According to the CMS, 561 accountable care organizations will participate in the Medicare Shared Savings Program this year -- 124 new participants, 372 continuing participants and 65 organizations that renewed agreements -- covering 10.5 million lives. The majority of ACOs will be in the upside-only Track 1, but 55 will be in Track 1+, which transitions participants toward accepting some downside risk, eight will be in Track 2 and 38 will be in Track 3, both of which carry downside risk.
The Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America has released updated guidance regarding recommendations on contact precautions to prevent the transmission of multidrug-resistant infections such as methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus and Clostridium difficile in hospitals. The recommendations, published in the journal Infection Control & Hospital Epidemiology, say clinicians should consider the amount of time elapsed since the last positive sample.
The concept of the focused factory has been proved effective in transplant, trauma and cancer centers, and a focused-factory-style health care provider is an attractive partner for accountable care organizations, write Suzanne Delbanco and Roslyn Murray. However, many highly specialized practices and facilities are paid through conventional models that offer no incentive to reduce costs and eliminate unneeded services, making them ripe for bundled care arrangements, Delbanco and Murray write.
Nonuniversity-based residency-trained surgeons performed more procedures than those with university-based residency training, and did proportionally more procedures in an outpatient setting, a study in JAMA Surgery found. Researchers said while both groups have distinct practice patterns, there were no differences in inpatient outcomes after controlling for patient, procedure and hospital factors.
The American College of Cardiology recently published a health policy statement and framework on digital health, big data and precision medicine and their importance in developing patient-centered, value-based care models. Telehealth, virtual care and similar technologies can both streamline clinical workflows and increase access to care, and broadening patient access to health information can drive patient-centered innovation, the ACC notes.
The THA Smart Ribbon program, developed by the Texas Hospital Association, provides physicians with real-time risk and cost data for patients, such as medications and lab results, via a ribbon image applied to a hospital's EMR system. The program allowed Baylor Scott & White Medical Center-Temple to reduce unnecessary care and testing, said Chief Medical Officer Dr. Stephen Sibbitt.
The Mayo Clinic and Corindus Vascular Robotics are conducting a preclinical telemedicine study involving remote insertion of stents using a robotic arm -- technology that could help health care providers overcome a looming shortage of cardiologists. Corindus CEO Mark Toland said the eventual goal is "to extend this capability to the remote treatment of endovascular disease and stroke."
The Medicare Payment Advisory Commission voted 14-2 to recommend the elimination of the Merit-based Incentive Payment System, with MedPAC policy analysts saying the system is too burdensome and complex for doctors and won't encourage higher-value care. MedPAC proposed replacing MIPS with a voluntary program, under which 2% of payments to clinicians would be withheld unless they agree to join an advanced payment model or choose to be evaluated as part of a larger group based on population-level quality, value and patient experience.
An American Medical Group Association report found per-physician operating losses in the US increased from 10% of net revenue in 2016 to 17.5% in 2017. Practices were faced with increased cost pressures, and although gross professional revenue rose, net professional revenue dropped.
The ACC recently launched the Leadership Saves Lives Toolkit, a companion initiative to ACC's Surviving MI campaign. The toolkit includes practical resources and insights about how hospitals achieve culture change. It was created on a team-based leadership intervention in 10 U.S. hospitals to promote use of evidence-based strategies associated with better 30-day risk standardized mortality rates for patients with acute myocardial infarction, drive improvements in five domains of organizational culture, and reduce RSMR. Find out more and download the toolkit at CVQuality.ACC.org.
Join ACC leaders tomorrow at 11 a.m. ET for a free webinar focused on how to prepare for the latest Quality Payment Program requirements. Dipti Itchhaporia, MD, FACC, and Cathie Biga, MSN, RN, will walk participants through the newest requirements, while leaving plenty of time for questions. Read more and register on ACC.org. Looking for even more in-depth information on the QPP? Visit ACC's MACRA hub. In addition, there is still time to register for ACC's Cardiovascular Summit taking place next month in Las Vegas. Learn more.
The reasonable man adapts himself to the world: the unreasonable one persists in trying to adapt the world to himself. Therefore all progress depends on the unreasonable man.
George Bernard Shaw, playwright
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