From the category archives:

Health Care Politics

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House votes to lift ban on federal funding for unique patient identifier

July 15, 2019

From FierceHealthcare: Although HIPAA initially required the creation of a health identifier in 1998, Congress overruled the legislation, barring federal agencies from investigating or creating patient identifiers out of privacy concerns.The American Health Information Management Association (AHIMA) voiced its support for efforts in Congress to repeal an “archaic ban that has stifled innovation and industry progress for […]

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UChicago SUED for providing Google with sensitive patient data

July 8, 2019

From Campus Reform: A former University of Chicago medical patient filed a class-action lawsuit against the University of Chicago and Google, claiming that the University of Chicago Medical Center is giving private patient information to the tech giant without patients’ consent. About two years ago, the university medical center partnered with Google with the hope […]

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New bill to plug up HIPAA app gaps

July 2, 2019

From POLITICO: PRIVACY BILL PICKS UP WHAT HIPAA LEAVES OUT—Sens. Amy Klobuchar (D-Minn.) and Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) are collaborating on a bill that would direct HHS Secretary Alex Azar to come up with regulations for health technology, including for apps, wearables and direct-to-consumer genetic tests. The bill directs HHS to consult with the FTC and the […]

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ADA seeks participants for SNODENT review

June 21, 2019

The American Dental Association is seeking qualified individuals to join an ADA canvass committee to consider approval of the 2019 revision of the Systemized Nomenclature of Dentistry. ANSI/ADA Standard No. 2000.2 for SNODENT was approved by the American National Standards Institute as an American National Standard in 2018,and it is revised annually. SNODENT provides a […]

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Death by a Thousand Clicks: Where Electronic Health Records Went Wrong

March 21, 2019

From Fortune: Follow the link and read the whole thing. Electronic health records were supposed to do a lot: make medicine safer, bring higher-quality care, empower patients, and yes, even save money. Boosters heralded an age when researchers could harness the big data within to reveal the most effective treatments for disease and sharply reduce medical […]

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HIMSS19: Loud and clear message from feds on patient data: It belongs to patients

March 14, 2019

From FierceHealthcare: Officials put industry stakeholders on notice over efforts to block patients’ access to their data. The Department of Health and Human Services made public several proposed rules aimed at increasing consumer access to their health data, but whether these regulations lead to the long-held goal of industrywide interoperability will take years to determine. Source: HIMSS19: Loud […]

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ADA comments on agency’s request to modify HIPAA rules

February 21, 2019

From ADA News: Washington — The ADA is asking the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights to incorporate flexibility and keep processes simple to help dental offices remain HIPAA compliant. Source: ADA comments on agency’s request to modify HIPAA rules Hmmm

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Hospitals Must Now Post Prices. But It May Take a Brain Surgeon to Decipher Them.

January 17, 2019

From The New York Times: On Jan. 1, hospitals began complying with a Trump administration order to post list prices for all their services, theoretically offering consumers transparency and choice and forcing health care providers into price competition.It’s turning into a fiasco. Source: Hospitals Must Now Post Prices. But It May Take a Brain Surgeon to […]

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The “healthcare crisis” is in fact not a crisis of care but a crisis of affordability

December 28, 2018

The “healthcare crisis” is in fact not a crisis of care but a crisis of affordability. So far attempts to fix the established system with central command and control have proven to be a ineffective. Technology has the potential to lower costs and improve care. Eventually the entrenched interest will be overwhelmed.

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Urgent Care Centers Take Off

December 20, 2018

From US News: Increasing demand is spurring a dramatic expansion in the number of urgent care centers in the U.S. There are about 8,250 urgent care clinics throughout the country, according to the most recent estimate by the Urgent Care Association. From 2014 to 2017, about 400 to 500 new urgent care clinics opened each year, […]

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Disruption is coming

December 6, 2018

Medicine (and by default dentistry) is an industry ripe for disruption. As usual the established players which in this case includes physicians, med schools, hospitals and insurance companies will resist the changes. However using history as a guide the disruption will start at the lower end of services and then grow. We are already seeing […]

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Considerations On Cost Disease

October 16, 2018

From Slate Star Codex: The cost of health care has about quintupled since 1970. It’s actually been rising since earlier than that, but I can’t find a good graph; it looks like it would have been about $1200 in today’s dollars in 1960, for an increase of about 800% in those fifty years. Source: Considerations On […]

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How Formerly Independent Doctors Were Pushed Out of Business

October 11, 2018

From Reason: “Is the independent doctor disappearing?” U.S. News & World Report asked earlier this summer. The answer is: yes—and to a significant extent, that’s a result of deliberate policy. Your doctors didn’t jump out of business; they were pushed. Source Reason According to the article only 33% of physicians own their own practice. That compares to 80% […]

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Amazon, Alphabet, Microsoft and others make health data pledge to Ease Patient, Provider Access to Health Data

September 18, 2018

From CNBC: There are many broken things about the U.S. health care system. But one of the biggest and most overlooked problems is that patients still find it too hard to share their medical information between doctors, especially those working in different hospitals. Source: Amazon, Alphabet, Microsoft and others make health data pledge This is […]

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CMS Head: We’re Working Toward Interoperability. Are You?

August 16, 2018

From Healthcare Analytics News: Healthcare is stuck in a 1990s time warp. That’s according to Seema Verma, M.P.H., who heads the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS)… …But in spite of these steps forward, healthcare organizations still depend on faxes, CD-ROMs and paper notes. Interoperability remains elusive, and patients still don’t have access to, never […]

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Trump Administration Requires Hospitals To Post Standard Prices Online

August 14, 2018

From The Daily Caller: The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) will require hospitals to update their online price list annually starting Jan. 1, reported The Hill. Before the new rule, CMS required that hospitals share prices with people who requested them.CMS said the rule was made to “encourage price transparency,” according to The Hill. […]

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The Cost Issue and Questions to ask Yourself

June 19, 2018

Patients do not care about cost when someone else (a third party) is paying for treatment. They do care about quality outcomes and the overall experience of a healthcare encounter. When paying themselves patients have different priorities. How many times have you had patients refuse treatment because their insurance will not cover it? Way too […]

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Dispute between California Dental Association, Delta Dental of California settled for $65 million

May 31, 2018

From ADA News: The San Francisco Superior Court granted final approval May 2 of a $65 million class action settlement between the California Dental Association and Delta Dental of California,… …The CDA filed the legal action in August 2013 in response to Delta Dental’s plans to reduce reimbursement rates for their Premier plan by 8 […]

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Good Trend

May 29, 2018
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High Tech Reporting Needs its Muckrakers

April 2, 2018

From NRO: Apple, Alphabet (Google), Amazon, Microsoft, and Facebook are the world’s five largest companies in terms of stock value. Together they have market capitalization of about 3 trillion dollars, about the net worth of the entire country of Switzerland. …Yet today’s Silicon Valley and related high-tech companies are largely exempt from such traditional regulations. […]

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