hospitals

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A new public health awareness campaign is underway in Kentucky aimed at educating physicians and the public about the dangers of overprescribing antibiotics. 

Statistics from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention show Kentucky has the highest rate of antibiotic use in the U.S. Bethany Wattles is with the Department of Pediatrics at the University of Louisville School of Medicine, and is part of the new campaign called Kentucky Antibiotic Awareness (KAA).

Owensboro Health

Owensboro Health Regional Hospital has been working with a third party since August of 2018 to create a dashboard with prices and market comparisons. The hospital is complying with a new federal law requiring hospitals across the country to post prices for stays, procedures, drugs, services and supplies.

“This is an opportunity for us to empower our consumers and patients, to understand more about pricing. And we want to be a very transparent and open organization,” said director of marketing and public relations Brian Hamby.

Lisa Gillespie

Cathy Rhoden-Goguen’s first experience with ‘Do Not Resuscitate’ orders came last year, two days after her father, Robert Rhoden, was admitted to Baptist Health Corbin with abdominal pain. Her phone rang at 5:24 a.m., and a nurse told her she needed to get to the hospital. Her father’s heart rate was dropping.

“So I ask her, ‘Has he been moved to ICU?’ And she said that he had a DNR, so they couldn’t move him to ICU,” Rhoden-Goguen said.

Thirteen minutes later, before she could get to the hospital, her father’s heart stopped and he died. He was 76 years old.

“There was no treatment and the basis for them refusing to treat him was the fact that he had signed a DNR,” Rhoden-Goguen said.


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If you go to the hospital this year, there will likely be a small decrease in your bill from previous years.

That’s because hospitals in Kentucky saw the lowest rates of charity care in 2015 since before Medicaid expansion went into effect four years ago.

But it might not last.

Charity care refers to the services hospitals provide patients who can’t pay because they don’t have insurance. Hospitals get paid back for this partially by the state and federal government, but they pass the remaining cost on to insured people.

In 2015, Kentucky hospitals had $552 million in charity care costs, compared with $2.4 billion four years ago.

The findings on uncompensated care come from a new report from the Foundation for a Healthy Kentucky report out last week.

A big reason for the dip is likely from the state’s expanded Medicaid program.

Caverna Memorial

A Hart County hospital is being acquired by The Medical Center of Bowling Green.

At an announcement in Horse Cave Monday morning, the leadership of Caverna Memorial Hospital said it had agreed to the deal, which will be complete by the end of the year. Under the plan, Caverna Memorial will be known as The Medical Center at Caverna.

Caverna Memorial has been independently operated since 1967, and is a 25-bed, non-profit critical access hospital.

The Medical Center executive vice-president Wade Stone says the increasingly complex and expensive nature of health care is making it tough for rural hospitals to remain independently-operated.

“It’s making sense for hospitals like Caverna—small rural hospitals—to start looking for options in terms of partnering, or being part of an acquisition, to make sure they have the resources they need to survive long-term.”