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Home   Contact Us   Career Center   Education   SHCA Store Sept. 1, 2010
Future of primary care? Some say 'medical home'
NPR    Share   Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Imagine a place where your doctor doesn't keep you waiting, does keep you healthy, and works with a whole team of other health care professionals. Oh, and imagine that place makes the doctor's life easier and health care cheaper. In a nutshell, that's the idea behind what's called the "patient-centered medical home." It's an idea that's spreading around the nation. More

Fixing a world that fosters fat
The New York Times    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Why are Americans getting fatter and fatter? The simple explanation is that we eat too much junk food and spend too much time in front of screens — be they television, phone or computer — to burn off all those empty calories. One handy prescription for healthier lives is behavior modification. If people only ate more fresh produce. Unfortunately, behavior changes won’t work on their own without seismic societal shifts, health experts say, because eating too much and exercising too little are merely symptoms of a much larger malady. The real problem is a landscape littered with inexpensive fast-food meals; saturation advertising for fatty, sugary products; inner cities that lack supermarkets; and unhealthy, high-stress workplaces. More

Federal health care site coming July 1
USA TODAY    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Wish finding health insurance were as easy as shopping for an airline ticket? A federal government website that starts July 1, of next year, takes a step in that direction. The site, for the first time, will give consumers a list of all private and government health care plans for individuals and small businesses in their areas. The nation's new health care law requires the site ( Initially, it will provide just basic facts, such as the names of companies, health plans and Web links. Beginning in October, it will list detailed cost and benefits information. Consumer groups and insurers already are clashing over exactly what information should be displayed. "What we are trying to do is create some order in the marketplace," says Karen Pollitz, a top official at the new Office of Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight at the Department of Health and Human Services. More

40th Anniversary Annual Conference
Call for Presentations
SHCA 2011: Navigating the Waves of Change
April 5 - 8, 2011 - Jacksonville, Florida

Now's the time to throw your hat in the SHCA speaker ring. The Call for Presentations is open and runs through September 10. All accepted proposals will receive a complimentary registration to the 40th Anniversary Annual Conference. Visit the SHCA website for more details and submit your proposal.

Cash-poor governments ditching public hospitals
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Faced with mounting debt and looming costs from the new federal health-care law, many local governments are leaving the hospital business, shedding public facilities that can be the caregiver of last resort. Officials in Lauderdale County, Ala., this spring opted to transfer their 91-year-old Eliza Coffee Memorial Hospital and other properties to a for-profit company after struggling to satisfy an angry bond insurer. "We were next to knocking on bankruptcy's door," said Rhea Fulmer, a Lauderdale County commissioner who approved the deal with RegionalCare Hospital Partners, of Brentwood, Tenn, but with trepidation. She said the county had no guarantee the company would improve care in the decades to come. "Time will tell." Clinton County, Ohio, in May sold its hospital to the same company. More

Doctors enter electronic age
The Times Leader    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
In 2004, the federal government set a goal to reshape the nation's medical system by having most American's health records converted to an electronic format by 2014. In early 2009, this project received a boost, when the federal government approved the $838 billion stimulus spending bil, containing funding to promote this project by offering incentives to physicians and hospitals to computerize medical records. Since the stimulus package was approved, the number of physicians converting to electronic records has increased by 20 percent says Mark Stephens, president and CEO of InterMountain Health Group. Stephens further noted his health group started the conversion several years ago, before the government incentives began. More

Upcoming SHCA Webinars - Members enjoy a discount of $100

New Joint Commission Patient - Provider Communication Standards: How to Ensure Compliance
Sept. 22, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. CST
Click here for more details and to register.

The Patient-Centric Web and Social Media: Opportunities for Advocacy
Oct. 20, 2010 at 1:00 p.m. CST
Click here for more details and to register.

FDA says it lacks the resources to prevent outbreaks
The Associated Press via The Boston Globe    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Farms like the two involved in a massive recall of more than a half-billion eggs are rarely inspected by the federal government, officials say, as the Food and Drug Administration has traditionally reacted to outbreaks instead of working to prevent them. Margaret Hamburg, Food and Drug Administration chief, recently said her agency has not had enough authority to help prevent outbreaks like the more than 1,000 cases of salmonella poisoning linked to the eggs from two Iowa farms. Giving a series of network interviews, Hamburg said the FDA is taking the issue "very, very seriously." At the same time, she said Congress should pass legislation stalled in the Senate that would increase the frequency of inspections and give the agency authority to order a recall. Companies now issue such recalls voluntarily. More

As reform improves the overall market, inefficient insurers could take hits
Kaiser Health News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail
When Assurant Health, a Milwaukee-based health insurance company, announced this month it was laying off 130 employees in Milwaukee and Minneapolis, it blamed the health care overhaul for its struggles — and at least one prominent critic of reform quickly chimed in. "There are more and more Obamacare job-killing stories piling up like this one," conservative columnist Michelle Malkin wrote in an item with the headline, "The White House War on Jobs." More

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West Virginia ahead of curve on health care reform, experts say
The Charleston Gazette    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
West Virginia is taking strong steps to get ready for the new federal health care reform law, Kathleen Stoll, deputy director of the non-profit Families USA, told a conference of the state's health care workers, policy-makers and advocates. "I go all over the country, and I would rank West Virginia in the top 10 states in terms of thinking ahead and doing the things that need to be done," she said, speaking at the "Growing Healthy Children" conference in Charleston, W. Va. More

Smoking still too common in movies, CDC says
Reuters    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
The number of U.S. movies showing people smoking has declined since 2005, but cigarettes still feature in far too many films and could be influencing young people to take up the habit, according to a report recently released. The report's authors recommended that movie ratings also consider whether the film depicts smoking and suggested strong advertisements about the dangers of smoking precede movies that show tobacco use. "The results of this analysis indicate that the number of tobacco incidents peaked in 2005, then declined by approximately half through 2009, representing the first time a decline of that duration and magnitude has been observed," the team at the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the University of California San Francisco and elsewhere wrote. More

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First national HIV strategy relies on prevention
The Nation's Health    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Access to care, eliminating disparities and reducing infection rates are the overarching goals of America's new National HIV/AIDS Strategy, which calls for a more coordinated response to the nation’s ongoing HIV epidemic. Three decades into the U.S. HIV epidemic, it is the first such strategy of its kind and comes at a time when more Americans than ever are living with the virus and 56,000 new infections are reported every year. More

Most emergency room patients willing to wait longer to avoid non-doctor care
American Medical News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
As the use of nurse practitioners and physician assistants increases, a survey urges greater disclosure about who provides care and their level of training. Nurse practitioners and physician assistants account for at least 10 percent of outpatient visits and increasingly are being used to handle patient care in emergency departments, according to previous research. But a new survey said 80 percent of patients expect to see a physician when they come to the emergency room. Fewer than half would be willing to see a nurse practitioner or physician's assistant for an ankle injury — they would rather wait two more hours to be cared for by a physician. More
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