HealthLeaders Media Community and Rural Hospital Weekly - September 2, 2009
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CA Hospitals Fight for Right to Hire Docs on Constitutional Grounds
Cheryl Clark, Editor, Community Hospitals
Does the Medical Practice Act, which bars California hospitals from hiring doctors, violate the 14th Amendment, the one that guarantees equal protection under the law? Welcome to the latest argument in the campaign by California's hospitals to recruit and retain primary care providers and specialists by hiring them and offering them benefits. [Read More]
September 2, 2009
Editor's Picks

Retail Clinics Providing Similar Quality of Care as EDs, Physicians' Offices
Physicians, take heed. Some of your bread-and-butter business may face stiff competition from retail clinics. Apparently the quality of care in retail clinics is similar to that provided in physician offices and urgent care centers. Even though emergency departments may have more sophisticated diagnostic equipment, retail clinics' care in certain conditions is superior to that found in an ED. [Read More]

Health Coverage Does Not Protect Against Incurring Medical Debt
Two thirds of those answering a California survey who said they had medical debt had health coverage, a surprising finding in this study by the UCLA Center for Health Policy Research. The problem, the researchers discovered, is that many people are buying health plan products with high deductibles that they then have trouble paying off. [Read More]

The Fight to Prove the Value of Hospitalists
Institutions that utilized hospitalists scored higher in two of three quality markers—acute myocardial infarction and pneumonia—when they used hospitalists to provide care, according to a study in the Archives of Internal Medicine. That may be because they live in the hospital, and can see the entire process of care. Experts suggest that if hospital executives are worried about paying for hospitalists, they should find the money, because they will save in the long run by avoiding mistakes. [Read More]

Many Hospitals Not Allowed Access to Names of Disciplined Nurses, Pharmacists
This is a rather frightening story about the failure of hospitals to gain access to the names of disciplined nurses and other non-physician health providers they may be considering for employment, or may actually have on their staffs now. A federal law allows this information to be moved to a databank where health industry employers can access it, but administrations have lagged on setting forth the regulations. Public Citizen urges HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius to get moving. [Read More]
Leaders Forum

Seven Strategies to Solve Healthcare's Cost Problem
As the White House and Congress pursue comprehensive healthcare reform, one fact remains clear: The status quo is unsustainable and the growth of healthcare spending must be slowed. [Read More]
This Week's Headlines

Mexico's healthcare lures Americans
USA Today ? September 1, 2009
Study raises questions about cost savings from preventive care
Washington Post ? September 1, 2009
Georgia-based Gwinnett Medical faces fight over open heart surgery
Atlanta Journal-Constitution ? September 2, 2009
Hospital executives worry about the what-ifs of reform
Washington Post ? August 31, 2009

Webcasts/Audio Conferences

Marketing to Physicians: Build Relationships to Increase Referrals (October 22)
Service Lines Strategies Workshop 2009: Gastroenterology (On Demand)
Advanced Service Line Marketing: New Orthopedics Growth Strategies (On Demand)

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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]
Service Line Management
Making Wellness Work
Wellness and weight loss programs aren't major revenue generators, but healthcare reformers know they cannot effectively control costs without focusing more on prevention. [Read More]
Audio Feature
A Quality Contract: 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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