Here's What You May or May Not Have Missed This Week:
• The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services launched a new risk-based primary care initiative on Monday, which is expected to work hand in hand with data and technology to boost care, lower costs, and advance the health care industry toward becoming a learning health system. This Comprehensive Primary Care Plus, or CPC+, initiative will start in January 2017 and will include up to 5,000 practices and 20,000 physicians in about 20 regions. Practices will receive an up-front incentive payment that will either be kept or repaid by physicians based on quality metrics. The goal of this initiative is to move the health system from quantity of care to quality of care. Source
• Long-held suspicions that the Zika virus causes microcephaly in infants as well as major brain-related birth defects were confirmed this week by the Centers of Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). While the link was confirmed in the results of a New England Journal of Medicine study, formally establishing the connection does not mean all pregnant women infected with Zika will give birth to an infant with microcephaly. The confirmation, however, does represent a significant milestone in preventative care for Zika. In addition, some U.S. businesses, regardless of how far the virus actually spreads, are expected to encounter shortage of staff and employee reluctance to travel. Source
• A report released on Thursday shows that since the Affordable Care Act was enacted, more hospitals and health systems have started or expanded their own health insurance plans. By combining medical claims and clinical data, hospitals are able to build on their population health programs. Total enrollment in hospital-based plans in 2017 are expected to exceed the already 15.3 million people receiving their health coverage through a provider-owned health plan. Most of that growth is expected to come from Medicaid plans. Source
On The Front Lines:
Android took away a slim .02 percent of the mobile device pie this week. Such a small net change leaves room for speculation - will Android continue this trend into next week, or will Apple defend its dominance in mobile health care?
Each Friday, Signor Goat reports the latest from the week in health care alongside the front lines of the iOS-Android wars among pMD's physician charge capture users. Check back next Friday for your dose of our little medical corner of health care news.