- Flu cases climb according to MDH
- IBM gets fingered by Gov. Dayton over MNsure issues
- Sunshine Heart creates new therapy for heart failure patients
- Medicaid patients worry about how they’ll get home-health care
Cases of influenza in Minnesota now widespread (Brainerd Dispatch)
As of the last week of 2013, the Minnesota Department of Health reported 71 influenza-related hospitalizations for a total of 189 since the flu season began.
There have been no influenza-related deaths identified in people 18 or younger. The most commonly identified strain of flu in the state has been influenza A or H1N1. Read More…
Minnesota slams IBM on health insurance exchange woes (InformationWeek.com)
Add Minnesota’s state-run MNsure website to the list of troubled health insurance exchanges. The site launched October 1, but it’s plagued by problems that Minnesota Governor Mark Dayton is pinning largely on software from IBM.
In a five-page letter sent to IBM CEO Virginia Rometty on December 13 and made public by the governor’s office on Friday, Dayton detailed 21 specific problems tied to IBM’s Curam software. “Your product has not delivered promised functionality and has seriously hindered Minnesotans’ abilities to purchase health insurance or apply for public health care programs through MNsure,” Dayton wrote. Read More…
C-Pulse device designed to help patients with advanced heart failure (MedCityNews.com)
A company that has created a unique new therapy for patients with advanced heart failure is hoping to spread the word about its product in 2014, after a year of clinical trials in both Europe and the United States.
Sunshine Heart, based in Eden Prairie, MN, raised more than $61 million in 2013, after two public offerings. Clinical trials for its C-Pulse device began late in the year. According to CEO David Rosa, the biggest challenge the company faces is making patients and physicians aware of the therapy, which uses a balloon-like device to help the heart pump blood. Read More…
Patients worry as Blue Cross switches rural ride service (Minneapolis Star Tribune)
Interstate 94 stretches like a lifeline between Mary L. Anderson’s home in Moorhead and her cancer treatment team in Minneapolis.
She makes the four-hour trip every other month, so doctors can adjust the prosthetics on her face, where the cancer ate into the bone, and make sure the aggressive disease hasn’t returned. But she doesn’t make the journey on her own.
Anderson is one of thousands of Minnesota Medicaid patients who rely on nonemergency medical transportation companies to get to their doctors, chemotherapy and dialysis appointments, or the hospital. Read More…