Friday, August 30, 2013

HealthLeaders Media: Oregon to Streamline Provider Credentialing

A new law requires the Oregon Health Authority to establish an electronic database for credentialing organizations, including hospitals, insurance companies, and other facilities. 

Jacqueline Fellows, August 22, 2013
Provider credentialing in Oregon is on its way to becoming more streamlined under a bill that mandates healthcare providers use a single credentialing system by 2016.

The initiative, known as SB 604, requires the Oregon Health Authority to establish an electronic database for credentialing organizations, including hospitals, insurance companies, and other facilities. It's the first state to mandate the use of a single credentialing system; the bill was overwhelmingly supported in the state legislature.

Read more at HealthLeaders

Monday, August 26, 2013 Bill to empower nurse practitioners divides professional organizations

California legislators look to nonphysicians to address primary care gaps in the state, but physician organizations and others oppose the proposed solution.

 Jennifer Lubell, August 26, 2013

A bill moving through the California Legislature that aims to boost the primary care work force by allowing some nurse practitioners to practice independently has run into resistance from physician and nursing organizations alike, who oppose the current measure for opposite reasons.

Despite some recent revisions to narrow the circumstances in which nurse practitioners could set up shop on their own, the physician organizations insisted that the bill doesn’t go far enough to protect patient safety or encourage needed collaboration with doctors. Other key groups in the state withdrew their support on the basis that the newly amended version would heighten the liability risk for nurse practitioners.

Read the rest at

Wednesday, August 14, 2013

American College of Surgeons: Improved communication techniques enable residents to provide better care now and in the future

The Bulletin of the American College of Surgeons recently published an article relating streamlined communication and its beneficial effects on patient care. Raphael C. Sun, MD, Afif N. Kulaylat, MD, Scott B. Grant, MD, and Juliet A. Emamaullee, MD, PhD write,

"Effective communication is a key component and common denominator in successful organizations and businesses, and medical practices are no exceptions to this rule. Studies have consistently demonstrated that effective communication is essential to delivering safe and high-quality patient care. Until recently, residents have not been required to complete standardized courses in communication, and the subject has never been a formal component of graduate medical education. However, the emphasis placed on communication has increased since the Accreditation Council on Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has identified it as one of the six core competencies for physicians."

Read the entire post at the Bulletin of the American College of Surgeons:

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

New York Times: Path to United States Practice Is Long Slog to Foreign Doctors

Thousands of foreign-trained immigrant physicians are living in the United States with lifesaving skills that are going unused because they stumbled over one of the many hurdles in the path toward becoming a licensed doctor here.

Read more about the hurdles for foreign-trained physicians at the New York Times website:

Rampell, Catherine. "Path to United States Practice Is Long Slog to Foreign Doctors." New York Times August 11, 2013: Web. August 2013.

Tuesday, August 6, 2013

InformationWeek Healthcare: Doctor Profile Data Exchange In Works

Ken Terry, July 31, 2013

A new information-sharing company called Data Commons is expected to ease the electronic exchange of physician profile information after it launches its product this fall. To make this data exchange possible, Data Commons is using the Healthcare Professional Profile of MedBiquitous, a nonprofit standards development organization (SDO) started by Johns Hopkins in 2001.

Among the founding members of Data Commons are the American Board of Family Medicine (ABFP), the American Board of Pediatrics (ABP), the Association of American Colleges (AAMC), the Educational Commission for Foreign Medical Graduates (ECFMG), the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB), and the National Board of Medical Examiners.

Read more from InformationWeek Healthcare. 

Monday, August 5, 2013

Who is Moving Our Cheese?: Preparing for Change

Dear Medical Staff Services Professional,

As I read Mr. Greeley’s July 29 post, “The Future of American Medical Care,” I thought about our profession and the book I read many years ago, Who Moved My Cheese? by Spencer Johnson, MD.   When Dr. Johnson wrote this book in 1998 he may have had the organized medical staff and medical staff services professionals in mind.  It is inevitable that the Organized Medical Staff, as we know it, will change…and we as medical staff professionals must embrace these changes to enable our medical staffs to effectively and efficiently adapt – and benefit from ongoing improvements.  We all need to have the mindset and skillset to change before someone moves our cheese. 

Each time something new comes along, our immediate reaction is to resists because we don’t have enough staff to do it.  Some examples include assisting our Quality Departments with OPPE or our Human Resources Departments with Dependent Health Practitioners.   Instead of focusing on barriers, try to make each of these challenges an opportunity to become indispensable to your hospital and your medical staff.  In doing so, you will help to ensure a meaningful future for your department and further your career and book of knowledge.    

So, don’t get too comfortable in what you do today because it is not going to stay the same.  Take some time to read Who Moved My Cheese? and use it as a framework for personal innovation.  Be ready; so you never have to say the words “Who Moved My Cheese?”