The emphasis on primary care as the “key” to lifting the quality of U.S. healthcare may be exaggerated according to a report by Dartmouth’s Institute for Health Policy & Clinical Practice. "Primary care forms the bedrock of a well-functioning, effective health care system," the researchers observe. But-- and this is an important caveat- "simply increasing access to primary care, either by boosting the number of primary care physicians in ...

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When a health system asked me to facilitate a Board discussion on physician alignment and integration on November 12, 2010, I was already committed to giving a keynote on the future of health care for the American Institute of CPAs in Las Vegas on November 11. Although I usually fly Delta or USAir where I have priority frequent flyer status, the only way I could get to the Board meeting ...

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MedPage Today News Editor Joyce Frieden and Washington Correspondent Emily Walker sat down with Secretary of Health and Human Services Kathleen Sebelius to talk about fixing the sustainable growth rate, implementing the Affordable Care Act, rebooting the electronic health record initiative, and -- of course -- they talked about money. The video is embedded below: classid="clsid:d27cdb6e-ae6d-11cf-96b8-444553540000" width="356" height="294" codebase="http://download.macromedia.com/pub/shockwave/cabs/flash/swflash.cab#version=6,0,40,0">
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A bill given emergency status by Texas Governor Rick Perry is the largest invasion of the patient-physician relationship that I am aware of. Proposed by Senator Dan Patrick (R-Houston) and supported by Lt. Gov. David Dewhurst, the bill as originally written would require physicians to perform a ultrasound and explain the physical characteristics of the fetus to anyone contemplating an abortion. Physicians would be required to inform women about alternatives to ...

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While DrRich is a conservative American, and has made plain the difficulties he has with the Progressive program in general and with Progressive healthcare reform in particular, at times he is forced to admit that, on occasion, the Progressive way of looking at the world has certain merits. And as DrRich contemplates a question that has been bothering him lately, a question that no doubt plagues many American ...

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by Katherine Fullerton, MD As a pediatric emergency physician in Northern Virginia, I have the good fortune to work with an amazing staff in a busy pediatric emergency department (ED) that sees a wide range of patients with both minor and life-threatening illnesses. Of note, we have a wonderful electronic medical record (EMR) that allows us to see past visits, lab tests, and medical problems. My last shift was an overnight ...

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With little notice, UnitedHealth released a major paper recently considering diabetes in America. First the bad news: a large portion of our population either has the disease or is pre-diabetic. Now, the really bad news: diabetes and pre-diabetes rates are going to soar in the coming decade, according to the analysis, in part driven by the obesity crisis. I’ll return back to the study in a moment, but it underscores a ...

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The recent explosion of interest in onsite clinics – not just by employers, but by health plans, hospital systems, public health programs, and others – is anything but just another health care fad. At once, clinics’ growing popularity signals purchasers’ weariness with an intransigent, self-interested health system, as well as their guarded optimism about a better way. Today’s best clinics are single-mindedly focused on what works best for the patient and ...

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by Jeffrey L. Cohen In the 90s, physicians were told “The sky is falling. You have to find a tree to stand under or you will be crushed.” The “trees” were things like IPAs and PHOs. The future outlook was bleak. All patients were going to be part of some system with which the physician would have no input or control. Decisions would be made on purely ...

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A guest column by the American Medical Association, exclusive to KevinMD.com. by Ardis Dee Hoven, MD Physicians’ voices heard through AMA advocacy activities in Washington, DCThis week, hundreds of physicians and medical students converged in Washington, D.C., for the AMA’s annual National Advocacy Conference. The current and future physicians learned about and discussed key legislative issues, including how new policy will impact physician practices, and heard from officials including CMS Administrator ...

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