HealthLeaders Media Corner Office - February 5, 2010 | A QUEST to Improve Healthcare Cost and Quality View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
A QUEST to Improve Healthcare Cost and Quality
Philip Betbeze, Senior Editor-Leadership

While the president started 2009 with a promise to reform healthcare, that process seems as though it's on life support. I've detailed many times in this space the shower of good ideas for improving quality and cutting cost in healthcare that have hit the cutting room floor as the healthcare reform debate devolved into an exercise in trying to cover the uninsured. That's why the QUEST program, a joint project with the Institute for Healthcare Improvement and the Premier Healthcare Alliance, is a ray of light in the darkness. QUEST provides a framework that helps hospitals do what they have trouble doing alone—cutting costs and improving quality.
[Read More]
  February 5, 2010

Editor's Picks
The Christ Hospital Settles Whistleblower Suit with Feds
The Christ Hospital in Cincinnati has agreed to settle a federal whistleblower suit alleging that the hospital ran a kickback scheme with physicians to funnel patients to its cardiac care center. These whistleblower suits seem to come one or two a week these days, but even in the midst of that volume, a $100 million settlement qualifies as pretty big news. My colleague John Commins does a nice job covering all the angles. [Read More]
Obama suggests Republicans could have a role in healthcare bill
It looks as though soon we'll have an answer as to whether the current healthcare reform bills are salvageable. In a conciliatory note, President Obama suggested Republicans could be enlisted to play at least some role in negotiating a final bill. Given the narrow filibuster-proof majority Democrats have enjoyed for a year, this offer may have come too late. That's not to excuse Republicans from their own political hay-making during the bills' evolution, but the bottom line is the bottom line, and if some kind of reform legislation can't be salvaged, it will be yet another chapter of missed opportunities in the decades-long battle to reform a bloated and inefficient healthcare system. [Read More]
The decline of St. Vincent's Hospital Manhattan
Excellent story about how a bad payer mix and lack of contracting clout—along with a few other factors they didn't control well—have sent New York's venerable St. Vincent's Hospital to the brink of another bankruptcy filing. Keeping a hospital like this afloat seems difficult, if not impossible, in the current healthcare business environment. Below in the "This Week's Headlines" section, you'll see where they got an emergency loan from the state to keep bankruptcy at bay a little longer. [Read More]
Live ED Overhaul Webcast on February 23
Join HealthLeaders Media on February 23 for HealthLeaders Media Rounds: ED Overhaul: Reduce costs, improve quality, and increase satisfaction from 9 a.m.-noon, PST. This three-hour Webcast features discussion—including interactive Q&A—of the key issues impacting ED management. Hear top executives from Scripps Health, Tomball Regional Hospital, William Beaumont Hospital, and Methodist Healthcare share solutions to: crowding and wait times, streamlining the admission process, ED and hospital integration, staffing plans that reduce costs and increase coverage during peak hours, physician alignment, and quality and patient safety improvement. For more information and to register click here. To attend the program live on the Scripps La Jolla campus, click here.
This Week's Headlines
Bankruptcy Judge OKs St. Mary's Hospital's Reorganization Plan
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - February 4, 2010
Business Associates Can Pay Directly for Breaches
Dom Nicastro, for HealthLeaders Media - February 4, 2010
House Still Taking Aim at Insurers' Antitrust Exemption
Janice Simmons, for HealthLeaders Media - February 3, 2010
Miami-based Jackson Health System is bleeding red ink
Miami Herald - February 3, 2010
HealthNet Reports $49 Million Net Loss in 2009
Joe Cantlupe, for HealthLeaders Media - February 3, 2010
Public health tab to hit milestone
Wall Street Journal - February 4, 2010
St. Vincent's Hospital Manhattan gets loans for a four-week reprieve
New York Times - February 4, 2010
Doctors Sue To Stop Unsupervised Nurse Anesthetists from Administering Anesthesia
Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media - February 3, 2010

Webcasts/Audio Conferences
ED Overhaul: Reduce costs, improve quality, and increase satisfaction (February 23)
Physician Compensation Models in a Strained Economy (March 8)
Marketing Oncology: Service Line Strategies for Marketers (On Demand)

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From HealthLeaders Magazine
Five Strategies that Prove Healthcare is Still a Growth Industry

HealthLeaders January 2010
Here is a review of growth opportunities that will increase revenue, decrease costs, or enhance services in the areas of leadership, finance, physicians, technology, health plans, quality, and outcomes. [Read More]
Service Line Management
The Sports Center

Famous athletes and big sports programs may be the public face of sports medicine, but at its core are local communities and, increasingly, the unconventional athlete. [Read More]
View from the Top

The New Sheriff in Town: The Unique Role of an Interim Manager: Part 1: Charles Van Sluyter has served as an interim healthcare executive for 15 hospitals in nine states. Interim management positions offer a "test drive" period for both the person hired and the client hospital for potentially converting to a permanent role, he says. In part one of his column, Van Sluyter addresses the interim manager's lifestyle, how to find interim work, and how to best assess a potential client hospital before signing on. [Read More]
Audio Feature

The Value of Partnerships: Jim Molpus, HealthLeaders Media director of strategic relationships, talks about a new interactive offering from HealthLeaders Media, Breakthroughs: Aligning Hospitals and Physicians Toward Value. This detailed, and free, report provides case studies of four leading healthcare organizations, as well as audio, video and commentary from a recent live roundtable discussion with the four CEOs of those organizations. [Listen Now]
Sponsor HealthLeaders Media Corner Office

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