Today’s NewsStand — Nov. 26, 2019

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

Iowa News            

Hospital association to award 60 health care education scholarships
The Iowa Hospital Association, through subsidiary the Iowa Hospital Education and Research Foundation, will award 60 health care scholarships of up to $7,000 ($3,500 per year for up to two years) and $1,000 specific to emergency medical technology/technician certification programs. The goal of IHERF’s scholarship program is to fill Iowa health care positions that have a notable number of openings by offering financial support for health care education or training. (Clinton Herald)

Iowa county saves taxpayers over $500,000 by providing inmates with mental health treatment
A Scott County program taking people at the Scott County jail with mental illnesses out of jail and into treatment has saved taxpayers more than half a million dollars since its inception. The Scott County Mental Health Court had just begun operating its diversion program years ago, pooling resources across the county to help reduce recidivism, alleviate the overcrowding of the county jail with mental health patients, and reduce costs. (Fox40)

MercyOne New Hampton to pause OB services
MecyOne New Hampton has announced their plans to put the hospital’s OB services on hold – effective July 1st, 2020. This is mainly because, many of the physicians at MercyOne have decided to no longer provide OB services. The hospital only delivers 30% of Chickasaw babies – which is only around 50-60 babies a year. This change in OB services will not affect current patients or emergency care opportunities. (KCHA)

National News

Hundreds of hospitals sue HHS over payment cuts
Hundreds of hospitals are suing HHS over issues related to reimbursement. In one lawsuit filed Tuesday, more than 600 hospitals are alleging the agency has unlawfully continued what were supposed to be temporary rate reductions for inpatient stays that should have stopped in 2017. The continued cuts have resulted in a loss of $840 million per year across the country’s hospitals. The plaintiffs, which include Ascension and Mayo Clinic hospitals, allege they lost about $124 million per year during federal fiscal years 2018 and 2019. (Healthcare Dive)

Uncompensated care up significantly at US hospitals, led by Southeast
Despite the Affordable Care Act taking hold in recent years, the average amount of uncompensated care reported by hospitals rose to $12.8 million last year, up nearly $1.7 million from 2015, according to a new survey from Definitive Healthcare. Hospitals in the Southeast, where the expansion of Medicaid eligibility has mostly been rejected, saw the greatest growth in uncompensated care between 2015 and 2018. (Healthcare Dive)

We need to update health care IT infrastructure for the rural and underserved
Technology holds massive potential to revolutionize the way healthcare and medicine is delivered to patients on a global scale. While the challenges of healthcare remain an obstacle, telehealth gives us a glimpse into the next-generation world of wellness, allowing for new avenues of value delivery on all sides. This is exactly why the total digital health market is projected to reach over $115 billion in 2023 and the top-funded digital health categories—with analytics and telemedicine representing the top two—garnered upwards of $896 million in the first half of 2019 alone. (Fierce Healthcare)