On Thursday, June 25, 2015, the U.S. Supreme Court voted 6-3 in the highly anticipated King v. Burwell decision.
According to Healthcare Finance News, the ruling means that “more than six million residents in the 34 states with federal exchanges can keep their tax subsidies for healthcare insurance under the Affordable Care Act.”
The article quotes several of the justices as well as a statement made by a “relieved” American Medical Association, who wrote in that statement: “With this case now behind us, we hope our country can move forward and continue strengthening our nation’s health care system.”
Click here for more from Healthcare Finance News on this decision.
With the healthcare industry facing an ever-increasing nurse shortage, demand for Travel Nurses is at a 20-year high. With news of the shortage and the role the Travel Nursing industry plays in keeping staffing ratios safe on the frontlines, it’s very important to remember another crucial resource that is waiting in the wings: The nurses of tomorrow!
While Medical Solutions already actively supports continuing education for RNs with an excellent online RN to BSN Academy partnership with Nebraska Methodist College, we are also striving to provide important resources for undergrads, nursing students, and even those who are simply curious about the field of nursing and the option of Travel Nursing.
That’s why we’ve created youniversity.medicalsolutions.com — a website devoted to providing important industry information and making Travel Nursing accessible to all of the wonderful nurses of tomorrow. We know that it is these, often younger, student nurses who will be making a huge, positive impact in the healthcare industry throughout the coming years.
Armed with the proper resources and information, we believe these are the very individuals who will help facilities nationwide keep their units staffed properly in order to provide the best possible patient care.
Here are some resources available at youniversity.medicalsolutions.com that can help nursing students prepare for fulfilling Travel Nursing career:
- A student nurse-focused blog
- Information about the field of Travel Nursing
- Guidance on becoming a Travel Nurse
- Student nurse scholarship opportunities
- Info about Medical Solutions’ history, quality, and commitment to social responsibilities
If you know of any nursing students, faculty, or curious individuals who might benefit from this information, please pass it along.
Also, we would love to hear any suggestions you have from a hospital perspective about how we can make youniversity.medicalsolutions.com the best possible resource for the nurses of tomorrow — and in the long-run, provide the best possible staffing solutions for facilities like yours. Please share any feedback you have in the comments!
Modern Healthcare is inviting you to cast your vote for the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare for 2015.
The 300 nominees come from state and national government positions and entities (including the POTUS himself), healthcare facilities and systems, boards, associations, institutes, foundations, journals, academia, and several other areas relevant to healthcare in 2015.
Modern Healthcare identifies itself as “the industry’s leading source of healthcare business and policy news, research and information,” reporting on “important healthcare events and trends, as they happen, through our weekly print magazine, websites, e-newsletters, mobile products and events” that allows its readership to “use that information to make informed business decisions and lead their organizations to success.”
Indeed, it is an excellent resource for those in the healthcare field.
You can review the titles and affiliations of the 300 nominees for Modern Healthcare’s annual 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare here.
No list or ranking will please everyone, but what do you think about the choices made for candidates for this important annual list of healthcare movers and shakers?
Click here to cast your vote for the 100 Most Influential People in Healthcare by choosing your favorite influencers.
A recent USA Today article from Kaiser Health News discussed that alongside economic recovery and the implementation of the Affordable Care Act, the demand for Travel Nurses reaches a 20-year high in 2015.
That’s according to a representative from Avondale Partners, who estimated in the article that “the demand for nurses and other healthcare personnel is at its highest level since the mid-1990s.”
And demand is not expected to stay there, but rather to increase by 10% throughout the year, according to Staffing Industry Analysts.
Industry expert and the director of University of Pennsylvania’s Center for Health Outcomes and Policy Research, Linda Aiken, told USA Today that, “Hiring temporary nurses can alleviate shortages that could produce higher patient mortality.” Aiken is known for her research into nurse burnout and optimum hospital nurse staffing.
Two of Medical Solutions’ top-quality, highly screened Travel Nurses were also featured in the USA Today article.
One-time Medical Solutions Traveler of the Month Amy Reynolds shared her story of traveling with her retired husband to assignments in California, Washington, Texas, and Idaho.
“It’s been wonderful,” she told USA Today. “It’s given us a chance to try out other parts of the country.”
Another excellent Medical Solutions Traveler, Cherisse Dillard, was also interviewed for the feature. She’s been an L&D Travel Nurse for almost 10 years and has worked in Chicago, Dallas, Houston, Pensacola, and the Bay area.
As the demand for Travel Nurses reaches a 20-year high, is your facility taking advantage of the Travel Nursing industry to help meet your patient care needs?
If you’d like more information on how Travel Nurses can save your facility money and help ensure quality care, click here to learn more about the many resources that are available to you and your team.
Happy Nurses Week to all the amazing nurses and nurse leaders out there!
Nurses Week celebrations are an excellent opportunity for a hospital to show its appreciation for its nurses.
At WeLoveOurNurses.com, Medical Solutions is celebrating with a variety of activities, prizes, and more. We hope you’ll share this with your Travelers and other nurses as a way for them to celebrate Nurse Week.
The Real Nurses of Nurses Week
A live Instagram feed of nurses from worldwide. Check out photos from other nurses and be sure to share yours with the hashtag #yournursesweek for the chance to win one of these prizes:
- One $100 Amazon gift card (courtesy of Medical Solutions)
- One $50 Amazon gift card (courtesy of Nebraska Methodist College, our RN to BSN Academy partner)
- Three $25 Tafford Uniforms gift cards (courtesy of our friends at Tafford Uniforms)
Fourth Annual Nurses of Tomorrow Scholarship
This scholarship opportunity is back for a fourth year with one change … a bigger scholarship fund! To help support the development of the next generation of nurses, nurses leaders and educators, three lucky undergraduate or postgraduate nurse scholars will each win $2000 to help with their education costs. Entries will be accepted here through June 6, 2015.
Nurses Week eCards
Free, shareable and downloadable cards in celebration of Nurses Week. These can be posted on Facebook, you can tag your friends, and download them to share via email or through other social sites.
Medical Solutions supports this national fund for nurses in need, and has started a team fundraising page for their annual Nurses Week effort, Dolphins for Nurses. Many Travelers have told us that they wanted to give back for Nurses Week, so we invite everyone to join the team and help support Nurses House. Click here to learn more or to donate.
You can also send your nurses to TravelNursingBlogs.com to learn about more Nurses Week festivities and freebies. Spoiler alert: There’s free Cinnabon involved!
What does your facility have planned in the way of Nurses Week celebrations?
This is the time of year when many entities release results of “Best Places to Work” awards, and one of the biggest, most influential lists comes from Forbes. The Forbes “America’s Best Employers” list is generated based upon employee feedback and resulted in a list of America’s top 500 employers from across 25 different industries.
The overall top 5 included a few of the usual suspects — organizations who are well known for providing great work environments:
- Marathon Petroleum
- The Container Store
- L.L. Bean
In the healthcare realm, there were 25 hospitals and health systems named best employers, ranking between number 12 and number 154 on the Forbes list.
Becker’s Hospital Review published this list of the 25 hospitals and health systems named best employers in Forbes’ list — the number at the end of each entry is where they ranked:
- University of Iowa Hospitals & Clinics (Iowa City, Iowa) — 12
- Northside Hospital (Atlanta) — 23
- Intermountain Healthcare (Salt Lake City) — 25
- University of Michigan Health System (Ann Arbor, Mich.) — 26
- Lakeland (Fla.) Regional Medical Center — 28
- Seattle Children’s Hospital — 32
- Partners HealthCare System (Boston) — 45
- UNC Health Care (Chapel Hill, N.C.) — 50
- The University of Vermont Health Network — 51
- Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer Center (New York City) — 53
- Mayo Clinic (Rochester, Minn.) — 74
- American Cancer Society (Atlanta) — 75
- Atlantic Health System (Morristown, N.J.) — 76
- Kaiser Permanente Medical Care Program (Oakland, Calif.) — 81
- Carolinas HealthCare System (Charlotte, N.C.) — 89
- New York University-Langone Medical Center (New York City) — 111
- BayCare (Clearwater, Fla.) — 117
- Rochester (N.Y.) Regional Health System — 120
- Mercy (Chesterfield, Mo.) — 122
- Novant Health (Winston-Salem, N.C.) — 127
- Sparrow Health System (Lansing, Mich.) — 137
- Cincinnati Children’s — 147
- NewYork-Presbyterian (New York City) — 152
- Providence Health & Services (Renton, Wash.) — 152
- UF Health (Gainesville, Fla.) — 154
Happy employees are a huge factor in the success of any organization, which is why it’s so important for hospitals to keep themselves fully staffed. Often that means bringing on temporary staff, and when that’s the case it’s important to staff through a healthcare staffing company that also works to treat employees well.
Congrats to all who work with and for any of these 25 hospitals and health systems named best employers! Thank you for providing an excellent work environment for healthcare professionals.
According to a government report released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services on March 23, 2015, the expansion of healthcare to millions of Americans through the Affordable Care Act brought hospitals’ costs of caring for uninsured individuals down an estimated $7.4 billion dollars in 2014.
Reuters reports that hospitals’ uncompensated care costs were approximately $27.3 billion in 2014, which is a lot, but low in comparison to the estimate that it would have been $34.7 billion had the U.S. uninsured rate stayed at its 2013 level.
While all states saw a reduction, the bulk of reductions were in Washington D.C. and 28 additional states that have expanded Medicaid for poor populations.
In addition to the cost savings for hospitals, charity care costs were also reduced nationwide.
With more than 16.4 million Americans acquiring health coverage as a result of the Affordable Care Act, hospitals’ uncompensated care costs may be falling, but the need for staffing quality healthcare professionals to meet patient needs has risen.
In addition to covering for EHR/EMR conversions, job actions, and other short-term staffing needs, Medical Solutions offers quality Travelers who can meet your staffing needs associated with the patient boom related to the ACA.
Click here to learn more about how we can serve your facility and keep you at the forefront of patient care in a rapidly changing healthcare environment.
A Health Leaders Media post from October 2014, suggests that it’s quite important — in terms of patient care of course — but also in terms of your financial bottom line.
The article quotes a study from the journal Medical Care which finds that investing in your nurses’ higher education makes excellent financial and business sense for hospitals and facilities. The researchers found that “patients who received 80% or more of their care from BSN-prepared nurses had 18.7% lower odds of readmission and 1.9% shorter lengths of stay. Researchers also found that a 10% increase in the proportion of BSN-educated care was associated with a 10% reduction in the odds of mortality.”
The study’s lead author, Olga Yakusheva, Ph.D., was quoted saying, “Ultimately, better patient outcomes are important,” but “hospital administrators are the ones that are stuck with the bill.”
Additionally mentioned is the Institute of Medicine’s 2020 goal for having no less than 80% of the nursing workforce having earned their Bachelor’s degrees.
Medical Solutions believes not only in facilitating the best possible patient care but also in doing whatever we can to help our Clients successfully manage and maneuver their operations. We also believe that a happy Traveler makes for a happy assignment, so we love to help our Travelers reach their professional best.
That’s why we recently relaunched our RN to BSN program with the new Medical Solutions RN to BSN Academy — a win-win for Travelers and facilities alike.
Here are some of the benefits and perks Travelers can expect from the new RN to BSN Academy:
- 100% online and crafted especially for working RNs — do your work from anywhere with an internet connection, any time of day or night
- Flexible start dates
- Financial assistance package, including books and tuition
- No need to take out more student loans
- One-on-one relationship with an academic advisor dedicated to your success
- Strengthen your skill set and resumé while you continue to work and travel
- Earn your BSN in 12-24 months, depending upon any credits you transfer into this transfer credit friendly program
- Graduate from highly respected, CCNE accredited Nebraska Methodist College
- Be prepared for better compensation and greater access to leadership roles such as educator and practitioner
And, as mentioned above, the perks for your facility include better patient outcomes and a healthier financial bottom line!
Click here to learn more about the RN to BSN program, and be sure to share this information with any Travelers you think might benefit from it.
In just a couple of months, National Nurses Week 2015 will be upon us. Celebrated annually, Nurses Week is an excellent opportunity for facilities to help celebrate the important role nurses play in the healthcare system and the huge impact they have in in their patients’ lives.
The American Nurses Association is providing a Nurses Week 2015 resource toolkit for facilities and organizations to use in advance of National Nurses Week, May 6-12. The theme this year is “Ethical Practice, Quality Care.”
The Nurses Week 2015 resource toolkit is full of useful information and tools to help you celebrate the occasion in style and to the greatest effect — as well as to help your facility promote National Nurses Week 2015 within your community and to members of the media.
The Nurses Week 2015 resource toolkit includes:
- A downloadable Thank You card to share with your nurses, which can be customized to include personalized messages as well as your organization’s logo
- A downloadable Certificate of Appreciation for your nursing staff
- A downloadable, customizable Microsoft Outlook OFT email to share
- A large (2’x 3’) downloadable banner which can be personalized with your logo and printed at a local vendor
- Downloadable ads in four standard sizes to help advertise the fact that you’re celebrating National Nurses Week 2015
- Tips for practical, yet creative ways to celebrate throughout the week
- Tips for working with media in order to inform the public about Nurses Week
- And much more!
As the ANA knows, it means a lot to nurses that their hard work, long hours, compassion, skill, and self-sacrifice are recognized. Whether you celebrate every day of the week or just say a simple one-time “thank you,” it means a lot to your nurses. Knowing you care enough to recognize their efforts is likely to be reflected in the effort they continue to put into their work at your facility.
I hope it helps your nursing staff feel honored and leads to an excellent celebration for your organization!
As healthcare reform continues to unfold in 2015 and beyond, providers, consumers, and insurance companies will continue to adapt. While most agree that the system was not previously and still is not perfect, what’s tricky to find a consensus on is how to improve things within such a complicated, entrenched system.
Health Leaders magazine, in partnership with Truven Health Analytics, recently provided a Fact File that provides an interesting breakdown of health insurance cost trends in the face of healthcare reform and, in turn, as employers attempt to reduce health insurance cost trends.
“By taking a data-driven approach, payers can manage costs and, ultimately, make their benefit programs sustainable in the context of healthcare reform. They can also maximize opportunities to improve population health and productivity and optimize the delivery of care,” reads the Fact File titled, Trends in Health Insurance Costs.
The information is broken down in terms of:
- Medical and Pharmacy Out-of-Pocket Costs: Combined, these out-of-pocket costs increased from $695 per member per year in 2012 to $734 in 2013 (a 5.7% increase). Medical alone increased 8.4% and pharmacy alone decreased 4% (the decrease is attributed to a shift to generics).
- Specialty Pharmacy: This sector saw continued growth, with an overall increase in cost of 23.1% in 2013.
- Trends in Medical and Pharmacy Claims Costs: At the current rate, these costs are on track to have increased by nearly 45% over the past nine years.
- Inpatient and Outpatient Costs: In addition to several factors at play, cost increases here seem driven by price increases and changes in admission types, while average length of stay remained steady. Outpatient services trend upwards.
- Preventative Screening Compliance
- Americans’ General Health
This data can be very interesting to hospital administration and healthcare professionals, in terms of knowing a bit more about the population you’re serving and the health insurance costs trends relevant to the care of each individual.
Click here to see the Fact File in full.