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Transform Your Workplace: Four Steps to a Healthier and Happier Team with MedElite

Welcome to the latest edition of the MedElite newsletter! In today’s issue, we’ll discuss how you can transform your workplace into a healthier and happier environment for your team.

We compiled four essential steps that can help improve employee well-being and increase productivity. From auditing occupational risks to promoting greater inclusion and diversity, we explore essential best practices for promoting employee wellness.

With MedElite‘s guidance, you can create a workplace that fosters a positive and thriving work culture. Let’s dive into these practical tips and get jumpstart your organization’s health-centered transformation today

From the CMO:

On March 31st, Dr. Rekha Bhandari, CMO of The MedElite Group, published to LinkedIn Pulse the following piece exploring the ongoing hiring crisis in healthcare, noting how the field might strike a stronger balance of care quality and cost in the future:






Balancing Quality and Cost: Addressing Healthcare’s Staffing Crisis in 2023

The early 2020s have been a turbulent period for the healthcare sector, beginning with the sudden logistical shock of COVID-19 and, lately, entering a period of relative uncertainty in several regards. While healthcare profit pools are poised to see considerable growth in the coming years, many industry institutions are currently still struggling from a personnel standpoint. Enduring patient backlogs, staff burnout, and ongoing residual health concerns are just a few factors jeopardizing these entities’ ability to remain medically effective and financially viable.

As a result, healthcare leaders continue to search for ways to mitigate costs in the name of consistent, quality care. For the industry to properly fulfill its projected growth, it must establish a stronger balance between value-based care and cost-effective staffing.

Achieving this harmony is proving difficult, and one unfortunate byproduct of this process has been a general reduction in backfilling personnel holes – even in some ERs, which are cutting certain hiring initiatives in favor of alternative staffing strategies.

(Click the link above to read her full piece.)

The Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) recently proposed new rules for the use of clinical decision support (CDS) tools and artificial intelligence (AI) in healthcare. The proposed rules seek to establish standardization and interoperability for CDS and AI technology to improve the quality and safety of patient care. The rules would also promote transparency in developing and implementing these tools, ensuring that patients and healthcare providers have access to accurate and up-to-date information.

One of the key aspects of the proposed rules is the incorporation of the Trusted Exchange Framework and Common Agreement (TEFCA), which would create a national infrastructure for securely sharing electronic health information. This framework would enable healthcare providers to exchange patient data more easily and efficiently, improving communication between providers and ultimately enhancing patient care.

Additionally, the rules would require CDS and AI developers to follow a standardized development process and provide clear documentation of their tools’ performance and capabilities. This change would help build trust in the technology among healthcare providers and patients alike, as they would have more information about tool design and functionality.

Overall, the new ONC rules have the potential to bolster trust, transparency, and overall efficiency in healthcare on behalf of a wider range of patients. By establishing standards for CDS and AI technology, and by promoting the secure exchange of patient information, these changes could help ensure that patients receive the best possible care – all while supporting innovation in healthcare technology at large.

Health at Work: Quick Steps to a Healthier Workplace

Workplace health is paramount in building and maintaining a proper quality of life; this fact has become increasingly clear as business culture evolves to bolster employee safety and well-being. Every year, World Day for Safety and Health at Work (April 28th) calls additional attention to this topic, highlighting how workplaces can mitigate prevailing health and safety risks, establish a stronger internal culture, and ultimately advocate for their workers in new and effective ways – actions that have only become more crucial amidst COVID-19.

That said, here are four quick ways workplace leaders can improve workplace safety and overall health for their employees:

Audit For Occupational Risks

Perhaps the most obvious way leaders can ensure a safer, healthier workplace is to take stock of existing occupational risks and deficiencies. Such changes will vary depending on the industry or line of work, but broadly speaking, leaders should make sure their work environment is clean, compliant with all relevant health codes and regulations, and conducive to workers’ safety as they navigate their daily obligations.

Foster a Stronger Workplace Culture

In addition to ensuring their workers’ physical well-being, leaders should also make necessary changes to support employee mental and emotional health – and, in many cases, this starts with general workplace culture. Cultural change is inherently a communal effort, with leaders setting a proper example in fostering cohesion, tolerance, transparency, and camaraderie.

Emphasize a More Inclusive, Aligned Hiring Process

Cultural changes should also include hiring and acquisition protocol, with leaders tailoring such efforts to inclusion and alignment in terms of appropriate staffing. New additions should not only represent a broad dedication to diversity and equity – they should also complement and augment existing team culture and functionality.

Keep Ahead of Emerging Risks

Foresight is critical to workplace safety and health; this applies to everything from regular auditing initiatives to constant insight into macro business and healthcare trends. In this sense, leaders must keep an eye on emerging risks threatening the integrity of their working environment, taking preemptive steps to ensure occupational and cultural health, reduce stress, and keep employees in the best position for success.


This Spring, Invest in a Happier, Healthier You

Amidst the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, the healthcare sector continues to grapple with countless operational deficiencies – namely, a growing nursing shortage stemming from overwhelming patient backlogs and personnel burnout, which is occurring in tandem with expedited retirements. This crisis has created a vicious cycle in which key medical professionals are vanishing when they are needed most.

In turn, many healthcare institutions are shifting their attention to increased international recruitment efforts, understanding that merely depending on traveling nurses is no longer sustainable or cost-effective. The result is that one of every six US nurses is now from outside the country (though the trend is hardly exclusive to the US).

Still, even as this approach offers temporary solutions, demand in the nursing sector remains high, and for the field to adequately address the issue in a long-term sense, it must streamline federal authorization, alleviate unnecessary protocol snags, and remain committed to ethical and empathetic recruitment processes.

(Click the link above to read her full piece.)

The Chartis Group this week announced a new facility aimed at curbing medical practitioner burnout. The Chartis Center for Burnout Solutions is a joint venture between Chartis and newly-acquired DES Health Consulting, and it will feature a staff consisting of psychologists versed in the healthcare field’s unique mental and emotional challenges.

In a press release published on February 22nd, Chartis Chief Physician Executive Dr. Roger Ray called the project an asset to helping clients “gather deep insights on their workforce, then implement proactive, data-driven solutions that improve wellness and resiliency.”

“The healthcare workforce is a vital part of our communities,” Ray said, “and addressing their health is key to helping our clients materially improve healthcare.

As more healthcare institutions grapple with the residual impact of COVID-19, many facilities continue to struggle with personnel-related deficiencies stemming from staff burnout. Such problems stand to jeopardize care quality and continuity as staff numbers dwindle and patient backlogs mount.

Chartis’s new initiative marks an important turning point in addressing this critical issue, embodying the healthcare field’s commitment to its active personnel’s health and well-being.

Spring is just around the corner, and that means better weather, longer days, and various other reasons to get excited. Amidst these pleasant diversions, it can be easy to overlook certain seasonal aspects of personal health. From allergies to dehydration, the warmer months pose several healthcare considerations to keep front-of-mind as you enjoy the nicer weather. Here are five ways to make sure your spring is healthy and happy:

If you suffer from spring-related allergies, be sure to take proactive measures to prevent and manage your worst symptoms. Stock up on medication, keep up-to-date on daily pollen counts, avoid certain symptom triggers, and schedule an appointment with your doctor to discuss high-level allergy concerns.

Hydration is a must during the spring – especially as the season begins its transition into summer. This fact is especially true if you compete in outdoor sports or aerobic exercise, which can quickly sap you of adequate hydration. Try to consume at least 16 ounces of fluid before an activity or exercise, maintaining hydration as much as possible during the event and recovering with at least 16 more ounces per pound lost after.

It’s easy to get excited about warm weather after the dull, cold winter months, and this often tricks people into over-exerting themselves during activity or exercise. In turn, these individuals risk incurring overuse injuries that prevent them from enjoying the nicer conditions. This spring, be sure to remain mindful of your physical limitations as you participate in your favorite activities.

Annual doctor check-ups are an important part of preventative healthcare, and in the spring, they can ensure you are physically ready to participate in warm-weather activities. Whether you are a young athlete preparing for a spring sports season or an adult preparing for a new exercise regimen, a spring physical is a great way to take stock and achieve peace of mind.

As the days get longer and the weather stays warm at later hours, it can be easy to forgo healthy sleeping habits to maximize your seasonal enjoyment. The warmer temperatures can also make sleeping more uncomfortable without proper inside accommodations. Therefore, it is crucial to commit to a consistent sleeping routine once spring begins, adapting your sleeping environment to make the process as easy as possible.

The 2023 Medelite eCap Summit After Party: An Evening to Remember

The Seemingly Limitless Potential of Blockchain in Healthcare

The MedElite Group hosted its annual after-party following the 2023 eCap Summit on February 6th, in Miami, Florida. The eCap Summit is one of the leading healthcare conferences in the country, with this year’s event consisting of 1500 people, including some of the most influential owners and operators in the industry.
This year’s after-party featured a surprise special guest: former NBA superstar Shaquille O’Neal! O’Neal treated guests to a fireside chat and meet-and-greet, and we thank him for making the event one to remember.

Thank you to everyone for a memorable evening, and we are already looking forward to next year!



The Seemingly Limitless Potential of Blockchain in Healthcare

Interoperability remains the Holy Grail in healthcare, the goal to which all organizations aspire. The urgency to remove silos and improve communication between various systems and organizations is paramount, as it promises to lead to greater efficiency and improved outcomes while at the same time lowering costs – and not a moment too soon, given the fact that the world’s population is aging and there is a growing shortage of clinicians.

More and more, blockchain – a secure, decentralized digital ledger most often associated with cryptocurrency – is being viewed as a pathway toward achieving interoperability, or building bridges between “data islands” – i.e., the organizations and systems where patient data might be stored (but not shared).

That’s how they were described by Sriram Bharadwaj, vice president of digital innovation and applications at Franciscan Health, a Midwestern organization, on the website Health IT Analytics. More often labeled data silos, the frequent inability to share information between them leaves clinicians in a position where they do not always have a full picture of a patient’s medical history, and thus unable to provide the best care. Blockchain can address this issue, and help create unified patient records (UPRs).

Additionally, wider availability of information would go a long way toward compiling population health metrics, a crucial element in establishing health policy and programs.

(Click the link above to read her full piece.)


Industry Updates

Healthcare-related jobs saw a boost in employment outlook last month thanks to a broad January hiring surge. The US reportedly added nearly double the amount of jobs expected in January across all sectors, which, according to Investopedia, pushed the collective unemployment rate to its lowest point in decades.

In healthcare, employment gains were among the highest for a specific sector, ranking alongside or just behind leisure and hospitality, government, and retail trade. The sector added nearly 58,000 jobs – with many openings occurring in doctors’ offices and outpatient facilities.

This optimistic news comes amidst the ongoing healthcare fallout resulting from the COVID-19 pandemic, which continues to fuel widespread burnout, harm healthcare facility staffing, and ultimately stunt job growth rates from returning to pre-pandemic levels. However, the industry has remained resilient, ending 2022 with improved job growth.

With Q1 2023 already well underway, these recent findings stand to offer hope to a healthcare field that, in many ways, is finding its feet again en route to a brighter, more progressive future.


The American Heart Month, Let’s Talk About 5 Ways to Boost your Heart Health

February is American Heart Month, an important time of year for people to take inventory of their cardiovascular health. Leading a healthy, active lifestyle and identifying key cardiovascular risk factors are key aspects of heart self-care. Here are five ways to boost your heart health this year and beyond:

There are countless benefits to establishing a healthier diet, and cardiovascular well-being is one of the most crucial. The US Department of Health and Human Services suggests eating less saturated fat, reducing sodium intake, consuming more fiber, and broadly committing to more heart-healthy foods like vegetables, fruits, and whole grains.

Whether it’s running, yoga, or something else, regular exercise is a great way to build and support good cardiovascular health. Johns Hopkins Medicine recommends taking part in aerobic exercise (walking, running, swimming), resistance training (weight lifting, body-resistance training), and flexibility work (stretching, balance improvement) as great avenues for boosting heart health.

When it comes to avoiding heart-related illness and trauma, prevention and foresight are crucial. This fact takes many forms – from knowing the signs of heart attack to pinpointing key risk factors and predispositions to certain diseases and conditions. Be sure to schedule annual visits with your doctor and pay attention to symptoms that may warrant further examination.

The National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute reports that around 1 in every 5 deaths in the US is related to smoking – and heart disease is one of the most common forms of smoking-related death, as it significantly harms the heart and blood vessels over time. The path to quitting can be difficult, but such a commitment can yield countless health-related benefits ranging from disease prevention to improved circulation.

Today, there are countless reasons to feel stressed – from work to world events. While stress can seem innocuous to some, its potential health effects can burden many parts of the body and mind, including the cardiovascular system. Luckily, for as many stressors as there are in the world, there are almost just as many ways to combat those feelings. Broadly speaking, consider investing time in breathing and meditation practices, therapeutic healthcare options, and other lifestyle changes focused on eliminating anxiety triggers and bolstering personal interests and points of comfort.


Happy 2023!

Happy 2023! What’s to come from MedElite this Year!

How Can the Problem of Unnessecary Hospitalizations be Solved?

Stemming the tide of avoidable transfers from nursing homes to hospitals is a significant challenge for the healthcare industry. There are questions about just how significant – one study said as many as half could be avoided, another 60 percent, another 70 percent – but suffice it to say that some measures are in order, given the threats to patients’ physical and psychological well-being such transfers represent.

It might be as complicated as improving the manner in which card studies (i.e., surveys about the manner in which any given patient receives care) are performed. Or it might be as simple as a text chain.

Both measures are in the works.

Click the link above to read her full piece.


Industry Updates

In an attempt to streamline providers’ workflows, boost cost-effectiveness and improve patients’ care journey, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), in conjunction with the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), introduced on Dec. 19 a rule proposal entitled “Adoption of Standards for Health Care Attachments Transactions and Electronic Signatures, and Modification to Referral Certification and Authorization Transaction Standard (CMS-0053-P).”

The rule, if finalized, would establish standards for electronic signatures used in transactions involving medical charts, X-rays and provider notes, according to a news release. It would also modify transactions consummated under the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act of 1996 (HIPAA), and according to an estimate by the CMS, save $454 million a year in administrative costs.

As CMS administrator Chiquita Brooks LaSure said in the release:

The proposed rule further aims to streamline the healthcare-claim process by “providing structured, standardized electronic data to payers.” Additionally, it “proposes to adopt a modification to the standard for the referral certification and authorization transaction, thereby reducing potential barriers to adopting value-based payments,” which, again, will reduce administrative costs and burdens on providers.

The issue of standardizing electronic transactions has been one that has been under consideration since HIPAA was enacted by Congress, in 1996 – specifically, another CMS release said, through a codicil that called for “Administrative Simplification.” And indeed, there were attempts, in 1998 and 2005, to standardize electronic signatures. In 1998, stakeholders did not believe such technology had reached maturity, and in 2005 they could not reach a consensus on how best to use that which was available.

The Affordable Care Act, passed in 2010, includes a requirement that the Secretary of Health & Human Services adopt standards for healthcare claim attachments.

The rule can be reviewed here, and according to the release, the CMS welcomes comments from all interested parties, particularly “patients and their families, providers, clinicians, consumer advocates, health plans, and health care professional associations.” The deadline for doing so is March 22, 2023.


How to Beat the Winter Blues

The holidays are over; so now what? Everyone’s mood is bound to drop, just like the temperatures. The website asserted that seniors are especially susceptible to the winter blues, due to limited social contact, lack of sunlight and/or inactivity.

What starts as the blues could devolve into Seasonal Affective Disorder (SAD), an affliction that impacts some 10 million American adults and is characterized by fatigue, lethargy, weight gain and irritability (among other symptoms), and can only be treated by a trained clinician.

So the question is, how can we help seniors through this difficult time? Here are some tips:

Natural light is often the tonic for the blues, for scientific reasons: Vitamin D helps improve one’s mood. As a result, we would do well to make sure seniors’ blinds are open during the day, to let in as much sunlight as possible. And it wouldn’t hurt to venture outside on occasion, though bundling up is crucial, given their susceptibility to the cold.

Exposure to Vitamin D, albeit that which can be consumed through one’s diet, was also the subject of a University of Georgia study cited by The study drew a correlation between mental health and a deficiency of this vitamin, meaning seniors (and, well, everyone) would do well to load up on foods like eggs, seafood and the like.

Doesn’t mean they have to venture outdoors; that’s what treadmills are for. But it is crucial to move one’s bones. There is not only the physical benefit, but also the emotional one, courtesy of the endorphin release. Whether that’s through walking, biking, dancing or even gardening, it doesn’t matter. The net effect is the same

There is no shortage of ways to engage one’s creative side. Maybe it involves baking or photography. Maybe it involves knitting or scrapbooking or crafting. The point is, it activates the brain and relieves stress, including that which can result from the winter doldrums.

This is crucial not only in wintertime, but all the time. The deleterious effects of social isolation have been well-documented. And while it might be more difficult in the colder months, it is vital that we make sure seniors mingle.

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