Brief survey: Physician and staff attire in the urgent care center
Studies show that patients prefer their physicians to dress on the formal side — and definitely not in casual wear. The March issue of JUCM further analyzes this topic in the article entitled "Image Check: Impact of Employee Appearance on the Patient Experience." Author Alan Ayers, MBA, MAcc, explains how patients often infer quality on the basis of outward appearances. Take our brief survey to let us know what your doctors and staff are wearing in the urgent care.
| Additional Resource: Look back at previous UCAOA mini survey data by accessing Data Insights.
Meet the candidates running for election
Meet the candidates running for the UCAOA 2015 Board of Directors' Election. This year, there are four open director positions. If you're not aware of the ballot process, please read this informative page. E-voting will open on Monday, April 20 and conclude at 6pm CT on Wednesday, April 29. All UCAOA individual members and designated center member representatives are eligible to vote, regardless of whether you are attending the Spring Convention. Be sure your voice is heard by voting in this key election! Results of the election will be announced at the 2015 Spring Convention (in Chicago) on Thursday, April 30 during the closing keynote as well as in the April 30 UCAccess.
Letters of intent for urgent care transactions
The Ambulatory M&A Advisor
When getting ready to sell your urgent care center, letters of intent (LOIs) are important documents that should be examined carefully. LOIs can be binding or non-binding, depending upon the transaction and the parties involved. While there are some key factors that sellers should be aware of in an LOI, the most important one is balance.
| Additional Resource: Get best practices and tips on mergers and acquisitions during the Buy and Sell Panel Discussion held on Tuesday, April 28 from 3:15-4:15pm during the 2015 Spring Convention in Chicago.
Building and Expanding Your Service Portfolio
Join urgent care industry experts for the 2015 Spring Pre-Convention Course: Building and Expanding Your Service Portfolio to be held on Monday, April 27 from 8:30am to 4:40pm. As a participant, you'll discover how to boost revenue and optimize provider and staff productivity in your urgent care center through the addition of margin-enhancing ancillary services. Gain multiple perspectives and real-world advice from successful urgent care operators and business professionals during these sessions:
Making a Business Case for Expanding Services Beyond Walk-In Urgent Care
Adding Lab and Diagnostic Capabilities to the Urgent Care Center
Management Considerations for the Growing Urgent Care Center
Developing a Comprehensive Marketing Plan for Your Urgent Care Center
Integrating Ancillary Services Into the Urgent Care
Adding Physical Therapy to Your Urgent Care
Adding Dispensing to Your Urgent Care.
Click here to learn more or register now. Hotel accommodations are available in the UCAOA room block at the Swissotel, but you must act by Monday, April 13.
Multidrug-resistant shigellosis spreading in the US
Centers for Disease Control and Prevention
Shigella sonnei bacteria resistant to the antibiotic ciprofloxacin sickened 243 people in 32 states and Puerto Rico between May 2014 and February 2015. CDC and public health partners investigated several recent clusters of shigellosis in Massachusetts, California and Pennsylvania and found that nearly 90 percent of the cases tested were resistant to ciprofloxacin (Cipro), the first choice to treat shigellosis among adults in the U.S.
Cigarette smoke can make drug-resistant superbugs even stronger
The Huffington Post
A new study finds that cigarette smoke makes MRSA (Methicillin-resistant Staphylococcus aureus) stronger and more resistant to antibiotics. The idea for the study came about when Dr. Laura Crotty Alexander, a pulmonologist at the VA San Diego Healthcare System, noticed that many of the patients she treated who were smokers had MRSA infections. "Cigarette smokers are known to be more susceptible to infectious diseases," Crotty Alexander said. "Now we have evidence that cigarette smoke-induced resistance in MRSA may be an additional contributing factor."
Celebrate National UC Awareness Month
Celebrate National Urgent Care Awareness Month this May in your urgent care center! Let your community know about the importance and convenience of urgent care by hosting center events and staff activities all month but especially during the week of May 18-22, 2015. UCAOA has created resources and ideas to help you plan and celebrate; visit our web site for ideas. Be sure to share your center's activities with UCAOA via Facebook, Twitter (#UrgentCare) and LinkedIn.
| Additional Resource: Do you have tips for success to share with other urgent care professionals and clinicians? Let us know by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or email@example.com.
Urgent-care clinics offer a lower-cost alternative to the emergency room
Champlain Business Journal
The April issue of the Champlain Business Journal features an article on the urgent care industry in which Alan Ayers, MBA, MAcc, UCAOA spokesperson and board member, was quoted as saying "Urgent care is growing to better serve the ever-growing number of patients and their needs. Consumers increasingly desire more flexibility from their healthcare providers and they need convenient, affordable, high-quality treatment during the evenings and weekends — hours that work best for their schedule." Read more on page 2
Medicare Advantage plans nab 1.25 percent raise for 2016
The CMS said this week that the benchmark payment rates for Medicare Advantage health plans will go up by 1.25 percent on average in 2016, a significant departure from the slight decrease the agency proposed in February. The rate reversal was not a change in policy, but “rather (a change) in the actuaries' estimated growth” of per capita Medicare fee-for-service spending, said Sean Cavanaugh, director of the CMS' Center for Medicare. More than 17.3 million people are enrolled in a Medicare Advantage plan, according to March data from the CMS. That represents about one-third of all Medicare beneficiaries.
ICD-10: Physicians remain skeptical about Oct. 1 start
For years physicians' associations have successfully lobbied the federal government to delay the implementation of the ICD-10 diagnostic coding set. Now, with the ICD-10 implantation date looming on Oct. 1, a survey of more than 1,100 physicians, payers and vendors from the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange finds that the biggest obstacle to industry readiness is the belief that there will be another delay.
Millennials, Gen Xers leading change in healthcare over seniors, boomers
By Scott E. Rupp
Millennials and Gen Xers are a population segment harboring and bringing about advances in healthcare technology. They are also altering the delivery of healthcare and insurance, according to new research offered up by PNC Healthcare. The trends identified in a survey of more than 5,000 people show that millennials, specifically, are impacting healthcare systems as we know them. They seek more speed and more knowledge before they buy, and they want to know the costs and other points.
Missed last week's issue? See which articles your colleagues read most.