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Progress With Electronic Health Record Adoption Among Emergency and Outpatient Departments: United States, 2006–2011

April 18, 2015 Comments off

Progress With Electronic Health Record Adoption Among Emergency and Outpatient Departments: United States, 2006–2011
Source: National Center for Health Statistics

Key findings

Data from the 2006–2011 National Hospital Ambulatory Medical Care Survey

  • In 2011, 84% of hospital emergency departments (EDs) used an electronic health record (EHR) system.
  • Adoption of a basic EHR system with a specific set of functionalities by EDs increased from 19% in 2007 to 54% in 2011.
  • In 2011, 73% of hospital outpatient departments (OPDs) used an EHR system, up from 29% in 2006.
  • Adoption of a basic EHR system with a specific set of functionalities by OPDs increased from 9% in 2007 to 57% in 2011.
  • From 2007 through 2011, adoption of Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives by EDs and OPDs increased.In 2011, 14% of EDs and 16% of OPDs had EHR technology able to support nine Stage 1 Meaningful Use objectives.

Trends in Long-acting Reversible Contraception Use Among U.S. Women Aged 15–44

April 17, 2015 Comments off

Trends in Long-acting Reversible Contraception Use Among U.S. Women Aged 15–44
Source: National Center for Health Statistics

Key findings

Data from the National Survey of Family Growth

  • Use of long-acting reversible contraceptives (LARCs) declined between 1982 and 1988, remained stable through 2002, and then increased nearly five-fold in the last decade among women aged 15–44, from 1.5% in 2002 to 7.2% in 2011–2013.
  • The percentage of women using LARCs has remained highest among women aged 25–34, with more than twice as many women aged 25–34 (11.1%) using LARCs in 2011–2013 compared with women aged 15–24 (5.0%) and aged 35–44 (5.3%).
  • After decreasing between 1982 and 1988 and remaining stable from 1988 through 1995, LARC-use patterns diverged among Hispanic, non-Hispanic white, and non-Hispanic black women.
  • Women who have had at least one birth use LARCs at a higher rate compared with women who have had no previous births, and this difference has increased over time.

Interim Report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing

April 17, 2015 Comments off

Interim Report of the President’s Task Force on 21st Century Policing (PDF)
Source: U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Community Oriented Policing Services

Trust between law enforcement agencies and the people they protect and serve is essential in a democracy. It is key to the stability of our communities, the integrity of our criminal justice system, and the safe and effective delivery of policing services.

In light of the recent events that have exposed rifts in the relationships between local police and the communities they protect and serve, on December 18, 2014, President Barack Obama signed an Executive Order establishing the Task Force on 21st Century Policing.

In establishing the task force, the President spoke of the distrust that exists between too many police departments and too many communities—the sense that in a country where our basic principle is equality under the law, too many individuals, particularly young people of color, do not feel as if they are being treated fairly.

It became very clear that it is time for a comprehensive and multifaceted examination of all the interrelated parts of the criminal justice system and a focused investigation into how poverty, lack of education, mental health, and other social conditions cause or intersect with criminal behavior. We propose two overarching recommendations that will seek the answers to these questions.

0.1 OVERARCHING RECOMMENDATION: The President should support and provide funding for the creation of a National Crime and Justice Task Force to review and evaluate all components of the criminal justice system for the purpose of making recommendations to the country on comprehensive criminal justice reform.

0.2 OVERARCHING RECOMMENDATION: The President should promote programs that take a comprehensive and inclusive look at community based initiatives that address the core issues of poverty, education, health, and safety.

SEC Staff and FINRA Issue Report on National Senior Investor Initiative

April 17, 2015 Comments off

SEC Staff and FINRA Issue Report on National Senior Investor Initiative
Source: U.S. Securities and Exchange Commission and Financial Industry Regulatory Authority

With the Social Security Administration estimating that each day for the next 15 years, an average of 10,000 Americans will turn 65, the staff of the Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC) and the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) today issued a report to help broker-dealers assess, craft, or refine their policies and procedures for investors as they prepare for and enter into retirement.

The National Senior Investor Initiative report includes observations and practices identified in examinations that focused on how firms conduct business with senior investors. The examinations by the SEC’s Office of Compliance Inspections and Examinations (OCIE) and FINRA focused on the types of securities purchased by senior investors, the suitability of recommended investments, training of brokerage firm representatives, marketing, communications, use of designations such as “senior specialist,” account documentation, disclosures, customer complaints, and supervision.

The Hong Kong Policy Report

April 17, 2015 Comments off

The Hong Kong Policy Report
Source: U.S. Department of State, Office of Inspector General

The United States has considerable and longstanding interests in Hong Kong. Cooperation between the United States Government and the Hong Kong Government (HKG) remains broad, highly effective, and mutually beneficial. Our relationship with Hong Kong is based on the framework of “one country, two systems,” enshrined in Hong Hong’s Basic Law, which serves as a virtual (or de facto) constitution. Under this system, Hong Kong exercises autonomy in all areas except foreign policy and defense affairs. Hong Kong participates actively and independently in a range of multilateral organizations and agreements such as Asia-Pacific Economic Cooperation (APEC) and the World Trade Organization (WTO), with trade policy objectives that generally align with our own, and is recognized as a separate customs territory by the United States.

There are more than a dozen U.S.-Hong Kong agreements currently in force. Our day-to-day bilateral law enforcement cooperation is on par with many of our closest allies. Hong Kong’s strong traditions of rule of law, low levels of corruption, and high levels of public safety make it a preferred choice for American businesses in the region. The United States enjoys diverse cultural, educational, scientific, and academic exchanges with the people and Government of Hong Kong.

Problems Paying Medical Bills: Early Release of Estimates From the National Health Interview Survey, January 2011-June 2014

April 16, 2015 Comments off

Problems Paying Medical Bills: Early Release of Estimates From the National Health Interview Survey, January 2011-June 2014 (PDF)
Source: National Center for Health Statistics

  • The percentage of persons under age 65 who were in families having problems paying medical bills decreased from 21.3% (56.5 million) in 2011 to 17.8% (47.7 million) in the first 6 months of 2014.
  • Within each year, from 2011 through June 2014, children aged 0– 17 years were more likely than adults aged 18 – 64 to be in families having problems paying medical bills.
  • The percentage of children aged 0– 17 years who were in families having problems paying medical bills decreased from 23. 2 % in 2011 to 19.0 % in the first 6 months of 201 4.
  • In the first 6 months of 2014 , among persons under age 65, 31.2% of those who were uninsured, 24.2% of those who had public coverage, and 12.4% of those who had private coverage were in families having problems paying medical bills in the past 12 months.
  • In the first 6 months of 201 4 , 27.1% of poor, 28.0 % of near poor , and 12.6 % of not poor persons under age 65 were in families having problems paying medical bills in the past 12 months.

Postal Service Revenue: Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full?

April 16, 2015 Comments off

Postal Service Revenue: Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full?
Source: U.S. Post Office, Office of Inspector General

We have all read the negative headlines of U.S. Postal Service’s looming financial demise. However, in its new paper, U.S. Postal Service Revenue: Is the Glass Half Empty or Half Full?, the OIG finds that the Postal Service may be turning a corner. An increase in parcel volume, significant cost reductions, and the exigent price increase are collectively driving an improvement in the Postal Service’s financial health.

Nevertheless, the Postal Service still faces numerous challenges, including the continued and persistent decline in First-Class Mail volume, an ever-increasing number of delivery points, and an increased need to make investments for its future. While significant, these challenges are not insurmountable. In order to further improve its financial position, the Postal Service will need to focus on increasing the revenue yield of its traditional products wherever market forces and conditions allow, including taking advantage of the growing parcel market. In addition, the Postal Service would benefit from diversifying into other areas of business, especially logistics and financial services.

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