Compared to other developed nations, U.S. end-of-life care holds its own

The United States' end-of-life care quality is about average in comparison to six other developed nations, according to a study from the Dartmouth Institute for Health Policy and Clinical Practice.

Hospitals with more post-acute referrals have more readmissions, shorter stays

A new study published in Medical Care suggests that some hospitals may use post-acute care as a substitute for inpatient care, potentially leading to premature discharges and higher readmission rates.

How a theme-park design can benefit hospitals

Not many people think of a hospital visit as a good time for the whole family, yet one designer says that healthcare organizations can improve patient experiences if they operate more like theme parks, according to an opinion piece for Fast Company Design.

More hospitals treat community violence as providers' responsibility

Violence is an increasing concern for hospital leaders, particularly those in at-risk communities. Now, many of them recruit talent who can help them treat violence and its causes beyond the facilities' walls, according to Kaiser Health News.

Lessons learned from organizations that integrate specialty care into ACOs

Specialty care will be important to the financial success of accountable care organizations, but ACOs still have a lot to learn in order to reduce costs for specialty care, according to post on the Health Affairs Blog.

Real population health management takes flexible, innovative leaders

Population health management requires contributions from everyone in a healthcare organization, but there are several steps hospital leaders must take to ensure the initiative is successful, according to a column from Executive Insight.

FDA gives approval to Olympus duodenoscope's modified design

The Food and Drug Administration has cleared Olympus' modified design and labeling of its TJF-Q180V duodenoscope that was linked to a superbug outbreak. 

Hospitals gear more services toward growing senior population

Hospitals are rethinking how they deliver services to geriatric patients, both for financial reasons and to better serve an aging population, Hospitals & Health Networks magazine reported.

Study raises questions about post-acute care facilities and readmissions, mortality rates

Increasing hospital readmission and mortality rates for patients discharged to post-acute care facilities raises questions about the quality of processes for transitional care, a new study concludes.

Palliative care's new home: The ER

A new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) Oncology finds that terminal cancer patients who receive pain management consultations and other palliative care in the emergency department have a significantly better quality of life than patients who do not. Furthermore, their survival rates are not significantly shorter.

3 factors that drive employee engagement

A white paper published this week by Press Ganey said that hospitals and other healthcare insitutions must commit to three key strategies in order to slow down rates of employee turnover and increase employee engagement. 

Too soon to tell whether transitional care can cut readmissions

In the quest to reduce hospitals' rates of preventable readmissions, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has introduced transitional care management programs to make sure chronically ill and aging patients are taken care of after discharge. But existing research reveals the effectiveness of these programs is far from settled science, according to a study published in the American Journal of Medical Quality.

Report faults HHS on healthcare workforce planning

The Department of Health and Human Services must develop a plan to address the needs of healthcare workers, according to a new report from the Government Accountability Office.

NFL works with charity to offer ER docs education on concussions

To help ER physicians receive the latest education on concussions, the NFL has partnered with the Emergency Medicine Foundation--a charity that invests in emergency medicine research and education--to provide a free online course for physicians on how to assess and manage concussions. 

Martin Luther King, Jr. Day

FierceHealthcare will not publish on Monday in observance of Martin Luther King, Jr. Day. We will return to our regular publication schedule on Tuesday, January 19....

The problem with financial incentives in healthcare

Back in the early 1990s, while working for Harvard Community Health Plan (later Harvard Pilgrim Health Care), I was involved in the implementation of quality-based incentive programs (now called pay-for-performance or P4P programs) where we incentivized physicians and medical practices to do certain things such as improve patient satisfaction and adhere to a drug formulary.

Rural health crisis: Hospital survival may depend on trustees who understand industry shakeups

Rural healthcare providers face an ongoing crisis due to budget and staffing woes, creating a landscape where such hospitals need trustees who have their fingers on the pulse of the industry at large, according to Hospitals & Health Networks.

Interdepartmental cooperation key to lowering sepsis mortality rates

Early detection of sepsis can improve patient outcomes and lower costs associated with the deadly condition, but this requires a concerted effort from all hospital departments, Institute for Healthcare Improvement Vice President Andrea Kabcenell, R.N., said in an interview with Hospitals & Health Networks.


Scope-linked superbug outbreak: Report blames feds, manufacturers, hospitals

The outbreak of deadly bacterial infections linked to contaminated medical scopes was worse than initially reported and due to numerous oversights and reporting failures by scope manufacturers, regulators and hospitals, according to a new U.S. Senate report.

Attending physician workload linked to lower teaching effectiveness

Attending physician workload is associated with lower teaching effectiveness and may compromise patient safety when managing new admissions, according to a new study published in the Journal of Hospital Medicine.