Category Archives: Efficiency

26 April 2017

Doctors Recommend a Pause Before Cutting the Umbilical Cord

In the first moments of a newborn’s life, obstetricians make multiple crucial decisions to provide optimal medical care. One of those decisions is the right time to cut the umbilical cord. While it has traditionally been cut immediately after birth to quickly clean and deliver the newborn to its expecting parents, the health care community has started to rethink this age-old practice. The latest official change in thinking has come from the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), which recently recommended that obstetricians wait at least 30 to 60 seconds before cutting the umbilical cord, as reported by The New York Times.

Even before the ACOG released the new recommendations, many...

19 April 2017

Google’s AI Could Help Pathologists Identify Breast Cancer Better, Faster

According to the CDC, there are more than 230,000 people diagnosed with breast cancer in the U.S. each year.  For these patients, determination of whether cancer cells have metastasized to other parts of the body significantly influences decisions about treatment.

While a pathologist’s report is generally considered the gold standard in the diagnosis of cancer, reviewing diagnostic slides is an extremely complicated task, even for specialists with years of training and experience. Different pathologists can arrive at variable diagnoses for the same patient, which can result in misdiagnoses. Diagnostic agreement for some forms of breast cancer can be as low as 48%. That number is unsurprising, considering the...

11 April 2017

Pediatric Vaccine Recommendations Updated for 2017

In a recent joint report, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP) have released the recommended childhood and adolescent immunization schedules for 2017. While immunization schedules are typically updated annually, medical professionals view some of the recent schedule updates as significant changes for pediatricians. Influenced by new trends in nationwide adolescent health, notable changes to the recommendations include:

1. Adolescents should no longer be given the live attenuated influenza vaccine. Flu-related hospitalizations and deaths have spiked nationwide since the start of the 2016–2017 flu season. Children younger...

4 April 2017

AMSURG Joins with Healthcare Bluebook to Make Healthcare Shopping Easier

An early proponent of Healthcare Bluebook, AMSURG was proud to be at the March 14 launch of their new healthcare marketplace price and quality tool for consumers in Nashville. AMSURG President Phillip Clendenin spoke at the event, emphasizing the consumer benefits of this tool. “It’s easier for healthcare insiders to understand how to shop for healthcare,” said Clendenin. “But this tool turns all consumers into insiders.” 

HCBB demystifies health system pricing and quality ratings, helping consumers find high-quality care at a fair price. Through their new marketplace comparison tool, which is free to all Nashville healthcare consumers, the company plans to help the city’s nearly...

23 March 2017

The Role of Professional Development in Physician Engagement

Sheridan’s Chief Quality Officer Gerald Maccioli, MD, MBA, FCCM sees physician engagement as essential for all stakeholders. He spoke with Becker’s ASC Review recently about the value of investing in comprehensive professional development opportunities for physicians to keep them engaged. 

“We all want the quadruple aim—which includes a satisfied population of physicians,” he said in the Q & A. “If engagement isn't developed, you are never going to get to that. It will always be a push and pull rather than a rolling together phenomenon.”

Dr. Maccioli explained that physicians are highly educated problem solvers for whom development and...

21 March 2017

Three Breakthrough Technologies That Will Change Medicine

The Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) publishes an annual list of 10 Breakthrough Technologies. Three innovations from this year’s list promise to have a dramatic impact on the future of medicine.

Brain Implants that Reverse the Effects of Paralysis

In recent years, brain implants have enabled lab animals and even a few people to use thoughts to control computer cursors or robotic arms. According to the 2017 MIT report,  researchers are “taking a significant next step toward reversing paralysis once and for all” using what French neuroscientist Grégoire Courtine calls a “neural bypass.” Wireless implants transmit electrical impulses from brain to spinal cord, bypassing...

16 March 2017

New FDA-Approved Drug Proven Effective in Reducing Recurrent C. diff Infections

Among the healthcare associated infections that may arise during a patient’s hospitalization, Clostridium difficile is an especially dangerous ailment due to its easy dissemination and antibiotic resistance. Transmission may occur if medical staff touch surfaces contaminated with feces during and between treatment of patients. The few available antibiotics that can be used to treat the initial infection do not prevent its recurrence in about 20 percent of those affected. To improve the efficacy of current standard-of-care antibiotic treatments, the healthcare community has long sought after an antibiotic that will further reduce the rate of C. diff infection recurrence. According to a study published in...

7 March 2017

CDC Opioid Guideline App: A Valuable Prescribing Tool

Last March, the United States Centers for Disease Control and Prevention published the “CDC Guideline for Prescribing Opioids for Chronic Pain.” The document provides recommendations for appropriate prescribing of opioid pain relievers and other treatment options in order to improve pain management and patient safety. Recently, the agency launched the CDC Opioid Prescribing Guideline Mobile App to educate providers and inform clinical decision-making when prescribing opioids outside of active cancer treatment, palliative care and end-of-life care. This free mobile app puts the opioid prescribing guideline and other helpful content, tools and resources into prescribers’ palms at the point of...

2 March 2017

ID Genomics IDs UTIs and Best Antibiotics in 25-45 Minutes

Urinary tract infections (UTIs) are one of the most common hospital-acquired infections in the U.S. UTIs can be quite painful, and since it usually it takes a lab about two to three days to identify the specific bacteria causing a patient’s infection, most doctors don’t want to wait that long to treat it. Instead, they make an educated guess as to which antibiotic to administer. Given that approximately 80 percent of UTIs are caused by E. coli bacteria, there’s a good chance the physician will choose an appropriate antibiotic. But that means that 20 percent of those patients may receive an ineffective or non-optimal antibiotic. And even if E. coli is the culprit, an increasing number of E....

28 February 2017

The Stealthy Spread of Superbug CRE in U.S. Hospitals

An alarming new study from the Harvard T.H. Chan School of Public Health and the Broad Institute of MIT and Harvard suggests that carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae (CRE)—a new class of superbug referred to as “nightmare bacteria” by former CDC director Dr. Tom Frieden—may be spreading more widely and more stealthily than was previously thought. The researchers found that CREs are growing in numbers and strength, are far more diverse than expected, and have many more mechanisms for not only resisting antibiotics but also spreading that resistance to other bacteria than have been identified to date. The study’s findings were published in January in the Proceedings of the National Academy of...