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December 6, 2012
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Transforming Health Care from the Inside Out

  First Focus 
  • Checklist, communications training cut postsurgical complications
    Surgical teams that used both communications training and a standardized surgical checklist had the least number of postoperative complications within 30 days, compared with groups that only had one or no intervention, a study showed. The findings, based on data from the American College of Surgeons National Surgical Quality Improvement Program, were published in the Journal of the American College of Surgeons. (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  Practice Management 
  • Expert: Maine leads effort to reduce repeat admissions
    Maine is "on the cutting edge" of figuring out how to reduce the number of patients who make costly return trips to the hospital, says Jeffrey Brenner, director of the Institute of Urban Health at Cooper Hospital in Camden, N.J. Maine's quality-improvement efforts include creating patient-centered medical homes, community care teams, and a pilot project using primary care physicians to identify and treat super-utilizers with multiple chronic illnesses. Kennebec Journal (Maine) (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • 750 Ind. physicians agree to publish quality data
    The Indiana Health Information Exchange announced that more than 750 of the state's physicians will allow their clinical quality scores to be published online as part of the organization's Quality Health First initiative. "Reporting these quality scores is a significant milestone for physician practices seeking to demonstrate their commitment to improving the quality of care provided to patients," said Harold Apple, IHIE's president and CEO. Modern Healthcare (subscription required) (12/4) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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  E-Health Watch 
  • Agencies issue proposed changes to MU criteria
    The CMS and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT have released a proposed rule that makes some changes to meaningful use criteria, including an alternative criterion regarding electronic transmission of structured lab data between hospitals and centers for ambulatory care. The proposed rule also included a change to the 2014 EHR certification criteria. Modern Healthcare (subscription required) (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  Products & Innovation 
  • Platform allows patient monitoring via live video chat
    AT&T has unveiled a cloude-based remote-patient-monitoring platform designed to enable physicians to better monitor their patients' chronic conditions, including diabetes and heart disease, via video chat. Video chatting may allow clinicians to observe signs of problems such as mood and skin color changes that they would not be able to note through a phone conversation, according to an AT&T official. eWeek (12/5) LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Other News
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  Policy & Reform Spotlight 
  ACC News 
  • ABMS announces creation of adult congenital heart disease subspecialty
    Yesterday, the American Board of Medical Specialties announced the creation of physician certification in a new cardiovascular subspecialty: Adult Congenital Heart Disease. The subspecialty will be offered by the American Board of Internal Medicine and will create a pathway for certification for cardiologists previously certified by either the ABIM or the American Board of Pediatrics. “This decision marks a great day for patients with adult congenital heart disease and their doctors,” said ACC President William Zoghbi, MD, FACC. “The advances in cardiology over the past several decades mean that the majority of pediatric congenital heart disease patients are surviving well into adulthood and even old age. This is very good news but with it comes the need for a more specialized focus on this type of patient. The certification in adult congenital heart disease subspecialty allows this growing group of patients to have their unique cardiac needs met and lifts some of the burden on pediatric cardiologists who may not be appropriately trained in adult health issues.” Learn more. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
  • Stay ahead of the curve: Check out the changes in cardiology coding coming in 2013
    The American College of Cardiology, along with the Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions and the Heart Rhythm Society, recently held a webinar aimed at educating cardiovascular professionals about the major changes to the coding system used by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services to set payments for percutaneous coronary interventions. More than 800 participants logged on to learn more about the changes, which are set to take place starting Jan. 1, 2013. Due to the popularity of the webinar, an archived version is now available. LinkedInFacebookTwitterEmail this Story
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This news roundup is provided as a timely update to ACC members and partners interested in quality health care topics in the news media. Links to articles are provided for the convenience of the health care professionals who may find them of use in discussions with patients or colleagues. Opinions expressed in ACC Quality First SmartBrief are those of the identified authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the American College of Cardiology. On occasion, media articles may include or imply incorrect information about the ACC and its policies, positions, or relationships. For clarification on ACC positions and policies, we refer you to
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