Data Loss an Issue When Physicians Use Mobile Devices

Eighty-one percent of physicians use mobile tools to collect, store, or transmit patient information, and 49 percent of those do nothing to protect the devices they use, according to a report in MDnews.com. The report cites a study by Ponemon Institute, which found that patient data loss at healthcare organizations went up 32 percent from 2010 to 2011. Forty-one percent of those surveyed claimed careless mistakes by employees were one reason for data breaches. Also, small size and portability can make the devices easily stolen or lost. The Department of Health and Human Services also found that nearly 40 percent of… Full Story

Morning Rounds (10.25.12)

Medical City’s Dallas Valve Institute is the first hospital in the country to perform a heart procedure approved by the FDA that treats patients with aortic stenosis.

U.S. physicians are healthier than nurses and the general population.

Top-tier medical practices excel in four categories—and generate an additional $150,000 in total medical revenue per full-time equivalent physician.

Study finds that frequent emergency department users are not abusing the system, but being seen for chronic conditions. Full Story

Four Keys to Top-Tier Medical Practices

Top-tier medical practices excel in four categories: profitability and cost management; productivity, capacity, and staffing; account receivables and collections; and patient satisfaction, according to a report in Modern Medicine. A study by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA), “Performance and Practices of Successful Medical Groups: 2012 Report Based on 2011 Data,” finds that the best performers had almost $150,000 more in total medical revenue per full-time equivalent physician than their peers. The successful practices said their key to success was optimizing back-end business processes and collections. These high-scoring practices also said they regularly poll patients regarding their satisfaction with physicians and staff, and evaluate… Full Story

Study: Physicians Healthier than General Population

An Oct. 3 Gallup report shows that U.S. physicians are healthier than nurses and the general population, according to American Medical News. The data, from Gallup Healthways Physical Health Index and Healthy Behaviors Index, reveals that physicians are about half as likely to be obese compared to nurses and other workers, and are far less likely to have health issues such as hypertension and diabetes. Additionally, physicians are five times less likely than the general working population to smoke. The report includes surveys conducted between Jan. 2, 2011, and Aug. 31, 2012, and participants included 1,984 physicians and 7,166 nurses.… Full Story

Medical City Dallas First in the Nation to Perform Newly FDA-Approved Heart Surgery

Medical City Dallas is the first hospital in the country to perform a heart procedure approved by the FDA that treats patients with aortic stenosis—who are not likely to survive open-heart surgery by replacing the heart valve without opening the patient’s chest. The procedure was performed by Todd Dewey, M.D., surgical director of heart transplant and structural heart disease, and Bruce Bowers, M.D., medical director for invasive cardiology and co-director of the hospital’s Dallas Valve Institute on Oct. 23. “This approach provides new hope to thousands of patients with aortic stenosis, who had been told they were out of options,”… Full Story

Morning Rounds (10.24.12)

The FDA has released a new list of customers that received medicines at the center of a multi-state meningitis outbreak.

Forty-five percent of physicians say they’ll cut Medicare patients due to upcoming pending reductions in reimbursements.

Dallas-based ORIX USA has launched a business unit specializing in investment of companies in the healthcare and life sciences sectors.

Fifty-five percent of corporate executives say healthcare benefits are their top current challenge. Full Story

Physicians Likely to Cut Medicare Patients Due to Reimbursement Reductions

Forty-five percent of physicians would stop seeing Medicare patients if Congress does not prevent upcoming Medicare physician pay cuts, according to Modern Healthcare. If Congress does not take action, physicians that participate in the Medicare program will face a 27 percent reimbursement reduction in February. Despite current challenges, 82 percent of respondents said they would be willing to explore new payment and delivery models if a level of stability was restored to the Medicare physician payment system, according to the study by MGMA-ACMPE. Additionally, out of those surveyed, 76 percent said they would reduce staff salaries and benefits, and 60 percent… Full Story

Morning Rounds (10.23.12)

More DFW hospitals and clinics may have received tainted medicine from pharmaceutical distributor at heart of national meningitis outbreak.

CHRISTUS Health has agreed to sell its share of Baptist St. Anthony’s in Amarillo.

The University of Texas System has allocated $7.5 million to expand STEM research at UTA.

Eighty-five percent of primary care physicians and oncologists use social media at least once a week to find new health information.

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Accolades (10.23.12)

PEOPLE Joseph H. Harmison, owner of Harmison Pharmacies in Arlington, has received the 2012 National Community Pharmacists Association Drug Safety Award for community outreach regarding patient education on the correct uses of prescription drugs. Gary Looper, CEO of Memorial Health System of East Texas, has been named the 2012 recipient of the third annual President’s Leadership Excellence Award by the Community Hospital Corporation for his motivational and visionary leadership and advancement of the Memorial Health System. David Helfer, who has served as president of Texas Institute for Surgery at Texas Health Presbyterian Dallas since July 2011, has received fellow status in the American College… Full Story

Physicians Turning to Social Media For New Information

Eighty-five percent of primary care physicians and oncologists use social media at least once a week to find new health information, according to a recent study published online by the Journal of Medical Internet Research. The study also found that 60 percent said social media helps them provide better care, reports American Medical News. About 21 percent use social media to find new medical information on a daily basis, and 14.2 percent contribute to the information daily. Sixty-one percent scan on a weekly basis, and 46 percent contribute. Fifty-eight percent believe social media is a beneficial way to get current and… Full Story