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From the editor

Dear Healthcare Intelligence Network Client,

HIN Managing Editor Patricia Donovan

UnitedHealth Group last week put forth a 15-step plan they say can save $540 billion in healthcare costs over the next decade. Read more about their ideas in the HIN blog, but essentially UnitedHealth's suggestions fall into three areas: incentives for high quality care (for providers that deliver it and beneficiaries that visit high-quality care providers); reducing avoidable and inappropriate care; and applying evidence-based standards to reimbursement policies. Programs that focus on education, self-management and transitions in care for the chronically ill figure prominently in the insurer's proposal.

In this week's issue, read about more ideas to reduce healthcare costs for underserved populations: a plan to test innovative care models for individuals dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid — a group that comprises less than one-fifth of the Medicaid population but accounts for almost half its costs; and innovative applications for telemedicine by a four-story medical home.

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

Please send comments, questions and replies to pdonovan@hin.com.

Associate Editor:
Jessica Papay, jpapay@hin.com

Publisher:
Melanie Matthews, mmatthews@hin.com

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June 1, 2009
Vol. XI, No. 20

Sponsored by:
Sixth Annual Healthcare Unbound Conference & Exhibition

Sixth Annual Healthcare Unbound Conference & Exhibition, June 22-23, 2009, Seattle, WA. Special Focus on Remote Monitoring, Home Telehealth & eHealth.

Register today online at:
http://www.tcbi.org/hu2009

This week's industry news:

  1. Four-Story Medical Home Wired with Telemedicine Outreach
  2. Health IT in Care Management to Improve Health and Effect Behavior Change
  3. Hospitals Fail to Discipline Doctors, Avoid Reporting Requirements
  4. Physician Practice Redesign Essentials: A Transformation Roadmap
  5. Featured Healthcare Business White Paper: Telehealth Improves Access to Clinicians for Every American
  6. Computer-based Smoking Cessation Programs Are a Success
  7. Health Coaching IT Tools: Dashboard for Driving Coaching Sessions Toward Behavior Change
  8. States to Pursue New Integrated Care Approaches for Dual Eligibles
  9. Comorbidity Care Models: Integrated Action Plans for Complex Healthcare Needs
  10. HHS Funding Development of H1N1 Vaccine
  11. Pandemic Influenza: Preparedness and Response in the Healthcare Facility — Inservice program
  12. Featured HealthSounds Podcast: Patient Activation Measure™: Assessing the Engaged Healthcare Consumer for Self-Efficacy
Please pass this along to any of your colleagues or, better yet, have them sign up to receive their own copy and learn about our other news services.

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This week's industry news

1.) Four-Story Medical Home Wired with Telemedicine Outreach

Kathy Scher, program manager for the Center for Clinical Care Design at Henry Ford Health System, describes how her organization designed a four-story medical home and identified patients for telemedicine outreach in this model.

When we designed our medical home model, we conceptually built it with a four-story house in mind. On the first and second floors of our home, we have designed the services for a relatively healthy patient population. The patient profile for level two and level one floors is that they’re healthy, but they may have acute episodic illnesses.

Get the full story.

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2.) Health IT in Care Management to Improve Health and Effect Behavior Change

Employee Health Promotion Strategies The most sophisticated technology in the world will not engage patients and members in health improvement if they are not convinced of the value of the program to their health, the commitment of their providers to the process and the credibility of the entire care team. Those are some of the findings detailed in Health IT in Care Management to Improve Health and Effect Behavior Change, which describes the enrollment and engagement of patients in telemedicine programs in a variety of care settings.

Learn more about this resource.

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3.) Hospitals Fail to Discipline Doctors, Avoid Reporting Requirements

Though a federal law requires hospitals to report physicians who have had their admitting privileges revoked or restricted for more than 30 days, a Public Citizen report found that in addition to inadequate discipline of physicians, hospitals routinely exploit loopholes to avoid government requirements, with nearly half of all hospitals not submitting a single doctor’s name to the National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) in the more than 17 years it has existed.

Get the full story.

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4.) Physician Practice Redesign Essentials: A Transformation Roadmap

Physician Practice Redesign Essentials Faced with emerging reimbursement models that focus on patient outcomes and demands for increased reporting of adherence to evidence-based guidelines, physician practices are being forced to transform the way they operate, from practice workflow to patient encounters to patient and condition tracking. In Physician Practice Redesign Essentials: A Transformation Roadmap, a four-volume set, you’ll get the essential steps physician practices need to take to succeed in this environment. You’ll learn from leading practice transformation experts on adopting a culture of change, choosing a physician performance measurement set, using flowcharts, checklists and diagrams, increasing practice revenue through PQRI and much more.

Learn more about this resource.

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5.) Featured Healthcare Business White Paper: Telehealth Improves Access to Clinicians for Every American

A white paper entitled “Telephone Connectivity Supports Medical Home Model and Removes Barriers to Care,” authored by Kenneth P. Moritsugu, M.D., M.P.H., F.A.C.P.M., articulates the value of telehealth — namely the utilization of the telephone to provide physician or consumer-directed cross coverage 24/7 — as an emerging and effective application in tackling specific issues related to episodic care as well as chronic care management for diseases such as diabetes, cancer, and cardiac disease.

Download this complimentary white paper.

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6.) Computer-based Smoking Cessation Programs Are a Success

A new analysis led by researchers at the University of California, Berkeley, School of Public Health suggests that for those individuals who are trying to quit smoking, Web- and computer-based smoking cessation programs are worth a try. And, because of the tough economic times, many of them are free.

Get the full story.

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7.) Health Coaching IT Tools: Dashboard for Driving Coaching Sessions Toward Behavior Change

Health Coaching IT Tools In this special report, two innovators in health coaching detail the ideal roster of features and functionality for a health coaching IT platform — from coaching support tools to tips on integrating with other systems.

Learn more about this resource.

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8.) States to Pursue New Integrated Care Approaches for Dual Eligibles

As the nation debates health reform options, the Center for Health Care Strategies (CHCS) is launching Transforming Care for Dual Eligibles, a state initiative to test innovative care models for people who are dually eligible for Medicare and Medicaid ("dual eligibles").

Get the full story.

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9.) Comorbidity Care Models: Integrated Action Plans for Complex Healthcare Needs

Comorbidity Care Models This special report presents emerging models of care for comorbidity, with a special focus on the needs of aging multi-morbid patients as well as those whose comorbidity encompasses physical and behavioral health conditions.

Learn more about this resource.

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10.) HHS Funding Development of H1N1 Vaccine

To prepare for potential commercial-scale production of a candidate vaccine for the novel Influenza A (H1N1), HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius is directing approximately $1 billion for clinical studies that will take place over the summer and for commercial-scale production of two potential vaccine ingredients for the pre-pandemic influenza stockpile.

Get the full story.

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11.) Pandemic Influenza: Preparedness and Response in the Healthcare Facility — Inservice program

Pandemic Influenza This presentation educates healthcare staff on preparedness and emergency response in the event of an influenza pandemic. It gives an overview of the influenza virus, the causes of a pandemic, the WHO Influenza Pandemic Phases and the conditions that would exist at each phase. This product outlines in detail the recommended steps in a preparedness plan in the healthcare facility, using recommendations from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), HHS and WHO.

Learn more about this resource.

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12.) Featured HealthSounds Podcast: Patient Activation Measure™ — Assessing the Engaged Healthcare Consumer for Self-Efficacy

Diane Bellard American Health Holdings relies on the Patient Activation Measure™ to assess a patient’s level of engagement in their own overall disease management (DM), but it does more than just that. PAM scores are also used to gauge the success of the DM program and its coaches. Director of DM and wellness services Diane Bellard discusses PAM — who is using it, how to deal with a decrease in PAM levels, how it fits with a patient's readiness to change and PAM's role in an organization's overall quality improvement.

Listen to this podcast.

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