HealthLeaders Media PhysicianLeaders - March 25, 2010 | Why Healthcare Reform is a Big Deal View as a Webpage | Subscribe for Free
Why Healthcare Reform is a Big Deal
Elyas Bakhtiari, Managing Editor

I personally know one of those 32 million whose prospects for real medical care improved with the stroke of President Obama's pen this week, and so does every physician who provides uncompensated care or spends time in an ED. This is why what happened this week matters and why Vice President Joe Biden emphatically referred to it as a "big . . . deal" (with Biden's own kind of emphasis). [Read More]
  March 25, 2010

Editor's Picks
Reform legislation limits physician-owned hospitals
The long battle over whether physicians should be allowed to own specialty hospitals may have been resolved with the passage of healthcare reform this week, and physician owners were on the losing side. For years, legislators have been tacking provisions to ban physician-owned hospitals onto unrelated bills. This week's legislation bans existing hospitals from expanding unless they meet certain allowable growth criteria and bans new ones from contracting with Medicare. [Read More]
Mystery shoppers may be used to find fraud
Included in the pending reconciliation amendments to the healthcare reform bill is a provision to pay physicians and other health professionals to go undercover by posing as patients to root out fraud. The AMA, for one, isn't supportive of the idea. "We are partnering with HHS and the Justice Dept. to address fraud, and we strongly recommend the government target areas where fraud occurs most, instead of wasting physician time that could be better spent caring for real patients," said AMA President J. James Rohack, MD. [Read More]
Primary Care Docs Concerned About How to Care for 32 Million Newly Insured
Primary care doctors are turning their focus to the challenge of providing care to 32 million new patients now that healthcare reform has passed. Given the shortages, it won't be easy. But the key isn't having more doctors, necessarily. Leaders of two primary care physicians' organizations say new practice techniques, technologies, efficiencies, and an emphasis on wellness and prevention will help mitigate many access issues in the coming years. [Read More]
Sebelius Pushes for Medicare to Pay Based on Quality, Value
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius presented a letter to the Quality Care Coalition this week indicating that Medicare may be soon moving away from a fee-for-service system to a more quality- and value-based system. This has been a big missing piece of the healthcare reform puzzle, but the creation of the Independent Payment Advisory Board lays the framework for making payment reform happen. [Read More]
Business Rx
Don't Fear Integration; Just Get It Right
Independent practice associations appear to be on the decline, but providers should give such alliances a second look. [Read More]
Physician News
FL Physicians to Pay $12M to Settle False Claims Suit
John Commins, for HealthLeaders Media - March 24, 2010
Cardiology Group Fights Medicare Pay Cuts by Offering Concierge Services
Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media - March 19, 2010
Florida ponders tort changes that include giving ER doctors malpractice protection
St. Petersburg Times - March 25, 2010

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