Morning Rounds (07.18.12)

More troubles for Lewisville-based Orthofix. The company has agreed to pay $5.2 million to settle federal regulatory charges that its subsidiary bribed Mexican officials for sales contracts with government hospitals.   The American Heart Association reported fewer patients needed long-term care when primary care doctors focused on the health hazards of high blood pressure, smoking, high cholesterol, diabetes, irregular heartbeats, and depression.   Dallas-based Tenet Healthcare Corp. boasts 33 hospitals that have received 71 designations for cardiac care, cardiac surgery, and heart rhythm disorders; and 21 designations as UnitedHealth Premium Surgical Spine and Total Joint Replacement Specialty Centers.   Texas healthcare ranks worst in nation, according to NYDaily News.   Arlington Occupational… Full Story

MedSynergies Aligns with Staubach’s Allies in Service to Help Provide Jobs for Veterans

Fifteen percent of MedSynergies’ new hires through 2013 will be veterans or their spouses, as part of the company’s commitment to help improve the 10 percent unemployment rate for post-9/11 veterans. “We understand the need that exists for reliable career paths among veterans and their spouses, and relish the opportunity to hire more employees with the kind of teamwork, commitment and discipline these individuals bring,” said J.R. Thomas, CEO of MedSynergies, in a statement. “As a growing business, it is absolutely critical for us to hire new employees who will help build leadership throughout our organization, and our partnership with… Full Story

Edgemere Implements “Masterpiece Living” Aging Program

Edgemere, a senior living community in Dallas, is now offering residents the option to participate in the “Masterpiece Living” program, an aging program focused on maximizing one’s quality of life. Developed in 1999 by a board of health advisors, and informed by aging research and reviews of ongoing outcome measurement completed in conjunction with Mayo Clinic, there are four tenets to the Masterpiece Living philosophy: use it or lose it, loneliness hurts but involvement heals, there are no age limits, and I can make a difference. Edgemere is one of five senior living communities in Texas owned by Senior Quality… Full Story

Baylor Health Care System’s Expansion—and Contraction

Like many North Texas healthcare organizations, Baylor Health Care System is expanding and contracting at the same time. As chief operating officer Gary Brock points out, North Texas is adding population annually that’s the equivalent of the city of Richardson. The healthcare organization must keep up with the growth. For example, Baylor recently announced a joint venture to build eight freestanding emergency departments within the next year with The Woodlands-based Emerus. Meanwhile, Baylor is cutting more than a half billion in expenses through 2014. Hospitals have to adjust to the reality of shrinking government health insurance reimbursement. Baylor will receive… Full Story

BUMC Captures Top Spot Locally in U.S. News’ Annual Hospital Rankings

Baylor University Medical Center (BUMC) captured the top Dallas-Fort Worth spot in the 2012 U.S. News & World Report annual Best Hospitals rankings, released today. BUMC was nationally ranked in six specialties—gastroenterology, nephrology, orthopedics, pulmonology, urology, and gynecology. UT Southwestern, which was No. 1 locally last year, slipped to No. 2, with national rankings in neurology and neurosurgery, and urology. This year’s Best Hospitals, the 23rd annual edition, highlights more than 720 of the nation’s roughly 5,000 hospitals. Fewer than 150 are nationally ranked in at least one of 16 medical specialties. Complete  2012-13 rankings will appear in the U.S. News… Full Story

Morning Rounds (07.17.12)

Texas Health Resources has implemented 3D technology for mammograms.   Dallas-based Aprima Medical Software has released an app that helps doctors manage their appointments, look up patient information, review patient visits, check and respond to messages, and other tasks. Seniors Helping Seniors, a non-medical home care company for senior citizens—with all work provided by seniors—is opening  a new location in Denton County.   The American Heart Association/American Stroke Association has created a website with an interactive map to assist people searching for heart disease and stroke care.   Irving-based The LaSalle Group plans to build a memory care assisted-living community that will… Full Story

Plano Mortgage Banker on a Mission to Change Medical Debt Laws

Plano mortgage banker Rodney Anderson first noticed a problem with medical debt in 2008 after a couple in their 70s came to see him when they wanted to purchase a house. What had been a nearly perfect credit score dropped from 790 to 685 points, resulting in a more than $5,000 fee for them to receive a loan—all because of a $150 medical collection. This couple accounts for two out of 73 million people who have medical debt, and two of many who don’t know they have it. Medical debt generally is reported to credit bureaus by collection agencies rather… Full Story

“DART” Program at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano Improves Efficiency, Care

Changes in procedures by nurses at Texas Health Presbyterian Hospital Plano have cut the admission process to 49 minutes and are helping patients better understand chronic diseases. Stephanie Zabel and her team of seven employees make up the Discharge, Admission, Resource, Transport, or DART, team at Texas Health Plano. “The DART determined that what is done during patients’ admission impacts their hospital care during and after their stay,” she said. “Along with gathering patient information, our nurses are passionate about helping to educate the patients and their families.” The DART team sees patients who are admitted to the hospital from the… Full Story

Welcome to D Healthcare Daily

The healthcare sector adds $52 billion annually to the Dallas-Fort Worth economy and supports more than 600,000 local jobs. The industry continues to be the fastest-growing both locally and nationally. Meanwhile, it’s experiencing unprecedented change—an evolution that raises many unanswered questions: How will healthcare be paid for in the future? How will it be delivered? To what degree will employers and the government will be willing to underwrite it? These issues demand to be covered, but traditional media have been reluctant to devote the necessary resources and expertise to do so. It’s a void D Healthcare Daily intends to fill.… Full Story

Medical City Hires Charles Gressle as Chief Operating Officer

Medical City Dallas Hospital has hired an experienced healthcare executive as its new chief operating officer. Charles Gressle, a 16-year industry veteran, will begin his new post on Aug. 13. Gressle comes to Medical City from HCA’s Continental Division, where he served as senior vice president and oversaw growth strategies for operations in Denver, Oklahoma, and Wichita. Prior to that, he was chief operating officer at The Women’s Hospital of Texas, where, among other things, he managed a $78 million tower expansion and led a growth initiative that helped make the system No. 1 in Houston. “Charles has a combination… Full Story