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Health Biz (443)

What one side sees as leveling the playing field in Michigan in preparation for major national changes in the health care landscape, the other side views as potentially preserving what it considers a monopoly.

As attention primarily focuses on the fate of the Affordable Care Act, insurers and care providers are steadily moving ahead with reforms of their own in how doctors and hospitals get paid.

Low-cost health plan names CEO

Written by | Sunday, 16 September 2012 18:15 |

Work to form a new, low-cost health plan designed for low-income individuals and small businesses in Michigan now has permanent leadership with the naming of a CEO.

In piloting a model to help small employers implement a workplace wellness program, the Small Business Association of Michigan first wants to develop a model that small employers can adopt to improve the health of their employees and ultimately reduce the cost of their health coverage.

GVSU, Right Place to co-manage GR SmartZone

Written by | Sunday, 16 September 2012 17:49 |

Grand Rapids’ SmartZone, formed a decade ago to spur development of new life sciences businesses, is about to get a new management structure.

Aspen Surgical sold for $400M

Written by | Tuesday, 04 September 2012 11:07 |

Privately held Aspen Surgical, a Caledonia, Mich.-based supplier of scalpels and other operating room equipment, has been sold to publicly traded Hill-Rom Holdings Inc. for $400 million in cash.

Porter Hills Retirement Communities & Services launched a new service that follows an emerging care model to help older adults remain in their homes as they age, rather than move to a retirement community, an assisted-living center or nursing home.

Perrigo’s growth aided by new products

Written by | Monday, 03 September 2012 21:20 |

Heavy investments made over the years in new product development drove Perrigo Co.’s record sales and earnings during the last year.

When Steve Marciniak worked as a retail pharmacist several years ago, he needed to clarify or ask questions about one out of every 10 prescriptions he received.

The use of health savings accounts picked up steam locally and nationally during the last two years as employers increasingly transitioned to high-deductible policies for employee health coverage to control costs.

The life sciences industry took its share of knocks over the past few years, but it also had a few bright spots.

A state insurance commissioner's order on so-called "most favored nation" clauses far from settles the issue in Michigan. The order prohibits the clauses in health insurers' contracts with hospitals unless reviewed and approved by his office.

Even if the federal Affordable Care Act does result in more than 30 million people gaining access to health coverage, experts say there's no guarantee they'll actually get to see a doctor or other care provider when they want.

GRAND RAPIDS — Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital's planned $51.3 million expansion and renovation project represents the largest health care construction project in West Michigan in some time.

Construction overall in the region, as with much of the nation, still remains soft following the recession, and health care projects the last few years have primarily involved small developments such as nursing homes and medical office buildings.

Deadlines near for doctors to go digital

Written by | Saturday, 21 July 2012 23:38 |

GRAND RAPIDS — Lost in the buzz generated earlier this month by the Supreme Court upholding the Patient Protection and Affordability Care Act was a related aspect of health care reform signed in 2009 that encourages hospitals and physicians getting reimbursed for Medicare and Medicaid to digitize their health records by 2015. 

Come 2015, the Health Information Technology for Economic and Clinical Health (Hitech) Act adds teeth to its requirements and begins to reduce Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements for those hospitals and physicians that have not switched from paper to electronic records.

WYOMING — A new chief medical officer signs on with Metro Health as health care providers adjust to perhaps the largest period of change ever seen. 

Dave Duffey, MD, joined the Wyoming, Mich.-based Metro Health in July from Spectrum Health, where he worked for nearly eight years, most recently as director of the pediatric hospitalist program and director of safety, quality and clinical innovation at the Spectrum Health Medical Group.

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