Health Care

IU seeking funding to help alleviate doctor shortage: Medical school wants extra $5 million from Legislature to tackle projected shortfall of 1,300 physicians by 2025Restricted Content

October 20, 2008
Scott Olson
An acute physician shortage in Indiana is driving a request for an additional $5 million in annual funding to expand enrollment at the state's only medical school. The Indiana University School of Medicine's Physician Workforce Task Force conducted a study in 2006 that found the state already had 3,500 fewer physicians than it should. Indiana had 12,534 doctors in 2005-a number that remains relatively flat because the medical school churns out the same number of graduates each year. Over the...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Starting from scratch best hope for health care systemRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Leroy B.
A person's DNA may someday determine how doctors diagnose illness and prescribe affordable treatment. That same genetic makeup also might help doctors determine whether a person suffering from cancer might be predisposed to respond or not respond to chemotherapy or another type of innovative or experimental treatment. That future picture of health care delivery, however, is missing a key piece. It doesn't address what those advancements might mean for health insurance and other related questions about medical coverage. Our current...
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Ex-Lilly executives open 'trials' clinic: Centurion expects high demand from drug firmsRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Scott Olson
A new clinic that is on the cusp of conducting human trials in Indianapolis could distinguish itself as a key player in drug development, not only within the state, but nationally as well. Centurion Clinical Research LLC serves pharmaceutical companies and medical-device makers that need to test their products before they can be approved for widespread use. That first phase, in which healthy people are paid to participate in the overnight studies, is critical in determining the safety and success...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Worksite wellness encourages steps to healthier firmRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Patrick J.
Over the past several years, employers have seen a movement from traditional PPO health plans to consumer-driven health plans, by implementing qualified high-deductible plans such as health savings accounts. This shift has been viewed by most to have initially lowered overall employer and employee cost, but more importantly, it has gotten the employee more involved in their health care choices. Fortunately, consumer-driven health care plans are not the only answer in reducing employer costs. According to the Towers Perrin 2008...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: Taking a few minutes to take control of your health careRestricted Content

October 20, 2008
Robert W.
In recent months, all of us have been affected to some extent by economic uncertainty. At a time like this, we need to make well-informed decisions on how we spend our money, now and in the future. Health care spending is one area where people are looking more than ever to get the most value in return for their investment. The rising cost of health care should encourage everyone to explore their health benefit options. But despite rough economic times,...
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More small businesses allowed to jump in pools: Law lets employers join together for cheaper ratesRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Scott Olson
Small businesses in Indiana stung by rising health care costs now can band together to broker better deals from insurance providers. The rule from the Indiana Department of Insurance took effect in late August and is the final piece of a 2007 health care expansion state lawmakers financed with a 44-cent increase in the cigarette tax. The pooling program is open to businesses with two to 50 employees and is meant to give them strength in numbers so, in essence,...
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NOTIONS: The perils and pitfalls of pulling the party leverRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Bruce Hetrick
My sister-in-law is a deputy county prosecutor in Michigan. By all accounts, she's good at her job. But that may not matter. You see, my sisterin-law's boss is up for re-election next month. And because his job is on the line, so is hers. So in addition to her day job, my sister-in-law has been working nights and weekends on the campaign. My sister-in-law is passionate about putting away bad guys. She'd like to keep doing it. But it's not...
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IP law illuminates growing field for women: Increase mirrors rising number of Internet companies and inventionsRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Della Pacheco
But more than a century later, women are protecting more than their own assets-they're increasingly looking out for the intellectual property of business owners large and small. One of the hottest practice groups within law firms today, intellectual property law falls into four basic areas: copyrights, trademarks, patents and publicity rights. With the exception of patent law, which requires a background in science or engineering, no specialized undergraduate degree is required. Gary Roberts, dean and the Gerald L. Bepko professor...
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Mild bump expected in benefits: Despite modest rise in premiums, employers look to pass on costsRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Scott Olson
Several industry surveys predict health insurance expenses will rise at a slower pace in 2009 than in previous years. Many employers, however, are passing the added burden on to workers. Raising deductibles, copayments or out-of-pocket spending limits are the most common ways companies plan to reduce their increases. The trend of passing more of the responsibility to employees has escalated the past five years, giving rise to cheaper alternatives such as consumer-directed health plans. "The tie that binds is that...
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Lawsuit raises questions about prison privatization: Complaint alleges abuse of mentally ill inmatesRestricted Content

October 13, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
A newly filed federal lawsuit alleging widespread abuse of Indiana inmates raises questions about the state's privatization of prison health care. The Indiana Protection and Advocacy Services Commission, a not-for-profit watchdog organization, sued the Indiana Department of Correction on Oct. 1, charging it regularly segregates mentally ill prisoners into isolation for 23 hours a day. According to the suit, the prisoners are punished by stripping away their clothes and being fed a diet consisting entirely of "nutraloaf," described as "a...
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Firm off to a FAST start: Investors backing company's kidney assessment technologyRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Scott Olson
FAST Diagnostics quickly is becoming one of the more promising companies in Indiana University's efforts to commercialize its discoveries. Incorporated in November 2006, it is developing a method to measure kidney function faster and more accurately than existing techniques can. While FAST represents speed, the name actually stands for functional assessment and surveillance technology. The fledgling firm so far has attracted more than $4 million from investors, including $2 million from the state's 21st Century Fund. BioCrossroads, Rose Hulman Ventures...
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EDITORIAL: Signs of hope as many retreat: Some shrug off economic fearsRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Signs of hope as many retreat Some shrug off economic fears The front page of this week's IBJ tells of companies that are in dire straits-or out of business-after banks, jittery about a financial collapse, called their loans or canceled their credit line. Stories like these put a local face on the economic crisis that has gripped the American psyche in the last two weeks unlike anything since the terrorist attacks of 9/11. Anyone who didn't realize credit's vital role...
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Arcadia banking on DailyMed: Company hopes product sales can help it escape debt, lift stockRestricted Content

October 6, 2008
Peter Schnitzler
When Arcadia Resources Inc. moved from Southfield, Mich., to Indianapolis last fall, the Indiana Economic Development Corp. crowed with pride. In exchange for incentives worth more than $6 million, the state had landed the headquarters of a publicly traded life sciences firm with more than 5,000 employees. Even better, the company was ready to launch an innovative new product that promises to improve home health care while simultaneously reducing its cost. A year has passed, but investors still aren't as...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: This Thanksgiving, start making plans for the futureRestricted Content

September 29, 2008
Steven P.
Many of us will visit parents over Thanksgiving and the holiday might be just the time to have a hard-to-hold conversation about financial preparedness. While it can be a difficult conversation to have, its important for adult children to check in with aging parents to make sure they have a plan for retirement and estate needs. It is estimated that about 50 percent of American adults do not have a will, which can result in losing control of your financial...
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EDITORIAL: Waiting for fallout of Wall Street rout: More regulation in our future?Restricted Content

September 22, 2008
Waiting for fallout of Wall Street rout More regulation in our future? At IBJ deadline, Wall Street was suffering through one of the most tumultuous weeks in its history, and there was no end in sight to the worry consuming investors. The $85 billion Federal Reserve bailout of American International Group Inc. on Sept. 16 did little to shore up markets that had plunged the day before, after Lehman Brothers declared bankruptcy and Bank of America rescued Merrill Lynch. The...
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Tough economy touching all industries, but some are hurting more than othersRestricted Content

September 22, 2008
Anthony Schoettle, Cory Schouten

Stock markets are falling, jobs are disappearing, and the outlook for the economy seems grim. Banks, real estate developers, retailers and manufacturers are taking the worst hits, but all types of businesses in central Indiana are hurting. From health care to technology, education to philanthropy, every industry is trying to take the setbacks in stride.


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Lilly Endowment crawls toward diversification goal: Bear market, low Lilly stock price slow selloffRestricted Content

September 15, 2008
J.K. Wall
Lilly Endowment Inc. is still on its journey to sell off $2 billion of its Eli Lilly and Co. shares. But after a slow start and a few stops for rest, it may take a little longer to get there than originally thought. The endowment, the single largest holder of Lilly stock, announced its plan to diversify its holdings back in July 2006. For nearly 70 years, the not-for-profit held its wealth almost exclusively in the pharmaceutical company's stock. So...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: Cautious streak helps Duke weather tumultuous timesRestricted Content

September 15, 2008
Greg Andrews
Duke Realty Corp. has stayed largely out of the headlines this year, which in an economy like this is a pretty good sign. Another Indianapolis developer, Lauth Property Group, has shed more than half its 450-person work force, and Premier Properties Inc.- perhaps the city's most daring developer-lurched into bankruptcy court. Meanwhile, Duke, which specializes in suburban office and industrial development, keeps on chugging. To be sure, the company isn't immune to broader economic slowdown. In April, it laid off...
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Benefits brokers dive deeper into wellness: Employers look to prevention to lower health costsRestricted Content

September 8, 2008
J.K. Wall
Gibson Insurance Group is the latest benefits broker to get more serious about wellness. The South Bend-based firm, which has an office in Indianapolis, has hired a dedicated wellness director to help its clients refine and assess their wellness programs for workers. Nicole Fallowfield, the former vice president of sales for Principal Wellness Co. in Indianapolis, will work out of Gibson's downtown Indianapolis office but serve Gibson's clients throughout Indiana. By hiring Fallowfield, Gibson joins a budding trend among brokers...
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Commentary: Indiana law chases away talentRestricted Content

September 8, 2008
Mickey Maurer
The Wellness Community of Central Indiana was established in 1995 as a not-for-profit organization to provide free support, education and hope to individuals and families affected by cancer. At The Wellness Community, cancer patients can share experiences and lend one another encouragement informally or through programs facilitated by professional counselors. The Wellness Community also provides a haven to grieve together in those instances when cancer is the ultimate victor. Today, the folks at The Wellness Community are grieving over a...
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Experts: Building boom not over: Big projects wind down, but new ones fill pipelineRestricted Content

September 8, 2008
Scott Olson
The completion of $2 billion in city construction projects has left a gaping hole in contractor job schedules-as wide as when the roof opens at Lucas Oil Stadium. Even so, industry leaders remain optimistic about staying busy despite the combination of a tepid economy and the end of a local boom that stretched the limits of the labor pool. The $1.1 billion airport midfield terminal project, the $715 million stadium and $150 million Central Library expansion helped to create so...
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Doc pay-for-performance program set to launch: Quality Health First signs up Anthem, 700 doctorsRestricted Content

September 1, 2008
J.K. Wall
After four years of development, a payfor-performance plan for Indianapolisarea doctors will officially launch Oct. 1. Quality Health First, the latest service of the Indiana Health Information Exchange, now has 700 primary-care doctors signed up to receive its reports on the quality of the care they give. And perhaps even more important, the program has contracted with Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Indiana as the first health insurer to offer bonus payments to doctors based on how well...
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Indiana auto insurance rates show uptick, report says: Despite rise, state still among cheapest in nationRestricted Content

August 25, 2008
Scott Olson
Auto insurance rates are climbing nationally, led by increases in Indiana that topped all other states, according to a report released last month by Insurance.com. The online auto insurance agency said the lowest car insurance quotes, on average, jumped 3.4 percent, to $1,893 per year, from the first quarter to the second. Rate increases in Indiana nearly doubled the national average, rising 6.7 percent, or $94, to $1,501. Arkansas and Rhode Island followed, with 6.1-percent and 5-percent spikes, respectively. Sam...
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Ex-WellPoint VP sues, says he was axed for testifying in drug caseRestricted Content

August 18, 2008
J.K. Wall

WellPoint Inc. prides itself on working to hold down the rising cost of health care. But to hear one of its former vice presidents tell it, the company retaliated against him when he worked to do just that. In a lawsuit against WellPoint, Dr. Randy Axelrod claims his former employer forced him out when he tried to curtail a drugmaker's controversial pricing strategy that was costing WellPoint money.


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Creating opportunities in tough times: Tightening economy requires 'patchworking' sources of incomeRestricted Content

August 11, 2008
Della Pacheco
Women aren't leaving the work force to stay home with their kids-they're being forced out in equal numbers with men. That's the word from "Equality in Job Loss: Women are Increasingly Vulnerable to Layoffs During Recessions," a congressional report released July 21. Often women who face job losses decide to forego the job hunt and opt instead for selfemployment, the report said. Might this job downturn trigger a boom in entrepreneurship for women? Not if they don't already have the...
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