The American College of Cardiology published an expert consensus document on managing bleeding in patients taking oral anticoagulants in its Journal of the American College of Cardiology, adding to its recent consensus report on managing anticoagulation in patients with nonvalvular atrial fibrillation. Writing committee chairman Dr. Gordon Tomaselli said the pathway provides a "conceptual framework to support clinician decision-making" for patients with bleeding complications who are taking oral anticoagulant therapy.
The CMS this week added quality measures related to the influenza vaccine, methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus bacteremia, and Clostridium difficile infection to its compare websites for inpatient rehabilitation facilities and long-term hospital stays. The influenza measures include the percentage of patients and health care personnel who get vaccinated.
The HHS Office of Inspector General approved a drug company's pilot program to give a private Medicare Advantage plan real-time access to a hospital's electronic discharge records so that plan pharmacists can use the information in patient medication management to improve transitions of care and reduce readmissions. The program participants were not identified but a vendor would provide a technology interface to allow access to the data.
A study in the Journal of International Medical Research found that integration of a clinical pharmacist into primary care medical home practices increased the likelihood of improved and faster management of diseases, increased ambulatory encounters, and lowered drug costs. Pharmacists in the Collaborative Pharmacist Support Services program of Salt Lake City's Intermountain Healthcare worked in clinics to adjust medications, monitor safety and choose generics when appropriate.
A video game called "Night Shift" increased emergency department physicians' ability to appropriately assess trauma patients, compared with ED physicians who were provided educational materials, researchers reported in The BMJ. The game design focused on the part of the brain linked to using pattern recognition and past experience to subconsciously make quick decisions.
The American Medical Association and Accenture surveyed about 1,300 US physicians and found that 83% reported experiencing a cybersecurity attack, with phishing and computer viruses cited as the most common causes of cyberattacks. Just over half of respondents said they were very or extremely concerned about their organizations being affected by cyberattacks in the future, and about three-quarters said clinical practice interruption and security of patient records were their top concerns.
Health care providers seeking EHR optimization in their organizations should conduct initial and ongoing EHR training classes for newly hired physicians and staff, according to a KLAS best-practices list. Researchers found that personalization settings that allow quick data retrieval and chart reviews help improve clinician satisfaction, and a culture of user empowerment and IT service is typically found in successful organizations.
HHS held a two-day Code-a-Thon to focus on using data and technology to help address the opioid crisis. One of the winning teams came up with a way to track overdoses in a community in real time so first responders and authorities know where to send resources.
House Republicans introduced a set of bills that would postpone the Affordable Care Act's tax on health insurance for two years, the medical device tax for five years and a tax on high-cost plans for one year, and these bills could be merged with spending legislation expected to be approved by Dec. 22. The tax on health insurance, which is scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, would be postponed next year for payers offering plans with premium rebates, while the delay for all other plans would begin in 2019.
Peace is not unity in similarity but unity in diversity, in the comparison and conciliation of differences.
Mikhail Gorbachev, political leader
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