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Sensing Savvy

Fresenius and DaVita Capture 84% of U.S. Hemodialysis Market

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Aug 24, 2016 6:30:00 AM

In its 2016 July issue Nephrology News and Issues published its annual survey of dialysis providers. Fresenius Medical Care and DaVita control the hemodialysis market with 84%, which translates to 366,000 patients out of a total of 433,000 patients.The two companies employ more than 135,000 employees. DaVita further solidified its position as one of the top players in the market with its 2015 acquisition of Renal Ventures Management, which added 2,387 patients to its roster. U.S. Renal Care, the third largest company, bought DSI Renal. Other mid-sized companies with national coverage are Dialysis Clinic Inc., American Renal Associates Inc. and Satellite Heathcare Inc. The top 10 are:

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Topics: Clinical Trends, Hemodialysis

Do Dialysis Clinic Star Ratings Really Reflect Quality?

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Aug 22, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Introduced in January 2014, the Center for Medicare/Medicaid's (CMS) Star Ratings for dialysis facilities are intended to help patients know how dialysis clinics rate for quality measures. A 5-star rating for a facility indicates that its quality of care is considered “much above average” compared to other dialysis facilities. A 1- or 2-star rating indicates that measured outcomes were below average compared to those for other facilities.

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Topics: Clinical Trends, Hemodialysis

How Medicare’s Outpatient Prospective Payment System Rule Could Affect Hospitals

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Aug 17, 2016 6:30:00 AM

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid (CMS) recently released its 2017 Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System Rule (OPPS) and Ambulatory Surgical Center (ASC) Payment System Proposed Rule.

Beginning in FY 2017, the proposed rule will result in a 1.6 percent increase — of approximately $5.1 billion compared to FY 2016 — in payment for hospitals paid under OPPS.

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Topics: Hospital Administration

Technology Trends Impacting Cardiothoracic Surgery You Need to Know

Posted by Anna Mueller, MS on Aug 15, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Cardiothoracic surgery, Twitter chats and website design may not seem like the perfect combination, but when it comes to accessing the latest journal articles, connecting with patients and expanding your practice, they can be invaluable.

At the 2016 STS Annual Meeting, a panel of cardiothoracic experts shared how these and other internet technology trends are impacting cardiothoracic surgery.

Here are three technology trends impacting cardiothoracic surgery you need to know:

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Topics: Cardiothoracic, CABG Surgery

How Working Locum Tenens can Reduce Surgeon Burnout

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Aug 10, 2016 6:30:00 AM

You struggle to get yourself to the hospital for your shift. You’re not as engaged with patients and your peers as you once were. You might even find yourself dealing with feelings of anxiety and depression. You’re likely suffering from burnout, and like over half of your colleagues, you’re not alone.

Over 50 percent of surgeons report feelings of burnout. Researchers also found that rates of burnout among surgeons increased between 2013 and 2016, with female surgeons experiencing burnout more often than their male colleagues.

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Topics: Cardiothoracic

How Design Thinking Can Improve Patient Experience

Posted by Roger DeLong, CP, PE, MBA on Aug 8, 2016 6:30:00 AM

An electronic mannequin is splayed on a stretcher in a fictional emergency department, shouting in pain. Nearby, an actor portraying that mannequin’s brother is frantic with worry. This isn’t a scene from a play. Rather, it’s a scene playing out in many top hospitals—an exercise in design thinking.

Exercises in design thinking put actual doctors and nurses at the bedside of fictitious patients where they interact with fictitious family members, all in an effort to improve patient experience.

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Topics: Hospital Administration

Ways to Reduce Dialysis Nurse Burnout

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Aug 4, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Twelve-hour shifts, sleep deprivation, skeleton staffing, and difficult patients. For nurses, these working conditions come with the profession. However, being on the front lines of patient care can have deleterious effects for those providing care.

Nurse retention and burnout plague many hospitals and health systems, but nowhere is the issue more prevalent than among dialysis nurses. One in three dialysis nurses in the United States experiences burnout. That’s because these nurses are usually more overworked, underpaid and, at times, undervalued than their peers in different specialties, says Francyne N. Rosenstock, vice president of Business Development and Marketing for Renal Reserve. 

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Nephrology News to Know from July

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Aug 2, 2016 2:00:00 PM

Davita Kidney Care and Inspira Partnership

Davita Kidney Care will start a joint venture to acquire New Jersey’s Inspira Health Network. Through the acquisition, three southern New Jersey Inspira clinics will transfer the majority of ownership to Davita.

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Topics: Hemodialysis

Why Cardiovascular Disease is Killing Hemodialysis Patients

Posted by Susan Eymann, MS on Jul 27, 2016 6:30:00 AM

John has end-stage renal disease (ESRD) and goes for hemodialysis three times a week at his local dialysis clinic. By all accounts, John seems to be handling his hemodialysis treatments well.

At the end of one of his sessions, John doesn’t feel well. He assumes it has to do with his recent treatment and figures he’ll feel better shortly. He leaves the clinic, but fails to show up for his next hemodialysis treatment.

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Topics: Clinical Trends, Hemodialysis

The Latest on Obamacare Funding and Healthcare Policies

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Jul 25, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Many low-income Affordable Care Act patients will be seeing higher co-pays and deductibles at hospitals and doctor’s offices if the May 2016 decision by federal Judge Rosemary Collyer stands.

But the ruling doesn’t just affect the finances of patients: Your hospital could take a hit, too. Here’s what you need to know about the latest happenings with Obamacare funding and other healthcare policies:

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Topics: Hospital Administration