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Health Care Week in Review: Candida Auris, 90-day EHR Reporting Period, Cancer Drugs Causing Heart Damage, Anthem ACA Woes

Image: Johnson et al., New England Journal of Medicine, 2016

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

• The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has identified a drug-resistant fungus in the U.S. The infection, Candida Auris, was first seen in Japan in 2009. Four of the seven U.S. cases were fatal, however, it's not clear that the fungus caused their deaths because these patients were hospitalized with cancer-damaged immune systems or other serious conditions.  The main concern is that the fungus is being spread within hospital facilities. The CDC reminds health care facilities to seriously heed infection-control measures. Read More

• Health care providers participating in the Meaningful Use EHR Incentive Program now have a 90-day EHR reporting period in 2016 and 2017, according to The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). The EHR reporting period will be any continuous 90-day period between January 1st and December 31st in calendar year 2016 and 2017. This will help increase flexibility, lower the reporting burden for providers, and focus on health information exchange and using technology to support patient care. Read More

• Potentially life-saving cancer drugs can cause heart damage in rare cases. These powerful drugs enlist the immune system to help fight cancer but this rare side effect has prompted some hospitals to carry out additional cardiac testing for patients taking these drugs. Early detection can help prevent permanent heart damage. Read More

• The Affordable Care Act (ACA) has seen its share of insurers pulling back and now it might have to add Anthem to the list. Anthem CEO, Joseph Swedish, said on Wednesday that both membership and profit margins have been lower than expected for its ACA-compliant individual products. Anthem will look to 2017 to assess ACA performance and strategy for the long-term. Read More

Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news.
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