February 1, 2010 Recent News


Electronic Medical Records



Now that the Dems have lost their 60 votes in the Senate, it will be interesting to see how and if they can pass any healthcare bill without involving any Republicans.  For instance the Republicans wanted some change in the Med Mal system but the Dems bowed to their trial attorney masters and their money to kill any significant change.

The New York Times after the victory for the country in the used to be People's Republic stated that the Dems will not rush to pass a healthcare bill.  They could have the House pass the Senate bill so it will not have to return to be defeated there.  They may try to get Republican Snowe to vote for the bill but that seems unlikely after the way she was treated earlier.  

Obama stated that nothing will be done on health until the new Senator is seated.  We will see if his wishes are followed by Pelosi and Reid.  He also states that health reform will have to be scaled back to areas where both parties agree.  This means only minimal money to be spent and only with absolute funding to counteract the money spent.  An example may be a saving of $54 Billion with med mal reform and then use that money to purchase moderate basic healthcare for those who want it and not for all under fiat.

The White House states the underlying premise of healthcare reform remains popular and the Republicans want to be part of the process so want the Dems to start over.  

Idaho was not waiting for the Republic to elect a Republican.  They are considering a bill to keep the Feds from forcing the people to purchase insurance.  This is within their power as a state's rights issue. 

The same is true for Wisconsin.  The Democratic state with long ties to the trial attorneys had the Senate pass a med mal bill to overturn their non economic damages law.  The Assembly still has to approve it and then it needs to be signed before the physicians start to leave.

Ah, leave it to the left coast.  Again, the legislature is attempting to pass single payor in the state.  There is no money to pay for this but that has never stopped the Dems before.  Fortunately Arnie is still the Gov and will veto the bill yet again.   

The Arizona Republic has a long article on the stopping of physicians in the state taking new Medicare patients.  The pay is poor and the red tape is miserable.  The CMS states that they have had no notice of patients having difficulty in finding physicians.  The reason is that people don't know to complain.  If one thinks this is bad wait to March 1 when the present reprieve on SGS is over and the 21% decrease goes into effect.  

The Phoenix Business Journal has an article on the Medicare managed care plans of the state and their cutting of benefits and dropping out altogether.  The reduction of 4.5% in fees paid is the difference.  Those plans that had no co-pays now have one.  Primary physicians are receiving 50-55 cents per dollar billed and specialists are getting 60 cents per dollar billed.  Is it any wonder no one will take Medicare or Medicare HMO business?   

USA Today states that there has been little progress by the feds against health fraud.  For years the numbers have remained amazing similar despite the crowing of the feds.  The current estimate is the fed $60 BILLION a year.  They are only prosecuting the "low hanging fruit."  This a major reason why fed med is so dangerous.   Top

Electronic Medical Records

Hospitals do not learn.  About five years ago Cedar's Sinai spent millions of dollars on an electronic medical record system that the physicians would not use.  They had to ditch the system and spend millions more on one that was user friendly.  Now the same thing is happening to the University of Iowa.  They bought Epic and no one likes it.  The hospital tried to put it out in less time than was needed and now will need to pull back and work slower.        Top


UC Irvine is still in deep doo doo.  They got a terrible review in October during a surprise inspection.  The report was finally made public and was scathing in the treatment of patients.  The hospital has submitted its plan of correction and is waiting for its next inspection.  

The People's Republic's loser for the Senate AG Coakley has announced to no ones surprise the major hospitals in the state are getting paid twice as much money for no better care than the other hospitals in the state.  Either all should be paid the higher rate or the big boys should have to repay alot of money.        Top


  DISCLAIMER: Although this article is updated periodically, it reflects the author's point of view at the time of publication. Nothing in this article constitutes legal advice. Readers should consult with their own legal counsel before acting on any of the information presented.