HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - October 3, 2008 | When Leadership Is Lonely and Uncomfortable View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
When Leadership Is
Lonely and Uncomfortable

Carrie Vaughan, Senior Editor-Leadership

The nation may be split on whether Congress should pass the $700 billion bailout plan for the financial industry. But one thing that people—both Republicans and Democrats—seemed to agree on this week was that legislators displayed a profound lack of leadership. The public view is that leaders need to be able to make tough decisions regardless of public sentiment—and healthcare is no exception.
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  October 3, 2008

Editor's Picks
HCA chief to retire
Jack O. Bovender Jr., is giving up the reins of Nashville-based HCA Inc. on Jan. 1 to Richard M. Bracken, HCA's president and chief operating officer. Bovender, who came out of retirement in 1997 to help lead the organization amid a federal fraud investigation, will remain HCA's executive chairman for another year. [Read More]
Healthcare's version of Big Brother
Medica Health Plans' new "health coach" program aims to help people live healthier lives. These types of programs often help businesses rein in costs by helping employees diet, exercise, quit smoking, and manage their chronic diseases. But Medica's initiative takes it one step further. It uses a computer program to identify which members of the plan need help the most. Critics are concerned that the program is encroaching on individuals' life and lifestyle and could eventually lead to higher premiums for the at-risk patients. [Read More]
New owner for HealthSouth's abandoned hospital
HealthSouth's unfinished $250 million "digital hospital" may soon be complete. Birmingham, AL-based Trinity Medical Center plans to buy and invest $236 million to complete the facility that was abandoned after Richard Scrushy, former HealthSouth chief executive officer, was ousted in 2003 following an FBI raid of the headquarters. [Read More]
Companies pay Mayo Clinic prices to save on healthcare costs
Foundation Coal Holdings Inc. has a unique approach to cutting its healthcare costs—encourage employees to seek out the nation's best medical care even if it is out of state. About two-thirds of employees' surgeries have actually proven to be cheaper at better-rated hospitals out of state. And even when the price was higher, the Linthicum Heights, MD-based company has saved money by reducing misdiagnoses, complications, and repeat procedures. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines
National scorecard ranks palliative care across country
HealthDay/Washington Post - October 3, 2008
Labor groups launch website to monitor Beth Israel
Boston Globe - October 2, 2008
Financial crisis takes a toll on hospitals
Wall Street Journal (Blog) - October 2, 2008
Massachusetts gets $10.6 billion for healthcare insurance
Boston Globe - October 1, 2008
Medicare won't pay for medical errors
New York Times - October 1, 2008
St. Luke exec leaving when merger's done
Cincinnati Enquirer - September 30, 2008
Chicago medical center, heading for closure, files for Chapter 11
Chicago Tribune - September 30, 2008
5 Ways to Hospital-Physician Quality: Goals, Incentives, Dialogue, Staff, IT (Live)
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From HealthLeaders Magazine
10 Events That Could Change Healthcare

HealthLeaders September 2007
No one knows what the future holds, but these scenarios could significantly alter the healthcare landscape and pose formidable strategic, financial, and clinical challenges for senior leaders. Get ready. [Read More]
View from the Top

What to Say Now: The most recent comments by health finance experts are that our industry will be relatively unharmed by this financial mess. (So far, at least.) But these experts are talking about the math of "access to capital" and "triple A ratings." They are not talking about the culture of your organization or the psyche of your employees. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Domestic Medical Travel: Ronald Miles, MD, a cardiothoracic surgeon, discusses Aspirus Wausau (WI) Hospital's strategy to expand its target area by participating in a domestic medical travel network. [Listen Now]
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