CommonWell adds two members; ONC unveils FAQs on HIE governance;

News From Around the Web

> The CommonWell Health Alliance, a collaborative effort of HIT suppliers working to attain interoperability and data liquidity, has added Computer Programs and Systems, Inc. and Sunquest Information Systems to its organization. Other members of the alliance include Allscripts, athenahealth, Cerner, Greenway Medical Technologies and McKesson. Announcement

> The Office of the National Coordinator for Health IT has released five pages of answers to Frequently Asked Questions about health information exchange governance. The FAQs cover a variety of topics, including membership in the National HIE Governance Forum, goals of cooperative agreements, business associate requirements, preventing interoperability silos, and vendor issues. Website (.pdf)

> More than 1,000 former Allscripts MyWay electronic health record customers have switched to Aprima Medical Software rather than upgrade to Allscripts' Pro EHR product, according to an announcement from Aprima. Allscripts discontinued its MyWay product in autumn 2012. Announcement

Health Finance News

> Declining admissions that hurt hospital revenue still plague Community Health Systems and other hospital operators. Predicting full-year admissions will drop 1 to 3 percent, Community Health yesterday reduced its 2013 earnings forecast. The Nashville, Tenn.-based hospital system, the second largest in the country, also saw total admissions drop 5.1 percent and adjusted admissions fall 1.8 percent for the three months that ended June 30, 2013, compared with the same period in 2012, according to the hospital operator's earnings preview released last week. Article

> Providing incentives to physicians to record end-of-life wishes of their patients into their medical records greatly boosted the practice. The practice could significantly reduce the costs of providing care if widely adopted. Researchers at the University of California at San Francisco (UCSF) paid medical residents $400 if they engaged in a group effort to record end-of-life wishes for their patients in their medical records. As a result, the proportion of patients with end-of-life information in their records rose from 22 percent to 90 percent. The findings were published in the most recent issue of JAMA Internal Medicine. Article

Provider News

> Physician groups are, for the most, part very pleased with a bill approved Tuesday by a Congressional subcommittee to replace Medicare's sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula. In particular, physicians are in favor of the government's plan to provide five years of stable Medicare payments beginning next year, with reimbursements growing 0.5 percent for each year between then and 2018. Starting in 2019, physicians can choose to report certain quality measures and have traditional fee-for-service payments adjusted with a 1 percent bonus if they perform well against their peers and receive a 1 percent penalty in payments if they don't. Article

And Finally... They're now living on pizza, hot dogs, donuts and Mountain Dew, and they had poor diets before they arrived? Article