Today’s NewsStand — Sept. 9, 2020

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

Iowa news

Unitypoint pediatrician says it’s a crucial year to get your flu shot

With summer changing into fall, flu season is approaching. Now that more medical practices and pharmacies are offering the vaccine, UnityPoint pediatrician Claudia Vicetti is urging everyone to get their flu shots. “I think it is absolutely important that everybody gets their flu shot especially this year,” Dr. Vicetti said, “when we already have people falling very ill with COVID-19.” Given that this will be the first time dealing with the flu and COVID-19, Dr. Vicetti listed reasons why it is crucial to get the flu vaccine. (KWWL)

Therapy dogs return to work at UnityPoint Health-St. Luke’s

After taking some time off due to COVID-19, some furry faces are ready to get back to work. “It brightens my whole day,” said John Street, pet therapy volunteer. After being gone since February, therapy dogs and their volunteer owners finally got to make their rounds once again. “I really truly was surprised when we got the call that we were welcomed back in the hospital. I know my dog has missed it,” said Street. Street said although it takes training to have your dog certified, it’s well worth it in the end. (KTIV)

Iowa looks to $100M in federal aid to continue coronavirus testing

A $100 million infusion of federal funds will maintain Iowa’s COVID-19 testing capacity through the coming months, Gov. Kim Reynolds and her staff say. The state’s continued ability to provide testing for Iowans will be critical as new COVID-19 cases have been spiking and the annual flu season is fast approaching. Using federal funds, Iowa on April 15 entered into a $26 million contract with Nomi Health of Utah to boost the state’s testing capacity. While the contract covers support for a full year, the original terms called for Nomi to produce 540,000 COVID-19 tests in the contract’s first five months. (The Gazette)

Nationals news

We should push for more progress in telehealth

Over the last few months, millions of Americans have used telehealth services — the remote delivery of care and health monitoring using digital telecommunications tools — to get health care. Federal and state policymakers have made it easier to access telehealth during the pandemic to keep people home and safe but there is no reason to slow the momentum after so much progress has been made. (The Hill)

The $1 trillion quest to bring hospital care to your home

Doctor Bruce Leff is a hospital skeptic. A practicing geriatrician who’s been on the faculty at the Johns Hopkins University School of Medicine for 25 years, Leff argues that hospitals don’t have their priorities straight. (Fast Company)

Health IT one year from today: 8 CIO predictions

The pandemic has spurred a major shift in the importance of IT to healthcare organizations and their priorities. Here, eight hospital and health system CIOs discuss what will be different about health IT one year from today and what will be the same. (Becker’s Hospital Review)