News Snapshots

Drug Found to Curb Dementia’s Delusions

Associated Press. (December 5, 2019), Drug Found to Curb Dementia’s Delusions, Courthouse Retrieved

The drug Pimavanserin used for treating delusions in Parkinson’s patients was found to help treat delusions in Alzheimer’s and other forms of dementia. The drug could become the first treatment for dementia-related psychosis and the first new medication for Alzheimer’s in two decades. The drug targets hallucinations that lead to anxiety, aggression, physical and verbal abuse. Cost could be an issue with the drug as charges run about $3,000 a month.


For early signs of dementia, check bank accounts, not biomarkers

Chess, E. (December 5, 2019). Step aside, biomarkers. Look to the bank account for early signs of dementia STAT: Morning Rounds Newsletter. Retrieved

Dr. Eric Chess from The Knoebel Institute for Healthy Aging explains how impaired financial decision-making can appear decades before traditional signs of dementia such as memory loss. “People with early stages of the disease are prone to making impulsive, irrational financial decisions that are a departure from the way they previously managed things.” Dr. Chess and his colleagues at the Financial Security and Cognitive Health Initiative at the University of Denver are studying the relationship between money management and various forms of dementia.


Mayo Clinic Health System to close hospital in 2020

Ellison, E.  (December 4, 2019). Mayo Clinic Health System to close hospital in 2020. Becker’s Hospital  Retrieved

Mayo Clinic Health System will close its hospital and clinic in Springfield, Minn., in addition to a clinic in Lamberton, Minn., on March 1, 2020. The hospital in Springfield is one of eight hospitals within a 38-mile radius, which has led to declining admissions and "extremely low" use of the emergency department.  Dr. Hebl, Mayo V-P shared in a press release, "Mayo Clinic Health System has been proud to have a presence in Springfield and Lamberton over the past 22 years. This is not the outcome we wanted for our patients, our staff or the community, but it's a decision that was necessary to make."  

Proposed mergers would combine 34 Louisiana hospitals

Ellison, E. (December 4, 2019). Proposed mergers would combine 34 Louisiana hospitals. Becker’s Hospital Retrieved


Lafayette General Health [LGH] and Jennings American Legion Hospital [JALH] have signed a letter of intent to merge. Under the proposed terms, LGH will assume management and operations of 49-bed JALH and its affiliated clinics.  In September, LGH signed a letter of intent to merge with New Orleans-based Ochsner Health System. Under the agreement, Ochsner would invest $365 million over 10 years in LGH's facilities. If both transactions are finalized and approved, the combined system will include 34 hospitals.

Patient Acquisition Hinges on Positive Medical Billing Experience

LaPointe, J. (December 3, 2019). Patient Acquisition Hinges on Positive Medical Billing Experience. Recycle  Retrieved

In a recent survey,76% of healthcare customers measured the medical billing experience when selecting a provider. Forty seven percent of buyers surveyed reported a medical billing or payment issue during a recent healthcare visit. This highlights the impact of the billing experience on patient procurement. Patients are increasingly evaluating the medical billing experience. Health providers failing to provide positive financial experience maybe putting patient acquisition and patient loyalty at risk.

After bone marrow transplant, patient's blood contains only donor's DNA

Masson, G. (December 9, 2019). After bone marrow transplant, patient's blood contains only donor's DNA. Becker’s Hospital Retrieved

A Nevada man received a bone marrow transplant to treat acute myeloid leukemia and myelodysplastic syndromes.  Follow up tests revealed the DNA in his blood had been replaced by the DNA of his donor. Swabs of his lips and cheeks contained both his DNA and that of his donor four years after the lifesaving procedure. It is unknown how many patients may have experienced this rare occurrence.

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