Archive for the ‘Healthcare Reform’ Category
Lots of new regulations go into effect 1 Jan about what additional data must be recorded for every patient visit and about how it is to be formatted. Our group has to purchase an entirely new Electronic Medical Record system in order to be in compliance for 2018. We have already been very busy preparing new templates to meet the new requirements. “Go live” is the end of the month. That is when the real fun will begin.
Most of the new reporting requirements are about conditions I do not treat. Therefore, their utility in treating the issues for which I am seeing the patient will be limited. We hope that some day the public health information potential of the additional data can be realized. But first we need to be able to share data across systems. Even within the ACO we belong to, that is challenging.
We hope to have things under control in early 2018.
Jay Ginther, MD
The nation is focused on the story of a 10 year old girl dying of Cystic Fibrosis. A judge has just ordered that she be placed on the waiting list for an adult lung transplant, rather than follow current federal policy that children under 12 be on a separate list. The media are telling us that the judge is saving her life. That is only half of the story.
Obesity is becoming a BIG issue in the US and around the world. Countries which struggled to find enough food only decades ago now have growing numbers of overweight and obese citizens. Along with increased weight, we are seing huge increases in diabetes, high blood pressure, stroke, and heart disease. Who or what is to blame?
Sugar is one obvious suspect. About 80% of all prepared foods in the US contain sugar, high fructose corn-syrup, and other calorie rich sweeteners. Some health policy activists are pushing for government regulation of sugar as a toxic and addictive substance – like tobacco and alcohol.
Access to medical insurance is not the same as access to medical care. Access to medical insurance was the objective of “Obamacare”. The second issue, access to medical care, has not been addressed at all.
Here in Iowa, access to medical care is getting tougher to find. Primary Care Physicians are retiring faster than they are being replaced. Nurse Practicioners and Physician Assistants are increasing, but nowhere near fast enough to fill the vacancies. Nearly 40% of the MD and DO docs are over 60. We are slowing down and many will soon retire. We are decreasing the number of healthcare providers while adding access to insurance to another 40,000,000 people. How will this help access to medical care?