Practice

Xavier Becerra had a mostly smooth nomination hearing before the Senate health committee Tuesday despite accusations from some GOP members on his support for abortion rights, lack of medical credentials and executive experience in the face of the COVID-19 public health emergency. Becerra, the California attorney general and President Joe Biden’s pick to head up
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Dive Brief: Outpatient visits held steady during the last three months of 2020 even as the country experienced a surge in COVID-19 cases, a new Commonwealth Fund report by researchers at Harvard and Phreesia, a health technology company, found. Outpatient visits largely returned to pre-pandemic levels after plummeting in the spring, but trends differed among
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Dive Brief: The Joint Commission is advising providers to proactively collect data to better identify disparities and inequities in their care, among other measures, as the COVID-19 pandemic highlights the U.S. system’s failings in that area. Training staff on implicit bias, providing medical interpreters for patients of different cultures, using communication platforms beyond the telephone
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Dive Brief: UnitedHealth CEO Dave Wichmann is retiring and will be replaced as chief executive by Andrew Witty, currently the CEO of health services unit Optum. Witty will continue running Optum and become CEO immediately, with Wichmann assisting in a transition period through March, UnitedHealth announced Thursday. Dirk McMahon, CEO of payer business UnitedHealthcare, will become
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Dive Brief: CMS expanded coverage of mitral valve transcatheter edge-to-edge repair procedures, previously known as transcatheter mitral valve repair, to include patients with symptomatic moderate-to-severe or severe mitral functional regurgitation, also called secondary MR. The move significantly grows the U.S. patient pool eligible for coverage. The finalized national coverage determination (NCD) was released Tuesday after delays
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Dive Brief: Cleveland-based KeyBank plans to launch a digital bank in March aimed at serving healthcare professionals, Chris Gorman, the bank’s chairman and CEO, told analysts during a fourth-quarter earnings call Thursday. Through Laurel Road, the digital student loan refinancing platform it acquired in 2019, KeyBank said the new digital bank will serve the healthcare
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Dive Brief: Hospitals and health systems dealing with pandemic-related financial struggles have also been hit with year-over-year declines in volumes and revenues to employed physician practices, according to Kaufman Hall’s quarterly Physician Flash Report. Fewer patient visits, hospital diagnostic and procedural volumes compared to pre-pandemic levels put physician productivity — measured as physician work relative value
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Dive Brief: Nitrile gloves are the latest item of personal protective equipment challenging supply chains as the coronavirus pandemic stretches into another calendar year. Nitrile gloves are used across industries from food preparation to administering vaccines. Nitrile gloves were the second-most sought after item reported by the Thomas Index Report in Q4. The item is
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Sanjay Basu is a primary care physician and epidemiologist. He is the director of research at the Harvard Medical School Center for Primary Care as well as the VP of research and population health at Collective Health, a healthcare plan administrator. When COVID-19 cases began rising in the U.S. in early 2020, healthcare providers mobilized
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Envision Healthcare’s 25,000 clinicians are no longer considered in-network with UnitedHealthcare, the nation’s largest private payer, the physician staffing company confirmed Tuesday. The nationwide contract dispute threatens to leave patients with higher costs and surprise bills as Envision clinicians staff many hospitals, including emergency rooms across the country. Envision clinicians work in 44 states and
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Dive Brief: HHS’ Office of Civil Rights has published the findings of an audit of more than 200 covered entities and business associates during 2016 and 2017, finding most surveyed met requirements regarding reporting breaches and notifying those whose information is involved required under HIPAA. But fewer complied with providing appropriate notices of their privacy
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Dive Brief: Tenet entered into an agreement to sell its urgent care business to FastMed, the for-profit chain said Friday. Tenet’s urgent care business is branded CareSpot and MedPost. The deal will almost double FastMed’s footprint and provide entry into Florida and California, where most of Tenet’s urgent care centers are located. It will add 87
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