Health Care

Physician assistants want OK to prescribe drugs: Bill would make Indiana last state to allow itRestricted Content

March 19, 2007
J.K. Wall
Indiana could see a wave of new physician assistants working here if lawmakers allow the medical technicians to prescribe medicine. So say the proponents of House Bill 1241, now being debated in the Indiana Senate. They claim Indiana, as the only state yet to grant the prescribing prerogative, forces doctors to hire fewer physician assistants and so loses health care workers to other states. That's a particularly important issue in rural and some urban areas, where doctors are scarce. Because...
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BEHIND THE NEWS: WellPoint succession breeds unease on Wall StreetRestricted Content

March 12, 2007
This isn't the Well-Point Inc. way. The last two times the Indianapolisbased health insurer appointed a CEO-when Ben Lytle took the job in 1989 and Larry Glasscock succeeded him in 1999-there was no drama. The board had publicly, and painstakingly, groomed the new leader. WellPoint did nothing remotely similar this time around. As CIBC World Markets analyst Carl McDonald pointedly observed in a research note, "There's clearly a gap in succession planning when a company of Well-Point's size has to...
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Software firm finally making name for itself: Fusion quietly becomes giant in local tech industryRestricted Content

March 5, 2007
Scott Olson
Doug Brown might not know how to name a company, but he sure knows how to grow one. CEO Brown, 46, co-founded Fusion Alliance Inc. in 1994 along with Tim Shaw, who is no longer active in the firm. The company has since blossomed into the Indianapolis-area's's largest software developer, with 196 staff and contract software engineers and programmers. Much of the growth coincides with the decision in 2000 to rechristen the northwest-side company from its original and less glamorous...
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EYE ON THE PIE: What's wrong with property taxes?Restricted Content

March 5, 2007
Morton Marcus
So much is going on in the Indiana General Assembly that it makes my head spin, which makes me dizzy and unfit for driving safely on the roads. That, plus the recent heavy snows, has made me a hermit. To re-enter society, I called Dr. Werner von Fizzle, the only psychologist I know who provides at-home consultations. As he sat down, Dr. von F asked, "Do you have some tonic vater?" I nodded and rose to fill his request. "And,"...
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Doctor grows magazine with unusual strategy: Circulation hits 100,000 nationally and still climbingRestricted Content

March 5, 2007
Anthony Schoettle
A Carmel-based doctor turned publisher is celebrating his magazine's first anniversary by rolling out plans to take his publishing and health care businesses nationwide. Radius magazine is poised for rapid growth due to its "no fluff" content, according to its founder, Dev Brar, who founded Carmel-based Nightingale Home Healthcare in 1996. Both businesses are operating out of a new headquarters at 1036 S. Rangeline Road, and Brar is hoping the two will grow hand-in-hand. Brar is using Radius to market...
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NOTIONS Bruce Hetrick: A buck-a-pack increased tax for the health we lackRestricted Content

February 26, 2007
After our Valentine's Day wedding, my bride and I took a few days off for a brief New York City honeymoon. We walked nearly everywhere, used public transportation when we wanted to go farther and bought our food and drink in jam-packed, smoke-free restaurants and bars (the only kind there are in New York, thanks to a several-years-old, levelthe-playing-field, smoke-free workplace law). I liked being able to dine anywhere and everywhere with clean indoor air. I liked the exercise from...
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New NFIB boss knows politics: State chapter to devote more time to campaignsRestricted Content

February 26, 2007
Jennifer Whitson
Kevin Hughes cut his teeth in the political world. Now he's taking a bite out of small business, as the new state director for the National Federation of Independent Business. Hughes, 30, has never owned his own business, but he worked for six years at the Ohio State Legislature as a legislative aide and for the Senate Republicans there. He also worked on several campaigns. In 2004, Hughes took a job as the Midwest regional political director for NFIB in...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Markets pay a premium for the college-educatedRestricted Content

February 26, 2007
Patrick Barkey
Nothing erases the thrill of getting a raise from your employer faster than the news that someone else got a bigger one. We care about how much money our friends, neighbors and coworkers make-not always in a benevolent sense-even though there is usually little we can do about it. The trappings of material wealth are all around us, and it is almost impossible, it seems, not to get caught up in the game. But despair over disparities in income and...
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MICKEY MAURER Commentary: A plug for non-partisan policy makingRestricted Content

February 12, 2007
MICKEY MAURER Commentary A plug for non-partisan policy making In my final week as secretary of commerce, I appeared at a hearing before the State Budget Committee on behalf of the Indiana Economic Development Corp. The hearing was the first step in the reauthorization process for operating budget and incentive program funding for fiscal years 2008 and 2009. It was to be my final presentation at the Statehouse. In an effort to demonstrate that the Legislature was reaping a handsome...
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ECONOMIC ANALYSIS: Earmarking taxes in vogue, but is it good state policy?Restricted Content

February 12, 2007
Patrick Barkey
I was taught economics, and in particular, the subject of public finance, by a faculty dominated by old Kennedy Democrats. A lot of that teaching has rubbed off or has simply been forgotten. Much of it also could be dismissed as idealism, a sort of ivory-tower thinking not relevant to the real world. Yet as I scan and digest the various tax proposals now in front of the Indiana General Assembly, several of those old lessons keep coming to my...
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BRIAN WILLIAMS Commentary: Good legislation to promote good healthRestricted Content

February 12, 2007
BRIAN WILLIAMS Commentary Good legislation to promote good health The newly elected and re-elected men and women of the Indiana General Assembly will debate and vote on many issues of importance during the 2007 session. One legislative proposal upon which members of the General Assembly and governor should quickly reach consensus is the proposal put forth in House Bill 1160, authored by Rep. Craig Fry, D-Mishawaka, and Senate Bill 114, authored by Sen. Beverly Gard, R-Greenfield, that would change the...
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VOICES FROM THE INDUSTRY: A positive shift in health care: It's OK to say you're sorryRestricted Content

February 5, 2007
Laura N.
Last September, when tragic errors led to the deaths of three infants at Indianapolis' Methodist Hospital, the hospital did something that, just a few years ago, might have seemed unthinkable: It acknowledged the tragedy and admitted that mistakes were made. "We are all saddened by this news and our hearts are with this family and all the families who have been affected," a hospital spokesman told The Indianapolis Star. Added Methodist President and CEO Sam Odle, "Ultimately, the blame for...
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Providers have new rules to take on Medicaid fraud: Many companies required to educate employeesRestricted Content

February 5, 2007
Scott Olson
A federal law that took effect Jan. 1 requires hospitals and others serving the Medicaid population to teach their employees how to detect fraud and report it to the government. Medicaid is the joint federal-state program that provides health insurance coverage to the needy and is prone to abuse. In an effort to reduce abuse, the legislation requires companies that do at least $5 million annually in Medicaid business to educate all employees and officers on how to spot fraud....
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Advocacy firms finding business in confused patients: Health care complexities creating new industryRestricted Content

February 5, 2007
Scott Olson
Duane Etienne's role as the leader of a local elder-care agency provides him the benefit of knowing how to navigate the intricacies of the modern medical maze more than most. Yet, the 65-year-old admitted he still had trouble deciphering the fine print on his parents' insurance policies. "It's just too complicated," said Etienne, president of the local CICOA Aging & In-Home Solutions. "I work this business every day, and it's complex for me. But I've got people I can go...
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Indiana health provider says no to drug reps: Arnett joins others wary of industry marketing powerRestricted Content

February 5, 2007
Tom Murphy
There truly is no such thing as a free lunch, or at least that's what Arnett Health-System told drug company sales representatives last fall. The Lafayette-based system banned meals for doctors that were paid for by the salespeople, but it allowed them to continue to meet with physicians through appointments. Then that stopped Jan. 1. Now, Arnett also prohibits reps from making sales calls at its roughly 20 locations in Tippecanoe County and the surrounding area. No more free samples...
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VIEWPOINT: Let's create a culture of hospital safetyRestricted Content

January 29, 2007
Vincent C.
As Hoosiers jump into this new year, it is important that all Indiana health care providers resolve to improve patient safety. Since health care providers hold the public trust, they have a responsibility to all patients to deliver optimal health care in a safe environment. Studies show that most medical errors result from "system" errors, not people errors, so our state must create a culture of safety that encourages our medical professionals to report errors and highlight processes and procedures...
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NOTIONS: How to use Colts euphoria to enhance a communityRestricted Content

January 29, 2007
Bruce Hetrick
After the Indianapolis Colts beat the New England Patriots to win a trip to Super Bowl XLI, my fiancée and I jumped up and down in the living room and pumped our fists in the air. The cat, who was scared out of his wits, escaped up the stairs. After a celebratory phone call from my son Zach in Fort Wayne, we threw on our coats and jogged the six blocks from our downtown home to the RCA Dome, where...
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Corporate shopping spree: Massive Guidant deal helps make 2006 a record-setting year for local M&A activityRestricted Content

January 29, 2007
Scott Olson
Last year was a record-shattering period for the Indianapolis-area merger and acquisition market, thanks in large part to the loss of one public corporation. Guidant Corp.'s acquisition by Boston Scientific Corp. for $28.4 billion last year and the related sale of its vascular business to Abbott Laboratories for $4.1 billion made the 2006 Big Deals list bigger than ever. That's because the two deals made up about 85 percent of the $38.5 billion of M&A activity tracked down by the...
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A lonely number for IPOs in Indiana: Calumet joins short list of Indiana companies to go public this decadeRestricted Content

January 29, 2007
Scott Olson
A little-known refining and petroleum products company on the city's west side has the distinction of being the only company in the state to go public in 2006. Calumet Specialty Products Partners LP filed its initial public offering last January. It completed the process in June by selling 5.7 million shares of stock at $21.50 each, ultimately raising $122.5 million. Shares since have nearly doubled in value, thanks in part to rising prices in the petroleum industry. While Calumet's decision...
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Doctor report cards may boost care, pay: New pay-for-performance model prepares for testingRestricted Content

January 22, 2007
Tom Murphy
The designers of a pay-for-performance plan for doctors are about to put their theories to work. The Quality Health 1st of Indiana program will start testing its unique system for measuring performance in the next three months, and it might lead to bonus payments for doctors by the second half of 2007. Big in-state insurers like M-Plan Inc. and Anthem Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Indiana back the initiative, and several large doctor groups have signed up, too, said...
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VIEWPOINT: Let's improve the health of working poorRestricted Content

January 15, 2007
Sue Anne
On a cold and rainy day and wearing only a thin jacket, Maria walked eight miles to get help. She was pregnant and seeking prenatal care. Her husband had deserted her. The pervasiveness of unemployed and working-poor families presents a growing challenge. Most are underinsured or have no health insurance at all. That means our charity-care system is stretched to the maximum. One north-side center that provides care for the uninsured and underinsured has seen a 15-percent increase in patients...
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State to privatize mental-health hospitalRestricted Content

January 15, 2007
Jennifer Whitson
State officials are advancing plans to privatize a state-run hospital for the mentally ill and now are looking for a not-for-profit to build and manage a new facility in Indianapolis.
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St. Francis plans another south-side growth spurt: Hospital system looks to build on 30 acres adjacent to Indianapolis campusRestricted Content

January 8, 2007
Tom Murphy
The youth soccer teams that fill the playing fields near St. Francis Hospital-Indianapolis will take their matches elsewhere next spring to accommodate another expansion by the burgeoning hospital. St. Francis Hospital and Health Centers wants to build on 30 acres of land near the south-side hospital and Interstate 65, according to paperwork filed with Marion County. An acute-care bed tower, medical offices and a cancer center are among the expansion possibilities for the campus, which the Beech Grove-based hospital system...
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STATEHOUSE DISPATCH: Think the state's awash in cash? Think againRestricted Content

January 8, 2007
Ed Feigenbaum
Most observers assume there will be a confrontation between House Democrats, led by Speaker Pat Bauer, D-South Bend, and Republican Gov. Mitch Daniels this session. They suggest it's like watching a hockey game and just waiting for a big fight. But confrontation need not be a synonym for breakdown , and while legislative Democrats and Daniels have some different philosophies about the role of government, they also have some basic agreements on just what should be accomplished before the end...
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Buyout frenzy hits Indiana firms:Restricted Content

January 1, 2007
- Greg
The year closed with two multibilliondollar buyouts of Indiana public companies-Carmel-based Adesa Inc. and Warsaw-based Biomet Inc. It was a fitting way to wrap up what was a record year for U.S. buyouts, many of them launched by deep-pocketed private equity firms. Adesa, an operator of auto auctions, announced Dec. 22 that it will be sold to a group of private-equity investors, including New York-based Goldman Sachs Group Inc., for $3.7 billion. Four days earlier, Biomet, a maker of orthopedic...
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  1. With Pence running the ship good luck with a new government building on the site. He does everything on the cheap except unnecessary roads line a new beltway( like we need that). Things like state of the art office buildings and light rail will never be seen as an asset to these types. They don't get that these are the things that help a city prosper.

  2. Does the $100,000,000,000 include salaries for members of Congress?

  3. "But that doesn't change how the piece plays to most of the people who will see it." If it stands out so little during the day as you seem to suggest maybe most of the people who actually see it will be those present when it is dark enough to experience its full effects.

  4. That's the mentality of most retail marketers. In this case Leo was asked to build the brand. HHG then had a bad sales quarter and rather than stay the course, now want to go back to the schlock that Zimmerman provides (at a considerable cut in price.) And while HHG salesmen are, by far, the pushiest salesmen I have ever experienced, I believe they are NOT paid on commission. But that doesn't mean they aren't trained to be aggressive.

  5. The reason HHG's sales team hits you from the moment you walk through the door is the same reason car salesmen do the same thing: Commission. HHG's folks are paid by commission they and need to hit sales targets or get cut, while BB does not. The sales figures are aggressive, so turnover rate is high. Electronics are the largest commission earners along with non-needed warranties, service plans etc, known in the industry as 'cheese'. The wholesale base price is listed on the cryptic price tag in the string of numbers near the bar code. Know how to decipher it and you get things at cost, with little to no commission to the sales persons. Whether or not this is fair, is more of a moral question than a financial one.

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