Morning Rounds (08.20.12)

Lewisville’s ClearPoint Diagnostic Laboratories chosen as in-network provider for United Healthcare. UT System to add medical school in South Texas. Northstar Healthcare announces equity restructuring of Dallas-area surgery center. Dallas physician recounts surviving West Nile Virus.

Update on DFW Healthcare Projects

For better or worse, as healthcare consumers we expect the best. We don’t want to walk into an old hospital or physician’s office. For one, we want the best available technology. Second, we expect the best doctors and the best doctors want the best facilities. This controversial issue as related to the cost of care is about driving the business forward for many hospitals. Dallas-Fort Worth is no exception. From 2005 to 2015, more than $5 billion in healthcare industry construction projects have been or will be completed. These projects directly and indirectly employ thousands of people, from architects, lawyers,… Full Story

Morning Rounds (08.17.12)

Hospitals name their most and least favorite insurers. Five compensation options for ACO physicians. Aerial spraying for West Nile Virus began in Dallas last night. The average amount embezzled from medical practices is $1,000. AHA: Black stroke survivors face greater risk from high blood pressure.

Morning Rounds (08.16.12)

Physicians seeing patient visits rebound in 2012. 5 Simple Ways a hospital can build a stellar reputation. Harvard Medical School: New test may speed detection of heart attacks. Having a resident in a surgery increases success rate. Pharma reps with iPads get more physicians to accept samples, prescribe drugs.

Parkland Replaces Interim CEO With Former Tenet Executive

Robert L. “Bob” Smith, a Plano resident and former senior vice president for Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare, was named interim chief executive officer for Parkland Memorial Hospital Wednesday. His appointment was approved unanimously by the Parkland Health & Hospital System board of directors, to replace Thomas C. Royer, M.D., whose contract expires in at the end of the month. Royer held the position for nine months. “Bob has extensive experience doing just what we need him to do—taking an organization facing significant challenges and turning it around,” said Debbie Branson, chairwoman of Parkland’s board, in a statement. “With his engagement, we… Full Story

Morning Rounds (08.15.12)

American Heart Association: Blood type may influence heart disease risk. TMA offers tips for negotiating health plan contracts. Dallas-based Doris Daniely Outreach one of two finalists in Aveeno grant competition. CDC: New strain of swine Flu strain on the rise. Baylor Research Institute releases digital version of its annual report.

Medicare Will Penalize 26 Local Hospitals for Readmissions Beginning Oct. 1

Twenty-six hospitals in the four-county Dallas-Fort Worth metropolitan area are among the more than 2,000 hospitals across the country that will be penalized by the federal government, because too many of their patients are readmitted soon after discharge, according to Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). More than two-thirds of the nation’s hospitals will be penalized for readmissions starting in October. The penalties, which CMS characterizes as “adjustments,” were authorized by the Affordable Care Act (ACA) to prod hospitals to lower unscheduled patient readmissions. Research consistently shows that about one out of five Medicare patients return to the hospital… Full Story

Morning Rounds (08.14.12)

The Magic Johnson Clinic at Fort Worth’s AIDS Outreach Center hosts its grand opening. UT Southwestern shares a video of the quintuplets born at its medical center. Texas’ JAMP initiative helps disadvantage students attend med school. Remote patient monitoring market projected to more than double to $20.9 billion by 2016. FDA approves vaccine formulation for the 2012-2013 influenza season.

THR Pilot Study: Wireless Monitoring Cuts Heart Failure Readmissions by 27 Percent

At most hospitals, chronic heart failure (CHF) is the No. 1 reason for hospital readmissions. In a typical hospital, CHF patients comprise nearly a third of those cases. In a pilot project, Texas Health Resources has been able to lower CHF readmission rates from 14 percent to about 10 percent—a drop of 27 percent. THR’s research arm, Texas Health Research & Education Institute, has been working with AT&T and Plano-based software maker Intuitive Health since April 2011 to monitor CHF patients remotely for 90 days after their hospital discharge. Patients are equipped with tools to help identify potential complications that… Full Story

Morning Rounds (08.13.12)

UT Southwestern Medical Center to provide more details on the quintuplets delivered last Thursday. Dallas County is conducting aerial sprays to combat the West Nile Virus. The CDC has updated its treatment guidelines for STDs. Hospital mass layoffs spiked in June, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. AMA: Patient satisfaction scores seen as critical to physician success.