Today’s NewsStand – March 12, 2019

Featuring hospital and health care headlines from the media and the Web.

Iowa News

First flu-related pediatric death of this flu season reported in Iowa
State public health officials have reported the first pediatric death in Iowa due to influenza. The influenza-associated death of a young Iowan occurred the first week of March and is the first of this flu season, according to a release from the Iowa Department of Public Health. While activity is not as high this season as it was during the 2017-18 season, public health officials are reporting an increase in many measures of activity in recent weeks. Public health officials also reported that half the 32 outbreaks in long-term care centers began in February. (Quad City Times)

Ames teen donates $10,000 to Blank Children’s Hospital
Blank Children’s Hospital got a big donation Monday, thanks to a 13-year-old girl. Grace McCunn was named one of U.S. Cellular’s 16 Under 16 “The Future of Good” recipients. Grace’s vision started when she was just 10 years old. She has held toy drives and hot chocolate and lemonade stands for the hospital. In 2017, she started her first “Amazing Grace Lemonade Race” to benefit the hospital. Grace has raised over $40,000 for the hospital, and that number got a lot bigger Monday. U.S. Cellular presented Grace with a $10,000 check for the hospital. Grace knows what that money can do because she was a patient at Blank when she was younger. (WHO TV)

Genesis announces regional model for cancer care
People undergoing cancer treatment will now have the opportunity to receive care closer to home through Genesis Health System. Genesis announced an alignment of three Quad-Cities medical oncologists to its cancer care in order to create a regional model. Oncologists Dr. Stewart Garneau, Dr. David Spector and Dr. Michael Porubcin will now provide medical care at Genesis Cancer Institute. “These physicians have spent nearly 90 years fighting cancer in our community, and now they’re becoming part of the Genesis Cancer Care Clinic, both here on our Davenport campus and at our medical center in Silvis,” said Genesis Executive Medical Officer Dr. Kurt Andersen. (Quad City Times)

National News

The latest: Hospital groups protest cuts in Trump budget
Hospital groups are objecting strongly to hundreds of billions of dollars in proposed Medicare and Medicaid payment cuts in President Donald Trump’s budget. American Hospital Association President Rick Pollack says the budget raises “serious concerns about how hospitals and health systems can ensure they serve as the safety net” for patients. The budget includes a range of hospital cuts over 10 years, including reduced reimbursements for uncompensated care and lower rates for outpatient departments. Medicare will spend about $650 billion this year. The administration says it’s targeting waste. (Washington Post)

Illinois hospitals say they’re not getting paid, question state’s outsourcing of Medicaid
Last year, Illinois’ governor at the time, Bruce Rauner, revamped and expanded a program for paying for care for millions of Illinois residents, many of them poor. Called Medicaid managed care, the system — in which health insurance companies and organizations administer Medicaid benefits for the state — held the promise of improving care for patients and saving the state money. One year later, the reality is far different, hospital officials say. Payments from the companies are routinely late, and sometimes don’t come at all, hospital officials say. (Chicago Tribune)

Trump proposes big cuts to health programs for poor, elderly and disabled
The Trump administration is proposing a sharp slowdown in Medicaid spending as part of a broad reduction in the government’s investment in health care, calling for the public insurance for the poor to morph from an entitlement program to state block grants even after a Republican Congress rejected the idea. The budget released by the White House on Monday also calls for a sizable reduction for Medicare, the federal insurance for older Americans that President Trump has consistently promised to protect. (Washington Post)