Modern Healthcare - - LATE NEWS -

North­west­ern Me­mo­rial Health­Care re­ported stronger rev­enue for its sec­ond quar­ter, thanks pri­mar­ily to its ac­qui­si­tion of a large physi­cian prac­tice group. Helped along by an in­flux of $395.4 mil­lion in rev­enue from the physi­cian group, the Chicago-based sys­tem booked a con­sol­i­dated $1.2 bil­lion in rev­enue for the six-month pe­riod ended Feb. 28, 2014. The boost in over­all rev­enue rep­re­sents a 42% in­crease from the $849.8 mil­lion posted for the year-ago pe­riod. That im­prove­ment was a di­rect re­sult of the in­te­gra­tion of the 900-plus physi­cian group, re­named North­west­ern Med­i­cal Group, par­tic­u­larly be­cause rev­enue from the sys­tem’s other op­er­a­tions re­mained rel­a­tively flat.

State Med­i­caid agencies could be putting ben­e­fi­cia­ries’ per­sonal in­for­ma­tion at risk by off­shoring ad­min­is­tra­tive func­tions, ac­cord­ing to a re­port from HHS’ Of­fice of the In­spec­tor Gen­eral. The re­port, sent April 11 to CMS Ad­min­is­tra­tor Mar­i­lyn Taven­ner and Leon Ro­driguez, di­rec­tor of HHS’ Of­fice for Civil Rights, an­a­lyzed the prac­tices of 56 Med­i­caid agencies. It found that 11 agencies al­low out­sourced off­shore ad­min­is­tra­tive func­tions, while four agencies have spe­cific bans against it. The re­main­ing 41 Med­i­caid agencies have no rules against off­shore out­sourc­ing, but also do not send any work to other coun­tries. Among the 11 agencies that al­low out­sourc­ing, seven are plan­ning to not al­low per­sonal health in­for­ma­tion off­shore, the re­port noted.

Lit­tle progress has been made to­ward re­duc­ing food poi­son­ing in the U. S., ac­cord­ing to new federal data. Ill­nesses from sal­mo­nella, the most com­mon cause of food­borne sick­ness, were down 9% in 2013 com­pared with the aver­age from 2010-2012, ac­cord­ing to find­ings pub­lished in the Cen­ters for Dis­ease Con­trol and Preven­tion’s Mor­bid­ity and Mor­tal­ity Weekly Re­port. Still, more than 2,000 people were hos­pi­tal­ized for sal­mo­nella poi­son­ing in 2013 and 27 people died from it.

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