Today’s NewsStand – June 7, 2019

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

Iowa News

Law enforcement challenged with limited mental health resources
Regional law enforcement administrators agree, a lack of area mental health care services is taxing on staff and budgets — and there doesn’t seem to be any relief in the immediate future as agencies continue to close and services disappear. When law enforcement officers are faced with a situation in which they encounter a person who may be acting out, the responding officers are challenged to make the determination if the act is criminal and if the individual in question is a threat to themselves or others. (Spencer Daily Reporter)

Mental health resource center opening in North Iowa
When it comes to mental illness people often don’t know where to turn for help for themselves or loved ones. That’s where a new community resource center comes in at MercyOne North Iowa Medical Center. It’s called the “Jan Again Center for Hope and Safety.” For many it will be the first stop on their road to recovery for themselves or loved ones. The center provides resources as well as inpatient care and outpatient support. 34 people can receive inpatient care at once, most of whom will have private rooms. (KIMT)

A day with University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics CEO Suresh Gunasekaran
Between driving growth, meeting clinical objectives and navigating complex payer dynamics, there don’t seem to be enough hours in the day for health care executives. Leaders succeed despite these challenges, each with their own habits, hacks, styles and methods — and Suresh Gunasekaran, the CEO of University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics and associate vice president for the University of Iowa Health Care, is no exception. Mr. Gunasekaran, a seasoned healthcare leader with more than 20 years of experience, joined the Iowa City-based academic medical center as CEO in November 2018. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

National News

Employers, hospitals and insurers butt heads over transparency proposals
This week, insurers and hospitals drew their own lines in the sand for Congress. Their comments on the Senate health committee’s draft legislation that aims to cut expenses across the system exposed the gulf between the financial interests of those industries and employer plans that pay for most Americans’ care. The American Hospital Association said hospitals generally can only provide accurate projections on “very discreet services and bundles of services,” like routine procedures and laboratory and diagnostic tests. (Modern Healthcare)

‘Mental health parity’ is Still an elusive goal in US insurance coverage
Many patients, like Bacon, struggle to get insurance coverage for their mental health treatment, even though two federal laws were designed to bring parity between mental and physical health care coverage. Recent studies and a legal case suggest serious disparities remain. Advocates for patients say insurance companies still interpret mental health claims more stringently than those for physical illness. (Iowa Public Radio)

Apple unveils app store for its watch; adds health features
Apple Inc. showed off a big upgrade to the software that powers its Watch, adding an App Store, new health-tracking features, and a series of new watch faces. It also upped the health-tracking capabilities of the smartwatch, bundling in a Cycle Tracking program for menstrual cycle tracking and Activity Trends to analyze your workout activity over time. (Bloomberg)