Iowa Candor Legislation Receives Unanimous Approval

From the Iowa Medical Society:

In an exciting development at the Capitol this week, IMS’s top priority for the 2015 Legislative Session passed unanimously out of committees in both the House and Senate. SSB 1176 and companion bill HSB 143 enact protections to allow individual facilities to develop Candor programs to handle instances where a patient experiences an unanticipated healthcare outcome. The bills establish procedures and confidentiality protections for physicians who choose to engage patients in an open discussion following an unanticipated outcome. Passage by these committees protects the Candor bills from falling subject to this week’s funnel deadline and continues the forward momentum of this innovative new reform measure.

Iowa Telehealth Rules Advance

From the Iowa Medical Society:

The process of establishing statewide standards governing the practice and payment of telehealth service in Iowa continues to progress. As we reported last month, the Iowa Board of Medicine (IBM) has released an amended draft of its proposed telehealth practice standard rules, which are expected to be formally adopted when the IBM meets the first week of April. This most recent draft of the telemedicine rules incorporates a number of recommendations from IMS, including prohibiting the practice of prescribing based solely upon an internet questionnaire or internet consultation, or solely upon a telephonic evaluation absent a previously established physician-patient relationship. With the adoption of these rules, companies offering toll-free numbers or websites that allow an Iowan to virtually interface with an out-of-state practitioner and receive a prescription will no longer be able to operate in Iowa. Rather, the provider will have to have either first seen the patient in-person or will have to operate a true telehealth system that includes the use of two-way HIPAA secured interface. After their formal adoption by the IBM, the rules will be subject to one final review by the Administrative Rules Review Committee, composed of legislators from both parties in both the House and the Senate.

Sharing Patient Records Is Still A Digital Dilemma For Doctors

From NPR:

In an era when most industries easily share big, complicated, digital files, health care still leans hard on paper printouts and fax machines. The American taxpayer has funded the installation of electronic records systems in hospitals and doctors’ offices — to the tune of $30 billion since 2009. While those systems are supposed to make health care better and more efficient, most of them can’t talk to each other.

Bush lays a lot of blame for that at the feet of this federal financing.

“I called it the ‘Cash for Clunkers’ bill,” he says. “It gave $30 billion to buy the very pre-internet systems that all of the doctors and hospitals had already looked at and rejected,” he says. “And the vendors of those systems were about to die. And then they got put on life support by this bill that pays you billions of dollars, and didn’t get you any coordination of information!”

Top Stroke Centers Too Far Away For Many Americans

From Immortal:

In the case of a stroke, more than one-third of Americans would be without the best healthcare options due to the time it takes them to reach their nearest stroke center, according to a new study which was published on March 4 in the journal Neurology. In the new study, researchers generated a computer model to portray which primary stroke centers should be upgraded to comprehensive centers in order to optimize access for as many Americans as possible.

Emergency Department Staff Not Immune to Traumatic Stress

From Medscape:

Physicians in the emergency department should be aware that they are at risk for post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD), and should be prepared to take steps to deal with it if they find that they have symptoms.

“We don’t have good numbers, but the incidence of PTSD in emergency physicians is probably around 17%,” said Leslie Zun, MD, from Mount Sinai Hospital in Chicago.

The rate is “similar to that in trauma surgeons, where the incidence is 15%, and to that in emergency medicine nurses, where the incidence is 18%. We are right in the middle,” he told Medscape Medical News.

“Clear”, A parody video that teaches hands-only CPR