Reinventing the State's Malpractice System

During last year's Alabama legislative session, Senator Trip Pittman introduced a proposal to rein in the costs of malpractice suits. Senate Bill 413 would have replaced the trial-based system with a no-blame, administrative ...

Birmingham Researcher Releases As-Needed Drug for Anxiety

"This will fill an unmet need in mental health," says Tom Dooley, PhD, a Birmingham researcher with 13 patents for pharmaceutical and biotech developments to his name.

Business

St Vincent's Opens Hospital in Chilton County

St Vincent's Opens Hospital in Chilton County

For three years, Chilton County has been without a hospital, which at times, has been challenging for the community. For instance, last year, when a school bus crashed in Clanton, the children had to be driven 30 miles away to Shelby Baptist Medical Center in Alabaster. Fortunately, none of the injuries were life-threatening.

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2017: A Year of Uncertainty ... and Opportunity

PwC's Health Research Institute looks at areas of interest to the industry in 2017 starting with the looming questions surrounding the Affordable Care Act.

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Through the Looking Glass/Medicare Under a New Trump Administration

Through the Looking Glass/Medicare Under a New Trump Administration

What will be next for health care in the United States? While there have been some successes associated with the Affordable Care Act ("ACA") such as health insurance coverage available for some Americans that had previously not had such access and increased emphasis on core quality standards such as avoidance of hospital acquired infections1, there are more critics than proponents.

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New Software Platform Potentially Generates More Revenue

New Software Platform Potentially Generates More Revenue

ARCpoint Health has unveiled a new software tool to enable primary care physicians to garner greater reimbursements and better manage labs.

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Upheaval in Alabama's Health Exchange

Upheaval in Alabama's Health Exchange

Insurers have jumped ship on the health insurance marketplace in Alabama. Started in 2014 under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the exchange has offered options by insurance carriers to all individuals and small businesses with 50 or fewer employees.

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2016 Health Care Year in Review

2016 Health Care Year in Review

Since I began writing this year-end review in 2013, there have been some common themes - a shift to pay for quality and away from fee-for-service, much of which has been brought about by the Affordable Care Act (ACA): efforts to combat fraud and abuse in the health care system; provider consolidation; Alabama Medicaid's ongoing struggle to cover the cost of health care for our most needy citizens; and increased regulations for the health care industry.

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Feature Profiles

Dr. Whitney Tew Goes From Physician to Soldier

Dr. Whitney Tew Goes From Physician to Soldier

Witney Tew, MD is a firm believer in service over self. It not only drove her decision to become a family medicine physician but also prompted her to follow in her father's footsteps by joining the Alabama Army National Guard, where she has earned her rank as captain attached to the 135th Sustainment Command in Birmingham.

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Reseach

Administering Additional Antibiotic Prior to C-section Reduces Infection Rates by 50 Percent

Administering Additional Antibiotic Prior to C-section Reduces Infection Rates by 50 Percent

Physicians at UAB and colleagues have discovered that administering the antibiotic azithromycin alongside the standard recommended antibiotic regimen, cefazolin, reduces infection rates by 50 percent for women who have a non-elective cesarean delivery.

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UAB Team Identify Protein that plays Key Role in Brain Cancer Stem Cell Growth

UAB Team Identify Protein that plays Key Role in Brain Cancer Stem Cell Growth

A team of physicians and scientists at UAB discovered that a kinase protein, mixed lineage kinase 4, also known as MLK4, plays a crucial role in survival of patient-derived brain cancer stem cells in pre-clinical animal models. The findings suggest that MLK4 could potentially be a useful target for cancer treatment.

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Researchers Develop a Test for Early Stage Ovarian Cancer

With funding providing by the Laura Crandall Brown Foundation and the Ovarian Cancer Institute, researchers at Georgia Tech have developed a method to detect ovarian cancer that is highly accurate in patients with Stage 1 disease.

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UAB Heads Two New National Rehab Research Centers

UAB Heads Two New National Rehab Research Centers

"The challenge of this is not only building the center, but attracting users across the national community and for them to become aware of what we have to offer," says Marcas Bamman, PhD, director of the new REACT Center and MR3 Network Coordinating Center at UAB.

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Clinical

Birmingham Researcher Releases As-Needed Drug for Anxiety

Birmingham Researcher Releases As-Needed Drug for Anxiety

"This will fill an unmet need in mental health," says Tom Dooley, PhD, a Birmingham researcher with 13 patents for pharmaceutical and biotech developments to his name.

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Functional Medicine

Functional Medicine

The Power of "Why?"

Primary care physicians see it almost every day. Patients come in complaining of fatigue. The exam is normal, labs raise no flags, and questions yield few if any clues.

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A wellness approach to chronic disease

A wellness approach to chronic disease

The dissonance between how human bodies evolved to live and how modern life is pushing us to live has created a plague of lifestyle-related chronic illnesses. Diabetes, hypertension, immune disorders, obesity and a whole range of diseases of lifestyle are diminishing both the length and the quality of so many lives.

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Care at a Distance

Care at a Distance

UAB First in the Nation to Use Telemedicine for Dialysis Visits

"How are you feeling today?" the doctor asks the dialysis patient.

"Everything's going good," she says.

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Addressing Childhood Obesity

Addressing Childhood Obesity

Stakeholders release report on barriers to evidence-based care for childhood obesity.

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Regulatory/Compliance

Reinventing the State's Malpractice System

Reinventing the State's Malpractice System

During last year's Alabama legislative session, Senator Trip Pittman introduced a proposal to rein in the costs of malpractice suits. Senate Bill 413 would have replaced the trial-based system with a no-blame, administrative one.

Read More

End in Sight for Medicare ALJ Backlog?

As providers who are currently undergoing a Medicare claims appeal know, there is a lengthy delay to having an appeal actually heard by an Administrative Law Judge (ALJ). Some estimates indicate that it will currently take over 10 years to have an appeal heard.

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OIG Authorizes Per-Dispense Fee for Vaccination Refrigeration Systems in Physician Offices

OIG Authorizes Per-Dispense Fee for Vaccination Refrigeration Systems in Physician Offices

The Department of Health and Human Services Office of the Inspector (OIG ) recently issued an advisory opinion that determined that a vaccine storage and dispensing system with a per-dispense fee did not violate the Anti-Kickback Statute.

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Significant Stark Physician Compensation Settlements Continue in the South

Significant Stark Physician Compensation Settlements Continue in the South

Unfortunately for most healthcare providers, the Office of Inspector General of the US Department of Health & Human Services (OIG) continues to demand and receive large settlements under the Physician Self-Referral Law found at 42 US Code Section 1395nnn (Stark Act).

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Grand Rounds

UAB Ranked Near Top in Federally Funded Research

New data from the National Science Foundation shows UAB ranked No.18 nationally among public universities and No. 34 overall in federally financed research in 2015, with more than $328.5 million in expenditures. UAB's total research expenditures exceeded $516 million in 2015, ranking the institution No. 25 among public universities and No. 41 overall nationally.

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Medical Association Applauds Tom Price, MD for HHS Secretary

Medical Association Applauds Tom Price, MD for HHS Secretary

The Medical Association of the State of Alabama applauds the nomination of U.S. Rep. Tom Price for secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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UAB Names Vice President of Research After National Search

UAB Names Vice President of Research After National Search

Christopher S. Brown, PhD, former vice president of Research for the University of North Carolina System, has been named vice president of Research at the University of Alabama at Birmingham.

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HealthSouth CEO Jay Grinney Retires

HealthSouth CEO Jay Grinney Retires

CEO Jay Grinney retired from HealthSouth at the end of 2016. Executive Vice President and COO Mark Tarr has succeeded Grinney.

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DCH using Bronchoscopy with Endobronchial Ultrasound

DCH Regional Medical Center has a new, less invasive procedure for diagnosing lung cancer and other lung conditions.

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Andrew Miller, MD Selected Chair of American College of Cardiology

Andrew Miller, MD Selected Chair of American College of Cardiology

Andrew Miller, MD, FACC has been selected as the next Chair of the American College of Cardiology Board of Governors. With a mission to transform cardiovascular care and improve heart health, the American College of Cardiology has over 52,000 members from around the world.

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Jimmie Dotson, Jr., MD Joins Grandview

Jimmie Dotson, Jr., MD Joins Grandview

Jimmie Dotson, Jr., MD, FACC has joined the Grandview Medical staff. Dotson, who specializes in Interventional Cardiology, has joined Alabama Cardiovascular Group. He is Board Certified in Cardiology.

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St. Vincent's is Only Health Center in Nation to Hold Highest SCPC Accreditations in All Three Areas

St. Vincent's Health System is now the first and only health system in the nation to hold the highest Society of Cardiovascular Patient Care accreditations in all three of its areas. The accreditation is based on meeting and exceeding stringent quality and outcome cardiovascular measures.

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