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Sensing Savvy

Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP

Thomas has been a physician for more than 25 years. He is board certified in family medicine, completing his family medicine residency and earning the honorary degree of fellow, granted by the American Board of Family Medicine (AAFP). Thomas has been a teacher and mentor of medical students and residents for more than a quarter century and served as an assistant family medicine residency director for more than a decade.

Recent Posts

What Physicians and Hospital Administrators Should Know About MACRA

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Oct 3, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Healthcare payment reform is coming. As healthcare delivery is shifting from a fee-for-service model to a value-based model, Medicare is changing the way it will reimburse physicians.

The result is the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) and it’s slated to go into effect on January 1, 2017.

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Topics: Hospital Administration

How Do You Rate the Affordable Care Act (ACA)? These Docs Gave it an F

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Sep 26, 2016 7:00:00 AM

Since its inception six years ago, the Affordable Care Act (ACA) has received lots of feedback. Regardless of political opinions, physicians have voiced their thoughts on the law, praising it for improving access to healthcare but saying it has negatively affected their practices.

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Topics: Hospital Administration, Clinical Trends

CMS Star Ratings: 3 Things to Know

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Sep 21, 2016 6:30:00 AM

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released its Overall Hospital Quality Star Ratings and with it came a slew of questions and comments.

CMS says its ratings system is designed to help individuals, their family members and caregivers compare hospitals “in an easily understandable way.”

Here are three things you should know about the latest CMS Star Ratings.

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Topics: Hospital Administration

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

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

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

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

Medical Errors as a Cause of Death: 4 Things to Know

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Jul 20, 2016 6:30:00 AM

As a surgeon, you're keenly aware of the danger of medical errors and extremely diligent to avoid making them.

Medical errors as a cause of death now rank as the third leading cause of death, behind heart disease and cancer in the United States. Researchers at Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine found that errors result in the deaths of around 250,000 patients per year.

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Topics: Clinical Trends, CABG Surgery

How to Increase Efficiency in the Operating Room

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Jul 18, 2016 7:00:00 AM

One of the costliest areas in a hospital is the operating room. Despite its high costs, the OR is also one of the top revenue generators, bringing in between $15 - $20 per minute, and that’s just for a basic surgical procedure.

But as budgets become tighter and patients and insurance companies seek a greater value for their money, hospitals are examining ways to increase efficiency in the operating room. Imagine the money and time wasted each time a case is delayed by a search for a piece of missing equipment.

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Topics: Hospital Administration, Cardiothoracic, CABG Surgery

Are Transonic Access Flow Measurements the Standard of Care?

Posted by Thomas Gole, DO, FAAFP on Jun 29, 2016 7:00:00 AM

After reviewing and comparing various methods of surveillance of AV grafts and fistulas, a London, Ontario group of physicians concluded that Transonic’s ultrasound indicator dilution methodology (Kriviski Method) is the gold standard for measurement of vascular access recirculation and access flow. It is the method of choice for monthly surveillance of vascular access grafts in adherence to NKF-KDOQI guidelines.

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Topics: Hemodialysis