Today’s NewsStand

Today’s NewsStand

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|February 20, 2023

Iowa news

Group names Lakes Regional and Spencer among the top 100 rural and community hospitals

The Chartis Group, a health care consulting firm, has named Lakes Regional Healthcare and Spencer Hospital among its 100 best-performing rural and community hospitals for 2023. Hospitals are rated using publicly available data sets and scored across eight performance pillars including quality, market share and patient perspectives. The Chartis Rural Hospital Performance INDEX is the industry’s most comprehensive and objective assessment of rural provider performance. The INDEX framework is widely used across the nation by independent rural hospitals, health systems with rural footprints and state offices of rural health, which provide access to INDEX analytics through grant-funded initiatives. (The Chartis Group)

Study finds pandemic added challenges for Iowa’s nursing homes

A new report found that as Iowa’s senior population continues to grow, the state’s nursing homes are facing growing financial and staffing challenges. The report by LeadingAge Iowa, a group that represents nonprofit providers of aging services, found the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated long-standing industry challenges like workforce shortages, increasing costs and low reimbursement rates from Medicaid and Medicare. Since the start of the pandemic, the workforce for aging service providers has shrunk nearly 12% as Iowa’s workforce overall has grown 2%. Nursing home costs have increased by 15% in that same time frame and patient care revenues haven’t caught up. (Iowa Public Radio)

Johnson County designated HeartSafe Community

Johnson County has been designated a HeartSafe Community as local partners continue informing residents how to effectively intervene if they witness someone in sudden cardiac arrest. Johnson County is the fourth community in the country to receive this designation, said Fiona Johnson, the county’s ambulance service director. Johnson said the “prestigious designation” comes from the Citizens CPR Foundation, a national program that helps communities improve outcomes of sudden cardiac arrest. (The Gazette)

National news

The 20% Medicare cut coming for hospitals

As the U.S. prepares to end the COVID-19 public health emergency, hospitals are facing a major cut in Medicare payments used to treat patients diagnosed with the disease. Since January 2020, hospitals nationwide have received a 20% increase in the Medicare payment rate through the hospital inpatient prospective payment system to treat COVID-19 patients — that policy ends May 11. The sunsetting of the three-year policy is a key concern for the American Hospital Association because of its financial implication for hospitals already struggling with increased labor costs and inflation. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

Spring may bring a COVID-19 uptick, data suggests

National data indicates the U.S. may see an increase in COVID-19 cases in the coming weeks as test positivity rates rise and more states report a boost in admissions. On Feb. 13, test positivity rates were flat, and eight states reported a growth in COVID-19 admissions. Three days later, 10% of PCR tests used by laboratories and state health departments came up positive — a 2% increase in the past two weeks. The falling rate in cases, deaths and hospitalizations on Feb. 13 were double digits but are now single-digits, meaning the reprieve is slowing. (The New York Times)

The ADHD medicine shortage is getting worse. What went wrong?

As the nationwide Adderall shortage enters its fifth month, people who rely on medicine to help manage attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder are finding few, if any, available alternatives. There’s no sign of relief yet, and no easy solution to the problem, pharmacy experts say. Widespread scarcity has hit Adderall alternatives, too. As of January, the American Society of Health-System Pharmacists, which tracks drug availability, reported shortages affecting nearly 40 different doses or formulations of generic Concerta, a long-acting form of methylphenidate, the drug in Ritalin. (NBC News)

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