Dear Healthcare Intelligence Network Client,

Our local schools are scrubbing and sanitizing facilities in the wake of several cases of methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus - known as MRSA - in the student population. From our school Web site, parents can access a Public Health MRSA Fact Sheet and two separate communications on this issue. How is your organization responding to MRSA, and what steps are you taking to educate your population and prevent new cases? Take the survey on MRSA Prevention and Education by November 30 and you'll receive a free e-summary of the results.

And while final results are pending, your responses to the October healthcare trends e-survey indicate that wellness is both a huge challenge and an opportunity to launch some of your most successful programs. Wellness experts are often asked whether employees' spouses should be included in corporate wellness initiatives. In this week's news, IBM has gone a step further and unveiled its Children's Health Rebate to encourage the development of healthy habits in employees' children. This is a great step toward stemming rising obesity rates in children.

Your colleague in the business of healthcare,
Patricia Donovan
Editor, Healthcare Business Weekly Update

Please pass this along to any of your colleagues or, better yet, have them sign up to receive their own copy at http://www.hin.com/freenews2.html where you can also learn about our other news services.


Healthcare Business Weekly Update
Volume IX, No. 36
November 5, 2007

Sponsored by: AHAData.com

AHAData.com. Search, sort and download the latest American Hospital Association data online at AHAData.com. Create custom mailing lists or data sets based on your needs.


Table of Contents
  1. IBM’s Children’s Health Rebate for Employees Helps Families Attain a Healthy Lifestyle
  2. Healthy Lifestyle Incentives: Strategies to Control Healthcare Costs
  3. Project Rewards Physicians for EHR Use
  4. Electronic Health Records: A Practical Guide for Professionals and Organizations
  5. Featured Healthcare Blog: Desperate Patients: When Treatment is Too Expensive
  6. Study Finds Actual Cost Of Employees’ Health Four Times Greater Than Estimated Care
  7. Creating a Culture of Health by Engaging the C-Suite and Employees to Promote Better Health
  8. United States Has Much to Learn from German Long-term Care System
  9. Coordinating Care Transitions for the Elderly and Dually Eligible: Fostering Self-Management and Reducing Readmissions
  10. Many New York Hospitals Still Not Compliant with “Manny’s Law”
  11. The Medical Home: Pathway to Patient-Centric Primary Care
  12. Monthly e-Survey: MRSA Education and Prevention


1. IBM’s Children’s Health Rebate for Employees Helps Families Attain a Healthy Lifestyle

IBM unveiled a new wellness incentive for U.S. employees that encourages healthy living for families and children. Called the Children’s Health Rebate, it is being offered as part of IBM’s annual benefits enrollment to reward good nutrition and physical activity for the entire family, which is key to helping children develop healthy habits for a lifetime. IBM started the concept of healthy living rebates for its employees in 2004, and the new Children’s Health Rebate is one of four $150 cash rebates available to IBM employees in the United States.

To read this story in its entirety, go to:
http://www.hin.com/sw/Hindustry_MC110507.html



2. Healthy Lifestyle Incentives: Strategies to Control Healthcare Costs

Learn how organizations are employing incentives to promote consumer accountability for healthcare costs as an attempt to reduce healthcare costs driven by lifestyle-related habits during this 90-minute audio conference on CD-ROM.

For more information, please visit:
http://store.hin.com/product.asp?itemid=3186



3. Project Rewards Physicians for EHR Use

The United States Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a demonstration project geared toward encouraging small to medium physician practices to use electronic health records (EHRs). The project is a five-year plan conducted by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and is designed to show that streamlining healthcare management with EHRs will reduce medical errors and improve quality of care for 3.6 million Americans. Beginning in the spring of 2008, the project will be open to up to 1,200 practices.

To read this story in its entirety, go to:
http://www.hin.com/sw/hospital_HSmanagement110507.html



4. Electronic Health Records: A Practical Guide for Professionals and Organizations

Revised and updated to include the latest trends and applications in electronic health records, the third edition of Margret K. Amatayakul’s Electronic Health Records: A Practical Guide for Professionals and Organizations offers step-by-step guidelines for developing and implementing EHR strategies for healthcare organizations.

For more information, please visit:
http://store.hin.com/product.asp?itemid=3629



TALK TO THE HIN COMMUNITY: Share your reaction to a story or a strategy that's working at your organization. Send an email to editor@hin.com or post a comment to the HIN blog at:
http://blog.hin.com/

5. Featured Healthcare Blog Post: Desperate Patients: When Treatment is Too Expensive

With all the emphasis on transparency in the healthcare industry, will we ever see a day when the pharmaceutical industry is held to the same reporting standard for pharmaceutical costs? In a recent Newsweek article, Geraldine Ferraro describes how her ongoing battle with multiple myeloma has opened her eyes to the frailties of the U.S. healthcare system. But the real eye-opener in this article is...

To continue reading this blog post, please visit:
http://blog.hin.com/?p=193



6. Study Finds Actual Cost Of Employees’ Health Four Times Greater Than Estimated Care

Employers' total healthcare costs are four times greater than they estimate, according to a new study by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine (ACOEM). The study found that medical/pharmaceutical costs for the conditions studied were slightly over $2 million. The lost productivity costs were over $10 million, more than four times greater than the medical costs alone.

To read this story in its entirety, go to:
http://www.hin.com/sw/behavioral_health110507.html



7. Creating a Culture of Health by Engaging the C-Suite and Employees to Promote Better Health

Companies that embrace a culture of health across their organization not only improve the health of their employees and benefit from its related impact on productivity, but also improve corporate profitability and shareholder value. During this 90-minute webinar on December 4, 2007, an expert panel of speakers will describe the key steps in creating a culture of health that engages both the C-suite and employees.

For more information, please visit:
http://store.hin.com/product.asp?itemid=3751



8. United States Has Much to Learn from German Long-term Care System

According to a new AARP report entitled “Comparing Long-Term Care in Germany and the United States,” all Germans in need of long-term care receive benefits in the setting that best meets their needs — a sharp contrast to the long-term care system in the United States. Moreover, Germany is able to offer this kind of personalized care and still spend about the same proportion of its gross domestic product on long-term care as the United States does. The study can teach the United States crucial lessons in improving the long-term care system.

To read this story in its entirety, go to:
http://www.hin.com/sw/long_term_care110507.html


There are other free email newsletters available from HIN!

Health Management Career Center Update is a free bi-monthly email newsletter for healthcare management professionals seeking new career opportunities and healthcare organizations that are seeking to fill health management positions within their companies.

Healthcare Buyer's Connection is a bi-monthly email newsletter for buyers and sellers of healthcare products and services. It highlights news on trends in healthcare purchasing and marketing and recommends reading for keeping up-to-date on e-commerce.

To sign up for our free email newsletters, please visit
http://www.hin.com/freenews2.html



9. Coordinating Care Transitions for the Elderly and Dually Eligible: Fostering Self-Management and Reducing Readmissions

Closing care transition gaps for these populations is the focus of "Coordinating Care Transitions for the Elderly and Dually Eligible: Fostering Self-Management and Reducing Readmissions."

For more information, please visit:
http://store.hin.com/product.asp?itemid=3685



10. Many New York Hospitals Still Not Compliant with “Manny’s Law”

An investigation by the Council of the City of New York found that although rights of uninsured patients are being protected by many hospitals, too many still do not sufficiently inform patients about financial assistance.

For more information, please visit:
http://www.hin.com/sw/healthLaw_regulation110507.html



11. The Medical Home: Pathway to Patient-Centric Primary Care

"The Medical Home: Pathway to Patient-Centric Primary Care," addresses the value and challenges of medical homes from the viewpoints of organizations already trying to establish medical homes for their populations. Covered in this 40-page special report are funding and implementation hurdles, successful methods for identifying members and redesigning office practices to move toward an advanced medical home model.

For more information, please visit:
http://store.hin.com/product.asp?itemid=3719



12. Monthly e-Survey: MRSA Education and Prevention

Methicillin-resistant staph aureus (MRSA) caused more than 94,000 life–threatening infections and nearly 19,000 deaths in the United States in 2005, most of them associated with healthcare settings, according to the most thorough study of life–threatening infections caused by these bacteria, experts with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report. This month's survey examines how healthcare organizations are responding to MRSA, including education and prevention efforts.

To participate in this survey and receive its results, please visit:
http://www.surveymonkey.com/s.aspx?sm=QuaQ0HZQzibyy98faaW_2fTg_3d_3d


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