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February 15, 2013
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  Critical Care Update 
  • CDC: Hospitals made steady progress in curbing some infections
    A CDC report released on Tuesday found that the rates of central line-associated bloodstream infections declined by 41% and surgical site infections fell by 17% in U.S. hospitals since 2008. However, catheter-associated urinary tract infections have not declined further since 2010, possibly due to the number of catheter days holding steady in critical-care settings. CDC Director Dr. Tom Frieden called on hospitals to do more to control and track infections. Modern Healthcare (subscription required) (2/12), Nurse.com (2/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Study looks at human metapneumovirus in hospitalized children
    Hospital records from three U.S. counties from 2003 to 2009 showed that 6% of 3,490 hospitalized children had human metapneumovirus and 7% of 3,001 pediatric emergency department visits were linked to the virus. Children infected with the virus were more likely to have pneumonia or asthma, require oxygen treatment and have longer stays in intensive care units, researchers said. The findings appear in the New England Journal of Medicine. HealthDay News (2/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Researcher: ICU doctors need more info about ICH outcomes
    Research found some patients with intracerebral hemorrhage may have had life support withdrawn too soon and could have had acceptable outcomes had it been continued. Lead author Dr. Daniel Tirschwell said stroke neurologists know it is important to not always predict an unacceptable outcome in these patients, but ICU physicians who are not at academic medical centers or those in smaller community hospitals may need more information about ICH prognosis so they can better counsel families. The findings were presented at the International Stroke Conference. Medscape (free registration) (2/13) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Medicine in the News 
  • Study: No link between readmissions, hospital mortality rates
    A hospital's readmission rates are not linked to mortality rates, according to a Yale University study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Data found no relationship between the number of Medicare patients with heart attack and pneumonia who were readmitted within 30 days and those who died, and showed from 5% to 9% of hospitals had both low readmission and low mortality rates. CMS uses readmission rates to judge hospital quality and punishes high rates with reduced payments. Kaiser Health News (2/12), Reuters (2/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Obama vows to contain health spending in State of the Union
    President Barack Obama promised to seek to further reduce health care spending while praising the Affordable Care Act during his State of the Union address on Tuesday. "We'll reduce taxpayer subsidies to prescription drug companies and ask more from the wealthiest seniors," Obama said. "We'll bring down costs by changing the way our government pays for Medicare." The Huffington Post (2/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Trends and Technology 
  • Using AI models may boost patient outcomes, curb costs
    The use of artificial intelligence algorithms in health care resulted in significantly better patient outcomes at a lower cost, researchers at Indiana University found. "The framework here easily outperforms the current treatment-as-usual, case-rate/fee-for-service models of health care," said researcher Casey C. Bennett. Computerworld (2/12) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  SmartQuote 
If you want to live a happy life, tie it to a goal. Not to people or things."
--Albert Einstein,
German-born theoretical physicist


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