Healthcare Update Satellite — 12-13-2013


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Vacancy rate for physicians at hospitals nearly doubles in four years and vacancy rate for nurses at hospitals triples in four years. NPs and PAs also in short supply.
Even though I’m no Obamacare fan, I don’t think the provider shortage can be blamed on the new healthcare law as the Forbes article insinuates.
But if the shortage is because fewer people want to go into the medical field, there are going to be large problems in the future. It takes 11 years of secondary education to train a doctor. That’s a long time to wait if there isn’t enough medical care for all of the newly “insured” patients.

Cook County jury hits University of Chicago Hospital and two doctors with $15.5 million judgment after patient died during childbirth from undiagnosed placenta accreta.

Sticking up for Obamacare twice in a week? I must be falling ill. Kentucky family physician Stephen Kiteck puts ad in paper stating that he is closing his practice “due to the policies of Obamacare.
When he finally granted an interview, Dr. Kiteck said that a requirement to use electronic medical records were the reason he was retiring. The EMR requirement wasn’t part of Obamacare.
There’s still too damn much regulation in medicine anyway, though.

Epic fail? How much does the Epic electronic medical record system suck? Wake Forest Baptist Medical Center reportedly lost $16.8 million in direct expenses and another $53.7 million in indirect expenses just implementing the Epic system.

An IDC study shows that most docs are dissatisfied with EHRs and that the two most frequent reasons for EHR dissatisfaction involved lost productivity – spending more time on documentation (85 percent) and seeing fewer patients (66 percent).

Autisim symptoms improve with … hot tubs and intestinal parasites?

Seats of horror … infant high chairs responsible for an average of more than one emergency department visit every hour of every day. And the number of visits has increased in the past 10 years. Even worse: Regular chairs which account for four times as many ED visits each year.
How long it will be until the Joint Commission takes definitive actions and bans chairs in hospitals because they are a threat to patient safety? It’s for the children!

President Obama allowed insurers to temporarily keep insurance plans that don’t meet minimum coverage requirements under Obamacare. Aetna says “no way” and refuses to reinstate canceled policies.

Got bad vision? There’s an app for that. iPhone app helps users read letters 1.6 times smaller than they could before they started using the app. Amazing.

Saline, Michigan emergency department converts to an urgent care center effective next spring with about 45 people losing their jobs. In comments section, area residents are upset because the next closest emergency department 9 miles away is overcrowded and wait times are long.


  1. A shortage of people willing to go into medical fields?

    I just received the annual newsletter for the medical school in the state which I currently practice. (One I did not attend and a state which most people would be surprised even had a medical school.)

    For the class that entered this August, there were 10 applicants (who met the minimum standards) for every one slot. Even this number likely includes a large amount of self-(un)selection. The numbers for nursing, dentistry, pharmacy, etc. were not quite as dramatic, but still there were at the very least three times more qualified applicants than slots.

    So I have seen very little evidence that there is a lack of interest in the health professions.

  2. Dr. Ismail is one of the kindest doctors around. I was hospitalized with twins who were very medically “frustrating.” I was taken for a c-section that was cancelled last min. because my monitoring strip improved drastically. He was still concerned about the babies but didn’t want to take them so early if he didn’t have to. He sat in the nurses station for over 16 hours straight watching my monitoring strip (it was over night) to make sure all three of us were fine. At the first sign of distress I was in that delivery room having my babies. I will be forever thankful to him for saving my babies. Now, I have great sympathy for the man and children who lost their wife and mother. I wasn’t in the courtroom or in the delivery room and can’t have an opinion on whether the judgement was correct or not. But, I can say that he is a wonderful doctor and sometimes horrible things happen without anybody to blame

  3. It is very rare to experience accreta if there has not been previous surgery on the uterus. Why was the first cesarean done? Stories like this illustrates one of the problems with med-mal cases: The blame sticks to the last man on the ball, while the other participants in the chain of events that led to the disaster goes free.

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