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Natchez hospital gets OK for heart services

NATCHEZ — State health officials have approved plans by Natchez Regional Medical Center to reopen its catheterization lab. The state approved the plans Tuesday. NRMC officials have said that with the approval the hospital can have heart testing services patient-ready by late November. The services had not been offered at NRMC since 2007. Natchez Community Hospital dropped its opposition to ...

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UnitedHealth's 3Q profit rises 23 percent

INDIANAPOLIS — Insurer UnitedHealth Group Inc. said Tuesday its third-quarter profit jumped 23 percent, propelled in part by premium growth, enrollment gains and moderate health care use. The Minnetonka, Minn., managed care company also raised its 2010 profit expectation for the second time this year. It now expects earnings per share to range from $3.85 to $3.95, up from a ...

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Calif. first to OK insurance exchange per health care reform

State exchange plans must be approved by Jan. 1, 2013 Source: amednews.com WASHINGTON — California has become the first state to create a health insurance marketplace as envisioned under the national health reform law. “Every state is going to have to have some sort of legislative action on this,” said Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger, chair of the Health Insurance ...

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Study: Obesity care costs twice previous estimates

ATLANTA – New research suggests that almost 17 percent of medical costs in the U.S. can be blamed on obesity. It suggests that the nation’s weight problem may be having close to twice the impact as previously estimated. The new study pegs annual obesity-related costs around $168 billion. The new research was done by John Cawley of Cornell University and ...

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6 projects underway at Biloxi VA hospital

BILOXI- – Six major expansion projects costing $150 million are in progress at the Veterans Affairs hospital complex in Biloxi. Officials expect much the work to be completed next year, according to The Sun Herald. The Biloxi complex, built in the 1930s, has taken on more patients since the Gulfport Veterans Affairs hospital closed just after Hurricane Katrina in 2005. ...

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Judge lets states' healthcare suit go forward

A Florida judge ruled Thursday that U.S. states can proceed with a lawsuit seeking to overturn health care reform, according to Reuters. Mississippi has joined Florida and 18 other states participating in the suit. U.S. District Judge Roger Vinson had said at a hearing last month that he would block efforts by the Justice Department to dismiss the lawsuit. Apart ...

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UMMC 1st in MS to implant new heart device

JACKSON – A University of Mississippi Health Care surgical team placed the state’s first implantable left ventricular assist device (LVAD) in Jackie Kirkman of Tupelo, improving her chances for an eventual heart transplant. The LVAD, called a bridge to transplantation, is a mechanical blood pump that assumes some of the work for the heart. It’s reserved for end-stage heart failure ...

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MS to hire 1st medical examiner in 15 years

JACKSON – Mississippi is expected to hire its first medical examiner in 15 years by Nov. 1, and Department of Public Safety Commissioner Steve Simpson said he’s hopeful at least two other associate pathologists will soon be on board to help handle the state’s autopsy cases. “We have one doctor who has an engagement letter to come here Nov. 1. ...

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Another West Nile virus case identified

LEFLORE COUNTY — Health officials say one new case of West Nile virus has been reported in Mississippi, bringing the state total to six so far this year. The Mississippi Department of Health said in a news release that the new case occurred in an adult in Leflore County. So far this year, there have been three positive WNV cases ...

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Bill would ease outpatient therapy supervision requirements

Source: Mississippi Hospital Association The American Hospital Association on Oct. 6 voiced support for H.R. 6376, legislation that would allow general supervision by a physician for many outpatient therapy services. Introduced by Rep. Earl Pomeroy (D-ND), the bill would require the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services to allow a default setting of general physician supervision, rather than direct supervision, ...

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