Doc groups support cost-saving telehealth proposal

Three Medicaid reimbursement policy changes for telehealth and remote patient monitoring would save the federal government $1.8 billion over the next 10 years, according to a new report by consultancy Avalere Health. 

3 ways to tackle a high no-show rate

With billions of dollars in revenue on the line nationwide, one physician shares his strategies to cut down on no-show patients at his practice.

Words can hurt: Doctors must change the language of addiction

If the stigma surrounding addiction is one of the biggest obstacles to addressing it, the medical lexicon surrounding substance use disorders must also shift away from terminology that connotes blame and shame, according to an article from The Boston Globe.

3 don'ts for physician leaders

As intelligent and talented as physicians are, their professional skill set does not automatically lend itself to strong leadership. By overcoming common traits that inhibit solid leadership, physicians can improve their odds of success as they take on increased responsibility for their teams, according to an article in Forbes.

Make speed dating a part of your practice marketing plan

When many of today's patients are looking for a doctor, they head to online review sites in search of the right match for their needs and a physician's expertise, insurance contracts and personality. Some medical practices are offering patients an even better opportunity to get to know their doctors, with in-person "speed dating."

Bill would mandate drug-database checking in California

A California bill now headed to the Assembly would require prescribers to check the state's Controlled Substance Utilization Review and Evaluation System drug monitoring program database when prescribing Schedule II or III drugs like oxycontin to a patient for the first time, and annually thereafter if the treatment continues.

Why docs must give up 'standard of care'

Taking issue with the term "standard of care," William Sullivan, D.O., senior editor of Emergency Physicians Monthly and an Illinois emergency physician, advocates instead for doctors to practice "reasonableness" to inform medical decision-making.

Report: Too many docs keep licenses after sexual misconduct

State medical boards aren't doing enough to protect patients from physicians known to have engaged in sexual misconduct, according to a Public Citizen report published by PLOS ONE.

International medical graduates expect fewer opportunities despite doctor shortage

The rising number of graduates from U.S. medical schools, driven in part by efforts to stem the ongoing physician shortage, is expected put the squeeze on international medical graduates (IMGs) looking for residency slots in the United States, according to an article in Medscape. This raises questions for both students and the medical industry regarding where IMGs will fit in the shifting healthcare landscape.

Recruiting tip: Kindness counts more than performance

There is more to hiring employees than determining how well they will perform, especially in healthcare. A highly skilled doctor who nonetheless treats coworkers poorly, for example, is likely to cost your practice more than he or she generates, according to an article from Harvard Business Review.

Guiding principles for patient experience excellence

Guest post by Jason A. Wolf, Ph.D., president of the Beryl Institute Recently I had the opportunity to address a conference room full of physicians and clinical leaders on what matters in patient...

Ranks of obesity specialists growing

Despite the growing toll obesity and related conditions continue to take on U.S. patients, physicians prepared to help patients have been few and far between. But that's beginning to change, according to Forbes, which reports that the relatively new American Board of Obesity Medicine in December 2015 certified more than 429 physicians as obesity medicine specialists

What draws physicians to practice locations

There are a lot of variables to consider when choosing where to practice medicine. Some of these include annual salary, cost of living, malpractice considerations and physician density, according to research from Doximity, an online social networking site for physicians.

Burnout prevention tips from the trenches

It's no longer a secret that symptoms of professional burnout--exhaustion, cynicism, lack of effectiveness--are spreading through the healthcare workforce like wildfire. While recent large studies have shockingly revealed burnout rates of 50 percent or higher, a recent smaller survey from the Studer Group indicated that nearly all doctors (90 percent) are afflicted by burnout at least some of the time.

Focus on primary care delivery pays off across the healthcare industry

There may not be a silver bullet to solve the issues in the U.S. healthcare system, but among the current crop of initiatives to improve cost and quality of care, efforts to buttress primary care provision via the creation of patient-centered medical homes (PCMH) are showing promise, according to a report from the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative.

4 ways to reduce patient costs without changing care plans

There may be a number of reasons patients and physicians avoid discussing the cost of care, but the conversations that do occur often help alleviate the financial strain on patients--without taking up a lot of time, according to a study published this month in Medical Decision Making.

CDC head: Empathy critical to public health

Putting patients at the center of care--making them VIPs, to whom clinicians listen and show empathy--doesn't just promote high patient satisfaction scores but can also improve public health, according to a commentary from Thomas R. Frieden, M.D., the director of the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, published in STAT.

How physicians can grow from serious mistakes

When physicians make serious medical errors, they needn't merely survive the emotional aftermath. With the right types of support, they can use the difficult experience to help them grow, according to a new study published in Academic Medicine.

Use shared decision-making to fight superbugs

​The concept of shared decision-making needn't just apply to major medical choices, such as whether a patient should undergo surgery or stop chemotherapy. Routinely involving patients in the decision process for treating everyday illnesses--particularly coughs, ear infections and sore throats--could add up to a big reduction in inappropriate use of antibiotics, suggests a new study published by the Cochrane Group.

Patient survey reports solid communication with doctors

Healthcare providers have increasingly looked to provide more patient-centered care as they seek to improve on quality metrics in advance of value-based payment policies. Getting an initial read on how well any of this is working requires information from the patients themselves, and the latest patient trend data out of Massachusetts show significant improvement in behavioral health scores and an overall solid rating for doctor-patient communication, according to a report from Massachusetts Health Quality Partners (MHQP).