Today’s NewsStand

Today’s NewsStand

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|December 19, 2022

Iowa news

Iowa to receive $44.4m in settlement with Centene

Iowa Attorney General Miller announced the state will receive $44.4 million in a settlement with Centene Corporation, a managed care organization. The settlement follows allegations that the company overcharged Iowa’s Medicaid program for pharmacy benefits and services. The money received from the settlement will be divided between the state and the Federal Medicaid program in accordance with federal Medicaid requirements. The managed care corporation operates as Iowa Total Care, one of three managed care organizations under the state’s Medicaid program. (KCWI)

How Iowa health care providers and pharmacies are dealing with antibiotic shortage

Iowa health care providers and pharmacies are trying to deal with a nationwide antibiotic shortage. “Right now, there’s just so much sickness and there’s just not enough meds,” said UnityPoint nurse practitioner Janae Brown. Brown is a nurse and a mom. The antibiotic shortage is hitting her hard. “I’ve dealt with it personally and professionally. I have a son with asthma, and he had influenza A. So you want to get him Tamiflu, and we couldn’t get it,” she said. Brown explains the antibiotic shortage is all about supply and demand. Too much RSV, flu and COVID-19 is creating a massive demand for drugs – especially for kids. But companies rely on ingredients that often come from overseas. (KCCI)

Search resumes for next VPMA, Carver College of Medicine dean

After two months of gathering input from campus stakeholders, the University of Iowa is relaunching a search for the next vice president for medical affairs and dean of the Carver College of Medicine. The initial search paused in October after the candidate who was offered the position declined due to family obligations. President Barbara Wilson and Executive Vice President and Provost Kevin Kregel spent the next eight weeks reevaluating the search and meeting with campus stakeholders during 11 listening sessions. The president and provost have named Matthew Howard and Edith Parker as co-chairs of the new search committee. (University of Iowa)

National news

Hospital CEO exits climb in what may be bellwether for C-suites

The number of CEO changes at hospitals and health systems climbed 300% in November after a slowdown the month before. In November, hospitals saw 12 CEO exits compared to three in October. The dozen most-recently recorded exits mark a 33% increase from the nine recorded in November 2021. Across all industries, CEO exits surged in November after “a summer lull.” The number of CEO changes rose 34% from 71 in October to 95 in November. The latest month also saw an uptick in retirements — 37 CEOs retired, the most since January 2020. The upturn of CEO movement in November may be a sign of more CEO changes to come. (Challenger, Gray and Christmas)

Health care spending hit $4.3 trillion in 2021

A new CMS analysis estimated U.S. health care spending increased by 2.7% to $4.3 trillion in 2021. The growth rate was markedly slower than both 2020’s health care spending growth of 10.3% and the 38-year-high of 10.7% nominal GDP growth over the same period. Health care’s share in the broader economy dropped from 19.7% in 2020 to 18.3% in 2021. Federal health care spending, after a 36.8% growth in 2020, fell 3.5% in 2021. Lower federal spending for public health and COVID-19 programs were the biggest contributors to slower growth in health care spending in 2021. (Health Affairs)

U.S. may see early peak to flu season

Early signs suggest flu season may peak early in the U.S. this year, though health experts caution the upcoming holiday season could spur another uptick in activity. Flu activity typically starts rising in October and peaks between December and February. This year, flu season started earlier, with flu hospitalizations hitting a 13-year high by the end of October. Initial figures suggest flu activity may be slowing in the U.S. The CDC reported 31,442 positive flu tests in the week ending Dec. 10, a significant drop from the 43,960 reported a week before. The national rate of positive tests has hovered around 25% for three weeks. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

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