‘No One Is Ever Really Ready’: Aid-In-Dying Patient Chooses His Last Day
With its expansion to Hawaii this year, medical aid-in-dying is now approved in eight U.S. jurisdictions. Even when legal, the controversial practice of choosing to die after a terminal diagnosis is difficult, said one Seattle man who shared his final deliberations.
Medicare Giving Hospices Pay Bump For Next Year
Meanwhile, academic and rural hospitals will likely see a cut in funding.
Watchdog Agency Calls On Regulators To Ramp Up Oversight Of Hospice Industry After Report On Fraud, Neglect
The report from the Office of Inspector General at HHS raises concerns that some hospices are milking the system by skimping on services while taking in daily Medicare payments.
July 31, 2018
Today’s early morning highlights from the major news organizations.
Missed Visits, Uncontrolled Pain And Fraud: Report Says Hospice Lacks Oversight
A new government watchdog report outlines vulnerabilities in Medicare’s $17 billion hospice program, pointing to inadequate services, inappropriate billing and outright fraud.
As Exhausting As Hospice Work Is, These Caregivers Describe Their Roles As Sacred, Deeply Fulfilling
At the nonprofit Hospice of the Western Reserve in Cleveland, which serves 1,200 dying patients daily, many employees and volunteers have great job satisfaction and readily answer a common question: “How do you work here?” In other public health news: Alzheimer’s, HIV outreach, hip replacement research, all-plant burgers, carcinogenic chemicals and racial profiling.
No Gaps In Understanding: Here’s Your Primer On Medigap Coverage
Seniors often don’t realize that private insurers are required to offer Medigap policies, or supplemental insurance, only when people first sign up for Medicare.
A Hospital’s Human Touch: Why Taking Care In Discharging A Patient Matters
Patients and caregivers often feel abandoned and lose trust in health care professionals when they sense a lack of caring during transitions. With it, they feel better able to handle concerns and act on their doctors’ recommendations.
State Highlights: Maryland Governor Takes Steps To Enact Unique All-Payer Health Model; Group Seeks Ethics Review Of Rep. Jordan’s Ties To OSU Sexual Abuse Case
Media outlets report on news from Maryland, Ohio, California, Arkansas, New Jersey, Kansas, Ohio, Oregon, North Carolina, Minnesota, Missouri, Florida, Washington, Massachusetts and Louisiana.
Vaping Devices, Electronic Cigarettes Touted As Smoking Cessation Aids, But Some Data Suggests Otherwise
There’s a growing field of conflicting data on the benefits and harms of the products. In other public health news: organs, cancer patients’ end-of-life plans, Lyme disease, suicide, police violence and more.
Hospitals Scramble To Find Alternatives To Medications As Drug Shortages Persist
Hospitals and ER departments nationwide are coming up short when they need drugs such as morphine. “So many substances are short, and we’re dancing every shift,” said Dr. James Augustine, a doctor in Cincinnati.” In other public health news: palliative sedation, glaucoma, gaming addictions, ovarian cysts, emphysema and more.
The Dark Side Of Convenience: Smart Home Technology Is Making It Easier For Abusers To Control Their Victims
Internet-connected locks, speakers, thermostats, lights and cameras that have been marketed as the newest conveniences are now also being used as a means for harassment, monitoring, revenge and control. In other public health news: pandemics, breathing tubes, precision medicine, pregnancy vaccines, and more.
Hospice Care Has Become Booming Multibillion-Dollar Industry — And More And More Companies Want In
Humana is planning on buying two chains that together would create the industry’s biggest operator. But there’s more to hospice care than just profits. Meanwhile, some not-for-profit health systems are using methods to get around penalties on high employee compensation.
Medicare Financial Outlook Worsens
The Medicare board of trustees said the program’s hospital insurance trust fund could run out of money by 2026, three years earlier than previously forecast.
Suspension Of California’s Aid-In-Dying Law Leaves Sick Patients In Limbo
Doctors have stopped writing lethal prescriptions and pharmacists have stopped filling them after a court fight over how the law was enacted.
WellCare Joins In Health Industry Merger Trend With $2.5B Deal To Acquire Meridian
The move is just the latest in an industry seeking to survive through consolidation and deals with other insurers, ambulatory care providers and pharmacy benefit managers.
Concerns Rise As California Hospitals Provide Few Details Following Crash Of Information System
While Sutter Health executive officer Sarah Krevans says everyone was provided “high-quality, safe patient care,” during the outage, patients, doctors and nurses describe a different picture. More hospital news is reported out of Illinois, Washington and Texas, also.