By the Numbers

A look at healthcare-related headlines…

45 — Under the provisions of the health law, 45 preventive services currently graded as A or B by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force must be offered free by Medicare and new private insurance policies. But according to a study just published in the Annals of Family Medicine, tests and services don’t necessarily have to be rated effective to be covered: Medicare also reimburses physicians for a number of tests the task force recommends against.

6 — Rochell Pierce, vice president of physician relationship management for Brentwood, Tenn.-based Aegis Health Group, expands on the following six secrets for improved alignment between hospitals and physicians for Becker’s Hospital Review

5,000 — US Oncology (The Woodlands, TX) is considering the launch of a national Medicare oncology ACO, depending on what is contained in the soon-to-be-released final federal rules. The statute’s requirement states that an ACO needs at least 5,000 patients, so it could presumably mean 5,000 cancer patients. When cancer becomes the primary diagnosis, the oncologist basically handles the patient’s primary care, so while the ACO patients may require occasional care from other sources, including primary care physicians or specialists such as cardiologists or rheumatologists, only oncologists would be affiliated with the Medicare oncology ACO. Management feels that the time is ripe for oncology practices to approach commercial managed care organizations and begin ACO discussions, setting the fee schedule and expenditure targets and a shared-savings arrangement.

245-189 — The Republican-led House voted to repeal the health-care overhaul that is a signature achievement of President Barack Obama, in a largely symbolic move that made good on a GOP election promise but left uncertain what the party would offer as an alternative.

122 – Cases of bed sores or pressure points reported in Minnesota hospitals. The Health Department says Minnesota hospitals are making too many mistakes. While mistakes by medical staff are still considered rare, the experts say even one is too many.

12.8 Million – In savings. The Solutions for Patient Safety initiative, made up of the Cardinal Health Foundation (Dublin, OH), the Ohio Business Roundtable (Columbus, OH), the Central Ohio Hospital Council (Columbus, OH), the Ohio Hospital Association (Columbus, OH), the Ohio Children’s Hospital Association (Columbus, OH), and 25 hospitals throughout the state, saw more than $12.8 million in healthcare savings, more than 900 fewer patient days spent in the hospital and nearly 3,600 fewer adverse drug events and infections in children. The patient safety initiative launched in January 2009 and was funded with a $1.5 million investment from the Cardinal Health Foundation.
 

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