HealthLeaders Media Community and Rural Hospital Weekly - March 26, 2008
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Eliminating Healthcare Martyrs
Carrie Vaughan, Editor, Community Hospitals
I am sure that most of you have heard or even uttered the phrase, "This will go faster, if I just do it myself." While that may be true, it is not always the best option. [Read More]
March 26, 2008
Editor's Picks

Proposed legislation circumvents CON
Bullitt County, KY, has been hard pressed to get approval for a hospital under the state's certificate of need law given its proximity to hospitals in Louisville. But a new bill, which has already been approved by the state's Health and Welfare Committee, could pave the way for the hospital that Bullitt County residents have been after for years. The measure enables counties that have at least 60,000 residents and no hospital to add up to 60 inpatient beds to an outpatient center that provides surgery, diagnostic imaging, and 24-hour emergency care without having to gain regulatory approval from the state. [Read More]

More primary care docs on the way
About 7.6% of U.S. medical school seniors matched in family medicine, a slight growth over last year, according to figures from this year's National Resident Matching Program. So does this mean we are seeing a reversal in the trend away from primary care medicine? Only time will tell. But I doubt these figures have eased the worries of community hospital leaders when it comes to physician recruitment. [Read More]

Alabama hospital finally gets the green light
After six long years, the Alabama certificate-of-need review board has approved Huntsville Hospital's application to build a 60-bed facility in Madison. The new hospital, which would serve about 90,000 people in western Madison and eastern Limestone counties, will become the centerpiece of Huntsville Hospital's Madison Medical Park. But don't get out the bulldozers just yet. Crestwood Medical Center, which also sought approval to build a hospital in Madison and had the support of the Madison and Triana city councils, still hasn't decided whether to appeal the decision to state court. [Read More]

Another one bites the dust
It appears that Chelsea (MI) Community Hospital, one of the last independent hospitals in the region, will be bought by Michigan-based St. Joseph Mercy Health System. The two organizations have collaborated for decades and already share doctors with admitting privileges at both facilities. [Read More]

Medicare could save $1 billion next year
Medicare will finally utilize a competitive bidding process to purchase medical equipment and supplies in 10 geographic regions around the nation. The new prices are scheduled to take effect July 1, and could potentially save Medicare $1 billion next year. For example, Medicare now pays about $83 a month for diabetic testing supplies, and the program is estimated to reduce those payments to about $48 per month. [Read More]
Leaders Forum

The Executive's Guide to Value-Based Purchasing
One of your hospital's most significant payers has just notified you that, starting next year, it plans to withhold $1 million annually in reimbursement. The hospital may have a chance to regain some of that money, but only if you hit certain quality benchmarks and can demonstrate performance that exceeds that of your competition. This isn't a pie-in-the-sky scheme concocted by the insurance industry to boost revenue and please Wall Street. Welcome to the reality of the federal government's proposed Value-Based Purchasing program. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines

Hospitals snatch up Dallas-area land for future medical systems
Dallas Morning News - March 25, 2008
Health insurers limit advanced scans
AP/Yahoo News - March 24, 2008
Code-red situation has Washington state hospitals diverting patients
Seattle Times - March 24, 2008
Louisville hospital to add new care center
Louisville Courier-Journal - March 19, 2008
North Carolina hospital put on notice
Raleigh News & Observer - March 21, 2008
Cost savings, patient preferences propel home-based services
Cleveland Plain Dealer - March 19, 2008
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From HealthLeaders Magazine
Your Hospital, the Entrepreneur
Forget those fixed-income investments. Many organizations are funding early-stage healthcare ventures. [Read More]
Community Call
Discussion Board
Each week, Community Call will pose a question to encourage community and rural hospital leaders to share success stories and best practices. This week's question is "Any suggestions on how to implement a hospitalist program in small community hospitals?"
Audio Feature
Mississippi Data Exchange: Chuck Clark, chief information officer of the Coastal Family Health Center in Biloxi, MS, shares what he has learned from a statewide initiative to implement electronic health records across seven community health centers. [Listen Now]
Sponsor Community and Rural Hospital
Contact Lisa Brown, Director of Integrated Sales, at or call 781.639.1872.
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