Physicians Struggle With One of the Unhealthiest States for Men
When it comes to health, men in general start life with one strike against them. In Tennessee, it may be closer to two.
Many men are just too macho to seek regular care. Playing hurt is a tradition that goes back a long way, and in Tennessee men can take it to an extreme. On top of that add a big portion of southern fried everything in a diet heavy on fats and low on vegetables and fruits. And then mix in a common avoidance of exercise.
The lethal result: "Average life expectancy of a male is significantly shorter than a woman's," says Dr. Jim Jirvis, assistant chief medical officer for Vanderbilt Medical Group and director of the adult primary care center. "We males are still dying seven to eight years earlier."
by John Carroll
|Making the Move|
How Tennessee Hospitals Are Incrementally Introducing New Information Technology
It's been a year and a half since disgruntled physicians at Cedars-Sinai Medical Center in Los Angeles forced the hospital to pull the plug on its massive new computerized physician order entry system, but the event still sends shudders through those working to introduce information technology into the healthcare system.
"Doctors demanded that it be taken down because it was harming patients," says Dr. Neal Patel of Vanderbilt Children's Hospital. In fact, Cedars-Sinai physicians said that the massive paperless system slowed down the process of filling their orders, and that some orders regarding patient care were lost altogether.
by Sharon H. Fitzgerald
HCA Sees Clear Skies Ahead After Weathering The Storm of a Medicare Scandal
Jack Bovender, HCA Chief Executive Officer
By the end of 2002, Nashville-based HCA Inc. was still reeling from a deal to pay a total of $1.7 billion in civil and criminal penalties to resolve a long-running Medicare fraud probe — a stinging fine that fell on top of more than a dozen guilty pleas that had already snared top executives in the company.
Eighteen months later, the cloud of scandal is long gone.
At the end of the second quarter of this year, HCA was reporting second quarter income of $352 million, a 56 percent rise over the year before, when it had paid off $250 million in penalties. Its 190 hospitals and 91 freestanding surgical centers had $11.8 billion in revenue for the first six months of the year — compared to $10.7 billion the year before.
by Tracy Staton
|ASCO Session Unveils Promising New Cancer Treatments|
For three days in June, cancer specialists were focused squarely on New Orleans as a mountain of new trial data on some of the most promising oncology treatments were unveiled at the annual meeting of the American Society of Clinical Oncology. In report after report, researchers displayed real zeal in trumpeting new advances that - if they couldn't cure cancer - held immense promise for delaying death.
by John Carroll
| Assisted Living Offers Seniors Independence They Want, Help they Need|
Sometimes life doesn't go as planned. A married couple has dreams of one day retiring to their beach house to live out their golden years by the sea. Just when the dream is within their reach, one of the spouses shows early signs of Alzheimer's or suffers a mild stroke, and suddenly they must face the fact that they need help. For people in this situation - in need of some assistance, but still able and wanting to live independently- assisted living offers a suitable option.
by Kathy Whitney