AAHAM eNewswatch
Mar. 11, 2015

Legislative Day 2015 is a couple of weeks away
Sponsored by The American Association of Healthcare Administrative Management (AAHAM), this event brings you face-to-face with the decision-makers in Washington who will determine the outcome of our industry's top legislative priorities.

Legislative Day is right around the corner, March 30-31. We are all very excited to present you with a jam-packed agenda for this year's trip to "The Hill". This year we are making appointments for you with both your senators and representatives. Those of you who have attended this event in the past can attest to the excitement of being part of a grassroots advocacy event such as this. With all of the issues and obstacles facing us in healthcare today, it is imperative that you take this opportunity to let your voice be heard in Washington. AAHAM is giving you the opportunity to personally make this happen. Don't let this once a year opportunity pass you by!

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Where & When
Hyatt Regency Capitol Hill
Washington, D.C.
March 30-31More

Hospitals find few easy fixes for patient satisfaction scores
Hospitals have launched many initiatives to boost patient satisfaction, but many organizations still find the goal elusive, Kaiser Health News reports. First introduced in 2007 by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality, Hospital Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers and Systems surveys have given consumers a chance to provide feedback on their care experience. In 2012, CMS began to use the surveys to help determine hospitals' reimbursements, the first major step in what is an ongoing transition from a fee-for-service model to a value-based one.More

11.7 million Americans have insurance under health act
The New York Times
The Obama administration reported that 11.7 million Americans now have private health insurance through federal and state marketplaces, with 86 percent of them receiving financial assistance from the federal government to help pay premiums. About three-fourths of people with marketplace coverage — 8.8 million consumers — live in the 37 states served by HealthCare.gov, the federal insurance exchange. The other 2.9 million people are in states that created and operate their own exchanges.More

The rising cost of generic prescriptions
Medical Economics
In spite of federal efforts, the cost of healthcare continues to rise. A recent PricewaterhouseCoopers report predicts a 6.8 percent increase in costs in 2015, in part because of costly specialty medications, like the hepatitis C drug Sovaldi that costs $84,000 per treatment course. But it's not just breakthrough drugs accounting for escalated costs. Almost no part of the pharmaceutical industry is escaping the trend—including generics, formerly the go-to for low-cost care.More

Is HIPAA the biggest challenge to mHealth development?
mHealth Intelligence
Mobile healthcare is evolving dramatically, but HIPAA needs to evolve to address the current impact of the technology. The impact of mobile devices and applications in the healthcare field is growing with both consumers and professionals. There are constantly new gadgets and apps hitting the market, that handle everything from tracking health statistics to accessing patient records.More

Survey: HHS regulations are squeezing health IT professionals
By Scott E. Rupp
New research suggests that the regulatory demands imposed by the Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) are likely having a negative impact on health IT professionals. As many as 60 percent of polled healthcare IT professionals feel that government regulations are leading to the decline of their industry.More

Why the use of temporary physicians is on the rise
Healthcare Dive
Physicians have been filling in for one another for years. Temporary physicians (known as locum tenens) have traditionally taken over for other physicians as a professional courtesy during vacations, illnesses or other events requiring time away.More

Obama administration launches next generation of value-based care: A high-touch ACO
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services said it plans to launch the next generation of value-based medical care, expanding what doctors and hospitals can do via the accountable care organization (ACO) model of care. The next generation will allow ACOs, which are groups of medical care providers contracting with the Medicare program under one entity, to offer services at little or no copayment so the ACO can "interact more with the beneficiary," Dr. Patrick Conway, deputy administrator for innovation and quality and chief medical officer at the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services, said in an exclusive webcast with members of the Association of Health Care Journalists.More

ICD-10 delay soon could be back on table
Health Data Management
Congress during the month of March expects to once again attempt a permanent fix to the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate formula for reimbursing physicians, and a delay in the ICD-10 compliance date could be in the mix, just as it was last year when the date was moved to Oct. 1. Rep. Pete Sessions, R-Texas, chair of the House Rules Committee, "has been meeting with physicians and discussing how ICD-10 will affect all parties in the medical community," a spokesperson tells Health Data Management.More