Today’s NewsStand — Aug. 17, 2020

Today’s NewsStand — Aug. 17, 2020

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|August 17, 2020

Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the web.

Iowa news

Free mental health coaching to victims impacted by the derecho storm

Marion-based mental health provider, Covenant Family Solutions is providing free 30-minute mental health coaching sessions to those impacted by Monday’s storm. A spokesperson says survivors of natural disasters, like the one experienced across Iowa on Monday, have a 30-40% chance of suffering from post-traumatic stress disorder. To counteract the long-term mental health effects of a disaster is to seek help early and to talk about the experience with professionals that are trained to help. (KGAN)

Emergency rooms seeing increase in patients, injuries as people work to clean up neighborhoods

With so many people out working to clean up their yards and fallen trees, at least one hospital is now saying its emergency room saw record-high numbers. The City of Five Seasons is now a city of one sound throughout the day: chain saws. People across the city are either cleaning up their own yards or helping others. (KCRG)

University of Iowa meets climate change goals — didn’t kick its garbage habit

The University of Iowa met most sustainability goals it set a decade ago, but failed in a key area — garbage going to landfills. The University of Iowa released a report this spring on its progress towards its 2020 sustainability goals. Based on the original goals, the school met targets to use less energy in 2020 than it did in 2010, get at least 40% of campus energy from renewable sources and drop per capita emissions from university travel by at least 10%. (KCCI)

National news

COVID-19 pandemic brings telehealth into U.S. homes

The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in systemic changes throughout the nation’s health care system. Almost overnight, health systems, providers and the government were forced to collaborate to ‘stand up’ field hospitals, testing sites and quarantine procedures, while postponing or cancelling certain elective procedures and ceasing in-person encounters. One of the most significant developments in the response to COVID-19 has been government support for the expansion of telehealth services, which represents a significant departure from longstanding resistance to the provision of health care by telehealth. Most recently, the president issued an executive order that directs the secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services to propose regulations to codify some of the key telehealth changes, and notes that almost half of Medicare fee-for-service primary care visits during the month of April were provided by telehealth. (Medical Economics)

CMS has a new plan to push rural providers to value-based payments

CMS last week announced an alternative payment model that aims to improve rural health care and further the Trump administration’s push to shift US health care providers toward more value-based payments. The agency unveiled the new model in accordance with President Trump’s recent executive order aimed at boosting Americans’ access to quality rural health care and telehealth services. (Advisory Board)

Consolidation of health care may not lead to better care, study says

As hospitals across the nation and New Hampshire continue to merge, proponents have pointed out that quality of care would improve as costs declined. But a recent study by a Dartmouth researcher found that larger health organizations do not necessarily provide higher quality care than independent hospitals, and other studies suggest the costs can actually go up. (Concord Monitor)

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