Smarter Digits in Healthcare: December 6, 2016

21st century cures act

Smarter Digits in Healthcare: December 6, 2016

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392-26 Votes

The House of Representatives voted in favor of the 21st Century Cures Act, which provides funding for biomedical research and to accelerate drug development for mental illness. While some have expressed concern that the money will prioritize pharmaceutical companies over patients’ needs, others see it as a positive sign that treating mental health issues is becoming more of a national priority.

150 ER Visits/Year

The Minnesota Restricted Recipient Program tracks patients who frequently utilize healthcare services to determine how they can be treated more effectively. Patients to frequent the emergency room as many as 150 times/year are redirected to a primary care clinic where their health can be better managed and their care better coordinated. Patients who may be seeking pain medications, by seeing many different doctors or receiving many tests, are also flagged. For example, one 16-year-old received 200 diagnostic tests in one year. After investigation, the program found that her parent was attempting to get prescriptions for pain medications.

49.2% of the Workday

A study sponsored by the AMA followed 57 family medicine, internal medicine, cardiology and orthopedics physicians and found that they spent 49.2% of their workday on EHR and administrative tasks, compared with 27% on clinical face time with patients. No wonder my kid played doctor with a toy computer instead of a doctor kit.

7 Years

NYC residents who live near the Mets’ Citi Field will live an average of 7 years longer than those who live near Yankee Stadium. And, no, the impact of the Yankee’s season isn’t causing more heart attacks than the Mets’. The geographic life-expectancy disparity isn’t a surprise to many people, but thanks to research by RWJF and VCU, we can put a finer point on it. Their research mapped life expectancy by zip code across the country, highlighting areas where social health initiatives can make a big impact.

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