Contracting News November/December 2007

Scottsdale Thompson Peak Hospital opens
Scottsdale Healthcare (Scottsdale, Ariz.) opened 64-bed Scottsdale Thompson Peak Hospital (Scottsdale, Ariz.) on Nov. 5, 2007. The new hospital offers a 12-bed ER, 56 telemetry-capable inpatient beds, an eight-bed ICU, six operating rooms, and two interventional labs. Services include inpatient and outpatient general surgery; internal medicine, including cardiology and gastroenterology; orthopedics; ear, nose and throat; maxillofacial and plastic surgery; hand surgery; full radiology and cardiology diagnostic services; and the state’s first Ambient Experience MRI and CT suites. In the future, Scottsdale Thompson Peak will be able to expand up to 184 inpatient beds.

MedAssets releases new chargemaster system
Atlanta, Ga.-based MedAssets Net Revenue Systems released its new CDM Master™ chargemaster management technology, which incorporates price defensibility capabilities using proprietary benchmarks that cover 100 percent of the chargemaster, best practice recommendations for coding and compliance, and enhanced capabilities for managing chargemasters for multi-hospital systems. The defensible pricing component allows comparison of a hospital’s pricing against local fee schedules, pricing percentiles, and CMS hospital pricing data. All payor custom and regional pricing benchmarks are also available. CDM Master is also user-friendly, and its integrated work flow management improves communication, accountability and turnaround time.

LSU to open interim psychiatric hospital
Baton Rouge, La.-based LSU Health Care Services Division plans to open an interim psychiatric hospital on the former HCA DePaul Northshore Hospital (Covington, La.) campus, which closed after Hurricane Katrina, and was sold to Children’s Hospital (New Orleans, La.) in 2007. Children’s agreed to lease out one of two buildings on the campus for five years. LSU expects to complete construction on its own downtown teaching hospital by that time. The launch of the interim hospital introduces a major healthcare resource back into New Orleans, where the need for psychiatric beds has reached crisis proportions since the hurricane. The city had 365 psychiatric beds before the storm, but Katrina winnowed the total to 105.

ANAE University completes Training Camp
ANAE University completed its fall Training Camp for Healthcare and National Account Executives. The two-day session was geared toward working with GPOs and IDNs, and included presentations by Premier and Novation, and site visits to MedAssets and Amerinet. “This might have been the best GPO/IDN Training session I’ve seen,” said ANAE Executive Director Gary Gustafson. “We are already taking registrations for the March meeting in Dallas at www.anae.us.”

Letter to the Editor
AdvaMed issues clarification
I am writing to clarify statements regarding colorectal cancer that appeared in an AdvaMed fact sheet supplied to you as part of the recent article (“Manufacturers’ Point of View”) about AdvaMed’s health reform plan.

Excerpts from this fact sheet were published on page 8 of the September/October 2007 issue of the Journal of Healthcare Contracting and your readers were also given the URL of the full fact sheet. The fact sheet stated that “Virtual colonoscopy is more efficient than standard colonoscopy at detecting cancerous polyps.” In general, this statement is not supported by the current medical literature and should not have been stated as a fact.

The fact sheet also cited two different costs for treating colorectal cancer—$8.4 billion and $6.5 billion. While both figures appear in the literature, $8.4 billion is the more generally accepted figure. The fact sheet further stated that national savings from compliance with colon cancer screening recommendations would be $200 million annually. The most recent data suggest the savings are in excess of $300 million annually for avoidable hospital costs, and the citation should have been to the National Committee for Quality Assurance.

In addition, the fact sheet inappropriately presented potentially misleading data on the cost-effectiveness of various cancer screening modalities. As you know, measurement of cost-effectiveness is very complex and simple comparisons of the cost of various procedures can be misleading. The fact sheet did not recognize the invaluable contributions of standard colonoscopies, which the American College of Gastroenterology calls the “current gold standard for colorectal cancer screening and prevention.”

AdvaMed is committed to educating the public, policy makers and others about the importance of medical technology in detecting and treating disease, and we would be deeply distressed if information in that fact sheet might lead even one patient to forgo proven colorectal cancer screening and prevention treatments, such as standard colonoscopy, recommended by their doctor, the American Cancer Society, or other authoritative sources.

We appreciate the opportunity to share with your readers accurate information about the actions that medical technology innovators are taking to help all Americans have access to the best possible care.

Sincerely,
Stephen J. Ubl
President and CEO
The Advanced Medical Technology Association

»» CORRECTION
In the September/October 2007 edition of the Journal of Healthcare Contracting, we incorrectly reported the title of Mike Langlois, subject of that edition’s “Face Time” feature. His title should have read “senior vice president and chief supply chain officer.” JHC regrets the error.

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