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Physician Burnout Takes Center Stage Print E-mail
Written by Jeffrey Herschler   
Thursday, 06 June 2019 00:00

Physician burnout has been a hot topic in the news media lately and now a new report from the Annals of Internal Medicine puts a dollar figure on the issue: $4.6 billion. (NPR does a great analysis of the report HERE.) This is, according to the authors, a conservative estimate. Clearly, our overburdened health system can't afford this level of waste. 

Daniel Marchalik, a surgeon, contributes an excellent essay on the topic from a physician's perspective in a recent Washington Post article. (Soft paywall; login may be required.) Not surprisingly, Dr. Marchalik puts the blame squarely on EHRs. This new requirement of onerous data entry plus consolidation in the health sector, which reduces physician autonomy, appear to be the main drivers of the epidemic. Meanwhile, a Kissimmee, FL based physician has just written a book on burnout. 
So, there is lot of anecdotal evidence of the growing problem as well an enormous cost estimate delivered by a prestigious medical journal. But what is being done?

Lots of organizations are working on potential solutions. Stanford University just announced a collaboration that attempts to address the issue and research is being done on AI applications. Now that a dollar figure has been assigned, more help is surely on the way.
And it can't come soon enough. According to  practice management consultant Oyinkansola "Bukky" Ogunrinde, MHSA, "Physician burnout is not only financially costly to healthcare systems, but it also has implications in the quality of care rendered to patients which can result in compounding legal and immeasurable cost to health systems and affected patients respectively."
"Now that the World Health Organization has categorized burnout as a syndrome listed in the International Classification of Diseases - ICD-11, perhaps this will catalyze many organizations' efforts to combat the problem," she adds. "If not, the industry can expect governmental intervention by way of workplace laws and healthcare regulations - dictates that often result in additional and disproportionate cost."

Last Updated on Friday, 19 July 2019 16:31
State of the FL Med Mal Market - Hard Market Now Unfolding Print E-mail
Written by Matt Gracey   
Friday, 31 May 2019 10:43

Just as the heat of summer begins and ushers in hurricane season here in Florida, unfortunately other dark clouds are forming in the market for doctors' medical malpractice insurance. For the last twelve years malpractice premiums have steadily decreased until the last few years of flat prices. As the frequency and severity of claims against doctors has begun to rise in the last few years, few insurers raised their prices because of competitive fears. Most insurers started taking money out of their claims reserves and offset the growing expenses of legal fees and claims expenses so as not to need to increase their rates. Some decreased dividends and other "behind the curtains" discretionary credits so as not to have to publicly announce rate increases. All of this circumvention of straight up premium increases seems to now be behind us. In just the last month a number of companies have either announced or been approved for more significant rate increases. With most insurers of doctors in Florida now losing money on every policy they write, the only questions now are how much will rates increase and how quickly. My prediction is that many specialties will, over the next three years, experience pricing increases of up to twenty-five percent, with some even higher. In Georgia, one insurer just announced last week that rates will immediately increase up to forty-five percent on one specialty and thirty-six percent on another. We in Florida are no longer immune from such market changes, unfortunately.

Last Updated on Friday, 31 May 2019 11:02
Nurses Are Striking. Where Are the Physicians? Print E-mail
Written by Michael Pappas, MD | Kevin MD   
Tuesday, 14 May 2019 12:06
The U.S. healthcare "system" is completely and utterly broken. According to the World Health Organization (WHO), the U.S. system ranks 37th in the world, all while spending dramatically more on healthcare than other wealthy countries. Tens of millions remain without any health insurance coverage. For many, medical bills can mean economic ruin — some surveys show that up to 66.5% of all bankruptcies in the U.S are a result of medical expenses. On the front lines of this system are nurses and physicians — individuals who, by and large, decided to go into the profession to help patients and communities — are becoming more frustrated by their inability to do just that, sometimes even causing providers to leave the profession. While many inside the U.S. medical-industrial complex have had enough, nurses throughout New York City (NYC) are putting their collective foot down and showing us the way to fight for better outcomes for patients and better working conditions for providers.

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Big Tobacco Succeeds in Targeting Teens Print E-mail
Written by FHI's Week in Review   
Monday, 06 May 2019 17:56
Alex Bogusky ran an effective marketing campaign 20 years ago that helped "young people to see the tobacco companies as they really were" when it came to marketing cigarettes. His NY Times editorial, published 5/3/19, points out the current regulatory hole that is allowing Big Tobacco to ramp up marketing for vaping to teenagers. These marketing efforts have the potential to wipe out the significant public health progress over the past 2 decades in reducing tobacco use in teenagers. He advocates for corporate moral responsibility in the advertising industry through the "Quit Big Tobacco" campaign.
"Few healthcare professionals and executives who read this editorial will support Big Tobacco marketing vaping to teenagers," according to Craig Tanio, MD, MBA, a member of the executive team at Rezilir Health in Hollywood, FL. "It has been 55 years since the Surgeon General's first report on cigarettes and the facts are clear."
Read more in the current issue of Week in Review>>
Last Updated on Monday, 27 May 2019 11:43
FICPA Wraps Up Another Successful Health Care Industry Conference Print E-mail
Written by FHInews   
Friday, 03 May 2019 16:29
Few professions are as evolving as healthcare. Regulatory and legislative changes contribute to the industry's thirst for current information. The 2019 Florida Institute of CPAs Health Care Industry Conference, held at the Caribe Royale Resort Suites in Orlando on April 25 and 26, 2019, brought together experts in the field providing the latest data, resources and insights to keep healthcare professional at the top of their game. Faculty included Jana Kolarik, Clinnie F. Biggs Jr., Amanda Brady, CPA, MBA, Jaime Caldwell, Monica R. Chmielewski, Fraser Cobbe, Kirk P. Cornack, CPA, Lynda M. Dennis, CGFO, PhD, Aurelio M. Fernandez, Susan L. Friend, CPA, Calvin E. Glidewell, Jr. and Jeff Goolsby, CPA, CGMA.

Major topics included:

·         Orientation to health care accounting
·         Alternative payment models
·         Physician practice M & A transactions
·         Accounting for software implementation
·         Revenue cycles
·         Recruitment and retention
·         Robotic process automation

Last Updated on Friday, 03 May 2019 17:04
The Fallacy of Patient-Centered Care Print E-mail
Written by Myles Gart, MD | KevinMD   
Thursday, 14 March 2019 00:00
I often wonder what it was like before patient-centered care became a mainstream catchphrase. Was there a poor relationship between the patient and physician in the outpatient setting? Were hospitalized patients' feelings, desires, goals, and therapy options ignored? It amazes me that we were able to care for patients more than ten years ago without using a "patient-centered" approach. According to NEJM Catalyst, "Patient-and family-centered care encourages the active collaboration and shared decision-making between patients, families, and providers to design and manage...
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Last Updated on Friday, 15 March 2019 16:20
Healthcare Organizations Must Take Better Care of Employees Print E-mail
Written by Suneel Dhand, MD | KevinMD   
Friday, 22 February 2019 12:11
Anybody who has even a passing interest in health and wellness knows the sobering fact that a large number of medical problems that plague society today are the result of unhealthy living habits. Conditions such as heart disease and diabetes, which are reaching epidemic proportions, are directly linked to poor eating and inactivity. Official statistics show that around 70 percent of Americans are overweight or obese. We live on diets of junk food, and the vast majority of us don't meet minimum recommendations for weekly exercise (disappointingly under 25 percent do according to this Time article). Among physicians sadly, the very people who should most be setting examples for healthy lifestyles, the statistics are hardly any better - with around 65 percent overweight or obese.

Over the last year, in addition to my hospital work, I've also practiced preventive medicine and wellness in an outpatient setting and got to meet hundreds of people from all walks of life and occupations. Many of them work for large companies that are actively promoting health and well-being among employees. Hearing their stories has got me thinking: Why aren't health care organizations doing the same thing en masse?

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Last Updated on Friday, 22 February 2019 12:14
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