In The News

Docs-To-Be Spending Less Time Bedside, 4-30-13, PhysBizTech  

Madelyn Kearns reports clinicians-to-be are losing touch, according to a recent Johns Hopkins study, which clocks the time medical interns spend talking and examining patients at 12 percent, superior only to time spent walking about a facility (7 percent) and partaking in other miscellaneous tasks (9 percent).

Political Battle Over Health Law Starts Next Chapter, 5-3-13, NPR  

Mara Liasson reports in the three years since the Affordable Care Act became law; public opinion has remained divided with as many Americans opposing the law as supporting it. When Americans begin signing up for health insurance under the act, opinion may finally begin to shake loose.

U.S. Adults Need To Step Up Aerobic Activity, 5-3-13, PhysBizTech  

Frank Irving report only about one in five U.S. adults are meeting both the aerobic and muscle strengthening components of the federal government’s physical activity recommendations, according to a report published May 3 in Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report, a journal of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Not Big On Rules, 5-4-13, Modern HealthCare  

John D. Thomas writes about how many experienced physicians are seeing a real shift in the kind of people who will be going into medicine, and being turned off by the many non physicians regulating how physicians are doing their jobs.  

Holding Noses, Insurers Start Hawking Obamacare, 5-5-13, Politico

Jennifer Haberkorn reports the insurance industry may have a love-hate relationship with Obamacare, but a “train wreck” is definitely not good for the bottom line. So health insurers are planning campaigns for the summer and fall to persuade a skeptical public to sign up and get covered by the health reform law.

How a ‘Million-Dollar Patient’ Got Off A Medical Merry-Go-Round, 5-5-13, LA Times

Anna Gorman reports starting next year, clinics in rural and urban areas will receive an influx of millions of newly insured patients — many with complex, chronic diseases — and face higher expectations to keep costs down. Many of those patients are so ill — or resistant to altering behaviors — that they repeatedly cycle through expensive emergency rooms and hospital beds.

GOP Candidates’ Top Campaign Issue Will Be Obamacare ‘Train Wreck’ , 5-6-13, Huffington Post

Wendell Potter reports that Obamacare — even though it already has reduced the number of uninsured Americans by several million and has limited price gouging by insurance companies — represents the best hope that many Republicans will have of maintaining or boosting their majority in the House and possibly retaking the Senate.

Med School Enrollment to Rise 30 Percent, 5-6-13, PhysBizTech  

Mary Mosquera reports U.S. medical schools are on track to increase their enrollment 30 percent by 2017, according to results of the annual Medical School Enrollment Survey conducted by the Association of American Medical Colleges (AAMC) Center for Workforce Studies, released May 2.

Medicaid Contractor Sues Jindal Administration in La., Over Scrapping of $200m Deal , 5-6-13, Washington Post

The Associated Press reports a Maryland-based company whose nearly $200 million Medicaid contract was canceled amid an ongoing federal investigation sued Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal’s administration Monday for terminating the deal.

Doctors’ Diagnostic Errors Are Often Not Mentioned but Can Take a Serious Toll, 5-6-13, Kaiser Health News

Sandra G. Boodman reports diagnoses that are missed, incorrect or delayed are believed to affect 10 to 20 percent of cases, far exceeding drug errors and surgery on the wrong patient or body part, both of which have received considerably more attention.

Blue Cross: Rates Will Rise Under New Federal Health Care Law, 5-6-13, Charlotte Observer  

John Murawski reports in a signpost pointing to health insurance changes under the nation’s new health care law, North Carolina’s largest insurer has warned of steep rate increases for customers who have typically paid below-average premiums.

Slowdown in Health Costs’ Rise May Last as Economy Revives , 5-6-13, New York Times  

Annie Lowrey reports one of the economic mysteries of the last few years has been the bigger-than-expected slowdown in health spending, a trend that promises to bolster wages and help close the wide federal deficit over the long term — but only if it persists.

‘Care Guides’ Show another Face of Health Reform , 5-8-13, Star Tribune

Maura Lerner reports “care guides” are part of a fast-growing, and hotly debated, trend in medicine: Putting people with minimal (if any) medical expertise on the front lines — with titles like patient navigator or coach — to help improve care, and rein in the costs, of patients with chronic illnesses.


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