UC Access August 27, 2012
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UCAOA Meetings & Education Perspectives UConnect JUCM Industry News


The 2012 Economic Census is Coming Soon
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UCAOA was recently asked by the U.S. Census Bureau to help get the word out to our members, and audience-at-large, about the upcoming 2012 Economic Census.

Every five years, the Economic Census develops a comprehensive portrait of American business, from the national to the local level. In November and December, more than 4 million American businesses, including 460,000 healthcare and social assistance businesses, will receive 2012 Economic Census forms. Responses to the questionnaire are required by law (Title 13, U.S. Code), to be returned by Feb. 12, 2013. Click here for more information.

Meetings & Education

4 Days Left to Register at Regular Tuition Rates!
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Planning on attending the Fall Urgent Care Conference, held Oct. 25-27, in New Orleans? Save $100 by registering by this Sunday (9/30)! Courses are quickly filling up ... pick 1 of the following:
  • Clinical Masterclasses New Topics!
  • Urgent Care Marketing: from Research to ROI New Course
  • Comprehensive Clinic Startup Flagship Course
  • Advanced Financial Management — You're Profitable, Now What? New Course!
Whether you're new to the industry or a seasoned vet, the Fall Conference has something for everyone. Register today and get ready to "laissez le bons temps rouler" ... let the good times roll!


Billing & Collections: Outsourcing vs. In-house
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This month's Perspectives article, authored by Amy Tecosky, examines the benefits, challenges, key considerations, and cautions to both sides of handling billing and collections: outsourcing or in-house. Key takeaway: You need to be in control of your A/R no matter how it's being handled. Click here for the article!


Be a Resource to your Fellow Members!
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This month, new questions were posted in the following UConnect Discussions:
  • Billing & Coding
  • Certified Urgent Cares
  • Hospital-Affiliated Urgent Care Centers
  • Starting a New Urgent Care Center
  • Urgent Care Billers
  • Urgent Care Owners
  • Urgent Care Practice Managers
Whew! That's a lot of questions ... and some of them are still in need of an answer or opinion. Be a resource to your fellow members — post an answer to a Discussion question today!


Now Online in JUCM
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A new urgent care Images Challenge case is now available only on the JUCM website. Review the case of an 8-year-old girl with a blow to her right elbow and view the images taken. Consider what your diagnosis would be, then check the case resolution to see if you were right. Click here to take the Images Challenge.

The Journal of Urgent Care Medicine supports the evolution of urgent care medicine by creating content that addresses the clinical practice of urgent care medicine and the practice management challenges of keeping pace with an ever-changing healthcare marketplace. Are you an urgent care provider who would like to write for our journal? Send an email to editor@jucm.com for information on our author guidelines.

Industry News

US warns hospitals against Medicare scams, vows to prosecute
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There are "troubling indications" some hospitals may be using electronic records to defraud Medicare, the Obama administration said, promising to prosecute any doctors and hospitals found "gaming the system." More

Healthcare overhaul would cause longer ER lines for some immigrants
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Many poor and uninsured patients, a disproportionate number of whom are chronically ill as a result of not having regular medical attention, turn to the emergency room as a main healthcare provider. But the Affordable Care Act, President Barack Obama's healthcare overhaul, cuts aid hospitals use to pay for emergency care, a move that hits undocumented immigrants particularly hard. More

Urgent care fills niche between primary care and the ER
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One New England urgent care owner says his business efficiently treats injuries and illnesses which might otherwise result in a costly and lengthy emergency room visit. "We're trying to cultivate an environment that is warm, friendly, and service-oriented, yet also efficient and competent," owner Michael Gutman said. Gutman said many people go to emergency rooms because in their minds it's an emergency, but really only about 10 percent of those people have life-threatening conditions. "Ninety percent could be treated in another venue," he said. More

Boom in trauma centers can help save lives, but at what price?
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Disputes are becoming more common as hospitals across the country add trauma centers at a record pace, spurred in part by the lure of greater profits. More than 200 trauma centers have opened since 2009 in more than 20 states, and another 75 hospitals are seeking approvals, according to data collected by Kaiser Health News from state health agencies. States with the greatest number of new centers include Texas, Alabama, Arizona and California. The growth reverses more than a decade of closures in the 1990s and early 2000s. More

Feds want wider use of health records applet
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Millions more Americans soon will be able to download their personal health records by clicking on a simple "blue button" on the websites of their healthcare providers and insurance companies. The extent to which they do will be a gauge of consumer readiness for a Web application developed and first used by the federal government, an application that recently saw a milestone as its millionth user downloaded his health records using the technology. More

HCA seen losing revenue as Kaiser makes push for patients
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Kaiser Permanente, the California- based healthcare behemoth, is moving east. In a bid to shake up the East Coast market, Kaiser will compete for emergency-room patients with HCA Holdings, the largest for-profit hospital chain in the United States. Kaiser has completed four of five "multispecialty centers" in the Washington area, at a cost of about $2 billion. The facilities will test the market for patients that might otherwise go to emergency rooms to receive treatment for routine matters such as broken bones or ear infections. More

Study links longer office hours, lower healthcare costs
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After primary care doctors close their doors on weekends and evenings, patients turn to urgent care facilities, pharmacy "minute clinics," and emergency rooms to get the care they need. In doing so, they may also be contributing to the nation's skyrocketing health system costs. More

Survey: New ACOs acquiring data solutions rapidly
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A Black Book Rankings survey has revealed that data requirements will cost smaller accountable care organizations more than $1 million and large ACOs about $4 million before launching operations. More than 96 percent of ACO executives are actively acquiring ACO data solutions, including clinical decision support, revenue cycle management, health information exchange, electronic health record systems and data center security and storage solutions, according to the survey. More

Massive job losses expected under Medicare sequester
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Mandatory, across-the-board spending cuts to Medicare in 2013 will lead to large job losses at physician offices and throughout the rest of the healthcare system, according to an analysis on the impact of the scheduled federal budget sequester on the entitlement program. More


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