SETMA

Change is not surprising in human experience. We are humorously told that as Adam and Eve left the Garden of Eden, Adam said, “Well, Eve, things are changing!” And it has been that way ever since. In a meeting Jan. 26, 2015, Health and Human Services Secretary Sylvia M. Burwell announced measurable goals and a timeline to move the Medicare program, and the health care system at large, toward paying providers based on the quality, rather than the quantity of care they give patients.

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SETMA, other healthcare providers and the public received an announcement Jan. 21 from the AMA about the new ADA, AMA, CDC and Ad Council Pre-diabetes Public Awareness Campaign. The announcement was made by Karen Kmetik, PhD, Group Vice President, Health Outcomes of the American Medical Association.

Dr. Kmetik’s stated in the announcement:

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SETMA’s soon-to-be 21 years of healthcare delivery can logically be seen in three seven-year segments:

• 1995-2002 – marked by the development of a team approach to healthcare, electronic medical records, which morphed into electronic medical management, population health, and the foundation of analytics and data management with 1999-sentinel events that continue to define our care delivery.

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In the first week of January, as we reviewed the details of what we expected in December 2014 to accomplish in 2015, we were reminded of other years in which we had specific, stated goals. 

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SETMA’s team approach to inpatient care is a success, as demonstrated by the facts that our lengths of stay, quality metrics, cost of care and patient satisfaction are excellent. And this team approach is one of the reasons why the indigent, uninsured and unassigned patients for whom we care receive the same quality of care as our private patients. I would offer the following observations about SETMA’s team.

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 James  Holly, M.D.

Oct. 1, 2015, the entire healthcare industry is changing its coding to the “new” system, ICD-10, which is used to document diagnoses in medical records and is used for billing insurance companies such as Medicare and Medicaid for the services patients receive.

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Recently, the Opinion page of the New York Times included a brief description of the problem facing primary care physicians who are confronted by a patient who wants a narcotic pain medication. When I started practicing medicine over 40 years ago, doctors ordered urine drug screens in order to discover patients who were taking street drugs such as marijuana, heroin, etc. Today, urine drug screens are being recommended and/or required to discover patients who are NOT taking their prescription pain medication and other drugs that have a high potential for abuse.

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Cutting the ribbon for the grand opening of the Altus Emergency Center

Thursday, Jan. 9, local residents and officials cut the ribbon on the new Altus Emergency Center in Lumberton.

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Lumberton is getting a state-of-the-art emergency room with a touch of small-town care.

According to an Altus press release, the company will break ground Sept. 25 and begin building the 10,000 square-foot complex, which will include a trauma room, eight treatment rooms, lab services, a triage unit, radiology suite, pharmacy and year-round emergency room services.

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