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March 17, 2017

Around the nation: A germ-fighting robot

Daily Briefing
  • California: University of California Riverside (UCR) in partnership with Genentech is launching a pilot to examine whether video visits can supplement in-person consultations with neurologists to improve access to care. The pilot will include 100 patients with Multiple Sclerosis (MS), half of whom will use such video visits while the remainder will attend traditional consultations. For the video visits, nurse practitioners will travel to patients' homes and remotely connect with an MS expert who will perform a neurological assessment. Later, patients in both groups will be compared in areas such as mental health, bowel control, and overall quality of life (Mack, Healthcare IT News, 3/15).

  • Indiana/New York: New York City-based Health Management Associates will purchase SVC, an Indianapolis-based consulting firm owned by Seema Verma, President Trump's recently confirmed head of CMS. After the deal is complete, SVC will be known as HMA Medicaid Market Solutions and will consult with federal and state agencies, health systems, and health plans on serving Medicaid patients (Ellison, Becker's Hospital Review, 3/15).

  • Kansas: Olathe Medical Center has a new tool to fight viruses and superbugs—a robot. The Surfacide Helios system uses beams of ultraviolet light to clean individual rooms after a patient is discharged. The process takes about 15 minutes. "The surgical suites are also treated with UV-C nightly when the cases are done for the day. Because of their larger size, the operating rooms take a longer time to effectively treat," said Stan Stuckey, infection prevention coordinator for the hospital (Reuter, Kansas City Business Journal, 3/15).

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