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Industry News

Sep 10, 2018

HCA Healthcare's Monday announcement that its top executive plans to retire at the end of the year came as no surprise to Wall Street analysts. It's par for the course at the for-profit hospital chain, which they say has made a practice of refreshing its CEO post every handful of years.

Another piece of news that didn't seem to turn heads: R. Milton Johnson's replacement, Sam Hazen, whom analysts described as the "logical" and "natural" successor. Once Johnson closes out his five-...

Sep 10, 2018
Lawmakers want the CMS to abandon proposed changes to Medicare billing codes they fear will lead to doctors being underpaid.

"We are concerned that the proposal to consolidate these services devalues the expertise, clinical decision-making, and time of physicians who treat patients with complex conditions," a bipartisan group of 90 lawmakers wrote in a letter sent to the CMS on Friday.

Lawmakers wrote in the letter that the CMS did not adequately reach out to stakeholders before the...

Sep 10, 2018

The Senate will likely vote Thursday on its package of 70 bills aimed at reining in the opioids epidemic. But it remains unclear how the Senate and House of Representatives can hammer out the significant differences between their bills as November's midterm elections loom near.

The Senate's package left out several major items passed by the House, including two controversial measures that hospitals badly want: loosening the so-called IMD exclusion to channel Medicaid funds to...

Sep 10, 2018

(Updated at 12:30 p.m. ET)

Cerner President Zane Burke will leave the company on Nov. 2 after five years in the role. John Peterzalek, Cerner's executive vice president of worldwide client relationships, will take on Burke's duties and become chief client officer.

Burke helped oversee Cerner's $16 billion deal to replace the Department of Veterans Affairs homegrown electronic health record with one made by the Kansas City, Mo.-based company. Contract negotiations stretched...

Sep 10, 2018
HCA Healthcare CEO R. Milton Johnson will step down at the end of 2018 and be replaced by current President and Chief Operating Officer Sam Hazen.

The hospital chain's board of directors announced the moves Monday before the markets opened. Johnson has led HCA since 2014 and has been with the company for 36 years.

In a statement, Johnson noted the investor-owned hospital chain improved patient satisfaction as well as its revenue under his leadership.

"I remain excited about...

Sep 10, 2018

This story also ran on NPR.
This story can be republished for free (details).

When Drew Calver had a heart attack last year, his health plan paid nearly $56,000 for the 44-year-old’s four-day emergency hospital stay at St. David’s Medical Center in Austin, Texas, a hospital that was not in his insurance network. But the hospital charged Calver another $109,000. That sum — a so-called balance bill — was the difference between what...

Sep 07, 2018

There's one law in the policy world of Washington, D.C., that won't be found in the Federal Register, but often has a huge impact: the law of unintended consequences.

The Trump administration's immigration stance, often described narrowly as “national security vs. open immigration,” could have unintended yet significant consequences for the delivery of quality healthcare in the U.S. by exacerbating the challenges of a growing physician shortage.

For those responsible for...

Sep 07, 2018
For Griselda Cruz, the long drive from her home in Indiana to Alivio Medical Center in Chicago is well worth it.

Cruz, 25, likes that she can speak with the Alivio providers in Spanish, her first language. She also feels they take good care of her and her three young children.

Cruz visits Alivio for pediatric and women's healthcare appointments. “If my children are sick, they can see them on the same day,” she said in the waiting room of one of Alivio's clinics in the city's Little...

Sep 07, 2018
Sometime this week: The Senate will vote on a package of bills addressing the opioid crisis. The legislation has been held up by partisan bickering (shocking, right?). Among other things, the package would authorize new funding for states, expand access to medication-assisted treatment, and would let the National Institutes of Health research new, non-addictive painkillers. The House passed its legislation in June, so the bills would have to be reconciled before going to the president for his...
Sep 07, 2018

Post-acute care providers are attracting interest from private equity firms as potentially lucrative long-term investment plays, while real estate investment trusts pull away from the slumping healthcare segment.

Private equity firms have traditionally stayed away from the healthcare provider space, but several factors, such as the rapidly aging baby boomer population, are attracting them to the industry.

And real estate investment trusts, which have long been the major...