Health Care

Avera Health Recognized as Top 15 Health Care System in U.S.

Staff with Avera Health this week learned they have been recognized as one of the top healthcare systems in the nation. Representatives with IBM Watson Health attended Avera’s Quality Congress, a day-long event that recognizes the exceptional initiatives and quality care among staff, to make the surprise announcement. Avera Health is now considered among the nation’s Top 15 Health Systems. …

Avera Health Named Among Nation’s Top 15 Health Systems

Avera Health has been named one of the nation’s 15 Top Health Systems by IBM Watson HealthTM . The study uses publicly available clinical, operational and patient satisfaction metrics and data to reach its conclusions. This year, Avera Health was among 337 health systems evaluated, and 2,961 member hospitals. This is the first time Avera Health has been recognized with this…

Avera Health Acquiring More Health Facilities in Minnesota

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – South Dakota-based Avera Health is acquiring more health facilities in the Minnesota community of Marshall. Carris Health Marshall has signed a letter of intent to integrate with Avera’s Marshall-based operations. Avera Marshall will take over operations of Carris’ clinic and surgery center. About 150 workers will become Avera employees. The Sioux Falls-based health care provider says…

Free Health Fair Saturday in Sioux Falls

Health Connect of SD to offer children free hair cuts, lunch, health screenings

  Keeping kids and families healthy is the focus of the Annual Health Connect Fair. Organizers say over 400 attended last year’s event. This year, they’re hoping to reach even more, knowing there is incredible need in the community for even basic health care services. Will Bushee, President of the Board for Health Connect of South Dakota, was in with…

Social Security Beneficiaries, Expect an Increase in Benefits

WASHINGTON – Tens of millions of Social Security beneficiaries and other retirees can expect an increase in benefits next year as inflation edges higher. The government announced a cost-of-living adjustment of 2.8 percent on Thursday. That would mean an extra $39 a month for the average retired worker. Seniors count on the money to help keep pace with rising prices…

Iowa Hospital System Alerts Patients to Cyber Breach

WEST DES MOINES, Iowa – A major Iowa hospital and medical clinic system has notified about 1.4 million patients and former patients about a computer breach that might have exposed their personal information. UnityPoint Health officials say hackers used broke into the company’s email system and could have obtained medical information. UnityPoint’s privacy officer, RaeAnn Isaacson, said Monday the company…

New Teletype Machines Coming Online for Deaf and Blind Veterans

OMAHA, Neb. – The health care system for Nebraska and western Iowa veterans has ordered teletype machines so deaf or blind veterans can contact the Veterans Affairs Department. The Omaha World-Herald reports that the VA’s Nebraska-Western Iowa Health Care System said last week that it’s ordered some of the machines. One will go in the lobby of the VA hospital…

New Rehabilitation Unit Added at the Avera Prairie Center

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. — A Sioux Falls health system now has more to offer patients struggling with life-changing injuries and diseases. Open space on the 5th floor at the Avera Prairie Center is now a new rehabilitation unit. It features a therapy gym along with 24 private rooms and a cafe. The old unit is on the 2nd floor of the…

Deer Escorted Back Out Window of Health Care Facility

Officials in Aberdeen say the doe crashed through window of empty room

ABERDEEN, S.D. – A deer left a South Dakota health care facility in worse shape than when it entered. The American News reports the white-tailed doe crashed through a window of an empty room at Aberdeen Health and Rehab on Tuesday morning. Marketing Director Mike Brown says the animal might have been clipped by a car on a nearby highway…

Sign-ups Show Health Law’s Staying Power In Trump Era

WASHINGTON (AP) – A deadline burst of sign-ups is punctuating a tumultuous year for former President Barack Obama’s health care law. The strong finish for HealthCare.gov reveals continued consumer demand for the program’s subsidized individual health plans. But troubles aren’t over for the Affordable Care Act. Actions by the Republican-led Congress and the Trump administration could undermine the ACA’s insurance…

DocuTAP Adds More Staff, Expands Offices Nationally

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – Sioux Falls based DocuTAP, one of the nation’s fastest growing health care companies and providers of electronic medical records announced a major expansion. The company recently signed on three new major urgent care customers nationwide, expanded its service to over 100 new urgent care clinics, and added more 70 new staff here locally. DocuTAP is also opening…

Hurricane Maria Damage Impacting Health Care Industry

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. – It’s been over a month since Hurricane Maria wreaked havoc on the island of Puerto Rico. Many houses and businesses were damaged, and for some, electricity is still down. The impact of this storm is now affecting the medical industry, including Sanford Health right here in Sioux Falls. One of the main manufacturers of the solution…

Dakotas Nonprofit Urges People To Get Health Coverage Early

SIOUX FALLS, S.D. (AP) – A Dakotas nonprofit is urging consumers who buy health insurance on their own to sign up early through the Affordable Care Act marketplace. The open enrollment period for 2018 health coverage began Wednesday and runs until Dec. 15, 2017, a sign-up period six weeks shorter than last year’s. Community HealthCare Association of the Dakotas CEO…

2018 Individual Health Insurance Marketplace Opens

CEO of Avera Health Plan recommends health care consumers decide quickly, but shop around before buying

Open enrollment for Obamacare 2018 starts this week but with major changes that could affect thousands in South Dakota. The enrollment period is shorter than in years past, there will be minor scheduled interruptions to the process, and plans may cost more than consumers were originally expecting given the President’s slashing of subsidies to providers. It all means that, on…

Concerns Over Sanford Health Merger

Regulators in North Dakota say the move would violate antitrust law

BISMARCK, N.D. – A hearing is underway on a move by the Federal Trade Commission and the North Dakota Attorney General’s Office to block the proposed merger of Dakotas-based Sanford Health and Bismarck’s Mid Dakota Clinic. Regulators say a merger would violate antitrust law, and they want a judge to stop it until a formal FTC hearing later this month…

Open Enrollment To Begin Wednesday Under Affordable Care Act

ST. PAUL, Minn. (AP) – Open enrollment under the Affordable Care Act begins Wednesday, and there could be some problems for states that rely on the federal marketplace, now that the Trump administration has slashed spending. Also, the signup period has been cut in half, to six weeks. And the online marketplace, healthcare.gov, will be shut down for 12 hours…

States Ask US Court To Keep Up Health Subsidies Cut By Trump

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) – Top government lawyers representing 19 U.S. states on Wednesday asked a federal judge in California to force the administration of President Donald Trump to make health care subsidy payments that Trump abruptly cut off last week. The monthly payments would normally be scheduled to go out Friday. The states, led by California Attorney General Xavier Becerra,…

Uncertainty Reigns Ahead Of New Health Care Sign-Up Period

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) – Americans across the country are grappling with unanswered questions as they prepare to select their health insurance plans when the new sign-up period for the Affordable Care Act begins in two weeks. The uncertainty is especially pronounced in Iowa, which is seeking last-minute federal approval to revamp its insurance market. The confusion, of course, is…