The Right Tool Makes All the Difference

By OBHG Marketing on June 14th, 2017

Hospitals, just like other businesses, must operate efficiently and generate revenue to remain solvent and competitive. While their primary concern is providing quality care to their patients, it’s also unavoidable that administrators must monitor the bottom line. One would not be possible without the other.

As many hospitals create 24/7 Obstetric Emergency Departments (OBEDs) licensed under their existing Emergency Departments (EDs), a changing dynamic has emerged that directly impacts their revenue. The severity of a patient’s condition in the ED is calculated using what is called an “acuity scoring tool.” Accordingly, new OBEDS are using the ED’s tool to calculate acuity among obstetric patients, but the two are completely different.

An ED’s scoring tool is calibrated on the high end of the trauma scale. Obstetric patients rarely rise to the acuity level of, say, a gunshot wound. So using the same measurement tool for both the ED and the OBED is neither accurate nor recommended. Recent findings by Ob Hospitalist Group actually quantify the difference in terms of facility fee revenue.

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Never Feel Helpless Again

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 14th, 2017

It’s the most frustrating, gut-wrenching feeling. People are in urgent medical need, and you don’t have the clinical skills or certifications to help. But there is always something you can do. And it’s even better if you do it regularly and not just during times of crisis.

What can you do? Give blood. Give now. Give often.

That’s the theme for this year’s World Blood Donor Day, June 14.

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Babies Don’t Recognize Seasons. Neither Do We.

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 13th, 2017

It’s summertime. Lots of folks — OB/GYN physicians included — are sinking their toes into the sand and reading dog-eared paperbacks. Without question, they work hard and are enjoying well-deserved time off. But we all know that the proverbial stork doesn’t take vacations. So who’s delivering the babies?

Because there’s no “off-season” on the Labor and Delivery (L&D) unit, many hospitals experience challenges finding qualified healthcare professionals to provide coverage for their busy L&D departments during the summer, on holiday weekends, or during school breaks.

Ob Hospitalist Group (OBHG) programs are designed specifically to provide around-the-clock, 24/7 safety net coverage every day of the year so that every pregnant woman coming to the hospital at any time of the night or day can receive immediate care from a highly qualified OB/GYN clinician.

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CDC Monitoring Rare Polio-Like Virus

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 9th, 2017

In 2014, the medical world witnessed a curious uptick in cases of very young people, many of them babies or toddlers, suddenly becoming ill with neurological symptoms including muscle and limb weakness, breathing problems, difficulty swallowing, and, at worst, even paralysis.

What’s most scary is that the illness closely mimics polio, a scourge believed to be eliminated long ago in the wake of a life-saving vaccine. The illness certainly looks like polio, and lab techs soon found themselves receiving surprising requests to test saliva, feces, or spinal fluid for the polio virus. As it turned out, it is not polio.

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How a Dog and a Pigeon Can Help With Pregnancy Back Pain

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 7th, 2017

It’s a common complaint in pregnancy, especially during the third trimester. Back pain.

Up to 80% of pregnant women experience back pain, and it often is associated with irritation or pressure on the sciatic nerve. Sciatica itself is less a diagnosis than a symptom of more serious underlying issues related to the spine, such as a herniated disc, bone spur, or narrowing of the spine (spinal stenosis).

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OBHG Partner St. Mary’s Hospital Making Headlines

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 6th, 2017

We were delighted to see today’s article in The Daily Sentinel about St. Mary’s Hospital and Regional Medical Center in Grand Junction, Colorado. Kudos to our Team Lead Dr. Michael White, who explained some of the advantages of having highly qualified OB/GYN clinicians onsite around the clock to attend pregnant women presenting at any hour of the day or night.

“This is a unique model. There is always one of us physically present,” Dr. White told the newspaper. “Our response time is 30 seconds rather than the 15 minutes it might take a healthcare provider to get to the hospital from outside.”

The nursing staff also gives the OBHG team at St. Mary’s a thumb’s up.

“We have open communication, and the physicians treat everyone with respect,” said Shannon Stroeve, an RN in the maternity unit. “They keep the department moving with the most up-to-date evidence-based practices. And their bedside manner is truly exceptional.”

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CDC Now Recommends Zika Test Before Getting Pregnant

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 5th, 2017

Because testing for the Zika virus has become increasingly complicated, officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) now are recommending that women who are planning to get pregnant and recently traveled to a Zika-prone locale have their blood tested for Zika antibodies before they conceive. That way, a baseline reading could help better interpret Zika test results conducted during pregnancy.

The CDC also is recommending that pregnant women who may be at risk for infection be tested with two different Zika tests at various stages of their pregnancies. In addition, the agency is advising physicians to test women once per trimester using a different test that detects genetic material from the Zika virus.

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Be Alert to Safety Hazards

By Kristine Hartvigsen on June 1st, 2017

Out of this nettle, danger, we pluck this flower, safety.
—William Shakespeare

Without careful direction and planning, it can be easy to get lost in the weeds. Perhaps this is what Shakespeare meant when he wrote the line above. Imagine the weeds are the safety risks that surround you daily. How do you stay out of the rough?

June is National Safety Month, created to raise awareness about preventing accidents by managing common safety and health risks. Here are some tips for keeping safe.

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OBHG Shares Financial Risk for Evidence-Based Quality Performance

By Kristine Hartvigsen on May 22nd, 2017

Most of us recognize quality when we see it. But having good data increases our confidence in the quality of care we provide.

That’s why Ob Hospitalist Group (OBHG) is committed to providing robust and comprehensive data reporting on all elements of performance by our partner programs, including quality. OBHG collects, audits, and analyzes our partner hospital data on a quarterly basis to monitor performance and identify areas of opportunity.

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Grounded at 10,000 Feet

By Kristine Hartvigsen on May 19th, 2017

She much prefers the fresh air and sunlight to the indoors or the media spotlight. She doesn’t care who gets the credit, and she really doesn’t think her actions are that extraordinary. The humble Dr. Renee Lockey is refreshingly gracious, and her selfless deeds are, nonetheless, quite extraordinary.

The high-energy Team Lead at Memorial Hospital Central in Colorado Springs, CO, seems constantly in motion. When she’s off shift, she’s in the great outdoors mountain biking, snowboarding, camping, or road-tripping. Sun or snow, she commutes to and from work each day. It’s a lifestyle she truly loves.

 

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