Best read of the week


The digitalized hospital of the future will include clinical command centers and interoperable EHRs

FierceHealthcare: The experts envision hospitals using a central command center that mimics an air traffic control system for patients by collecting real-time data using wearable sensors to identify patients at risk for complications and help clinicians make quicker decisions. Using artificial intelligence and data analytics, this technology will suggest interventions to caregivers.


Additional news media reports on MLH physicians and the health care industry, excerpted from MLH’s daily Morning News Report:


Main Line Health News

Facing Breast Cancer Fears

US News & World Report: Marisa C. Weiss, M.D, director of breast radiation oncology and director of breast health outreach at Lankenau Medical Center, writes, “While fears brought on by your initial diagnosis often become more manageable with time and better understanding of your cancer and its treatments, the fear of recurrence will never completely leave you alone.”


A Holistic Approach to Reducing Hospital Readmission Rate

Healthcare Financial Management Association:  Barry D. Mann, MD, chief academic officer, Main Line Health, Wynnewood, Pa., and Chinwe Onyekere, MPH, system administrator for graduate medical education, Main Line Health, outline the Medical Student Advocate (MSA) Program, launched in 2013 in collaboration with Philadelphia College of Osteopathic Medicine.


Behind the mystery

Balancing Act: Dr. Leah Lande, Pulmonologist and a member of the medical staff at Lankenau Medical Center, part of Main Line Health, discusses chronic lung disease NTM (Nontuberculous Mycobacteria).


Meet Dr. Phiambolis, Honoree of the 30th Anniversary of the Hellenic News of America

Hellenic News: In 2006, Dr. Phiambolis returned back to Lankenau Medical Center where he established a Cardiac CT Angiography program for Main Line Health and now is the director of that program.  More recently, he has established the Advanced Lipid Clinic for Main Line Health and initiated the new cholesterol program with PCSK9 therapy.


The tyranny of numbers, large and small

Journal of Cardiovascular Electrophysiology: LMC’s Amanulla Khaji, MD, and Peter Kowey, MD, write, “Nowhere is the difference between drug and device trials more stark than in the world of atrial fibrillation stroke protection. Here, the relative incidence of stroke and intracranial bleeding, the two most relevant outcome events, is relatively small, thus the need for large sample sizes to register an interpretable number of events of interest.”


Lab notes: LIMR forms alliance, Spark expands team, Ocugen launches study

Philadelphia Business Journal: The Lankenau Institute for Medical Research has launched a new program, the Lankenau-Israel Strategic Alliance (LISA), to develop collaborations between physicians and scientists at Lankenau Medical Center and medical centers in Israel. Under the umbrella of the Israel Heart Society, the program will promote mutually beneficial cardiology research. (Subscription required; contact MLH campus Medical Library for full text.)


Merci Beaucoup honors Gerhard Society members

SusanScovill: The Gerhard Society is a preeminent philanthropic society on the Main Line composed of supporters who view Bryn Mawr Hospital as integral to the health of our community and who are committed to cultivating an enduring hospital and community partnership.



Regional Health Care News

Uncertainty for 120,000 ends as Independence reaches deal with Tower Health

Philadelphia Inquirer:  Independence and Tower Health have reached a three-year deal to keep Brandywine, Chestnut Hill, Jennersville Regional, Phoenixville, and Pottstown Memorial hospitals “in-network” for Independence members, the two organizations said Friday. Reading Hospital also will remain in-network; it could have fallen out in November.


MitraClip Helping Patients With Heart Problems

CBS3:  Dr. Atiq Rehman of the Lourdes Medical Center says a MitraClip, which is inserted into the heart valve through the groin similar to a cardiac catheterization, is designed to bring the two flaps of the valve together more closely so that they no longer leak blood.



Patient Care News…

Patients and doctors both agree: Visits are too short

Healthcare Dive: The biggest concerns remains cost, the survey showed. Nearly 6 in 10 consumers (57%) feel they are one illness away from being in financial straits, and 75% worry they won’t be able to pay if they get sick or injured, up from 62% a year ago.


Why breast cancer death rates dropped by almost 40% from 1989 to 2015

The Advisory Board: The researchers attributed the decline in breast cancer mortality to improvements in detection and treatments—such as adjuvant chemotherapy and more targeted therapies. However, they said such advancements have not addressed the racial and ethnic disparities in breast cancer death rates.

PA governor Tom Wolf signs ‘Right to Try’ legislation

Intelligencer:  “Right to Try” legislation paves the way for terminally ill patients to try experimental treatments, including drugs, biological products and medical devices, not yet fully approved by the FDA.



Quality and Safety News…

Penicillin Misconceptions May Raise Post-Op Infection Risk

HealthDay: Surgical patients who report having a penicillin allergy face a 50 percent higher risk for a post-op infection compared to patients who report no drug allergy, new research finds.


Are Women Surgeons Better Than Men?

HealthDay: A Canadian study found that patients operated on by women had no more complications or problems after surgery than did patients whose surgeons were men.


Pharma’s Puerto Rico problems could mean drug shortages: FDA chief

Reuters: The head of the U.S. Food and Drug Administration said on Tuesday the country may start to see a small number of drug shortages within two or three weeks due to delays in restoring manufacturing operations in Puerto Rico, where 10 percent of drugs prescribed in the United States are made.



Health Care Business News…

High-deductible health plans reduce use of both needed and unneeded services, research finds

FierceHealthcare: A new research review reveals that high-deductible health plans lower costs by reducing enrollees’ use of health care services—including preventive care.


Most practices still send patients paper bills

FierceHealthcare: The survey of 761 practice administrators/office managers (61%) and C-level executives (28%) found that adoption of electronic patient billing remains low and that few practices offer online bill payments, credit card on file programs and automated payment plans.


How Indy health systems are dealing with physician burnout

Indianapolis Business Journal: Community Health Network has set a Center for Physician Well Being and Professional Development. The center, launched this month, brings in speakers for physicians and offers a website with tips on how to recognize and deal with burnout. Community also entered a contract with Vital WorkLife, a national behavioral health consulting company based in Minneapolis that offers a raft of offerings


Not even the mattress pads were spared: An inside look at a top hospital’s struggle to cut costs

STAT News: An inside look shows how one of the nation’s leading hospitals is confronting the daunting financial and marketplace forces buffeting academic medical centers across the U.S.


MedPAC pushes for MIPS repeal

Healthcare Dive: In place of MIPS, the commission suggested a new program by which a portion of payments (perhaps 2%) is withheld. Providers not in an advanced payment model (APM) could join a group of physicians whose claims data is reviewed on certain population-based health measures to see if they qualify to have the withheld funds returned.


AHA report: Hospitals more than make up for their tax-exempt status

Healthcare Dive: A study from the American Hospital Association indicating that hospitals’ value to the community outweighs the value of their tax exemption by a factor of 11 to one.


Trump announces Hargan as new acting HHS secretary

Hill: Hargan was previously a lawyer in Chicago. He served at HHS in the Bush administration, holding positions such as deputy general counsel, principoal associate deputy secretary and acting deputy secretary.


Health care could be just an app away: seeing technology as a disruptor of traditional systems

Post-Gazette: Among several apps from entrepreneurs and tech giants is UPMC Anywhere Care, which uses Boston-based American Well’s telehealth software program and was launched in November 2013 as a platform for medical “visits” through secure messaging.


Trump to End Subsidies to Health Insurers

Wall Street Journal: The Trump administration intends to end billions of dollars in payments to insurers under the Affordable Care Act program, but President Donald Trump has told at least one lawmaker that the payments may continue if a bipartisan deal is reached on health care. (Subscription required; contact MLH campus Medical Library for full text.)


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