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COMMUNICATION

Interpreters improve patient care

Do you have interpreters on staff or on call for your medical practice? Interpreters are essential for medical care when language is a barrier. Consider the results of a study reported in this article from Boston Children’s Hospital:  By Veronica Giarla Sharing medical concerns with clinicians can be hard for anyone—a challenge that’s amplified in patients when English isn’t their first language. The results are troubling: One recent study by Boston Children’s pediatric hospitalist and researcher Alisa Khan, MD, MPH, found that patients and families who have limited English proficiency are three to five times less likely to speak up and ask questions of their care team. “There are many ways patients who don’t speak English experience health care differently from those who do,” she says. It’s a challenge that Esterlina… . . . read more.

Remote patient monitoring on the rise

Is your medical practice making use of remote patient monitoring? It’s an emerging trend, judging by market growth. A press release from Allied Analytics LLP says the remote patient monitoring market was was valued at $1.9 billion in 2021, and is estimated to reach $8.5 billion by 2031, growing at a CAGR of 16.3% from 2022 to 2031. Surge in number of populations, limited availability of hospitality beds along with upsurge in infectious virus during the pandemic fuel the growth of the global remote patient monitoring market during the forecast period. Remote patient monitoring devices check patients’ body temperature, respiration rate, heart rate, and blood pressure without invasive treatments. Day-to-day monitoring equipment, such as glucometers for diabetic patients and heart or blood pressure monitors for cardiac patients, are examples of… . . . read more.

TOOL

Love contracts: Help for hot messes

They arrive at work separately. They never touch each other in your presence. Then, as you chair a meeting, you see his gray eyes seek hers out across the conference table. She returns his gaze; her eyes linger. Suddenly you know. The senior manager, despite all the sexual harassment seminars he’s attended, appears romantically intertwined with an accounting clerk. If you’re in charge, how do you handle this hot mess?  The reality Some managers and supervisors would never have an affair with an employee they oversee or an employee in their company. Others consider the workplace a dating pond in which they fish. Still others fall into a relationship that makes them disregard risks. According to a recent survey by the Society for Human Resource Management, one in three U.S…. . . . read more.

WORKPLACE SAFETY

AMA renews call for gun violence prevention in wake of Tulsa shooting

The American Medical Association (AMA) has again called for prevention of gun violence, this time in response to the targeted killing of physicians on June 1 in Tulsa, Okla., one of the latest in a string of mass shootings across the country. “As we have said repeatedly since declaring gun violence a public health crisis in 2016, gun violence is out of control in the United States, and, without real-world, common-sense federal actions, it will not abate,” said AMA President Gerald E. Harmon, M.D. “The victims are grade school children and their teachers, people shopping for groceries on a Saturday afternoon, those attending their house of worship, and most recently in Tulsa, those who have dedicated their lives to healing. The House Judiciary Committee is taking an important first step… . . . read more.

YOUR CAREER

Changed jobs: What have I done?

By Lynne Curry You expect to feel angry when fired from a job you enjoy. You expect to feel scared when laid off from a job at which you felt secure. You don’t expect to feel rotten one week after you intentionally make a career move from a job you’ve outgrown to one that promises to be challenging and rewarding. So why are you so rattled during your first week on this new job? Sudden job change takes you from a job and practice in which you know who’s who and what’s what and throws you into situations you need to navigate without a clear road map. Before you have the chance to learn your new employer’s unwritten rules, including whom to trust and who might take things the wrong… . . . read more.

AMA

New physician population likely to be more diverse

The American Medical Association has committed itself to supporting a more diverse population of physicians to replace those physicians leaving the profession. The last two years of pandemic difficulties plus an aging physician workforce will likely result in an exodus from the field and a shortage of doctors. Gerald E. Harmon, M.D., president of the American Medical Association, says, “Across the United States, physicians from all backgrounds have spent the past two years battling COVID-19, serving their communities, and leveraging technologies, new and old, from telehealth to house calls, to treat and manage patients who might be apprehensive about visiting a physician’s office. But even as we transition to what is hopefully an endemic stage of COVID-19 and our country, hopefully, returns to something close to pre-pandemic living, we must… . . . read more.

PATIENT ACCESS

AMA asks Congress to fix Medicare physician payment system

The American Medical Association (AMA) has warned congressional leaders that the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) report sent to Congress in mid-March contains flawed analyses that would imperil patient access to high-quality care. The MedPAC report recommended a continuation of the freeze in Medicare physician fee payments but ignores a host of trailing indicators, none more obvious than the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on physician practices. In 2020, there was a $13.9 billion decrease in Medicare physician fee schedule spending as patients delayed treatments. Burnout, stress, workload, and fear of COVID infection are leading one in five physicians to consider leaving their current practice within two years. The letter to Congress includes a chart—based on an analysis of data from the Medicare Trustees—that shows Medicare physician payment has been… . . . read more.

MOM WEBINAR

Learn about changes and updates to telehealth

There’s a lot you need to know about telehealth. That’s why Medical Office Manager is offering a webinar, Telehealth—What Managers Need to Know, on April 6. It’s free to Medical Office Manager members. Presenter Jen Bell of Karen Zupko and Associates will give you the tools and knowledge you need to comply with new telehealth regulations. Meanwhile here is Jen’s update on telehealth changes to early 2022. POS 10 Telehealth Provided in Patient’s Home Patient is located in their home (which is a location other than a hospital or other facility where the patient receives care in a private residence) when receiving health services or health related services through telecommunication technology. Home may be defined to include temporary lodging (hotels, homeless shelters) and patient travels of short distance from the exact… . . . read more.

EMPLOYEE MENTAL HEALTH

Is it poor performance or a personal crisis?

By Paul Edwards Those in the healthcare industry are bound to be ahead of the curve in understanding that mental illness is not a character defect and can be a serious health condition that requires intervention. Despite having a good comprehension of the importance of good mental health hygiene, healthcare professionals tend to fare badly in terms of psychological self-care. While nurses and physicians are at a higher risk of suicide than the general population, this article is focused on employees and how can take the mental health of employees in crisis into account when talking to individuals about their performance at work. Given this past year, just about everyone associated with providing health care, when asked, will tell you they are burned out and tired. Overall, it seems most are facing… . . . read more.

PURCHASING

How to choose a healthcare analytics provider: A checklist

By Kevin Keenahan An effective analytics provider promises to bring novel data sets and insights to the table, optimize workflows, build efficient processes, and deliver superior financial returns in evolving value-based payment models. The challenge for buyers The “analytics” is a complex, nebulous family of functionality and the marketing noise surrounding many applications these days can be extremely misleading. Predicting what the product even looks like post go-live and how clinicians will end up adopting the application is often hard to nail down. Analytics itself covers several applications that all hold immense promise for healthcare applications. For instance: Computer vision solutions can automate diagnoses, Natural language processing can transcribe documentation and obviate simple and non-value-added tasks, and Big data analytics can parse through an ever-growing wealth of data to provide… . . . read more.


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