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Expert Opinion: Four Steps to Reduce Workplace Stress

As a manager or leader, the well-being of your staff should be of utmost importance. Workplace stress is detrimental to the overall health and productivity of employees. In recognition of April being National Stress Awareness Month, the following strategies help foster a reduced-stress environment with engaged employees. Understand the Negative Effects of Stress A 2012 study that monitored about 22,000 women over the course of 10 years showed that work-related stress significantly increased the risk of cardiovascular disease. The long hours associated with high-stress jobs present further health problems, which was shown in another study: “Employees who work long hours… Full Story

Expert Opinion: How to Fix the Cost of Care Dilemma

Like most Americans, I am worried about the rising cost of healthcare, but the terrible news is that the real healthcare cost problem hasn’t even arrived yet. And like many people, I’m tired of our health insurance premiums going up. As a business owner, for the last few years I’ve had to make the tough decision of raising premiums on our employees, increasing deductibles, or having our company absorb the increase. Unfortunately, our company’s health premiums have gone up an average of 17% each of the last four years while maintaining the same benefit plan. A 87% increase in insurance… Full Story

Medical City President Erol Akdamar on How to Make Flu Season Less Deadly

If you feel like you have been hearing more about sepsis recently, you are right. Blame the flu. Sepsis is an overwhelming response to infection that can lead to life-threatening organ failure. It’s a serious healthcare industry concern because each year, sepsis affects more than 26 million people worldwide including 270,000 American deaths, making it more deadly than breast cancer, prostate cancer and AIDS combined. Sepsis is often linked to bacterial infections, but the past two flu seasons it has made headlines as a life-threatening complication from the influenza virus. I follow the trends of sepsis on a daily basis… Full Story

Expert Opinion: How to Address the Physician Shortage in Booming DFW

Almost 500 people move to the Metroplex every day. Census data backs it up, and if you pull the lens back to look at the entire state of Texas, we are growing in a big way – 29 million at last count. It won’t be long before we overtake Chicago as the 3rd largest metropolis in the country. Change is coming with this type of growth. Big D is getting bigger, and older. Projections show that by 2030, Texans over the age of 65 will more than double since the last census in 2010. With age, comes the need for… Full Story

TMA President: “Our Vision for Improving the Health of All Texans”

With the 2019 Texas Legislature now well underway, the time is right to issue a stark reminder: Patient care in Texas is at a critical crossroads. Let us collaborate thoughtfully and purposefully to choose the right path forward and improve the health of all Texans. Among our concerns: Texas still ranks 47th nationally in active primary care physicians per 100,000 population. Not every Texan has timely access to affordable, quality lifesaving services. Not enough of our health care dollars are going to actual health care. Corporations are pressing harder to micromanage patient care decisions in an effort to boost profits.… Full Story

Expert Opinion: Simplifying Health Plans and Controlling Costs

The year was 2003, and a Fortune 500 company in Austin was looking to be the first employer with over 10,000 covered employees to launch a consumer driven health plan (CDHP). The savings the company realized from the federally mandated high deductibles would be redistributed in the form of Health Savings Account (HSA) dollars, so employees and their dependents could be better stewards of their own money. Coming out of an HMO era with low copays, the promise was that healthcare consumers needed “skin in the game” to impact the rising cost of healthcare.  As famed economist Milton Friedman’s once… Full Story

How to Prepare for Texas’ New Maternal Care Levels

Last November, D CEO Healthcare detailed the steps that Texas has taken to address the state’s maternal mortality rate, which is unacceptably high even after a revision of the mortality data. One of the important initiatives enacted by the legislature and signed by the governor is maternal level-of-care designations (MLOCD). MLOCDs, which were endorsed three years ago by the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the Society for Maternal Fetal Medicine, and others, are aimed at standardizing care and improving maternal and infant outcomes. Texas joins a handful of other states, including Indiana, Arizona, and Maryland in adopting maternal… Full Story

Tips for Coping with Grief in the Workplace

When it comes to dealing with grief in the workplace, there are three important perspectives to consider: 1) If you are the one grieving, it’s important to determine conditions that will provide time for healing and support. 2) If you are the colleague, it’s all about understanding boundaries. 3) If you are the employer, it’s important to have a plan and resources in place. Grief can affect anyone at any given time – when a loved one passes unexpectedly or after living with a chronic illness, or when something traumatic occurs, such as the case of a mass shooting, a… Full Story

We May Have Lost Amazon, But Biotech Could Be Dallas’ Next Big Move

While no doubt a disappointment, Amazon’s decision to locate its second headquarters in New York and Virginia doesn’t diminish the economic vitality of North Texas. In fact, Dallas’ strong showing in the company’s high-profile national search bolsters our reputation as an attractive region for business. Now, as we take stock of the Amazon decision and explore new ways to grow the local economy, let’s consider the potential of an untapped community asset: biotechnology. Dallas is well-known for its oil industry, corporate headquarters, and technology startups. But did you know that the science behind some of the best-selling prescription drugs of all… Full Story

Collaboration is Key to Improving Health Insurance Coverage

In 1965, President Lyndon B. Johnson signed the the Medicaid program into law as a part of Title XIX of the Social Security Act Amendments. Today, Medicaid covers one in five low-income Americans, as the majority of enrollees lack access to affordable health insurance. Each state administers the Medicaid program and must comply with federal standards. Amongst the successes and failures of the landmark legislation, misunderstandings persist. States have flexibility in determining covered populations, covered services, delivery models and reimbursement. They are also guaranteed federal matching dollars for services to beneficiaries, so the Medicaid program is financed jointly by federal… Full Story