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June. 8, 2011
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Hospitals push to reduce the 4.4 million preventable hospital readmissions a year
The Wall Street Journal    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Can a virtual nurse named Louise help keep patients from landing back in the hospital after they are discharged? The animated character on a computer screen, who explains medical instructions, is one of several new strategies hospitals are using to help patients make the transition to home, including sending patients off with a "Home with Meds" packet of medications and having real-life case managers and nurses monitor patients by phone. It's part of a push to reduce the 4.4 million hospital stays that are a result of potentially preventable readmissions, which add more than $30 billion a year to the nation's health care tab, or $1 of every $10 spent on hospital care, according to the federal Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality. More

AMSA now accepting abstract submissions for its 2012 Annual Convention
AMSA    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Is there a speaker you always have wanted to hear or a phenomenal presenter you have seen in the past? If so, we want to hear from you. Go online and submit your abstract today. Convention programming tracks include Advocacy, Career & Professional Development, International Health, Public Health and Premedical Focus. Visit and complete your online submission by June 12. For questions, please email

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Opinion: Why medical school should be free
The New York Times    Share    Share on
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Doctors are among the most richly rewarded professionals in the country. The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that of the 15 highest-paid professions in the United States, all but two are in medicine or dentistry. Why, then, are we proposing to make medical school free? Huge medical school debts — doctors now graduate owing more than $155,000 on average, and 86 percent have some debt — are why so many doctors shun primary care in favor of highly paid specialties, where there are incentives to give expensive treatments and order expensive tests, an important driver of rising health care costs. More

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First addiction medicine residencies to begin in July
American Medical News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
About 20 physicians will begin training this summer in the first 10 residency programs to be accredited by the American Board of Addiction Medicine. The programs are designed to provide doctors from a variety of specialty backgrounds with comprehensive training in the identification and treatment of patients with substance abuse issues. Ultimately, the ABAM hopes to become a member of the American Board of Medical Specialties and have the residency programs accredited by the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education. More

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AMSA student injury and sickness insurance plan — A valuable benefit for members
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UnitedHealthcare Student Resources clears the air on why this member benefit may be a better option for students than individual or employer insurance.
  • Student insurance is often more affordable than employer and individual insurance because the benefits are designed with students in mind.
  • Student insurance plans can be extended up to a defined number of months, keeping graduates protected while they search for a job that provides employer benefits.
  • The AMSA plan includes value-added benefits specific to student's needs, like discounts from 5 to 50 percent on dental, vision, fitness and wellness products and services, 24/7 telephonic and online access to registered nurses and clinicians for confidential guidance on physical and mental health concerns, and global emergency medical assistance when traveling 100 miles or more from home.
Learn more about the 2011-2012 AMSA Student Health Insurance plan July 1 at Online enrollment is easy and takes just minutes.

New graduates feel the chill
National Underwriter    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Members of the college class of 2011 are leaving campus with an average of $39,900 in debt each. Fidelity Investments, Boston, has based that statistic on results from a recent survey of 549 U.S. college graduates. About 78 percent of the recent graduates have some debt. More

Slideshow: Top 10 health systems
Healthcare Finance News    Share    Share on
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Thomson Reuters recently released its list of the top 10 U.S. health systems. Thomson Reuters analyzed 285 health systems according to metrics such as patient safety, mortality rate and standards of care. This slideshow features the 10 winning health systems. More

Report: Young adults are skipping needed medical treatments due to cost
Healthcare Finance News    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
A new Commonwealth Fund survey indicates almost half of all young adults are skipping necessary medical treatments due to cost considerations. Help is on the way, however. A provision in the Affordable Care Act that allows those under the age of 26 to remain on their parents' health plans is expected to increase coverage in 2011. When that provision goes into full effect in 2014, 12.1 million of the 14.8 million currently without insurance could be covered. "This is not an easy time for young adults — they are struggling to find employment in a difficult job market, and are among the age groups hardest hit by rising health care costs," said Sara Collins, the Commonwealth Fund's vice president. More

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Patients could gain right to find out who's seen their health records
The Hill    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Patients would be able to find out who has looked at their electronic medical records under a proposed rule that recently opened up for public comment. Patients would obtain the information by requesting an access report, which would document who electronically accessed and viewed their protected health information. Although providers are currently required to track access to such information, they don't have to tell patients. More

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5 ways college educators are using Twitter in the classroom
U.S. News & World Report    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Social media has found a prominent place in the college classroom. In fact, nearly 80 percent of faculty members are using social media in some way, according to a recent survey of nearly 2,000 college faculty. Jim Newman, a Ph.D. student and instructor at Northern Illinois University, says that he uses Twitter not as a news source for his class but as a bulletin board. "[Twitter] is not something I'm going to be using to chat [with students]," Newman says. "I use it as an additional way to let students know if there's some last-minute news, like class being cancelled." More

Students' job goals changing with times
Houston Chronicle    Share    Share on FacebookTwitterShare on LinkedinE-mail article
Men and women often have different career goals, but both sexes are becoming more attuned to job security as they prepare to enter the workplace, according to a survey of students at 19 colleges in Texas. Women are more interested in work-life balance, finding meaningful work and job stability, according to Universum, which conducted the survey of undergraduates in Texas as part of its annual worldwide survey of 350,000 college students about their career plans and workplace expectations. More

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