The Department of Defense and the Veterans Administration spend a lot of money on health care and health information technology, sometimes earning kudos. But there are a lot of problems. The GAO puts out a report on DOD’s Electronic Health Record Initiative, which should make the agency blush with shame.
Health care news and research
There is so much health spending in the United States that it is sometimes hard to isolate the big buckets. Nursing home residents have very high medical costs and many questionable hospitalizations. A KFF report examines reasons why.
Two papers discuss some of the costs and issues surrounding the impending implementation of the ICD-10 classification and coding system. When there are so many other health information system projects and requirements at the same time, this one will add a significant burden for payors and providers.
The leaves disappear from the trees but our Potpourri is eternal, this week entertaining you on projected drug spending next year, prescription abandonment rates, avoiding hospitalizations for home care patients, anticipating the effects of the health law on employer-provided health insurance, the NAIC’s final action on the MLR and hospitals views on their ability to achieve the meaningful use incentives.
Research reported in the NEJM looked at differences in quality of care for patients who either tested themselves at home or were tested in a clinic to guide the administration of warfarin, a blood thinning drug. The results indicate home testing is as good as clinic testing.
Venture capital has been critical to the creation of innovative health care products and services, as well as to the good jobs the companies offering those products and services provide. Funding continued to be sluggish in the third quarter.
As the use of pay-for-reporting and pay-for-performance grows, there is more research into whether care processes being measured are really related to ultimate health outcomes. A new article says not necessarily.
The reform debate and its aftermath focused a lot of attention on health plans’ administrative expenses, particularly whether they were devoting too much of total premium to profits. A new report looks at expense trends for Medicaid managed care plans.
The Institute of Medicine’s report on The Future of Nursing discusses many issues, but one that catches the eye relates to the role of restrictions on nurse scope of practice in impeding better access and lower costs.
More health care tidbits in this week’s potpourri, including medication adherence; the benefits of workplace wellness programs; the costs to employers of obesity; hospital prices in Oregon; reimbursement methods for drugs and potential savings from health IT.