Archive for July, 2013

Infographic: A 50-State Look at Medicaid Expansion

July 31st, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Health coverage to low-income families through the Medicaid program is expanding under the Affordable Care Act. New individuals and populations will be covered by Medicaid due to changes in national eligibility limits.

The federal government will cover 100 percent of the costs of Medicaid expansion in 2014, 2015 and 2016, according to a new infographic from Families USA. This infographic provides facts on where states stand on Medicaid expansion, along with a brief analysis on two states to watch.

A 50-State Look at Medicaid Expansion

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Population Health Management for Dual Eligibles: Blueprint for Care Coordination.

Infographic: Why Don’t People Take Their Medications?

July 30th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Many Americans don't take their medications as they are prescribed, resulting in various health issues and billions of dollars spent on otherwise avoidable medical costs.

Approximately 125,000 deaths per year are linked to medication non-adherence, according to a new infographic from Health Prize. The infographic pinpoints the top excuses and reasons people give for not adhering to their medication, patient populations most likely to ignore prescription instructions, the effects of non-adherence and ways to address these issues.

Why People Do Not Take Their Medications

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You may also be interested in this related resource: 2013 Healthcare Benchmarks: Improving Medication Adherence.

Take a look at HIN's medication adherence infographic: Medication Adherence: Getting America to Take Its Medicine.

Medication Adherence

Infographic: Jobs for Health Information Technicians to Increase

July 29th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Accompanying the rise in technology use in healthcare is a need for health information technicians responsible for compiling, processing and maintaining medical records.

The job outlook for health information technicians is expected to increase 21 percent by 2020, according to a new infographic from Health Information Technology Careers. The infographic outlines various aspects of a career as a health information technician such as average salary, work environment, typical level of education and certification, and the states with highest employment rates.

Get the latest healthcare infographics delivered to your e-inbox with Eye on Infographics, a bi-weekly, e-newsletter digest of visual healthcare data. Click here to sign up today.

You may also be interested in this related resource: 2013 Healthcare Benchmarks: Telehealth & Telemedicine.

Infographic: Abuse of Prescription Drugs Affects Young Adults Most

July 26th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Young adults make up the largest group of abusers of opiod pain relievers, ADHD stimulants and anti-anxiety drugs. In 2010, almost 3,000 young adults died from prescription drug overdoses and many more needed emergency treatment.

For every young adult death due to prescription overdose, there are 17 treatment admissions and 66 emergency room visits, according to a new infographic from the National Institute on Drug Abuse. The infographic also includes information about the nonmedical use of prescription drugs in the past year and the common motivations for and likely consequences of prescription drug use.

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Disease Management and Wellness in the Post-Reform Era.

Healthcare Business Week in Review: Urgent Care Growing; Medical Overuse; Pioneer ACOs, Readmissions

July 26th, 2013 by Cheryl Miller


Urgent care centers alternative care centers for time-challenged patients, or costly care convenience centers?

That’s the debate in a new study by the Center for Studying Health System Change (HSC) on the rapid growth of these centers throughout the country. Once an occasional independently-owned, standalone facility, there are now 9,000 urgent care centers.

Three key factors are driving the surge, among them, their accessibility. Urgent care centers fill a gap by providing walk-in care, especially during evening and weekend hours, when primary care physician (PCP) offices are generally closed. They are particularly appealing to those patients unable to schedule a PCP appointment during weekday hours, or for those patients without a PCP.

There is little debate over a series of recommendations that could reduce five medical interventions that are commonly used but not always necessary, according to a paper released by The Joint Commission and the American Medical Association-Convened Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement® (PCPI).

Left unchecked, overuse, described as the provision of medical interventions that provide zero or negligible benefit to patients, is a leading contributor to problems with quality and patient safety, can affect millions of patients, and can drive up healthcare costs.

Researchers estimate that $1 billion is spent annually on unnecessary antibiotics for adults with viral upper respiratory infections (URIs) alone, one of the five areas of overuse. Strategies to reduce this include developing clinical definitions for viral and bacterial URIs, aligning contradictory national guidelines, partnering with the CDC and initiating public awareness. Other strategies and treatment areas are outlined inside.

Developing consistent guidelines is key to another set of recommendations tackling an equally common and costly healthcare problem: heart failure readmissions. Researchers have identified six steps hospital staff can take to help heart failure patients avoid readmittance to the hospital within 30 days after they’re discharged, according to research in the American Heart Association’s journal Circulation: Cardiovascular Quality and Outcomes.

While each step alone has had some impact on patients' recovery, researchers found that if all six recommendations were followed, readmissions could drop as much as two percent. This translates to a savings of more than $100 million a year.

A lack of savings is prompting seven of 32 provider groups that signed up for the Pioneer Accountable Care Organizations (ACOs) program sponsored by CMS to switch to the Medicare Shared Saving Program (MSSP), according to the CMS.

Two other Pioneer ACOs are leaving the program completely, CMS officials say. Overall, more than 250 organizations participate in the Pioneer ACO Model and the MSSP, serving 4 million Medicare beneficiaries.

CMS said in a statement that 13 out of 32 pioneer ACOs produced and shared savings with CMS, generating a gross savings of $87.6 million in 2012 and saving nearly $33 million to the Medicare Trust Funds.

One of the key features of the Pioneer program, and one that differentiates it from the Medicare Shared Savings Program, is that it is accountable for all Medicare A and B benefits, so it includes end stage renal disease patients, hospice patients, and dual-eligibles.

How is your organization meeting the unique care coordination needs of dual eligibles? Share your organization's approach by July 31st by participating in our online survey and you will receive a free summary of survey results once it is compiled.

Infographic: America’s Heart Disease Epidemic

July 25th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the United States. Furthermore, more Americans die of heart disease than all cancers combined.

Thirty-five percent of heart disease mortalities are due to physical inactivity, according to a new infographic from Northwest Regional Heart Center. This infographic also includes costs associated with and causes of heart disease, high-risk conditions that lead to heart disease, and more.

America's Heart Disease Epidemic

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Chronic Care Professional Manual 5.0.

Infographic: Dissecting Patient-Centered Care

July 24th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Patient-centered care is evolving, and healthcare providers are redirecting their focus to meet the unique needs of every patient.

Beginning this year, 30 percent of hospital Medicare reimbursements will be determined based on patient experience, according to a new infographic from the University of Arizona College of Nursing. This infographic also details healthcare reform's effect on nursing professions, the need for advanced nursing education, chronic illness in the United States, switching from disease-centered to patient-centered care, and more.

Dissecting Patient-Centered Care

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Improving Patient Care: The Implementation of Change in Health Care, 2nd Edition.

HINfographic: The 4 Ws of Home Visits

July 23rd, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Visiting medically complex patients at home can shed light on health-related issues that might go undetected during an office visit, reducing the likelihood of unplanned admissions or emergency department visits by these patients.

According to a recent HIN survey, 72 percent of respondents include home visits in their care transitions program.

This HINfographic on home visits provides actionable data detailing who conducts the home visits, what happens during the visit, when the visits occur, why they are important and more.

Home Visits blog

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You may also be interested in this related resource: 2013 Healthcare Benchmarks: Care Transitions Management.

Infographic: Patient Habits with Online Portals

July 22nd, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

With healthcare facilities and medical professionals looking for various patient services to improve communication, allowing these patients to track and share their own medical histories via portals and online access could lead to improved healthcare.

Eighty-three percent of patients attribute security concerns as the primary obstacle in using a patient portal, according to a new inforgraphic by Carestream. This infographic details responses from a Carestream and IDR Medical survey of 1,000 patients across the United States with various backgrounds. The survey examined the patients' views on portal access, satisfaction, preferred method of delivery and more.

Patient Habits with Online Portals

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Transforming Health Care: The Financial Impact of Technology, Electronic Tools and Data Mining.

Infographic: 5 Ways the U.S. Healthcare System Is Broken

July 19th, 2013 by Jackie Lyons

Government deficits are driven almost entirely by healthcare costs, and U.S. healthcare costs per capita is exponentially higher than in other industrialized countries.

The Institute of Medicine estimates America loses $750 billion annually on unnecessary services, inefficient delivery of care, excessive administrative costs and other areas of wasteful spending, according to a new infographic from MBA Healthcare Management. This infographic also details issues with physician payment, lack of access to care, improper treatment of chronic conditions and the high rate of medical errors.

5 Ways the U.S. Healthcare System Is Broken

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You may also be interested in this related resource: Pursuing the Triple Aim: Seven Innovators Show the Way to Better Care, Better Health, and Lower Costs.