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2017 Healthcare Year in Review
2017 Healthcare Year in Review

If the 2017 healthcare environment could be summed up in one word, it would be "uncertainty."

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The Promise of Blockchain
The Promise of Blockchain

Change Healthcare's Aaron Symanski says there are a lot of questions around blockchain ... and that's a good thing because it means there are many uses for the transformational technology in healthcare.

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New CMS system changes focus from punitive to education
New CMS system changes focus from punitive to education

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) unveiled a new protocol this year that shifts the focus from punitive to educational in terms of proper coding of Medicare claims.

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Billing Errors that Can Cost Thousands
Billing Errors that Can Cost Thousands

Last year, a medical practice lost over $30,000 in revenue from skipping a basic step in the billing process. "These are billing 101 mistakes," says Sae Evans, CPA, with Warren Averett.

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ICD-10 Codes Will Affect Physician's Scores
ICD-10 Codes Will Affect Physician's Scores

The annual update in ICD-10 diagnostic coding went into effect this month with 363 new codes, 142 deleted codes, and 250 codes with revised definitions.

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Proposed Changes to MIPS Are Tame this Year
Proposed Changes to MIPS Are Tame this Year

"The new changes in the 2018 reporting period are actually not terribly drastic," says Joni Wyatt, MHA, MHIA, CPHIMS, FHIMSS, with Kassouf & Co about the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).

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Patient Access to Medical Records - A Refresher

Healthcare providers are constantly receiving requests for copies of patient medical records. Some requests come by way of the patient exercising his/her right to access his/her medical records, some come by way of patient authorization, and some come by way of another method (e.g., request from another treating provider).

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Frustrated by Congress, Trump signs order to weaken Obamacare

WASHINGTON (Reuters) - President Donald Trump on Thursday signed an order to make it easier for Americans to buy bare-bones health insurance plans, using his presidential powers to undermine Obamacare after fellow Republicans in Congress failed to repeal the 2010 law.

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PHYSICIAN COMPENSATION: Getting Your Legal Structure Right With Tax Reform
PHYSICIAN COMPENSATION: Getting Your Legal Structure Right With Tax Reform
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First Do No Harm: National Safety Efforts Paying Off
First Do No Harm: National Safety Efforts Paying Off

While the work isn't finished, the latest data shows efforts to improve inpatient safety by implementing best practices are really paying off.

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St Vincent's Opens Hospital in Chilton County
St Vincent's Opens Hospital in Chilton County

For three years, Chilton County has been without a hospital, which at times, has been challenging for the community. For instance, last year, when a school bus crashed in Clanton, the children had to be driven 30 miles away to Shelby Baptist Medical Center in Alabaster. Fortunately, none of the injuries were life-threatening.

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2017: A Year of Uncertainty ... and Opportunity

PwC's Health Research Institute looks at areas of interest to the industry in 2017 starting with the looming questions surrounding the Affordable Care Act.

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Through the Looking Glass/Medicare Under a New Trump Administration
Through the Looking Glass/Medicare Under a New Trump Administration

What will be next for health care in the United States? While there have been some successes associated with the Affordable Care Act ("ACA") such as health insurance coverage available for some Americans that had previously not had such access and increased emphasis on core quality standards such as avoidance of hospital acquired infections1, there are more critics than proponents.

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New Software Platform Potentially Generates More Revenue
New Software Platform Potentially Generates More Revenue

ARCpoint Health has unveiled a new software tool to enable primary care physicians to garner greater reimbursements and better manage labs.

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Upheaval in Alabama's Health Exchange
Upheaval in Alabama's Health Exchange

Insurers have jumped ship on the health insurance marketplace in Alabama. Started in 2014 under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), the exchange has offered options by insurance carriers to all individuals and small businesses with 50 or fewer employees.

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2016 Health Care Year in Review
2016 Health Care Year in Review

Since I began writing this year-end review in 2013, there have been some common themes - a shift to pay for quality and away from fee-for-service, much of which has been brought about by the Affordable Care Act (ACA): efforts to combat fraud and abuse in the health care system; provider consolidation; Alabama Medicaid's ongoing struggle to cover the cost of health care for our most needy citizens; and increased regulations for the health care industry.

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Making the Grade
Making the Grade

Long before the concept of 'patient engagement' became a rallying cry for the healthcare industry, Healthgrades was at work connecting the public to relevant information on providers and facilities in an effort to help patients make more informed decisions about care.

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Where did all the "S" Corporations come from?

You just formed your medical practice in Alabama, and you either chose a professional corporation (a "PC") or an LLC. If you went with a PC, you get to choose between an "S" corporation ("S corp") or a "C" corporation ("C corp") for federal and state tax purposes, both named after the Internal Revenue Code (the "Code") Subchapter that governs their taxation.

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Covered Entities Being Bullied Over Fees for Medical Record Requests
Covered Entities Being Bullied Over Fees for Medical Record Requests

HIPAA and the fees for reproducing an individual's medical records may seem like old news but as recently as May 23rd, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) added clarification on this very topic.

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Healthcare Insurance Rate Hikes
Healthcare Insurance Rate Hikes

The Medical Association of the State of Alabama's (MASA) health insurance for members will rise 15 percent next year. "We didn't like 15 percent," says Mark Jackson, executive director. "But don't get me wrong, we felt fortunate that we were able to keep it at 15 percent."

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Are Your Management Contracts Still OK?

On August 22, 2016, the Internal Revenue Service released Revenue Procedure 2016-44, which updates conditions under which a management contract will not result in private business use (or "bad use") of property financed with tax-exempt bonds. Compliance with the new safe harbor may be essential to the continued tax-exempt status of related bond issues. Revenue Procedure 2016-44 supersedes its well-known predecessor, Revenue Procedure 97-13.

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Urology Centers Hires Healthcare Reform Manager
Urology Centers Hires Healthcare Reform Manager

The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) means that big changes are coming to healthcare reimbursement; changes that will result in some physicians earning less money and others more.

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MACRA Advances
MACRA Advances

Last year President Obama signed into law the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). MACRA implemented significant changes in how Medicare reimburses doctors.

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Understanding the Merit Based Incentive Payment System
Understanding the Merit Based Incentive Payment System

Starting in 2019, Medicare's push toward value-based reimbursements will be within reach of the finish line. "It can sound terrifying," says Joni Wyatt, MHA, MHIA, CPHIMS, FHIMSS with Kassouf & Co. "But most practices have already done the work."

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Innovative Technology at Brookwood Baptist Health
Innovative Technology at Brookwood Baptist Health

Brookwood Baptist Health's (BBH) use of technology has earned it recognition as one of the "Most Wired" hospitals in the U.S. according to Hospitals & Health Network's Most Wired® survey.

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