HealthLeaders Media Community and Rural Hospital Weekly - July 30, 2008 View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free

Effective Physician Recruitment Tools
Carrie Vaughan, Editor, Community Hospitals
One key component of physician satisfaction is how responsive administrators are to physicians' ideas and needs. Rural hospitals tend to excel in this aspect of physician relations, which is probably one of the main reasons why rural doctors have higher satisfaction rates. [Read More]
July 30, 2008
Editor's Picks

$13 billion rural health bill approved
Last week, the Senate passed the Health Care Safety Net Act, which will help improve access to healthcare for millions of rural Americans. The legislation provides $12.9 billion to rural and medically underserved areas through three programs: the Public Health Service Act, which provides additional funding for community health centers; the National Health Service Corps, which provides scholarships and loan repayments to clinicians that work in health professional shortage areas; and Title III Rural Health Programs, which help coordinate care in rural areas through network development grants and telehealth, for example. [Read More]

The battle begins
Hospitals in Birmingham, AL, are joining a nationwide trend and expanding services into the more lucrative surrounding suburban markets. As this story discusses, however, heavy competition between these hospitals means they had better prepare themselves for a long battle through the state's certificate-of-need process. [Read More]

41 hospital beds up for grabs in Wake County, NC
Speaking of long, drawn out battles. North Carolina has said that Wake County's hospital system can grow by 41 beds and four operating rooms this year, according to the Certificate of Need Section of the N.C. Division of Health Service Regulation. So let the bidding begin. First up: Winston-Salem-based Novant Health wants to build a 46-bed, $110 million hospital in Holly Springs, NC. [Read More]

Vets need more accessible healthcare services
Last year, I wrote about the problems surrounding veterans' access to healthcare—especially in rural areas. This is a huge problem and one that everyone wants to see resolved. Joseph Scotti, a West Virginia University psychology professor, recently told the U.S. Senate Veterans' Affairs Committee that the private healthcare sector needed to collaborate with the VA on offering services to veterans. A pilot program in Kansas aims to do just that. If approved, the Rural Veterans Access to Care Act would enable vets living in remote areas in Kansas to receive veterans health benefits from local doctors or hospitals. [Read More]
Leaders Forum

Implications of Severity-Graded DRGs for Service Line Structure
While changes to severity-graded DRGs should ideally tie Medicare payments to hospital costs, more accurately reflecting the severity of illness, healthcare infrastructures are in need of reorganization. In Part I of this article, the authors examined the current use and challenges service line structures face in today's healthcare systems. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines

Vanderbilt proposal gets OK in Spring Hill, TN
The Tennessean – July 24, 2008
HRSA halts proposed rule revising medically underserved areas
Rural Assistance Center – July 29, 2008
Neighbors of proposed Pennsylvania hospital end challenges
Philadelphia Inquirer – July 24, 2008
Missouri-based CoxHealth resolves allegations of Medicare fraud
Kansas City Star – July 24, 2008
California freezes Medi-Cal payments to thousands of healthcare facilities
Los Angeles Times – July 24, 2008
Health plan from Obama spurs debate
New York Times – July 23, 2008
Help wanted: U.S. has a shortage of trained health workers
Los Angeles Times – July 28, 2008
From HealthLeaders Magazine
The Hospital of the Future
  Sure, your organization offers sophisticated, compassionate care. But the patients of tomorrow will want much more than that. [Read More]
Community Call
Discussion Board
We are closing our skilled-nursing unit at the hospital, any advice on how to inform our community?