HealthLeaders Media PhysicianLeaders - October 1, 2009 | Is Stark Too Restrictive? View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Is Stark Too Restrictive?
Elyas Bakhtiari, Managing Editor

Certain joint venture arrangements between physicians and hospitals may be illegal as of today. This is the day when changes to federal physician self-referral rules—Stark law—that limit specific financial relationships take effect. [Read More]
  October 1, 2009

Editor's Picks
Maryland, Georgia courts review liability caps
Physicians in Maryland and Georgia are trying to defend the states' caps on noneconomic damages as high courts review cases challenging their constitutionality. The Georgia Supreme Court case stems from a February court decision rejecting the constitutionality of the state's $350,000 cap. Maryland is debating whether the state's caps apply only to cases that are arbitrated. Federal lawmakers weren't seriously considering damage caps anyway, but the complications at the state level will likely push them further away. [Read More]
EHR implementation is a journey, not a destination
Technology editor Carrie Vaughan has a great column this week about the unique challenges every physician practice faces in implementing an EHR system. Her jumping off point was actually a recent study that concluded there isn't a single template for successful health IT implementations. That can be frustrating for physicians struggling with implementation, but as the column points out: "Successfully implementing electronic health record systems is just the beginning." [Read More]
Many EDs not caring for patients fast enough
Emergency departments are not caring for patients as quickly as recommended, according to a new study that found a mere 30% of EDs got the majority of their patients seen by a physician within recommended time frames and only 13.8% of EDs achieved the triage target for the majority of patients who needed to see a doctor within one hour. These figures were released as the National Quality Forum is looking for changes to ED quality standards, including measures on wait times and the visit length for admitted patients. [Read More]
Healthcare reform update
The big news this week was the rejection of two public option amendments in the Senate Finance Committee. The public option isn't completely dead yet, though, as it will come up again on the Senate floor and possibly when the House and Senate bills are merged. A triggered option is probably more likely at this point, though. In other news, Senators voted this week in favor of an independent Medicare commission to set payment rates, and the Committee began debating ways to permanently fix the problems with the Sustainable Growth Rate formula. [Read More]
Business Rx
Managing from Metrics
Effectively managing your service line requires not only an investment in developing a comprehensive system of care that engages all the key stakeholders, but also a commitment to continuously tracking, trending, and benchmarking your performance at the service line level. [Read More]
Physician News
60 Massachusetts doctors took speaker fees from drug giant
Boston Globe - September 29, 2009
Mental Illness is One of the Most Costly Conditions
Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media - September 29, 2009
In delivering care, more is not always better, experts say
Washington Post - September 29, 2009
Change of Heart: Online Assessment Reaches Patients Before They Enter ER
Cynthia Johnson, for HealthLeaders Media - September 28, 2009

Audio Conferences/Webcasts
November 17, 2009: Service Lines Strategies Workshop 2009: Stroke Care
November 11, 2009: RAC Strategy: Preserve Margin, Prevent Take-backs, Promote Alignment
October 29, 2009: Flexible Medical Staff Models of the Future
October 22, 2009: Marketing to Physicians: Build Relationships to Increase Referrals

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From HealthLeaders Magazine
The Patient of the Future
HealthLeaders September 2009
Physicians suggest. Patients ignore. Technology alone won't bring them together. But a new relationship just might. [Read More]
Service Line Management
Certifiable Stroke Care
With a growing emphasis on stroke center certification, hospitals must demonstrate that they have the teams in place to treat stroke patients quickly and effectively, or risk losing patients to a competitor down the road. [Read More]
PhysicianLeaders Forum

Four Common Problem Areas in Revenue Cycle Management: Contributor Chittaranjan Mallipeddi, CEO of MedPlexus, outlines four problem areas for physicians related to revenue cycle management and offers solutions to improve the revenue stream. [Read More]
Audio Feature

Sending Secure Patient Data: Wolfgang Bothe, CEO of Stonebranch, discusses the barriers to secure file transfer in physician practices and the possibility of physicians using mobile devices to interact with patients. [Listen Now]
Sponsor PhysicianLeaders

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Resources From HealthLeaders Media

Improve patient satisfaction, CAHPS scores, and quality with the strategies and tools in Physician Entrepreneurs: The Quality Patient Experience.
Learn how to harness the power of a large organization, either by expanding the practice or partnering with hospitals, private investors, or other physician groups, with Physician Entrepreneurs: Strength in Numbers.
Read about the latest business strategies to help you grow beyond traditional practice models in Physician Entrepreneurs: Going Retail.
Start marketing your practice or refine your existing marketing program with Physician Entrepreneurs: Marketing Toolkit, a new HealthLeaders Media book that combines expert tips with marketing samples, tools, forms, and checklists that will help grow your practice.
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