Healthcare Quicklinks 1701

Healthcare is ever-changing, so it’s important to stay up to date on advancements and issues that may impact the development, operation, maintenance, and growth of your services. Here are some important developments:

Cardiovascular biomarker score helps identify atrial fibrillation patients at risk of stroke, death

An analysis of a randomized trial found that a cardiovascular biomarker score may help predict the risk for stroke, systemic embolic events and death in patients with atrial fibrillation. The biomarkers were cardiac troponin I, N-terminal pro-B-type natriuretic peptide and D-dimer levels. Lead researcher Christian T. Ruff, MD, of Brigham and Women’s Hospital and Harvard Medical School in Boston, and colleagues published their results online in JAMA Cardiology. Continue reading…

Clear and present danger: Act now on medical device cybersecurity

The current state of medical device cyber readiness and compliance requires an immediate industry-wide call to action. Manufacturers and healthcare providers must collaborate to identify cyber security and privacy risks, to plan for mitigation and remediation, and to ensure that all patients are safe and secure. As medical device manufacturers continuously update and maintain their device portfolio, as well as innovate new products, the need to embed cyber security and privacy capabilities into the design, build, and maintenance of these devices is fundamental. Continue reading…

How doctors can manage MACRA

2017 will bring a lot will change for clinicians who treat Medicare patients, and yet many physicians and nurses don’t understand what they need to do. Effective January 1, how doctors treat Medicare patients will be measured by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). It’s part of the overall move away from fee-for-service to value-based care. By 2018, HHS seeks to have 90 percent of Medicare payments linked to quality. Here’s how doctors can manage the transition: Continue reading…

Pay-for-performance is here to stay – hospitals better pay attention

Soon a significant chunk of hospital revenue will be at risk, under a series of Medicare pay-for-performance programs. The idea behind P4P is simple. Third-party payers, like insurance companies or the Medicare program, will monitor the quality of care offered by health care providers like hospitals. High-quality providers will receive more money than low-quality ones, thereby giving providers an incentive to improve the quality of care they provide. Medicare has created several P4P programs, which, unless they are halted by the Trump administration, are slowly coming into effect. By 2017, these programs could put a sixth of Medicare payment at risk. Continue reading…

Marketing is a must for small practices

Years ago, it was not ethical to advertise your practice. You were only allowed a small picture of yourself with an announcement that you had opened a practice listing your training and office hours as a one-time write up in the local newspaper. Your practice was built on word of mouth and referrals from other physicians. Later, the Justice Department and the AMA reached an agreement permitting physicians to advertise without facing the ethical issues for doing so. Medicine isn’t just a profession, it’s also a business. To stay in business, you have to market yourself. Continue reading…

10 collection tactics for high-deductible patients

Patient collections are much more than collecting $10 copays: those days are long gone. Patients are paying a greater percentage of what you get paid and will be paying an ever higher percentage in the years to come. Smart and consistent patient collections tactics must be a part of every practice’s financial strategy. Consider a few eye-opening stats from a 2015 survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation on employer health benefits that emphasize why patient collections must be a priority now and for the foreseeable future: Continue reading…


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