Wed., November 20, 2013 7:00am
A state agency is updating its hospital coding system for the Medicaid program to meet federal requirements next year. The current “diagnosis related groups” (DRG) system used to reimburse Georgia hospitals is based on cost data derived from 2004 and 2005, and the new one will use 2011 and 2012 data, the Department of Community Health said this week.
Tue., November 19, 2013 9:00am
Recent problems with the Affordable Care Act--a poorly functioning insurance exchange website and an uproar over canceled policies--have dominated headlines and reignited political debates. But Jonathan Blum has a positive message to deliver about the ACA and its effect on the Medicare program, which covers about 1.4 million Georgians.
Tue., November 19, 2013 6:00am
Mayo Clinic’s recently announced collaboration with a Columbus hospital may signal other Georgia ventures for the renowned Minnesota-based health system. St. Francis hospital will be the first Georgia organization to join the Mayo Clinic Care Network. Under the agreement, its physicians will be able to connect with Mayo specialists on questions of complex care using an electronic consulting technique. Mayo will also supply other informational tools.
Wed., November 13, 2013 7:00am
The future of health care will feature greater use of electronic medical data, and more patients will be involved in their own care, a panel of health officials said Tuesday. Through technology and other changes, “we’re going to have better health care and lower costs,’’ Dennis White, president and CEO of Alliant Health Solutions, told an audience at the Health IT Leadership Summit in Atlanta.
Tue., November 12, 2013 9:00am
Emergency medicine is unique. At any time of the day or night, practitioners in an ER must be ready to treat any kind of problem, said Dr. Sam Kini, a veteran emergency physician. Patients rush in with everything from chest pains to vaginal discharge. Among the common problems are back pains, abdominal cramps, fevers, bruises and sprains. Kini said the ER is a blend of specialties, and that makes it an invaluable place to teach.
Tue., November 12, 2013 6:00am
What happens when a rural community loses a hospital? Jobs disappear. Hopes for economic development fade. Residents look for a new route to the nearest hospital. Georgia has seen three rural hospitals close this year: Charlton Memorial Hospital in Folkston; Stewart-Webster Hospital in Richland; and Calhoun Memorial in Arlington.
Fri., November 8, 2013 6:00am
The commissioner of the Department of Community Health on Thursday upheld the award of the state employees’ health benefits contract to Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Georgia. Clyde Reese, the DCH commissioner, also upheld the award of the pharmacy benefits management contract to Express Scripts. The contract award sparked intense criticism from UnitedHealthcare, which charged that the bidding process was flawed and needed to be redone.
Thu., November 7, 2013 8:00am
Thousands of Georgians are getting notices that their health insurance policies are being terminated because they’re not compliant with the Affordable Care Act. The cancellation notices have created an uproar in political circles and in households across the country. But many Georgia consumers have an option if they are unhappy about losing their current policy: They can renew it before Jan. 1.
Wed., November 6, 2013 9:00am
Two South Georgia health systems are reaching out across state borders for help in positioning themselves better in a tumultuous health care world. Phoebe Putney Health System, based in Albany, announced Tuesday that it had struck a partnership with an affiliate of a renowned Pennsylvania-based health system, Geisinger, to improve quality of care and reduce costs.
Wed., November 6, 2013 6:00am
More than 650,000 Georgians will be eligible for subsidies in the health insurance exchange, the seventh-highest total in the nation, a new report said Tuesday. A total of 17 million people who are uninsured or who buy their own coverage will be eligible for the discounts, according to the Kaiser Family Foundation analysis.