or analog phone lines. The new product complements the company’s broad range of offerings providing robust PC, mobile and appliance connectivity solutions for telehealth and telecare, including its recently announced acquisition of BlueLibris. HealthPort is ideally suited for Independent Living, Chronic Condition Management, and Transitions in Care Services.
Three in five Americans say they receive the best medical care from their primary care physician (PCP), according to a survey conducted by GfK Roper for Practice Fusion, the free, web-based Electronic Medical Record (EMR) company. The survey shows a strong preference for primary care above specialists, hospitals and urgent care facilities, and also indicated a desire for increased communication between doctors and more appointment availability.
Vidyo, Inc., the first company to deliver personal telepresence, and AMD Global Telemedicine, a leading supplier of medical technology for clinical telemedicine, today announced a partnership that will integrate Vidyo's award-winning software-based solution with AMD's telemedicine platform. The combined solution complements the Vidyo for Healthcare™ line with AMD Global’s integrating software and medical devices that are essential for effective telemedicine. Healthcare providers will enjoy a new, simple, intuitive, and comprehensive point-of-care solution.
Healthways acquires Ascentia Health Care Solutions April 23, 2012 | Industry Release
Ben R. Leedle, Jr., president and chief executive officer of Healthways, announced that the Company has acquired Ascentia Health Care Solutions, a Philadelphia area based company whose business is designed to support and promote population health management, patient centered programs, payer strategies and physician practice enhancement programs. Healthways will apply Ascentia’s technology, solutions and management team to support the rapidly growing demand for Physician-Directed Population Health (PDPH) capabilities from physician enterprises, healthcare systems and health plans across the country.
ZocDoc arrives in Greater Detroit today with the mission of improving access to medical care for local residents. ZocDoc, a free service for patients, is a one-stop resource for researching doctors and making appointments instantly online. At launch, the service offers appointments with participating primary care doctors, obstetrician-gynecologists and dermatologists throughout the Detroit area.
Midmark Corporation, a trusted leader in digital diagnostic devices for ambulatory care, today released a physician usage study demonstrating the viability, accuracy and affordability of primary care physician-managed home sleep testing using the Midmark SleepView® Monitor and Portal. The report shows that the complexity and costs for achieving a reliable diagnosis of obstructive sleep apnea (OSA) can be lowered as much as 70 percent by providing primary care physicians with the necessary technology and support.
Marci Nielsen, Ph.D., MPH, executive director of the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative, will be a featured speaker at The Atlantic's fourth annual Health Care Forum on April 19 at the Ronald Reagan Building in Washington, DC.
Interprofessional care teams improve clinical outcomes April 09, 2012 | Industry Release
With so much discussion about what's not working in healthcare today, experts are increasingly pointing to a model of care that is working to improve outcomes for patients.  A growing body of research is showing that the concept of "team work" or interprofessional collaboration can fill service gaps, enhance communication and ease the demands on the healthcare system – all of which translates into better care for patients.

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