Obama administration gives PR firm another $33M to promote exchanges; UnitedHealth sues city of Birmingham;

News From Around the Web

> The Obama administration has given an additional $33 million to public relations firm Weber Shandwick to help promote the reform law, including supporting health insurance exchanges and encouraging consumers to use new options to obtain health coverage, reported The Hill's Healthwatch. Article

> UnitedHealth is suing the city of Birmingham in a lawsuit that alleges a new benefits agreement between the city and Blue Cross Blue Shield of Alabama violated the state's competitive bidding laws.The suit seeks to block Birmingham from implementing the contract with Blue Cross, the Birmingham Business Journal reported. Article

Health Provider News

> For accountable care models to succeed, payers and providers must collaborate, using each of their strengths for the benefit of the healthcare system. Providers are good at acute care delivery, specialty care and technology, while payers' strengths include managing risk, population management, and member outreach and education. Article

> Hospitals increasingly are training their staff to properly respond to a shooter in the workplace, especially since studies show that 91 shootings occurred inside U.S. hospitals and 63 outside on hospital grounds between 2000 and 2011. Article

Health IT News

> The controversial data hub that will connect state health insurance exchanges with federal agencies has been completed, according to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Marilyn Tavenner. Article

> A new experimental "smart" knife can help surgeons determine whether they've removed all cancerous tissue during surgery. Article

And Finally… If it's hot, it's probably also smelly. Article