HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - January 18, 2008 | State of Emergency View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
State of Emergency
Molly Rowe, Senior Editor-Leadership

There's no denying that the ED is a problem area in most hospitals. Almost every major Joint Commission change of the past few years--medication reconciliation, handoffs, critical test results reporting--has gotten hung up in the emergency department, and almost every person I talk to, no matter how advanced the hospital, has problems getting his ED on board and in compliance. Have CEOs just thrown in the towel? [Read More]

  Jan. 18, 2008

Editor's Picks
Insurers stop paying for care linked to errors
Medicare's not the only organization refusing to pay hospitals for medical errors. Big insurers like Aetna and WellPoint are moving to ban reimbursement for care resulting from serious hospital errors. Insurers are stipulating in hospital contracts that patients not be charged for these errors either, but consumer advocates warn that these contracts aren't error-proof. While the ultimate goal may be to reduce medical errors, the short-term consequence is that patients must scour their hospital bills to ensure they're not paying for errors. As if hospital billing weren't complicated enough . [Read More]
2008 predictions for trends in healthcare
PricewaterhouseCoopers' Health Research Institute has released its top predictions for healthcare in 2008. Some of the highlights: revenue decreases for some but increases for others, thanks to the new Medicare reimbursement system; increased regulatory burden for pharma companies; a surge in retail clinics; and IRS scrutiny of nonprofit hospitals as well as executive salaries and benefits at those organizations. From an international perspective, PwC predicts Asia will become "the world's largest pharmaceutical consumer and producer." [Read More]
West Penn health system picks 'results oriented' CEO
Ah, the eternal question: What leadership style begets the best results? West Penn Allegheny Health System in Pittsburgh will soon find out. The announcement of the system's new CEO, Dr. Christopher Olivia, came with mixed reviews. Described as "results oriented," "not shy," and "not humble," Olivia is known for his opinions and confidence (described as "overconfident" by some). West Penn's former in-house counsel argues that Olivia's ego will serve him well in physician relations where docs "are trained to be decisive." But how will Olivia fare with non-physician staff? What do you think? Are better leaders humble and open or opinionated and aggressive? [Read More]
HealthLeaders Media TV
Video: Build a Better Board. A new model of governance asks trustees to monitor more than the bottom line. Also, stories on retail clinics, bedside technology, and more. Powered by Trinity Healthforce Learning. Watch the video now.
This Week's Headlines
Universal healthcare plans up against U.S. law
USA Today - January 17, 2008

Wellness programs may face legal tests
Wall Street Journal (subscription required) - January 16, 2008
Hospital companies offer business services to rivals
The Tennessean - January 15, 2008
Emergency care waits found to be on the rise
Washington Post - January 15, 2008
Study: Most back mandatory health coverage
Reuters/Yahoo News - January 15, 2008
When a health insurer says it won't pay
Philadelphia Inquirer - January 14, 2008

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Alternative Goes Mainstream

HealthLeaders December 2007 More hospitals are embracing alternative treatments to boost patient satisfaction and improve care. But can integrative medicine programs make money? [Read More]
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