Pediatric Asthma Emergency Room Visits

Asthma is a frequent childhood illness. Managing asthma can be difficult as it requires reducing environmental allergens (pollutants) and mitigating the body’s response to allergens through pharmaceuticals such as bronchodilators, inhaled or oral corticosteroids, and desensitization. When these efforts fail, an asthma attack occurs. If the attack escalates to asthmaticus status, it is a pediatric...

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Patient Ambulatory Care Sensitive Care Condition Admissions by Insurance Type

It is often hypothesized that Medicaid patients have difficulty securing appointments with physicians for preventative care and treatment of minor illnesses. VHHA has tested this hypothesis. Our approach to evaluating that notion is to measure whether the rate of hospital admissions for ambulatory care sensitive conditions (ACSC) is greater among Medicaid patients than commercially insured...

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Principal Diagnoses of Patients Discharged to Home Health

Having vulnerable patients receive home health services is one approach to reducing hospital readmissions. Home health services provide community-based support to assist patients and their families in managing health care needs. Depending on the patient, that can include daily maintenance activities such as bathing, dressing wounds, or coordinating care. Home health providers – they can...

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The Medicaid Readmission Challenge

The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) last week released its Hospital Guide to Reducing Medicaid Readmissions publication that functions as a federal toolkit to assist hospital teams in designing and delivering transitional care to better serve the adult Medicaid population. Adult Medicaid recipients tend to be 65 and older, have multiple chronic diseases,...

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Psychosis Diagnoses Trends

The Research Corner item in the July 29 edition of FYI Weekly focused on mental health disorders with a primary diagnosis-related group (DRG) associated with alcohol, drug abuse, or mental health issues. The key takeaways: 66,785 (or 7.8 percent of) 856,733 hospital discharges were mental health related, and among the 11 DRGs evaluated, psychosis accounted...

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Mental Health Disorder Diagnoses

Throughout Virginia and the nation, mental health remains a high priority due to its impact on the country and its citizens. This is manifested in many ways – from health care impacts to disturbing societal events and their aftermath. Many of the shocking, high-profile violent episodes that have left communities shaken are subsequently attributed to...

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Identifying Opioid Prescribing Norms

Concerns about opioid addiction are well known. As health systems search for the median amount of doctors prescribing opioids, whether the pattern is frequent or infrequent, there is a need to consider what is the norm. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) have an app for that. The Medicare Part D Opioid Drug...

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Recent Prescription Drug Spending Trends

Spending on prescription drugs has risen, and is projected to continue to rise more rapidly than overall health care spending. According to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services1, several factors contributing to THE increase from 2010-2014 can be roughly allocated in these proportions: 10 percent due to population growth; 30 percent due to...

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