Connected Care

An analysis at Boston Medical Center found that its cardiac care unit experienced 12,000 alarms a day, on average. But, according to a story on National Public Radio, the center was able to successfully combat alarm fatique by switching off lower-risk alarms and upgrading some warnings, for instance a pause in heart rhythm, to a higher level that signifies a crisis.

Sensors embedded in teeth could tell doctors when people have defied medical advice to give up smoking or eat less. Built into a tiny circuit board that fits in a tooth cavity, the sensor includes an accelerometer that sends data on mouth motion to a smartphone.

Will a key provision of healthcare reform—the establishment of health insurance exchanges—be ready to go by the fall 2013 deadline?

Healthcare reform means a new business model for medicine that puts a premium on patient outcomes instead of services rendered. To gear up for the 2014 implementation of the Affordable Care Act, many physicians are enrolling in pricy online MBAs to prepare themselves for changing reimbursement models that are changing from risk-based to value-based, according to an American Public Media Marketplace report that aired on June 3. Listen to the full story below.

Studies indicating that physicians are spending less time with patients than ever before are fueling the debate about whether EHRs and other IT systems are truly improving patient care or just helping providers rush through face-to-face encounters.

One in five Medicare patients return to the hospital within a month after discharge, so it isn’t surprising that the federal government is pushing forward an agenda to discourage costly readmissions. This upcoming October, hospitals with chronic readmission problems with patients struggling with heart failure, pneumonia and heart attack will face Medicare reimbursement penalties.

An Elsevier news brief is stressing the need for a business case for evidence-based medicine (EBM) to improve the U.S. healthcare system. The brief culminated from a roundtable discussion of healthcare industry thought leaders at the CMIO Leadership Forum in Chicago last fall.

The holy grail of modern medicine is better heath and better healthcare at a lower cost--the so-called ‘Triple Aim’--but how far along is the United States on its journey? The latest issue of Health Affairs delves into practices from other countries and lessons the United States could absorb as it sets out to accomplish this triple pursuit.  

When it comes to healthcare, is Kaiser Permanente the wave of the future? The all-in-one hospital system epitomizes well-coordinated patient care and is ahead of the curve in embracing cutting-edge health IT, but can the system ultimately lower costs?