Today’s NewsStand

Today’s NewsStand

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|August 5, 2021

Iowa news

The coronavirus’ summer surge is refilling Iowa hospitals

The Iowa Department of Public Health reported Wednesday that 201 COVID patients were hospitalized, up 28% from the 157 a week earlier and more than quadruple the 46 who were hospitalized on June 24. The pandemic is rekindling as the highly transmissible delta variant spreads, especially among people who are unvaccinated, experts say. Iowa hospital leaders expect to see even more inpatients as the number of infections soars. (Des Moines Register)

SOC Telemed expands partnership with UnityPoint Health to scale telemedicine solution and increase access to behavioral health specialists

UnityPoint Health is expanding its telePsychiatry services, adding the Telemed IQ telemedicine platform and SOC-provided psychiatrists to four additional hospitals. Additional hospitals include Iowa Methodist Medical, Iowa Lutheran Hospital, Methodist West Hospital and St. Luke’s Hospital-Cedar Rapids. SOC Telemed will go live with telePsychiatry services for UnityPoint Health in the second half of 2021 in both markets. (TMCNET News)

Protest outside MercyOne North Iowa against mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations

More than two dozen people showed up outside MercyOne North Iowa Medical Center late Wednesday afternoon to protest mandatory COVID-19 vaccinations. Trinity Health, the parent company of MercyOne, announced July 8 that it would require all colleagues, clinical staff, contractors and those conducting business in its health care facilities be vaccinated against COVID-19. (KIMT3)

National news

As the delta variant surges, a nonprofit app lets hospital patients call home for free on any device

COVID Tech Connect, a nonprofit created during the first wave of the coronavirus pandemic in the US, is launching a free app aimed at helping hospital patients call home. As the delta variant drives a new upward surge in critical COVID-19 cases, the new offering is, sadly, well timed. (Tech Crunch)

Hospitals no longer need to report their negotiated rates with Medicare Advantage payers

In a move praised by the American Hospital Association, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has repealed the mandate that hospitals report the median payer-specific negotiated charge they make with their Medicare Advantage payers on the Medicare cost report. (Healthcare Finance)

Arkansas hospital is so short on nurses in this newest COVID-19 surge, it’s offering a $25,000 signing bonus

Burnout and staffing shortages are plaguing Arkansas’ health care system in addition to the new COVID-19 delta variant. Staffing shortages are affecting morale to the point that some employees are walking off on the job in the middle of their shifts. (CNN)

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