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February 21, 2020

Market Research

  • Study finds motor function could improve in stroke patients with stimulation headset
  • Texas A&M invests $500M in engineering-medicine program
  • Tips for Greater Success

  • Communication Tip 5: Converse with Those You Admire
  • Government News

  • CMS proposes changes, 3-year extension to CJR model
  • Hospital and IDN News

  • Dosher Memorial Hospital names interim leaders following CEO departure
  • Second large health system leaves Cerner for Epic
  • Memorial Hermann Health System opens new 17-floor tower at Texas Medical Center
  • Ascension St. Clare's to merge with Marshfield Clinic Health Systems in Wisconsin
  • GPO News

  • Premier recommends modifications to Medicare Direct Contracting Model
  • News of the Weird

  • 36-year-old arrested for calling 911 after parents shut off cellphone
  • Rembrandt painting thought to be knockoff turns out to be real thing
  • Market Research
    Study finds motor function could improve in stroke patients with stimulation headset
    A study, funded by a grant from the Houston Methodist Research Institute Translational Research Initiative, has found a non-invasive magnetic stimulation headset could improve motor function in stroke patients. It was presented this week at the American Stroke Association’s International Stroke Conference 2020 in Los Angeles, CA. In a clinical trial of 30 patients who had survived chronic ischemic strokes, the transcranial rotating permanent magnet stimulator (TRPMS) produced increases in physiological brain activity in areas near the stroke site. Brain activity was measured using functional magnetic resonance imaging (fMRI). 
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    Texas A&M invests $500M in engineering-medicine program
    The Texas A&M University System has announced a new engineering-medicine program that will be housed in a three-building campus at the Texas Medical Center (Houston, TX). The $500 million project aims to create a new tier of doctors and engineers known as “physician-eers” that will be tasked with creating the next generation’s medical devices. Students will earn both a master’s degree in engineering and a medical degree. The doctor-engineer hybrid is being created to give doctors more of an engineering background for development of devices. 
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    Tips for Greater Success
    Communication Tip 5: Converse with Those You Admire
    In this week’s Tips for Greater Success, Dan Nielsen, founder of AmericasHealthcareLeaders.com and NIHCL.com, writes, "So far in our Better Communication series we’ve discussed honing our writing skills, public speaking skills, and conversational skills. Today with Tip 5 we will again focus on conversational skills—because the simple truth is that for most of us conversation makes up a huge percentage of our regular communication! In a way, this fifth tip…"
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    Government News
    CMS proposes changes, 3-year extension to CJR model
    CMS yesterday proposed a three-year extension and changes to the episode definition and pricing in the Comprehensive Care for Joint Replacement (CJR) Model. The proposed rule would change the care-episode definition to include outpatient hip and knee replacements. It would also make changes to the target price calculation, the reconciliation process, the beneficiary notice requirements, gainsharing caps, and the appeals process. Additionally the proposed rule change would extend the length of the CJR Model for an additional three years, through December 31, 2023, for certain participant hospitals. The CJR Model is currently scheduled to end December 31, 2020. 
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    Hospital and IDN News
    Dosher Memorial Hospital names interim leaders following CEO departure
    Dosher Memorial Hospital (Southport, NC) President and CEO Tom Siemers will steping down, effective Feb. 28. The hospital has named two interim leaders. Brad Hilaman, MD, will serve as interim CEO, and Lynda Stanley will serve as the hospital's new interim president, the hospital said. Dr. Hilaman is CMO of Dosher and an OB/GYN. He will remain CMO, in addition to his interim duties, and continue to oversee the hospital's wound center and women's health clinic. Stanley, former COO of Dosher, is president of the hospital's newly formed foundation. She will continue in her foundation leadership role while serving as interim hospital president.
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    Second large health system leaves Cerner for Epic
    Atrium Health (Charlotte, NC), which has more than 40 hospitals and 900 care locations in its network, is changing its EHR system from Cerner Corp. to Epic Systems. This marks the second large health system to leave Cerner for Epic, including AdventHealth (Altamonte Springs, FL), this month. Atrium Health has recently entered into an agreement with Wake Forest Baptist Health and Wake Forest University (Winston-Salem, NC), which is expected to bring a four-year medical school to Charlotte. It also merged with Navicent Health (Macon, GA) early last year. 
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    Memorial Hermann Health System opens new 17-floor tower at Texas Medical Center
    Memorial Hermann Health System (Houston, TX) has opened a new 17-floor critical care tower at its Texas Medical Center hospital. It has 140 patient rooms, 24 operating rooms, a 335-seat cafeteria and 900 new parking spots. The Susan and Fayez Sarofim Pavilion began accepting emergency room patients yesterday. Susan and Fayez Sarofim gifted the largest gift Memorial Hermann has ever received, $25 million, for the project. The tower is part of a $700 million renovation and expansion project at Memorial Hermann-Texas Medical Center.
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    Ascension St. Clare's to merge with Marshfield Clinic Health Systems in Wisconsin
    Ascension Wisconsin and Marshfield Clinic Health Systems have agreed to merge Ascension St. Clare’s Hospital (Weston, WI) with Marshfield Clinic. The agreement also includes the transfer of Ascension Wisconsin’s 50% interest in The Diagnostic and Treatment Center (Weston, WI) and Flambeau Hospital (Park Falls, WI) to Marshfield Clinic Health Systems.
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    GPO News
    Premier recommends modifications to Medicare Direct Contracting Model
    Premier Inc. (Charlotte, NC) recently issued a statement to CMS to recommend that, in light of its success, the Next Generation Accountable Care Organization (NGACO) program be extended or adapted. The NGACO model requires participants to take the greatest level of financial risk of any ACO model, Premier said. And yet, the organization recently announced that NGACOs reduced Medicare spending by $242 million in in 2018, achieving nearly $221 million in net shared savings. NGACOs that are organized in Premier’s data-driven collaborative realized nearly 30% of these savings, reducing total spending by more than $70 million and earning in excess of $63 million in shared savings. The NGACO model is scheduled to sunset at the end of this year. Premier has called on CMS to build on these successes by either extending the NGACO program or better adapting the new Direct Contracting Model to provide a stepwise progression between models for NGACOs. 
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    News of the Weird
    36-year-old arrested for calling 911 after parents shut off cellphone
    A 36-year-old Ohio woman was arrested last week when she repeatedly called 911 to complain that her parents had cut off her cellphone service. Officials arrested Seloni Khetarpal after she called the regional emergency dispatch center demanding that police come to her house, according to local station news. Authorities didn’t note what phone Khetarpal used to make the calls, but dispatchers told her to call 911 only if there was an actual problem. However, Khertapal reportedly called back two hours later, insisting she felt the lack of a working phone was a legitimate police matter. Court documents say Khetarpal was “belligerent” during her phone calls to the point that officers decided to arrest her on charges of disrupting public services, a fourth-degree felony. Khetarpal appeared in court on Friday and was released after posting a $2,500 bond. Authorities have not said why her parents shut off her phone service in the first place.
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    Rembrandt painting thought to be knockoff turns out to be real thing
    Thanks to modern technology and some expert detective work, a nearly 400-year-old painting that had long been attributed to an unknown artist in Rembrandt’s workshop has now been judged to have been a work of the Dutch master himself. For decades, the Allentown Art Museum displayed an oil-on-oak panel painting called “Portrait of a Young Woman” and credited it to “Studio of Rembrandt.” Two years ago, the painting was sent to New York University for conservation and cleaning. There, conservators began removing layers of overpainting and dark, thick varnish that had been added over centuries — and they began to suspect Rembrandt himself was responsible for the original, delicate brushwork underneath.
    The scientific analysis “showed brushwork, and a liveliness to that brushwork, that is quite consistent with other works by Rembrandt,” said Shan Kuang, a conservator at New York University’s Institute of Fine Arts who restored “Portrait of a Young Woman.”
    Outside experts who examined the 1632 painting after the completion of its two-year restoration concurred with the NYU assessment that it’s an authentic Rembrandt. The museum has not had the painting appraised — and has no intention of selling it — but authenticated works by Rembrandt have fetched tens of millions of dollars.
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