Thursday, March 31, 2011

Evaluating the Medicare Pilot Programs: Comparing ACOs and Bundled Payments

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act health reform legislation created several new types of provider arrangements that many hospitals and physician groups are evaluating. These organizational structures are intended to enhance the ability of hospitals, physicians and other types of providers to work together to enhance quality and reduce costs.

Crossroads: A Documentary Film About Rural Health Care In America

Healthcare is one of the paramount concerns of our times. Providing all Americans with access to quality healthcare is one of the most complicated social policy issues faced by our nation.  The unfortunate truth is not all Americans have access to basic care.  In the United States, the divide is not just between rich and poor or the insured and uninsured. It is also about where you live –- in an urban or rural area. No place on earth exemplifies this fact more starkly than the poverty stricken areas of the Mississippi Delta.  Vision Project’s documentary follows the doctors, nurses, community organizers and patients who are part of an innovative and well-planned healthcare network. Instead of focusing on the difficulty of the situation, they have chosen to focus on a solution.

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

OSU CHS Ranked #19 in Rural Medicine According to US News & World Report

US News & World Report released its annual medical school rankings, and OSU CHS is ranked #19 in rural medicine (tied with A.T. Still University of Health Sciences and the University of Missouri). Please note that a subscription is required to view the rankings.

2011 County Health Rankings - Oklahoma

The County Health Rankings show us that where we live matters to our health. The health of a community depends on many different factors – ranging from individual health behaviors, education and jobs, to quality of health care, to the environment. The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation is collaborating with the University of Wisconsin Population Health Institute to develop these rankings for each state’s counties.

Physicians Strengthen Oklahoma’s Economy

Oklahoma’s office-based physicians ensure the health and well-being of their communities. A recent report by The Lewin Group proves they also strengthen Oklahoma’s economy by creating jobs (35,000), purchasing goods and services ($7.5 billion economic impact or 4.9% of state GDP),

HRSA in Your State

Find real time data and information about HRSA funded programs in Oklahoma and other states.

Implementing the Medicaid Primary Care Rate Increase: A Roadmap for States

The roadmap can help states: (1) understand critical parameters of the increase; (2) identify the operational steps to prepare for and implement the increase and apply for the federal match; and (3) identify potential levers to enhance primary care access and quality. The roadmap is a product of Increasing Primary Care Rates, Maximizing Medicaid Access and Quality, a CHCS initiative made possible through The Commonwealth Fund. CHCS is working with Medicaid stakeholders, including the Medicaid agencies, health plans, physician organizations, and health policy experts, to maximize the long-term impact of the primary care rate increase on health care quality and access.

Medicare Physician Compare

Find physicians and other healthcare professionals in your area that accept Medicare.

Call for Proposals: Health Impact Project - Advancing Smarter Policies for Healthier Communities

The Health Impact Project: Advancing Smarter Policies for Healthier Communities, a collaboration of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation and The Pew Charitable Trusts, encourages the use of health impact assessment (HIA) to help decision-makers identify the potential health effects of proposed policies, projects and programs, and make recommendations that enhance their health benefits and minimize their adverse effects and associated costs. This CFP will support organizations that wish to undertake an HIA of a proposed policy, project or program currently or soon to be under active consideration by a decision-making body. The CFPs are due June 1, 2011.

Student scholarship opportunities available for NRHA's Annual Conference

The leadership of the Rural Training Track Technical Assistance Program, a cooperative agreement between NRHA and HHS Office of Rural Health Policy, is offering a funding opportunity for current medical students interested in practicing in rural America. As a condition of this scholarship

Oklahoma Critical Access Hospitals and SHIP Grantees, August 2010

Map showing critical access hospitals (CAH) in Oklahoma and those hospitals receiving funds through the small hospital improvement program (SHIP).

Quick Reference Grids to Navigating the Meaningful Use and Standards and Certification Criteria Final Rules

Three quick reference "grids" developed by the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology to help guide the implementation of meaningful use. The "EH & CAH/Inpatient Setting Only Grid" is particularly useful for critical access hospital administrators.

Evaluation of the Flexibility Critical Access Hospital Health Information Technology Network Implementation Program

This evaluation assessed the 16 Flex CAH HIT grantees’ ability to design, create, and implement functioning CAH HIT pilot networks that help improve coordination of care for the rural population served by the participating CAH(s).

Registration Open is Open for Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentive Program

The official web site for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs. The Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs will provide incentive payments to eligible professionals, eligible hospitals and CAHs as they adopt, implement, upgrade or demonstrate meaningful use of certified EHR technology. Participate early to get the maximum incentive payments!

Critical Access Hospital Replacement Resources

A HRSA maintained website that provides resources for critical access hospital (CAH) replacement, including a replacement process roadmap, a replacement process manual, and an example of a typical CAH.

Meaningful Use and Critical Access Hospitals: A Primer on HIT Adoption in the Rural Health Care Setting

This Primer provides critical access hospitals (CAHs) with an introduction on a broad spectrum of HIT adoption issues and considerations, in addition to identifying open-ended questions that can help CAHs further define their own roadmap for adoption.

Share Medical Center CEO Tells of Changes

From the Alva Review-Courier, this article profiles the new CEO of the Share Medical Center in Alva, Oklahoma and details the hospital's efforts to gain critical access status.

CMS Delays Enforcement of Supervision Requirements of Therapeutic Services in Critical Access Hospitals

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has decided to delay enforcement of the physician supervision requirements of therapeutic services provided to outpatients in critical access hospitals. CMS will not enforce the supervision requirements for all of CY 2010.

Oklahoma CAH Results for Hospital Compare

"CAH Participation and Quality Measure Results for Hospital Compare 2007 Discharges and 2005-2007 Trends: National and Oklahoma Results," Flex Monitoring Team. January 2009. A summary of participation rates and quality measure results for Oklahoma CAHs compared to CAHs nationally.

Financial Performance of Oklahoma CAHs

"Statewide Financial Performance of CAHs: Oklahoma," The Flex Monitoring Team. Summer 2008. A comparative analysis of financial performance among Oklahoma CAHs for twenty financial indicators.

5th Annual Rural Hospital Replacement Facility Study

Prepared by Stroudwater Associates, this report provides a comprehensive assessment of critical access hospitals that replaced aging facilities.

Hospital Compare Quality Measures: 2008 National and Oklahoma Results for Critical Access Hospitals

This report issued by The Flex Monitoring Team shows how critical access hospitals in Oklahoma compare to national averages for measures of quality and patient satisfaction.

Who in Oklahoma Will Be Uninsured After Health Insurance Reform?

Courtesy of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, this report estimates that 8.3% of the nonelderly population in Oklahoma will be uninsured after the full implementation of the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform). Without the PPCACA of 2010, the estimated uninsured rate among the nonelderly population in Oklahoma is 19.5%.

Report Finds Lower Insurance Premiums, More Choices in 2014 for Families, Businesses under Affordable Care Act

HHS report shows some families can save up to $14,900 annually, tax credits will save small businesses $6 billion over two years.

Where the Rubber Meets the Road: Strategies for Successful State Implementation of the Affordable Care Act

This paper describes the policy terrain in which state implementation of the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform) is occurring and proposes a specific strategy for successful state implementation of the the PPACA of 2010. Courtesy of Community Catalyst.

Accountable Care Organizations, Explained

Kaiser Health News provides an easy to follow explanation of accountable care organizations (ACO), as defined in the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Blue Cross & Blue Shield of Oklahoma Website Helps Small Businesses Calculate Health Care Reform Tax Credit

Businesses may use the website to estimate their potential tax credit by entering a few details of their business and current health plan (BCBSOK or other carriers), including number of employees, aggregate wage amounts and annual premiums per employee.

50-State Health Reform Calculator for Small Businesses©

This calculator is intended to give small business owners a rough idea of the amount of tax credit they could receive in 2010 if they offer health benefits to their employees as a result of the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform). The calculator takes into account many of the factors that will determine if, and how much of a credit the business could receive, but necessarily makes some assumptions. Employers who feel they may be eligible for the tax credit are urged to consult with their tax advisors to determine the actual amount.

IRS Helps Small Employers Claim New Health Care Tax Credit; Forms and Additional Guidance Now Available on Small Business Health Care Tax Credit

Final guidance for small employers eligible to claim the new small business health care tax credit for the 2010 tax year.

SAMHSA Health Care Reform Webinar Series

Compilation of webinars offered by the Substance Abuse & Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) that deal with changes to the allocation of mental health services brought about by PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Campaign Claims: Health Law Myths and Facts

Kaiser Health News and The Washington Post examine the accuracy of some of the most common campaign claims regarding the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Nearly 382,000 Oklahomans Will Be Eligible for Health Care Premium Tax Credits in 2014, Resulting in $1.5 billion Tax Cut for Middle-Income Families

A new report from Families USA details how middle-income Oklahomans will benefit from federal tax savings provided by the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Oklahoma Health Insurance Exchange Process

Link to the Oklahoma Department of Insurance webpage detailing the health insurance exchange process as specified in the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Health Care Reform, What’s in It for Rural Communities and Rural Medical Care?

This seven-page policy brief from the Center for Rural Affairs highlights the benefits to rural communities and rural medical care from the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Increases in Primary Care Physician Income due to the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2010 - Continued Tweaking of Physician Payment

An eight page policy brief from the RUPRI Center for Health Policy Analysis at the University of Iowa that looks at the potential income changes for a prototypical rural primary care practice as a result of the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Report Shows 86.2% of Oklahoma Small Businesses Eligible for Tax Credits

A new report from Families USA details how small businesses in Oklahoma will benefit from federal tax credits offered through the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act: A Summary of Provisions Important to Rural Health Care Delivery

This paper provides a consolidated summary of legislative provisions contained in the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform). It also serves as a roadmap for use by advocates, analysts, practitioners, and policy makers focused on rural health as they continue the important task of improving the system as it affects rural interests.

Kaiser Family Foundation Health Care Reform Website

Comprehensive information about the recently enacted health care reform legislation. The web site includes unbiased explanations and interactive tools to help users navigate the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform).

Impact of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act on Covered Persons

Analysis from the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis and Washington University in St. Louis, Mo. shows that when the PPACA of 2010 (a/k/a Health Care Reform) is enacted, 92% of all rural Oklahomans will be covered by health insurance. The current health insurance coverage rate for rural Oklahomans is 78%.

State & Congressional District Resource for Well-Being Map

Interactive website that allows users to explore various measures of 'well-being' by state and U.S. Congressional District.

Atlas of Rural & Small-Town America

View, print, and download county-level maps & data for over 60 socio-economic indicators.

National Broadband Map

The National Broadband Map is a searchable and interactive website that allows users to view broadband availability across every neighborhood in the United States.

OSU Center for Rural Health Programs & Services, 2010

A map showing the locations of various educational programs and service activities offered through the OSU Center for Rural Health.

Recipients of Teaching Health Centers Funding, 2011

A graduated symbol map showing the recipients of teaching health centers funding via the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services.

Oklahoma Health Professional Shortage Areas - Primary Care, January 2011

Map showing primary care HPSAs in Oklahoma as of January 2011.

Oklahoma Medically Underserved Areas & Populations, January 2011



Oklahoma State House of Representatives Map & Oklahoma State Senate Map & Oklahoma U.S. Congressional Delegation Map

Updated maps reflect changes from the 2010 elections and new capitol contact information for each representative and senator.  State House / State Senate / U.S. Congress

Estimated Adult Population without a High School Degree or GED by County, 2005-2009

This choropleth map shows the estimated adult population (age 25 and older) without a high school degree or GED in Oklahoma by county. Data was collected by the U.S. Census Bureau as part of the American Community Survey 5-year Estimates.

Estimated Median Age by County, 2005-2009

This choropleth map shows the estimated median age in Oklahoma by county. Data was collected by the U.S. Census Bureau as part of the American Community Survey 5-year Estimates.

Population Living in Poverty by County, 2009

This choropleth map shows the population living in poverty in Oklahoma by county. Data was collected in 2009 and reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in December 2010.

Median Household Income by County, 2009

This choropleth map shows the median household income in Oklahoma by county. Data was collected in 2009 and reported by the U.S. Census Bureau in December 2010.

Oklahoma Communities Recruiting Primary Care Physicians, November 2010

This map shows the communities in Oklahoma that are actively recruiting primary care physicians as of November 2010.

Proportion of Active Primary Care Physicians by Generation, 2009

This map shows the proportion of active primary care physician by generation for each county in Oklahoma.

Recipients of Primary Care Residency Expansion Funding, 2010

A graduated symbol map showing the recipients of primary care residency expansion funding via
HHS State Health Professional Grants.

Primary Care Residency Match in Oklahoma, 1999 to 2010

This chart shows the results of the primary care residency match in Oklahoma from 1999 to 2010. It details the number of positions offered and the number of positions filled by source.

Debt Burden of U.S. Medical School Graduates, 2003 to 2010

This chart shows the distribution and average debt burden of U.S. medical school graduates from 2003 to 2010.

Distance from the OSU Medical Center of Active Osteopathic Physicians Practicing in Oklahoma who Completed GME Training at the OSU Medical Center

A dot map showing the practice locations (in Oklahoma) of OSU Medical Center graduate medical education completers.

Residency Training Locations of OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine Graduates Graduating Classes 2005-2009

A graduated symbol map showing the residency locations of graduates from OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Oklahoma Rural Hospitals & Hospital Referral Regions, 2010

Map showing rural hospitals in Oklahoma and hospital referral regions as defined in The Dartmouth Atlas of Health Care.

Oklahoma Health Professional Shortage Areas - Dental Care, August 2010

Map showing dental care HPSAs in Oklahoma as of August 2010.

OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine Alumni in the United States, 1977-2009

Dot map showing OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine alumni residing in the U.S. by current practice status. Map encompasses graduating classes 1977 to 2009.

OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine Alumni in Oklahoma, 1977-2009

Dot map showing OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine alumni residing in Oklahoma by current practice status. Map encompasses graduating classes 1977 to 2009.

Hometowns of OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine Students

Graduated symbol map showing the Oklahoma hometowns of current medical students (graduating classes 2010-2013) enrolled at OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine.

Oklahoma Health Professional Shortage Areas - Mental Health, 2010

Map showing mental health HPSAs in Oklahoma as of March 2010.

Estimated Rate of Persons Living with AIDS In Oklahoma by County of Residence, 2007

This choropleth map shows the estimated rate of AIDS infection in Oklahoma by county of residence in 2007. Data supplied by Oklahoma State Department of Health.

Estimated Rate of Persons Living with HIV Infection In Oklahoma by County of Residence, 2007

This choropleth map shows the estimated rate of HIV infection in Oklahoma by county of residence in 2007. Data supplied by Oklahoma State Department of Health.

OSU CHS Alumni Affairs Career Services

The OSU CHS Office of Alumni Affairs maintains a comprehensive list of current physician employment opportunities including private practices that are for sale.

Oklahoma Physician Manpower Training Commission Physician Placement Program

The Physician Manpower Training Commission administers a professional placement service for physicians and rural communities.

OKPhysicianJobs.com

The Oklahoma Hospital Association has created this new web site for hospitals to post their openings for physicians. Interested physicians can search the job listings by specialty and geographic region. There is no cost or obligation to participate.

Oklahoma 3RNet

Oklahoma is a member of the National Rural Recruiting and Retention Network (3RNet) which helps connect health professionals with jobs in rural and underserved areas.

"On the Road Again" OSU's Mobile Telemedicine Clinic Featured in NRHA's Rural Roads

From the Fall 2010 issue of Rural Roads, this article highlights how OSU and other organizations are using mobile clinics to offer health care to underserved rural areas.

Challenges for Improving Health Care Access in Rural America

A compendium of research and policy analysis studies of rural health research and policy analysis centers, 2009-2010.

Results from a State Scorecard on Health System Performance, 2009

The performance of Oklahoma's health system ranks 50th in the nation (1st Vermont; 51st Mississippi) according to a new report issued by The Commonwealth Fund. The rankings measure the combined performance of access, prevention & treatment, potentially avoidable use of hospitals and costs of care, equity, and healthy lives.

Health Status and Health Care Access of Farm and Rural Populations

From the USDA ERS, this report outlines the barrier to healthcare access for farm & rural populations.

Private Health Insurance Coverage in Rural Areas

This brief from the Maine Rural Health Research Center discusses the challenges of expanding private coverage in rural areas, and describes policy options to address them.

Drumright Regional Hospital Featured on OETA's Oklahoma Horizon

Air date: January 26, 2008. First link goes to a 5-minute video segment about the re-establishment of the Drumright Regional Hospital. Second link goes to a 4-minute video segment featuring an interview with Val Schott, Director of the Oklahoma Office of Rural Health.  Part 1 / Part 2

The Importance of Osteopathic Physicians in Rural Oklahoma

William J. Pettit, D.O., Associate Dean for Rural Health at the OSU Center for Health Sciences, presented at the 2009 OSU COM Osteopathic Spirit Week. Dr. Pettit addressed the importance of osteopathic physicians and their impact on rural Oklahoma.

KRMG Radio Series Regarding Rural Health Care

William J. Pettit, D.O., Associate Dean for Rural Health at OSU Center for Health Sciences, was interviewed by KRMG for a series of radio stories regarding access to healthcare in rural Oklahoma. The series also features Darrel Morris, CEO at Drumright Regional Hospital, and Jim Riemer, D.O., a family medicine physician in Pawnee, Oklahoma.  Part 1 / Part 2 / Part 3

Why Not the Best?

Courtesy of the The Commonwealth Fund, "Why Not the Best?" is an interactive reporting tool that allows users to assess and compare how U.S. hospitals perform on measures of evidence-based care, patient experience, readmissions & mortality rates, and costs.

2009 State Snapshot of Healthcare Quality: Oklahoma

Snapshots from the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality of Oklahoma-specific health care quality information, including strengths, weaknesses, and opportunities for improvement.

AHRQ's Effective Health Care Website

New link to the Agency for Healthcare Research & Quality's (AHRQ) Effective Health Care website. The Effective Health Care Program aims to facilitate decision-making for health care providers by providing findings from high-quality research in formats for different audiences.

Grant Opportunity: USDA Rural Economic Development Loan & Grant Program for FY 2011

See link for details. The deadline for receipt of applications in the USDA Rural Development State Office are March 31, 2011 and June 30, 2011.

Grant Opportunity: Distance Learning and Telemedicine (DLT) Grant Program

See link for details. The deadline for receipt of applications is April 25, 2011. An informative webinar about the application process is scheduled for March 9, 2011.

Conference Call: Succession Planning for Rural Hospitals

Succession planning in health care organizations is incredibly important. Unfortunately, due to time and budget constraints, adequate succession planning does not happen as frequently as it should. Join Wayne Hellerstedt, former hospital administrator, on July 27, 2011 as he discusses the innovative and proactive succession plan he developed to train his successor.

ScanGrants™

ScanGrants™ is designed to facilitate the search for funding sources to enhance individual and community health. The funding sources listed here may be of interest to virtually anyone associated with the health field – medical researchers, social workers, nurses, students, community-based health educators, academics and others.

Office of Rural Health Policy Rural Guide to Federal Health Professions Funding

The President’s Improving Rural Health Care Initiative in the 2010 and 2011 budget includes a charge for the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services to improve recruitment and retention of health care providers in rural communities. The Improving Rural Health Care Initiative tasks the Office of Rural Health Policy with improving coordination and promotion of existing health professions programs within the Health Resources and Services Administration to assist rural communities in this challenge. This manual provides a road map to meet that charge.

USDA Announces Grant and Loan Funding Available for Rural Hospital Facilities

Rural hospitals are eligible for grant and loan funding provided to the USDA by the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act through the Community Facilities Program. Funds under this program can be used to construct, enlarge, or improve community facilities. Contact Oklahoma's Rural Development State Office for more information.

Rural Health and the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act

The National Rural Health Association has published "Rural Health and the American Reinvestment and Recovery Act" to assist rural communities and providers with accessing the funding that is available through "Stimulus" funding. Review this document to gain an overview of what funding might be available for your community. The publication provides links to web sites where you can access more detailed information on programs that be of interest.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Health Information Technology Regional Extension Center Locator

Enter a ZIP code and find the closest Regional Extension Center. Courtesy of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology.

Oklahoma Healthcare Authority Awarded $54 million "Early Innovator" Grant from HHS

The Oklahoma Health Care Authority is one of seven recipients of an "Early Innovator" Grant awarded by the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services. The $54 million award recognizes the Oklahoma Health Care Authority's leadership and commitment to developing a health information exchange to benefit all Oklahomans.

HIMSS Meaningful Use OneSource

HIMSS has developed the Meaningful Use OneSource to equip organizations to prepare for the Meaningful Use and Certification Criteria and Standards regulations. The Meaningful Use OneSource is a repository of hundreds of documents, tools, and links to other knowledge available on the Internet. Within this authoritative knowledge resource you will find everything you need to know about meaningful use.

Electronic Health Records Incentive Program: The Payment Clock is Ticking! For Hospitals

Fact sheet distributed by the OSU Cooperative Extension Service that highlights federal payment incentives to hospitals for the adoption of electronic medical records. Corie Kaiser, Assistant Director of the Oklahoma Office of Rural Health, contributed to its production.

Electronic Health Records Incentive Program: the Payment Clock is Ticking! For Eligible Professionals

Fact sheet distributed by the OSU Cooperative Extension Service that highlights federal payment incentives to eligible health care providers for the adoption of electronic medical records. Corie Kaiser, Assistant Director of the Oklahoma Office of Rural Health, contributed to its production.

CMS' EHR Meaningful Use Bonus Money Subject to Federal Taxes

According to Steven Waldren, M.D., Director of the American Academy of Family Practice's Center for Health IT, all health IT incentive payments received as a part of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 and the accompanying Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health, or HITECH, Act are viewed by the IRS as taxable income.

State Rep. Dorman Conducts Legislative Study On Electronic Medical Network

State Representative Joe Dorman (Rush Springs) outlines the results of an interim study regarding the use of electronic medical records in Oklahoma. Val Schott, Director of the Oklahoma State Office of Rural Health, provided input to the study.

Understanding the EHR Incentive Final Rule

This presentation by Paul Kleeberg, M.D. of the Regional Extension Assistance Center for HIT explains how the EHR incentive rule works, what the goals for the program are, and how it fits into a broader range of programs.

Information Technology and Health Care… What Is The Government Doing and Why Are They Doing It To Me?

Article written by Val Schott, MPH detailing the impact of HIT on physician practices and hospitals. The article originally appeared in the July/August 2010 edition of the Oklahoma D.O. (beginning on page 26).

HRSA Relaunches the Rural Health IT Adoption Toolbox

HRSA, via the ORHP, is relaunching the Rural Health IT Adoption Toolbox. This resource is targeted towards rural health providers seeking to implement health IT to improve the overall effectiveness of their institutions.

Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs

Link to CMS' official web site for the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs.

OFMQ Awarded HIT Regional Extension Center Grant

The Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, Inc. is one of 32 initial recipients of funding to establish Health Information Technology Regional Extension Centers (REC). The $5.3 million grant provides for technical assistance, guidance, and information to support and accelerate health care providers’ efforts to become meaningful users of electronic health records.

Funds to Help Oklahoma Doctors Move to Digital Records

Story from the Daily Oklahoman that covers the REC grant administered by the Oklahoma Foundation for Medical Quality, Inc. (see entry above). The story features quotes from Val Schott, Director of Rural Health Policy & Advocacy and Director of Oklahoma Office of Rural Health at the OSU Center for Rural Health.

Rural Health IT - What "Meaningful Use" Means to Rural

This blog provides resources, opinions and the opportunity to discuss issues relating to the HIT provisions and requirements of the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act, specifically relevant to rural healthcare. Created by the Wisconsin Office of Rural Health, administered by Louis Wenzlow of the Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative.

Rural Health Brief - Rural Hospital Electronic Health Records Survey

The OSU Center for Rural Health recently surveyed the sixty rural hospitals in the state with under 50 beds regarding their understanding of the costs and barriers of implementing an electronic health records system.

Criteria to Qualify for an Incentive Payment for Adopting EHR

A summary of the legislation that provides an incentive payment from CMS through Medicare and Medicaid payments for healthcare providers who become "Meaningful Users" of electronic health records. The web page includes responses to Frequently Asked Questions.

Sequoyah Memorial Hospital in the News

"Hospital’s Telemedicine Helps Save Woman’s Life," Sequoyah County Times. August 17, 2009. Sequoyah Memorial Hospital utilized telemedicine technologies, provided by the OSU Center for Health Sciences, to deliver care to a patient suffering a stroke.

Drumright Regional Hospital in the News

"Medical Milestone," The Tulsa World. June 12, 2009. Drumright Regional Hospital moves to an all-electronic medical records system to improve care and cut costs.

Monday, March 28, 2011

Little-Known AMA Group Has Big Influence on Medicare Payments

Kaiser Health News article on the American Medical Association's Specialty Society Relative Value Scale Update Committee whose recommendations on physician payment rates the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has approved more than 94% of the time.

Oklahoma Health Improvement Plan

The Oklahoma Health Improvement Plan outlines numerous key priorities and outcomes that will support health improvement throughout the state. The plan was mandated by the Oklahoma Legislature in 2008, which directed the State Board of Health to prepare a report that outlines a plan

"The Cost Conundrum" - The Rising Cost of Health Care

"The Cost Conundrum," The New Yorker. June 1, 2009. The article provides anecdotal examples of why the cost of health care has risen dramatically.

FAQs for the FTC's "Red Flag" Rule for Identity Theft

Frequently Asked Questions and Guide to the Federal Trade Commission's (FTC) "Red Flag" rule concerning identity theft. Courtesy of the American Osteopathic Association (AOA). A must read for physician providers.

CMS RAC Process Overview

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will soon begin conducting its Recovery Audit Contractor (RAC) reviews. For more information on the RAC process and provider outreach events, please visit the CMS web site.

An Evaluation of Osteopathic School Programs Designed to Promote Rural Location by Graduates

Original research from the OSU Center for Rural Health and Brian Whitacre of the OSU Department of Agriculture Economics.

Gender & Generational Issues Related to Physician Recruitment and Retention

Denna L. Wheeler, Ph.D., gave a research presentation at the 2010 Rural Health Association of Oklahoma Annual Meeting (September 23-24, 2010) in Norman, Oklahoma.

Changes in Knowledge and Attitudes Related to Specialty Choice and Rural Practice Location for 3rd & 4th Year Medical Students at OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine

Denna L. Wheeler, Ph.D., Vicky Pace, M.Ed., Chad Landgraf, M.S. presented this research poster at the National Rural Health Association's 33rd Annual Conference (May 18-21, 2010) in Savannah, Georgia.

A Comparison of Rural Hospitals with Special Medicare Payment Provisions to Urban and Rural Hospitals Paid Under Prospective Payment

This final report compares the financial performance and condition of rural hospitals with special Medicare payment provisions to urban and rural hospitals paid under prospective payment. Courtesy of the North Carolina Rural Health Research & Policy Analysis Center.

National Study Lists Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine as One of the Nation's Top Producers of Rural Physicians

Published in the April 2010 edition of Academic Medicine, a national study found that 30% of OSU COM graduates (1988-1997) were practicing in rural areas in 2005. OSU COM ranked 6th nationally and 1st in Oklahoma.

Oklahoma State University College of Osteopathic Medicine Ranks in the Top Third of U.S. Medical Schools at Fulfilling the 'Social Mission' of Medical Education

A study published in the June 15, 2010 edition of the Annals of Internal Medicine, ranked OSU COM 33rd nationally (1st in Oklahoma) at fulfilling the 'social mission' of medical education.

Rehospitalizations Among Patients in the Medicare Fee-for-Service Program

This article published in the New England Journal of Medicine indicates that 20% of patients discharged from a hospital in 2003 and 2004 were readmitted within 30 days. The article includes the cost of readmissions to Medicare and suggested interventions to reduce the rate of readmissions.

Potentially Preventable Readmissions in Rural Hospitals

This Upper Midwest Rural Health Research Center policy brief examines the issues surrounding patient readmissions to rural hospitals and the implications of changes to policy designed to reduce readmission rates in rural hospitals.

Place Matters - Challenges and Opportunities in Four Rural Americas

Published by the Carsey Institute, the reports shows the results from a survey of nearly 8,000 rural Americans regarding their opinions, experiences, and attitudes about the changes occurring in their lives, the lives of their families, and in their communities.

Grant Helps Medical Students Stay in Enid

An article from the Enid News that covers the Northwest Oklahoma Area Health Education Center's efforts to keep medical students in the Enid, Oklahoma area.

The Birth of a Family Medicine Residency Program in Northwest Oklahoma

Article written by C. Michael Ogle, D.O. highlights the new INTEGRIS Northwest Family Medicine Residency Program in Enid, Oklahoma. The article appears on page 32 in the December 2010 edition of the Oklahoma D.O. (beginning on page 32).

Taking up Residency: Bass Expanding Program to Include 5 Medical Students

An article from the Enid News and Eagle highlighting the expanded residency program at INTEGRIS Bass Baptist Heath Center.

The Future of Family Medicine and Implications for Rural Primary Care Physician Supply

This report examines the rural primary care physician shortage, the effect of recent trends in specialty choice on provider supply, and major trends that are changing the dynamics of rural health care delivery. Courtesy of the WWAMI Rural Health Research Center.

Medical Schools Can't Keep Up: As Ranks of Insured Expand, Nation Faces Shortage of 150,000 Doctors in 15 Years

Article from The Wall Street Journal detailing the shortage of physicians in the United States and how the newly enacted healthcare reform legislation may amplify the shortage.

Doctor Shortage in U.S. Won't Be Aided by More Medical Students

Article from Bloomberg.com detailing the looming physician shortage.

Reviving Interest in Primary Care

Article from The DO profiling OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine's predoctoral training grant as a means to produce more rural primary care physicians.

OSU Osteopathic Student Doctor Prepares for Rural Community Practice

OSU CHS press release profiles Charity Holder, a 2nd year medical student at OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine, from her formative years growing up in Coalgate, Oklahoma through her career as medical student as she prepares to the become a rural physician in Oklahoma.

Health Workforce Information Center

The Health Workforce Information Center is a comprehensive online library that will help you find health workforce programs, funding sources, data, research, and policy.

"Turning Out Country Doctors"

The Oklahoma Farm Bureau highlighted the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine's commitment to training and producing rural physicians in the Summer 2009 edition of Oklahoma Country (beginning on page 10).

Rural Health Workforce Policy Briefs

This series of policy briefs from the Rural Health Research Gateway looks at rural health workforce issues in primary care, general surgery, nursing, and dentistry.

Health Indicators Warehouse

The Health Indicators Warehouse contains standardized health outcome and health determinant indicators along with associated evidence-based interventions, which can be easily displayed, and will benefit a broad variety of users.

Change Happens

Article written by Vicky Pace, M.Ed. discusses the impact of generational differences on the physician workforce. The article appears on page 20 in the January 2011 edition of the Oklahoma D.O. (beginning on page 20).

2010 Census Shows an 8.7% Population Increase in Oklahoma

As of April 1, 2010, there were 3,751,351 people living in Oklahoma, an increase of 8.7% from 2000. The population density was 54.7 people per square mile, making Oklahoma the 37th most densely populated state in the country.

Oklahoma Quick Health Facts 2010

Produced by the AARP Public Policy Institute, this two page document highlights select health and demographic facts about Oklahoma.

Oklahoma Jumps to 46th in Overall State Health Rankings

The 2010 edition of America's Health Rankings, published by the United Health Foundation, ranks Oklahoma 46th (49th in 2009) in overall health.

Keeping Rural Hospitals Open

Besides providing healthcare, rural hospitals also generate millions of dollars annually within their communities. From the fall 2010 edition of State magazine.

OSU Center for Rural Health Report to the Senate Interim Study on Comprehensive Assessment of Healthcare Workforce Issues

Report prepared by Denna Wheeler, Ph.D. and Chad Landgraf, M.S. that details select characteristics of OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine graduates practicing in Oklahoma's rural physician workforce. The report was presented to the Oklahoma State Senate Interim Study on Comprehensive

Patient Centered Care in the Age of Health Reform

Presentation given by William J. Pettit, D.O. at the NOSORH Annual Conference in Oklahoma City, November 15-17, 2010.

Perspectives in Rural Health and Rural Medical Care: A Rural Health Elective Update

Article written by William J. Pettit, D.O. highlighting the rural health elective at the OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine. The article originally appeared in the November 2010 edition of the Oklahoma D.O. (beginning on page 28).

Friday, March 25, 2011

Med School Mapper

The AAFP's Robert Graham Center has unveiled a medical school mapping program that allows users to gauge the role of medical schools in promoting and sustaining primary care access within states, regions and localities.

OSU Center for Rural Health Staff Member Receives $75,000 Grant from Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

The Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, America’s leading philanthropy in health and health care, has awarded Denna L. Wheeler, Ph.D., a 24-month, $75,000 grant through the New Connections program. Dr. Wheeler is among a select group of junior investigators to receive one of the grants.

Oklahoma State University's Rural Focus...

Presentation given by William J. Pettit, D.O. on November 3, 2010 to medical students at OSU College of Osteopathic Medicine in Tulsa.

First Look: State of the State’s Rural Health - 3rd Edition

Article written by Chad Landgraf, M.S. highlighting the forthcoming edition of the State of the State's Rural Health. The article appeared in the October 2010 edition of the Oklahoma D.O.

Teaching Health Centers: Clinical Workforce

Presentation given by William Pettit, D.O. & Lora Cotton, D.O. on October 22, 2010 at the Oklahoma Primary Care Association Annual Conference.

The Rural Health Blog

A digest of events, trends, issues, ideas and journalism from and about rural America, from the Institute for Rural Journalism and Community Issues, located at the University of Kentucky.