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This Week in Health Care: Preparing for MIPS, Google's New Symptom Search, Dangers of Stem Cell Tourism

Here's The Latest in Health Care:

• The Department of Health and Human Services earlier this week announced that it will spend approximately $100 million over the course of five years to provide training and education to help individual and small group practices prepare for the new Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS). MIPS falls under the newly proposed payment program which will change how Medicare pays physicians and other clinicians. The funds will help provide hands-on training tailored to small practices, more specifically for those in under-resourced and underserved areas in the U.S.  Source

• Google, Harvard Medical School and the Mayo Clinic have partnered together to take the confusion out of symptom searching. Symptom search, which is available in Google iOS and Android apps, as well as search results on mobile devices, is only currently available in the U.S. and only in English. Veronica Pinchin, a product manager on Google's search team, cautions users that the search "is intended for informational purposes only, and you should always consult a doctor for medical advice."  Source

• A growing number of unregulated clinics across the globe claim they can treat, even cure, diseases such as muscular dystrophy, Alzheimer's, Parkinson's etc by injecting patients with stem cells. In theory, these stem cells could repair damage from an illness or injury. It is estimated that the "stem cell tourism" industry is worth hundreds of millions of dollars, drawing in tens of thousands of patients around the world. While researchers say stem cells hold enormous promise, they caution against the dangers resulting from rapidly-dividing stem cells that can form tumors and mutations.  Source


On The Front Lines:

This week, Android took away 0.02 percent of the mobile device pie among our health care providers. Is Apple on a slow and steady decline or will we expect a comeback in the upcoming weeks?


iOS: 90.25%
Android: 9.75%

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.
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