HealthLeaders Media HR - August 31, 2009 | Reagan Era Law Needs Obama Era Action
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Reagan Era Law Needs Obama Era Action
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media

There are a lot of things in healthcare that defy common sense. For example, healthcare is one of the few areas where new technology often adds to cost, and where the proverbial pound of cure is rewarded far more than the ounce of prevention. So, it shouldn't have been a complete surprise to learn that—22 years after Congress passed legislation that would allow for a Healthcare Integrity and Protection Data Bank to document disciplinary problems among more healthcare professionals—hospitals and nursing homes still can't access the data. [Read More]
  August 31, 2009

Editor's Picks
Online Job Ads Increase
In what appears to be another signal that the recession may have bottomed out, a new report shows that online job listings are on the increase in many employment sectors, with healthcare practitioners and technicians leading the way. The Conference Board's Help Wanted Online Data Series report, which tracks more than 1,000 online job boards across the United States, found that advertised vacancies for healthcare practitioners and technical occupations grew by 52,700 listings in August, for a total of 574,400. [Read More]
Healthcare costs hikes hurt employer-sponsored insurance
Regardless of your views on healthcare reform, it is hard to argue that the current system is financially sustainable. Consider a new report from RAND, which shows that rapidly rising healthcare costs, which are taking up greater portions of the gross domestic product, are having an adverse effect on many major industries—especially those that have higher percentages of workers with employer-sponsored insurance. For example, between 1987 to 2005, when healthcare costs rose rapidly from 10.8% to 15.2% of the GDP, the workforces in industries with larger percentages of workers with employer-sponsored insurance grew more slowly. For instance, in the utilities industry, in which about 84% of workers have employer-sponsored insurance, the workforce shrank by 2.8%. On the other hand, the workforce in the construction industry, with only about 43% of workers having employer-sponsored insurance, was up about 2.1% annually; and in the hotel industry, in which 54% of workers have health insurance, the workforce grew 1%. [Read More]
Hospital chaplains answer call to do more
Physicians, nurses, rad techs, and other hands-on caregivers aren't the only people in high demand at hospitals. The Boston Globe does a nice job describing the increasing demands placed upon hospital chaplains, whose duties have expanded beyond the traditional role of providing last rites and anointing the sick, to include family counseling on a wide variety of treatment options, including end-of-life decisions. [Read More]
Healthcare reform 'what ifs' undermine confidence
This is one of the better stories I've seen detailing the legitimate concerns that hospital executives have in the healthcare reform debate. The fact is, healthcare reform is so complex that it is inevitable that many very important questions still remain unanswered. Right now, we really don't even have an idea about what—if anything—will emerge from Congress. The longer Congress takes to craft a reform package, the more difficult it will be to sell to an increasingly skeptical American public. [Read More]
Executives on the Move
MARIANNA, FL: Meese named CEO at Jackson Hospital
Larry Meese has been named permanent CEO of Jackson Hospital. He took over this month and succeeded Richard McConahy, who has served as interim CEO since Jan. 1. Meese most recently served as CEO of Santa Rosa Medical Center in Milton and COO positions at Gadsden, AL, and Mooresville, NC, hospitals. He is a veteran of the United States Army. [Read More]

CHICAGO: BCBS IL president to retire
Paul Boulis is retiring as president of Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Illinois, the state's largest health plan. Boulis, 59, will step down effective Dec. 31 after 25 years with Illinois Blue Cross, a subsidiary of Chicago-based Health Care Service Corp. He will be replaced by another Illinois Blue Cross veteran, Karen Atwood, 53, senior vice president of the company's national division, which manages more than 350 major national, municipal, and labor accounts. Under Boulis, Illinois Blue Cross grew to more than 7 million health plan subscribers and 30,000 employer groups. Like Atwood, he spent much of his career overseeing the important national accounts business, which is designed to cover employees at large multi-state employers. [Read More]

NASHVILLE: Snow to direct St. Thomas Hospital's emergency services
Saint Thomas Hospital has named Tara Snow, RN, Director of Emergency Services. Snow has served as the interim director of the Emergency Department since April 2009. Snow has previously served in the Emergency Department as an admissions coordinator, nursing supervisor, manager for nursing resources, IV therapy nurse, nursing supervisor, and patient care services nurse. [Read More]

KNOX, ID: Satkoski named CEO at Starke Memorial
Linda Satkoski has been named CEO of Starke Memorial Hospital, effective immediately. Satkoski, who previously was senior vice president of physician relations/patient care services for LaPorte Regional Health System, has been serving as interim CEO at Starke Memorial since July 1. Starke Memorial was recently acquired by LRHS. [Read More]

DENVER: Donovan named CEO at Reliant Healthcare Professionals Inc.
Reliant Healthcare Professionals, Inc., which operates FASTAFF Travel Nursing and U.S. Nursing Corp., announced that Patrick Donovan has assumed the role of CEO. Donovan most recently served as President of Linde Healthcare and Kendall & Davis, respectively a locum tenens and permanent physician staffing agency. After founding the company in 1995, he led Linde Healthcare and Kendall & Davis to acquisition by MedFinders, now a Goldman Sachs Urban Investment Group company, in 2005. [Read More]

From HealthLeaders Magazine
Hang On

Get ready for the failure of the HIT stimulus dream, episode of care contracting, the end of easy credit, and a public plan. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Ralph de la Torre, MD, CEO of Boston's Caritas Christi Health Care, discusses his system's "alternative quality contract" with Blue Cross Blue Shield of Massachusetts. [Listen Now]
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