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Inside This Issue

6 Strategies for Coping with Drug Shortages

By Karen Wagner

Taking proactive steps to manage the staggering drug shortage may help to avert or reduce some of the costs associated with hunting down hard-to-find drugs-and, more important, protect patient safety.

How Population Health Management Can Drive Down Internal Costs

By Joseph Berardo, Jr. 

An increasing number of healthcare organizations are adopting wellness and prevention programs as part of cost-cutting initiatives, both to manage the health of the populations they serve and their employees. The key to success in population health management: the use of data analytics to identify those who may become high-risk patients, identify gaps in care, and help tailor preventive health programs for a specific population.  

Reallocating Post-Discharge Calls Enhances the Patient Experience and the Bottom Line   

By Steve Whitehurst

Too often, the task of calling discharged patients to ensure appropriate follow-up care falls on an already overburdened hospital nurse. Outsourcing the task may lead to improved care, happier patients, and lower readmission rates.

Line Item Match Exception Process Key to Supply Chain Improvements

By Rosalind Parkinson

In the process of uncovering the root causes of price discrepancies, Ohio State University Medical Center was able to eliminate finance charges for late payment of invoices as well as make process changes that have led to more efficient ordering, improved data management, product standardization, and supplier contract negotiations.

4 Extra Ways Hospitals Can Benefit from the 340B Program

By Suzanne Herzog

Enrolling in the 340B drug discount program can help hospitals do more than lower drug costs. The program can also help hospitals balance finances, protect against price increases, reduce their own healthcare costs, and increase patient access to pharmacies.

Retaking Healthcare by Storm: How Ochsner Health System Is Creating a New Model in New Orleans

By Joel McTopy

Known as "The Storm" by local residents, Hurricane Katrina's impact on New Orleans was unprecedented in American history. The local healthcare system was as devastated by the storm as the community. But one hospital that remained open did more than survive: Ochsner Health System built a new healthcare model for New Orleans that garnered its CEO top accolades by Modern Physician magazine in 2007, naming him the No. 1 most powerful physician executive in the nation.

Reducing Labor Costs Requires Practical Thinking, Data Linking

By Karen Wagner

Healthcare consultant Kelly E. Styles, RN, MHA, PhD, president of Chicago-based Verras, discusses how poor habits and entrenched practice patterns among administrators and physicians can get in the way of reducing labor expenses.

One Way to Reduce Drug Costs: Switching from IV to Oral Meds

A recent study found that hospitals that encourage the use of oral medications over intravenous (IV) medicines, where possible, could save millions of dollars a year.

Innovative Approach to Disclosing Adverse Events Saves $3 Million for 1 Hospital

When Stanford Hospital & Clinics launched a program to facilitate disclosure of adverse events, apologize them, and compensate patients, the health system saw its liability premiums decrease by about $3.2 million annually.

New Delivery Models Engage Consumers in Reducing Healthcare Spending

As the nation moves toward value-based business models of care, a period of 'disruptive innovation' will reduce costs of care delivery and make access to care more convenient.

Web Extra: Making the Laboratory the Leader in Clinical Integration

By Robert R. Reed and Arjen Westerink

Although payment reform and expense management dominate discussions among healthcare providers, clinical integration will soon emerge as the long-term strategic imperative for community hospitals and health systems.

Web Extra: PwC Ranks Top Health Industry Issues for 2012

Despite economic and political uncertainty, healthcare organizations will move full steam ahead in 2012 to meet regulatory requirements in and respond to challenges such as state health insurance exchanges, new reporting requirements, increasing drug shortages, and more, according to an analysis released by PwC's Health Research Institute.  

Publication Date: Tuesday, December 13, 2011