Simulation Drastically Improves Trauma Response Times, Study Shows

A new study from UT Southwestern shows how simulations can positively impact lifesaving trauma interventions. The medical center is home to one of the largest medical simulation training centers in the country, which provides a space for instructors to challenge the decision-making and performance of practitioners in high-pressure situations. The study showed how response times for resuscitative thoracotomies, which involve opening the chest cavities of patients without a pulse, improved from 14 to three minutes. Response times for tube thoracostomies, which release the pressure of blood filling the chest cavity, also improved from 13 to six minutes. “What we found most… Full Story

Judge Says Cook Children’s Can Remove Baby From Life Support

After a judge had previously prevented Cook Children’s Hospital in Fort Worth from removing a child from life support, a different judge has sided with the hospital, which says the 11-month old girl is in pain and her condition won’t improve, according to the Dallas Morning News. The mother of the girl, Trinity Lewis, asked Judge Sandee Bryan Marion to make sure Cook Children’s didn’t end the life-saving treatment her daughter Tinslee was receiving. Doctor’s had initially planned on removing her from life support on Nov. 10, when the hospital had been unable to find a facility willing to take… Full Story

The Doctor You See When Nothing Else Works

Last fall, D Magazine profiled UT Southwestern’s Dr. Juan Pascual, the Spanish-born neurologist who is a physician of last resort for patients all over the world when they run out of answers about their brain condition. Pascual’s unique and innovative outlook on treating brain disease has led to a committed patient base and numerous accolades in his work running UT Southwestern’s Rare Brain Disorder Program. Several things set him apart. First is his love of philosophy and respect for the power of language. Especially with brain disorders, he knows that a patient’s emotional state and psychology can be just as… Full Story

Pieces Technologies Raises $25.7 Million in Effort to Address Social Determinants of Health

Healthcare artificial intelligence and technology company Pieces Technologies has raised $25.7 million in funding from healthcare-focused investment firm Concord Health. The company developed platforms to address the social determinants of health and power clinical analytics, helping connect providers with community service providers. Clients include hospitals, health systems, community clinics, food banks, job assistance, and educational services. The technology analyzes real-time patient information to connect health systems with community organizations to improve patient outcomes. The technology has enabled a half-day reduction in hospital stays and a reduction in readmissions to the hospital where it has been deployed, which include Children’s Health… Full Story

Amid Court Battle, BCBS Ends Contract with Knox County Hospital for Federal Employees

Federal employees and retirees in Knox County received notice a day after open enrollment ended that their local hospital would no longer be in-network for Blue Cross Blue Shield’s Service Benefit Plan. In a statement sent to the Times-Record News, BCBS of Texas said the following plans would not longer have Knox County Hospital District in network for the following plans. ParPlan Blue Choice PPOSM Blue EssentialsSM Blue Advantage HMOSM The company directed patients to hospitals 20 and 40 miles away to remain in-network. The statement sent to the Times-Record continues, “Members being treated for a pregnancy, disability, acute condition… Full Story

Expert: When Physician Real Estate Owners Should Buy and Sell

Dallas-Fort Worth is a unique market for physician real estate owners. The city’s growing population affords the benefits of a primary market, allowing a practice to operate in a large medical office building in a densely populated area alongside a major freeway all while creating synergies with neighboring providers. However, given DFW is less dense than other major metropolitan areas like San Francisco, Los Angeles, and New York, providers here have a unique opportunity.  Physician groups can actually build their own facility at a reasonable price, allowing them to offer comprehensive services under one roof, providing a more convenient and… Full Story

THR, Methodist, and LHC Group Purchase Arlington Home Health Provider

DFW Home Health will be purchasing Arlington-based home health provider Healthcare Resources. DFW Home Health has been jointly owned by LHC Group, Texas Health Resources and North Texas Health Facilities Management, a subsidiary of Methodist Health System since 2012. The organization provides home health for 25 hospitals and in 2019 will serve 8,000 patients throughout North Texas. The country’s aging population has made home health a growth area, and keeping patients in their homes is both more comfortable for the patient and less costly for the health system overall. But many of the home health providers are retiring just as… Full Story

McKesson Renews Distribution Contract with VA

McKesson Corp.’s deal to be the primary pharmaceutical supplier for the Department of Veterans Affairs has been renewed for the next two years. The Irving-based pharmaceutical distribution company will continue their partnership with the nation’s largest integrated healthcare system. McKesson will supply all the VA medical centers and clinics as well as their outpatient pharmacies, which include 750 locations and 270 medical centers. The distributor is the largest non-defense vendor serving the VA, Department of Defense, and other government branches. “McKesson has had the privilege of supporting the VA as their prime pharmaceutical supplier since 2004,” said Brian Tyler, McKesson’s… Full Story

Texas Improves Three Spots to 34th in the American Health Rankings

Texas moved up and is the 34th healthiest state in the latest American Health Rankings from UnitedHealthcare, but the improvement might have little to do with healthier people in Texas. Part of the improvement is because other states’ health is declining at a faster rate than the Lone Star State. That isn’t to say Texas was without bright spots. The report notes that Texas’ high school graduation rate, low smoking rates, decreased violent crime, improved birthweight and increased number of mental health providers helped boost its ranking from 37 to 34 this year. But in several other important health measures,… Full Story

SMU Research Could Change the Way Diabetes is Treated

Diabetes and pre-diabetes affect an astonishing 43 percent of the country’s population at a cost of $237 billion in treatment and $90 billion per year in indirect costs such as absenteeism. The U.S. spends more treating diabetes than the entire GDP of Portugal. The earlier the disease is caught, the more likely treatment costs will be kept down. But testing is expensive and time consuming, so providers need to be wise about who they test. Usually, the patients who receive a diabetes test already have a symptom, meaning the chances of reversal are low and treatment costs are more likely… Full Story