AAHAM eNewswatch
Apr. 4, 2012

2012 Legislative Day — April 11-12
Sponsored by 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. Due to the nature of this event and to allow sufficient time to set up legislative appointments, attendance is limited, and will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, so be sure to send in your registration form and payment today. This year's Legislative Day focuses on the Telephone Consumer Protection Act.More

Obama confident Supreme Court will uphold healthcare law
The Washington Post
President Obama has challenged the Supreme Court to uphold his administration's sweeping healthcare reform legislation, arguing that overturning the law would amount to an "unprecedented, extraordinary step" of judicial activism. In his first public comments since the court wrapped up oral arguments in its review of the 2010 law, Obama questioned the authority of the nine-member panel of unelected justices to reverse legislation that was approved by a majority vote in Congress.More

Steep fine sends message on patient data protection
American Medical News
The federal government's first settlement resulting from a healthcare data breach reported under a part of the 2009 stimulus bill will cost BlueCross BlueShield of Tennessee $1.5 million, on top of what it has spent notifying customers and changing its data security practices. The settlement should tell physicians that the government "takes security breaches seriously," said Yarnell Beatty, director of the legal and governmental affairs division for the Tennessee Medical Assn.More

Employers signal near-term cuts to employees' health benefits
American Medical News
Facing the last few years before major health reform elements kick in, most employers say they are paring back benefits and pushing more costs to employees to keep benefits affordable. Reduced benefits could mean further declines in patient traffic to physician offices, experts say.More

Health law accelerates industry changes
Kaiser Health News
The healthcare market has been undergoing rapid transformation in part as a result of the healthcare law being debated by the Supreme Court. And most of those changes will continue regardless of how the Court rules in June, or who wins the White House in November. The shifts did not originate with the law, but they have accelerated greatly since its passage because the federal government is changing how it pays doctors and hospitals, from a system that rewards volume to one that rewards quality.More

New AAHAM Logo Store open
The new AAHAM Logo Store is now open. We have lots of great wearable merchandise at affordable prices, all with the AAHAM logo on it. We have sweatshirts, T-shirts, vests and even baby clothes for the youngest AAHAM fans.More

Information integrity: A high risk, high cost vulnerability
Health Data Management
Accuracy and validity of data are persistent concerns for those who use it and are the subject of that data. And the concerns are well founded. Data error is a risk to patient safety. The explosive growth of digital information — with weak information governance — has raised the stakes. Information integrity is a foundational building block of effective information management and it's arguably the most underdeveloped block.More

10 things we don't know about looming readmission penalties
HealthLeaders Media
The second, and some say the most anxiously anticipated, document setting forth how hospitals with excessive 30-day readmission rates will be fined will soon be released. A lot of money is at stake for some hospitals. And precisely how these new rules will be implemented for three conditions that represent 16 percent of overall readmissions — heart failure, pneumonia and acute myocardial infarction — remains unclear.More

Changes in insurance tied to more ER visits
People who either gained or lost their health insurance took more trips to the emergency room than those who had a stable insurance status, in a new study. The findings are troubling when considering the 32 million Americans expected to become newly-insured under President Barack Obama's 2010 healthcare law. But the results also suggest that the number of ER visits even out as a person remains either insured or uninsured for more than a year.More

Survey: Most CIOs not sold on ICD-10
It comes as little surprise that most CIOs believe the decision to postpone ICD-10 was the right move. What is surprising, however, is that an overwhelming majority don't see the benefits of converting at all, according to a healthsystemCIO.com SnapSurvey. Specifically, 80 percent said they do not believe the cost-benefit in the ICD-10 switch warrants moving ahead, with some noting that it will have little effect on patient care.More

6 best practices for implementing EMR, CPOE for Meaningful Use
Becker's Hospital Review
It's no secret that EMRs and CPOE offer healthcare organizations great resources for tracking metrics, gauging quality improvement and facilitating transitions of care. Montefiore Medical Center in New York City is among the first hospitals in the country to reach 100 percent implementation of computerized physician order entry. Here are six best practices that helped Montefiore successfully employ EMR and CPOE systems to meet Meaningful Use standards.More