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Health Reform Update - 7/27.

HOUSE UPDATE The House Democratic health reform bill faced a setback last week, with opposition coming from key members of the House Blue Dog Coalition, a group of moderate House Democrats. The Coalition’s leader and House Energy and Commerce member Rep. Mike Ross (D-AR-4) says the Blue Dog’s opposition to the bill stems from its failure to contain costs, as well as its lack rural provisions addressing rural America’s access problems. Fellow Blue Dog Congressman Zack Space (D-OH-18....

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Congressional Health Reform – an NRHA Government Affairs Update.

The Senate Health, Education, Labor and Pensions (HELP) Committee last week finished its fourteen day hearing to markup its health reform legislation, the Affordable Health Choices Act. With a final party line vote of 13 Democrats to 10 Republicans, the bill passed through Committee and health reform is one step closer to becoming a reality. That was one step, however, out of many…The Senate Finance Committee, also with health reform jurisdiction, has yet to release even a draft of its....

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U.S. News releases "best hospital" list.

U.S. News released its list of "best hospitals" on July 15. Admittedly, the list is intended to reveal the "best of the best" for medical sophistication in a host of speciality areas. Our concern is that it continues to foster the impression that "bigger is better." Out of 4,861 community hospitals in the 2007 AHA database, only 1,859 were eligible for inclusion in the study. Rural hospitals are once again shut out of yet another ranking system. U.S. News also ranked an unique subset of....

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Meaningful use revisions released by ONCHIT.

The federal Health Information Technology Policy Committee approved updated recommendations from its meaningful use work group on Thursday, July 16. Although their recommendations were in the right direction from a rural provider point of view, NRHA is very concerned that many providers will find these standards difficult to meet in order to receive funding. NRHA urges providers, both physicians and hospitals, to begin assessing their readiness as the 2011 funding period is only 18 months away..

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Obama's Rural Tour.

As you may have heard, President Obama has launched a "rural tour" with members of his Administration to hear from rural residents about their concerns.  This is an excellent opportunity to talk about the importance of rural health.  We highly encourage you to attend and spread the message!  See the below invitation for details on the rural health stop on the listening tour in Louisiana. The list of other stops and their topics follows.You are invited to a Community Forum on rural health with....

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