AHIMA expressed its support for lifting a ban on using federal funding to establish a national patient identifier, which got a boost late Wednesday after the House advanced an amendment to remove the ban. "Removal of this ban will empower HHS (the Department of Health and Human Services) to explore a full range of patient matching solutions and enable it to work with the private sector to identify solutions that protect patient privacy and are cost-effective, scalable, and secure," according to a statement released by AHIMA CEO Wylecia Wiggs Harris.
Advanced ICU Care CEO Lou Silverman said telehealth has an important and growing role in health care and the delineation between in-person care and virtual care is disappearing, even in critical care settings. "The greatest successes occur when workflows and patient engagement are built around the unique attributes of a specific telemedicine specialty rather than focused on importing bedside traditions into the telemedicine environment," Silverman said.
Four-year-olds with persistent and new excess weight were 2.54 times and 2.49 times more likely to develop hypertension by age 6, respectively, compared with those with healthy weight, Spanish researchers reported in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology. The findings also showed a 3.42 times and 2.81 times increased likelihood of high blood pressure among those with persistent and new abdominal obesity, respectively.
A study in the Journal of General Internal Medicine based on EHR data from 170,332 encounters and interviews with 40 physicians found that variations in clinical documentation in EHRs could result in patient harm and clinical inefficiencies. Researchers suggest conducting user training during the implementation of EHR systems and setting up practice meetings for standardized documentation.
A study presented at the American Diabetes Association annual meeting and published in the Journal of the American Medical Association found that children whose mothers had A1C levels greater than 6.5% during early pregnancy were almost two times as likely to be diagnosed with autism in the first 4 years of life as those whose mothers had A1C levels below 5.7%. The findings were based on data for 35,819 mother-infant pairs.
A study of 314 adults with metabolic syndrome found that those who participated in a telemonitoring-supported physical activity program experienced a significant reduction in mean MetS z score, a measure of severity, six months after the intervention, compared with a control group of patients on a waiting list for the program. The findings were published in The Lancet Public Health.
Vertical integration of health care companies is driven more by market factors than regulation, Northwestern University associate professor Craig Garthwaite told a US Senate subcommittee. Garthwaite said CVS Health's acquisition of Aetna is compelling and the incentives are aligned for it to work, but professor Thomas Greaney said opponents of the deal have made a plausible case that the combined companies' vertical strength would hurt rivals.
Medical 3D printer company PrinterPrezz is working with the University of California San Francisco's Surgical Innovations incubator to share a facility and leverage UCSF's clinical expertise in helping clients develop intellectual property and new ideas and get them to market faster. "We recognize the special role of innovation hospitals in making clinical advancements more accessible to broader patient populations," said PrinterPrezz CEO Shri Shetty.
A survey by Morning Consult and the Bipartisan Policy Center showed 93% of Republican respondents and 92% of Democrats said easier access to rural health care was an important issue. More than 90% of both rural and urban voters said access to rural health care was important.
The Federal Electronic Health Record Modernization Program Office was created by the Veterans Affairs and Defense departments to act as the arbiter for future EHR decisions. "FEHRM leaders will have the authority to direct each department to execute joint decisions for technical, programmatic and functional functions under its purview and will provide oversight regarding required funding and policy as necessary," said Lauren Thompson, director of the VA and DOD's Interagency Program Office.
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