Today’s NewsStand – September 25, 2019

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

Iowa News

Mental, physical health and access to services are top health concerns for Quad City residents
Mental health; nutrition, physical activity and weight; and access to health services were the top issues facing the health of Quad City residents, according to a report released last week. Those main issues, identified in the counties’ 2019 Community Health Improvement Plan, were developed through workshops with community stakeholders, including Transitions Mental Health, Genesis Health System and UnityPoint Health-Trinity, the Scott County Health Department and Rock Island County Health Department. (Quad-City Times)

Iowa children’s hospital launches tablet-based remote monitoring program
University of Iowa Stead Family Children’s Hospital in Iowa City tapped Charlottesville, Va.-based Locus Health to provide patients and their families with software to monitor vital health information from home. Families of high-risk shunt-dependent pediatric cardiology patients receive a tablet loaded with the app prior to leaving the hospital, replacing physical binders full of information and health tracking forms. Once home, the families use the platform to transmit real-time data, including weight, heart rate and oxygen levels, directly to providers. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

MercyOne Waterloo Foundation receives grant for new technology in birth center
MercyOne Waterloo Foundation has received a $25,000 grant from Variety- the Children’s Charity. This money will go towards upgrades at MercyOne’s Waterloo Birth Center. They will help with funding new ventilators that will be used in the birth center’s Integrated Neonative Intensive Care (INIC) program. (KWWL)

National News

CMS finalizes rule detailing October 1 cuts to Medicaid DSH payments
CMS has issued a final rule detailing how $4 billion in cuts to Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital payments will be implemented beginning Oct. 1. Under the Medicaid DSH program, hospitals that serve a large number of Medicaid and uninsured patients receive payments to help cover the costs of caring for them. Assuming that uncompensated care costs would decline as the number of insured people increased under the health law, the ACA lowered Medicaid payments to hospitals that serve a disproportionate share of low-income patients. (Becker’s Hospital Review)

Now-disbanded Medicaid work requirement costs New Hampshire $187,000
New Hampshire state officials spent over $187,000 this summer attempting to get low-income residents into compliance with the now-defunct Medicaid work requirement, according to calculations released this month. In a Sept. 3 letter to state lawmakers, Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner Jeffrey Meyers said that the bulk of that spending – $108,723 – went to an outside agency to call members of the program and get them into compliance. (Concord Monitor)

Amazon launches Amazon Care, a virtual medical clinic for employees
Amazon has launched a virtual health clinic with in-home follow-ups for employees in Seattle, dubbed Amazon Care. The company announced the program on a web site,, that is currently publicly accessible, but did not formally announce the news outside the company. The clinic offers a combination of telemedicine and in-person services. Its virtual offering includes an “in-app video visit with a doctor, nurse practitioner, or registered nurse for advice, answers, answers, diagnosis, treatment or referrals,” according to the web site. (CNBC)