Morning Rounds (07.27.12)

Texas Woman’s University of Dallas receives $452,500 grant from the National Institutes of Health. Medical City Children’s Hospital sees a baby boom in June, with births setting a 12-year record. Healthcare.gov launches tool to help consumers determine if their insurer is providing value for premiums under new 80/20 rule. The U.S. Senate Committee on Commerce, Science & Transportation is examining the “gray market” impact on drug shortages. The Advisory Board Co. releases fun infographic comparing Olympic athletes to average Americans. Plus: Who’s healthiest in a hospital—nurses, physicians, or patients?

When Collaboration and Innovation Collide

Innovation is one of the biggest buzzwords in healthcare for 2012. Innovation differs from both invention and improvement in a fundamental way. Invention is original creation of an idea, process, product, technology, etc. Improvement is doing this same thing better. Innovation refers to the notion of doing this existing thing not only better, but differently. In fact, the Latin word innovare means “to change.” Collaboration is yet another hot topic and can be used when discussing anything from bundled payments to patient-centered medical homes. Collaboration is not just working together, but it is a process where two or more organizations… Full Story

Annual Healthcare Cost for Dallas Families Tops $20,000

According to the 2012 Milliman Medical Index, the annual household cost of healthcare for a typical Dallas family has cracked the $20,000 mark. The Seattle-based actuarial and consulting firm annually calculates the total cost of care for a family of four enrolled in an employee-sponsored PPO plan. The $20,435 annual cost in Dallas was just below the U.S. estimate of $20,728. The national figure includes $12,144 in employer-cover insurance costs and $8,584 paid by the family—including $5,155 in insurance premiums paid by the employee whose family is covered by the plan, and $3,470 in out-of-pocket expenses. Dallas costs rose 7.1… Full Story

HRSA’s 340B Prime Vendor Renews Contract

The Health Resources and Services Administration has decided to continue its relationship with Apexus by renewing for another year as part of the agreement to advance the 340B Prime Vendor Program as its first completion of its three one-year renewal options. “We are pleased to continue our relationship with HRSA,” said Christopher Hatwig, vice president at Apexus in a statement. “As the government’s prime vendor for the 340B program, we believe the program is an essential federal program, and we are committed to providing value to the eligible organizations we serve. Since our partnership began, in addition to regulatory discounts… Full Story