Accountable Care Organization (ACO) Regulations: First Look

ACO regulations and related federal issuances hit the street last Thursday, after several months of waiting — from CMS, OIG, FTC, DOJ and IRS.  They cover the waterfront, ranging from the central regulation defining the structure and workings of the ACO, to  limited Stark self-referral ban and anti-kickback statute waivers in the fraud and abuse […]

Whither meaningful use of the certified, interoperable EHR?

Paul Roemer asks: Have you ever been a part of a successful launch of a national IT system that:  required a hundred thousand or so implementations of a parochial system? has been designed by 400 vendors? had 400 applications based on their own standards? has had to transport different versions of health records in and […]

Caritas Christi $100m infusion from Ascension Health on hold

Caritas Christi, the Boston-area Catholic health system, has been through the wringer and was looking forward to some capital improvements to be financed by issuing bonds.  $100m of the bonds were to be acquired by Ascension Health — one of the two larger Catholic health systems that considered acquiring Caritas and then backed off.  Today's […]

Interoperable EHRs: elusive grail or within our grasp?

The indefatigable John Halamka makes a convincing case that "interoperability is implementable today with harmonized standards, appropriate security, and a service oriented architecture using the internet," and that the only thing barring the way to a fully interoperable national EHR system is resources, or incentives — the technology is there. (This conclusion begs the question: […]

Ascension Health buys $100m in Caritas Christi bonds: Phase I of an acquisition?

A year or so ago, Ascension Health wanted nothing to do with Caritas Christi.  The national Catholic health care system considered buying the Boston-based Catholic health system after it put itself on the block, but backed away given the toxic condition of Caritas Christi's books at the time.  After getting its house in order somewhat, […]

Caritas Christi to bring on a new CEO

Greater Boston’s Caritas Christi Health System has had a rough couple of years — fiscal difficulties at some of its hospitals and with its physician network, troubles with a former CEO, several failed attempts to sell itself to larger Catholic health care systems, and an anxious state attorney general looking over its shoulder. Ralph de […]