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Practice Management

 - fraud

A cardiology group in New Jersey has agreed to pay $3.6 million to settle charges that it billed Medicare for tests and procedures that federal authorities considered to be unnecessary medically.

 - Pile of Money

For African-American adults, socioeconomic status plays a major role in predicting cardiovascular risk, according to a population-based study. Women in the lowest socioeconomic group were twice as likely as those in the highest group to have a cardiovascular event such as a heart attack or stroke.

 - physicians

An analysis of two randomized, double-blind studies found that fasting triglyceride levels predicted outcomes and cardiovascular risk in patients with acute coronary syndrome (ACS) who were successfully treated with statins.

 - Hospital_room

Since the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services decreased payments for some cardiology services in 2010, there has been a significant increase in the number of myocardial perfusion imaging, echocardiograms and electrocardiograms performed at hospitals, according to an analysis of medical claims.

 - Quality_Measures

U.S. News and World Report has bundled heart bypass and two other types of operations with the conditions congestive heart failure and chronic obstructive pulmonary disease in a new rating called Best Hospitals for Common Care. The analysis also targets very low-volume hospitals with poor outcomes.


More Stories

CXO survey finds many physicians remain on sidelines

Healthcare systems increasingly embrace the idea of a chief experience officer (CXO) to pilot improvement efforts in their hospitals, but many physicians are not at the vanguard of change, survey results showed. Most respondents saw physicians as passive participants in the process.

Fewer adults in U.S. have elevated triglyceride levels

From 2001 to 2012, the percentage of U.S. adults with elevated triglyceride levels declined in both men and women, according to a report from the National Center for Health Statistics.

Recent advances lead to low mortality rates in patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy

Recent advances in treatments and management strategies have helped patients with hypertrophic cardiomyopathy live longer and experience few adverse events, according to a longitudinal cohort study.

Death rates for heart disease decrease among baby boomers

Between 2003 and 2013, the death rate for heart disease decreased 19 percent among men age 55 to 64 and decreased 24 percent for women in the same age category, according to a report released on May 6 from the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Still, in 2013, 55 percent of deaths among that age group were due to cancer or heart disease.

Nearly 17M gain health insurance coverage, thanks to ACA

Nearly 17 million people gained health insurance coverage between September 2013 and February 2015, according to a longitudinal survey. The increase coincides with the federal government mandate that most people are required to have insurance.

Science, art & strategy

Physicians say medicine is part science and part art. These days many need to squeeze strategy into the formula.

Tertiary heart centers associated with longer survival after cardiac arrest

After patients experienced an out-of-hospital cardiac arrest, they had significantly higher survival rates if they were admitted to tertiary heart centers compared with nontertiary hospitals, according to a Danish study.

Study evaluates optimal aspirin dose to treat heart disease

A study funded by the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute will examine the most effective dose of aspirin to use in patients with heart disease.

Iowa City Heart Center joins university system

The Iowa City Heart Center and the University of Iowa’s Heart and Vascular Center have partnered in a deal that makes Iowa City Heart Center’s cardiologists and employees members of the university system.

Poll finds ER volumes increasing, concerns mounting about preparedness

According to a poll, 75 percent of emergency room physicians said the number of their patients has increased since the requirement that most people have health insurance was instituted on Jan. 1, 2014.

Rx for physician burnout: High-quality supervisors

A good boss may make the difference between a resilient and satisfied physician and a burned-out and disgruntled one, according to a study published in the April issue of the Mayo Clinic Proceedings. The higher doctors scored their supervisors, the less likely they were to report burnout or dissatisfaction.

Hospital society names Pollack president and CEO

The American Hospital Association announced that Rick Pollack would be the organization’s president and chief executive officer starting in September.

Patients with in-hospital stroke face delays for diagnosis and treatment

Patients who had a stroke while hospitalized for another reason waited longer before being diagnosed and receiving treatment compared with those who had strokes before entering the hospital, according to an analysis of a Canadian registry.

NPs, PAs as effective as primary care docs in outpatient setting

Patients at high risk of cardiovascular events received equivalent care, whether from a primary care physician or a nonphysician, in a study that compared the effectiveness of outpatient care. But both groups showed room for improvement.

Get ready for SCAI, HRS

This is the month for subspecialty cardiology conferences in the U.S., with two major meetings setting anchors on each coast.

Individual insurance market increases 46%

More than 15 million people had medical coverage through the individual health insurance market as of the end of last year, a 46 percent increase from the previous year, according to data released April 29 by the Kaiser Family Foundation.

AHA launches guidelines initiative

The American Heart Association (AHA) announced a new initiative focused on making guidelines available to physicians sooner and updating them more often.

Sitagliptin noninferior to placebo in cardiovascular outcomes study

Merck announced that the primary endpoint of noninferiority for the composite cardiovascular endpoint had been met in a study that evaluated sitagliptin, an oral dipeptidyl peptidase-4 inhibitor.

AHA cancels conference in Baltimore

Due to unrest in Baltimore, the American Heart Association (AHA) canceled its Quality of Care and Outcomes Research Scientific Sessions, which was scheduled for April 29 to May 1 at the Hilton hotel in Baltimore.

Meta-analysis hints at survival benefit with PCSK9 inhibitors

A meta-analysis of 24 clinical trials on monoclonal antibody treatments for hypercholesterolemia pointed to significant reductions in death and MIs, a finding that likely will catch the eye of the FDA as it considers approval for these new drugs. The results were published online April 28 in the Annals of Internal Medicine.