NewsStand, Dec. 21, 2023

NewsStand, Dec. 21, 2023

By Iowa Hospital Association|
|January 2, 2024

Iowa news

UI Health Care rebrands, Mercy Iowa City to be renamed
Mercy Iowa City will be shedding its name and religious affiliation in early 2024, following its acquisition by the University of Iowa Hospitals and Clinics and part of a rebrand by UIHC. Mercy’s location will be referred to as UI Health Care’s downtown campus and renamed “University of Iowa Health Care Medical Center Downtown.” UIHC’s rebranding efforts signal UI Health Care’s evolution to meet the state’s health care needs across its patient care, medical education and biomedical research mission. (Corridor Business Journal)

Drake University provides management services to Iowa Future Health Professionals

Drake University is partnering with the Iowa chapter of Future Health Professionals to help reshape the state’s health sciences education landscape. Through the partnership, Drake will provide management services to the chapter. The collaboration will include a range of support — program development, meeting and event coordination, and educational resources. As part of the agreement, Alisa Drapeaux, assistant professor of health sciences at Drake University, has been appointed the chapter’s director. Drapeaux has experience as a physical therapist, health care administrator and health sciences educator. Drapeaux will help students gain the skills and knowledge needed for a health care career. (Business Record)

Cass County is the first to launch the Iowa United First Aid pilot program

Cass County is using new technology to help get people the emergency medical services they need in a shorter time. The county was one of three to receive a $75,000 grant to test a state pilot program that treats emergency medical services like Uber. The app, Iowa United First Aid, will send the closest staff member to respond to an emergency before an ambulance can arrive. Cass was the first county to run the program on Dec. 6. Van Buren County launched it on Dec. 12. Calhoun County is still working to get it online. Emergency medical services are not considered an essential service in Cass County. An ambulance can take over 30 minutes to get to some rural parts of the county. (KCCI)

National news

A growing COVID-19 variant has taken off this holiday season

Scientists are narrowing in on the fastest-growing COVID-19 variant, learning more about the strain that has coincided with a rise in cases as Americans head into the holidays. Based on Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimates, the JN.1 variant now accounts for more than one-fifth of cases. Cases involving this mutation make up 15%-29% of COVID-19 infections. The variant previously accounted for an estimated 8% of cases. This uptick suggests that JN.1 could be more transmissible and better at slipping past people’s immune systems. Hospitalizations and deaths, indicators for COVID-19 spread, also remain elevated, with cases rising in the Midwest and mid-Atlantic. (USA Today)

Health systems commit to Biden’s AI principles

Multiple health systems, payors and health care companies have agreed to the voluntary commitments set forth by President Joe Biden to promote the secure advancement of artificial intelligence. Twenty-eight health care entities agreed to align the AI industry with the “FAVES” principles, emphasizing that AI in health care should lead to fair, appropriate, valid, effective and safe outcomes. Additionally, they promise responsible exploration and development of AI, focusing on solutions that promote health equity, increase care accessibility, affordability, and coordination, and improve patient experience while minimizing clinician burnout. (The White House)

Health care’s most stressful jobs

Five health care professions have made a new ranking of America’s most stressful jobs. The Occupational Information Network, part of the U.S. Labor Department, has ranked 873 of the most stressful jobs in the nation. The list — which spans all industries, not just health care — considers professions that require employees to accept criticism and deal calmly and effectively with high-stress situations. The five health care positions named among the 10 most stressful jobs across all industries are urologists, anesthesiology assistants, acute care nurses, obstetricians and gynecologists and nurse anesthetists. (USA Today)

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