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HAP Achievement Awards Winner Spotlight: Conemaugh Health System

February 16, 2018

Engaged employees and committed leaders are crucial to any organization. Dedication to each other and patients is crucial in hospitals and health systems. An award-winning program developed by Conemaugh Health System identifies and develops future leaders from within the organization through its Aspiring Leader Program.

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Congress Reviews Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Request for Health & Human Services

February 15, 2018

In a series of budget hearings before U.S. House and U.S. Senate committees, U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar defended the newly proposed fiscal year (FY) 2019 HHS budget request.

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Pennsylvania’s Medical Marijuana Dispensaries Begin Sales

February 15, 2018

Governor Tom Wolf announced that approved dispensaries throughout the state will this week begin selling medical marijuana to certified Pennsylvanians.

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U.S. House Committee Hears Academic Perspectives on Health Care Market Dynamics

February 14, 2018

In a hearing before the U.S. House Energy & Commerce Oversight & Investigations Subcommittee, federal lawmakers heard testimony from academic scholars about the forces that result in consolidation within the health care market and the impact of those market dynamics.

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Study Finds Missed Medical Appointments Not Affected by Free Ride Services

February 14, 2018

Patient ride-sharing services have become popular among hospitals and others as a way to help patients keep their medical appointments. Transportation to medical appointments often has been cited as a barrier to medical care. New study results indicate that such services may not be as effective as previously thought.

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Changes to MIPS in New Budget Deal

February 13, 2018

Late last week, the U.S. Congress passed the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 that ended a brief federal government shutdown. Included in the legislation are modifications to the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) that will affect physician payments.

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President Issues Fiscal Year 2019 Budget Request

February 12, 2018

President Trump released a $4 trillion federal fiscal year (FY) 2019 budget request which defines funding priorities for discretionary spending and outlines legislative proposals. The budget proposal places a focus on tackling the opioid epidemic and addressing drug prices, and envisions significant policy changes to Medicare, Medicaid, and the 340B Drug Pricing Program.

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PA Sees More Than 389,000 Open Enrollment Sign-ups During 2017; Hospitals Play Key Role

February 09, 2018

Despite the shortened health insurance Open Enrollment period, November 1, 2017–December 15, 2017, Pennsylvania was able to pull in 389,081 health insurance sign-ups.

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Guidance Released to Help Pregnant and Parenting Women with Opioid Use Disorder and Their Children; New Report Says States Need More Support to Address the Issue

February 08, 2018

The Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration has released new guidance that provides critical information to help health care professionals treat opioid-dependent mothers and their children, and ensure that impacted mothers and infants safely receive treatment for opioid use disorder and neonatal abstinence syndrome.

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Federal Lawmakers Urge Action on Intravenous Saline Shortages

February 07, 2018

Federal lawmakers sent a letter to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration expressing concern about nationwide drug shortages, and calling for actions to address current IV saline shortages.

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New Data Reveals More Rural Hospitals Losing Money

February 07, 2018

During the National Rural Health Association’s 2018 rural health policy institute, new data was presented that reveals that the number of rural hospitals losing money grew to 44 percent over the last year.

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American Hospital Association Refutes Recent 340B Study

February 05, 2018

An American Hospital Association blog responds to a recent study about the340B Drug Pricing Program, questioning its validity.  

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HAP Achievement Awards Winner Spotlight: UPMC Susquehanna

February 02, 2018

UPMC Susquehanna received a HAP Achievement Award for improving maternity care and surgical instrument tracking.

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Consumers Urged to Get Flu Vaccine and Know the Symptoms of Sepsis

February 02, 2018

The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said that more people are currently hospitalized with the flu than at the peak of the 2014–2015 flu season. Leaders are urging people to get the flu vaccine.

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CMS Announces New Protections to Combat Opioid Crisis

February 02, 2018

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released proposed changes for 2019, which are aimed at combatting the opioid crisis by strengthening patient-doctor-plan communication.

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