TV Shows and Board Games | Board Games

It can be safely said that television plays a very large role in culture today. It is extremely rare to find someone who doesn’t pay attention to the programming on the networks today. This attention starts to bleed out into other forms of entertainment available to the public and this includes the world of board games. Popular television shows are beginning to find some life in the gaming industry and this is a fact that is unlikely to change anytime soon. Fans are becoming more and more outspoken about exactly what they like and when options are available to them to continue to enjoy their interests, especially in the world of board games, they will take them.A number of popular television shows have been given a platform with board games in the form of trivia. Grey’s Anatomy, Sex and the City, I Love Lucy, and Desperate Housewives are just a few of the shows which have been given this trivia game treatment. With these board games, players often compete with each other in questions about the show’s storyline, the actors in the show, and production behind it. Fans who know the most, usually with some lucky throws of the dice, find themselves as the winner of the game. These games feature a simple board that players race around, landing on different spaces that usually denote the type of question that needs to be answered to progress. Trivia games based on popular television shows are usually popular with the fans because not only does it allow them to prove their status as super fans, but to usually learn something new about the show that they did not realize before.Trivia games aren’t the only representation that television shows have in the board game world, however. Different shows are adaptable to different types of games, such as reality television. Some of these reality game shows have been adapted into board games, with Survivor, Big Brother, and The Amazing Race being some of the most popular ones. With Survivor, players race around the board for Immunity by solving different puzzles or trivia questions about survival skills. The first player to reach the end of the board wins the round and Immunity for that turn. Players will then vote one member of the game out of the running and onto the jury. Players who have previously been voted out return at the end of the game to determine the winner between the final two players, much like the show. The Amazing Race board game utilizes a DVD which allows players to experience some of the different cultures of the world while racing through the board, giving it an edge that other board games usually do not provide.Lost gives its fans a strategy board game that changes each time it is played. By laying different tiles across the playing field, the board is built randomly each game and “the island” is never quite the same twice. It allows players to have a variety of different characters from the show and the novelty of this can last quite a while. Television can be a very creative outlet for storytelling and adventure and when these quality cross over into the board games representing the shows, quality entertainment can be enjoyed by all.

Outsourcing Companies Bet On Healthcare Despite Security Concerns | healthcare

If it’s not about healthcare reform, it’s about information technology. Whichever the case, both indicate that healthcare outsourcing is expected to garner a lot of business this year – and healthcare outsourcing providers such as medical coding or medical billing companies know it.Taking into account recent results released by Indian software provider Tata Consultancy Services (NSE:TCS), the company took note that in its last quarter ending December 31st 2010, one of its key wins was a multi-million dollar, multi-year strategic partnership with a healthcare company to provide knowledge process outsourcing (KPO) services in clinical development.Meanwhile, fellow outsourcer and IT solutions provider HCL Technologies (NSE:HCLTECH), who reported quarterly results on the 19th of January, announced strong growth in its healthcare vertical at 7.4%, on top of its better than expected results for the quarter.In terms of the healthcare reform, human resources and recruitment services provider Pinstripe, Inc. has revamped its leadership team with the appointment of Michael Soisson to Healthcare Practice Leader. According to the release dated 18th of January, the appointment will, “drive and promote innovative talent acquisition approaches for meeting the workforce demands being shaped by healthcare reform.”Xerox Corporation (NYSE:XRX) on the other hand is maximizing its solutions with its acquisition of company, WaterWare Internet Services announced on the 31st of January. Waterware is a provider of web application and software development, integration and customization. The acquisition improves on Xerox’s existing Enterprise Content Management (ECM) platform, allowing the company to provide electronic health record capturing and management, as well as pharmacy orders automation, maximizing on the electronic health records trend.Fellow outsourcers Vengroff, Williams and Associates also announced an expansion of its healthcare practice specifically in its revenue cycle management solutions. The release quotes research by Healthcare Finance News, which cited that, “the major complaint among hospital CEO’s and private medical practices lies in the inefficiency of the billing system.” The company has in turn improved on its revenue cycle management services to address this issue.But while more and more companies are focusing and revamping healthcare outsourcing efforts, a survey just recently released by Ponemon Institute as sponsored by data integration company, Informatica (NASDAQ:INFA) on the 1st of February revealed that more than half of healthcare companies do not protect patient data. The survey of healthcare IT professionals found that confidential patient records are not adequately protected from theft or loss, with most at 51% not protecting their data. The research further added that the conception is that outsourcing and cloud computing are increasing the security risk to confidential data, wherein 40% of healthcare organizations would not choose to outsource specifically due to security risks.Even with the current uptick in business in healthcare outsourcing, old concerns specifically issues on security have remained in the industry. Considering that more than half from the survey are not seeing outsourcing as an option specifically due to security concerns in a time when we are seeing increasing adoption of outsourcing in healthcare suggests that the current growth seen is merely a fraction of the true potential that the healthcare industry presents. The challenge now lies in overcoming the issue on security in order to secure higher growth.

Rising Healthcare Costs and Outsourcing | healthcare

The cost of healthcare in the US has been steadily increasing in the past few years, and according to some projections by consultancy firms, the trend will continue. This has lead to increasing acceptance of outsourcing by different hospitals and healthcare providers across the country. Information technology, medical transcription, medical billing, and medical coding outsourcing have been increasing in response to the need to reduce cost.Healthcare Costs On the RiseOn the 15th of September, New York based consultancy firm, Towers Watson (NYSE:TW), projected an 8.2% increase in employer health care costs for 2011. According to Ron Fontanetta, senior health care consultant with Towers Watson, “Employees today are adjusting to historically lower-than-average merit pay increases, while at the same time facing higher health care contributions, copays and deductibles. This combination could adversely affect many employees and intensify the growing affordability crisis.”Meanwhile, Chicago based company, Hewitt Associates (NYSE:HEW), estimates that it may be as much as 9%. In Chicago, the projection is as high as 12.4%. The figure is the highest it’s been in five years.In a statement by Hewitt’s health care practice leader Ken Sperling said, “Employers continue to struggle to balance the significant health care needs of an aging workforce with the economic realities of a difficult business environment.”The report attributes the increase to an aging workforce, coupled with increasing costs of technology as well as the health care reform act.Cost And OutsourcingThere’s certainly no doubt that the cost of healthcare is increasing and in response, healthcare providers and hospitals are struggling to maximize revenue while minimizing expenses in order to reduce the cost on consumers.One example is Hendrick Medical Center, who, on the 7th of September, signed a managed service and recruitment process outsourcing contract with AMN Healthcare Services (NYSE:AHS). Ralph Henderson, AMN President for the Nursing and Allied divisions, said that the contract would result in, “lower bill rates and operational costs, reduced liability and mitigated insurance risks, and increased compliance with clinical standards.”Outsourcers in the meantime are expanding into the healthcare space in order to take advantage of the opportunity.As MaryAnne Pace, co-founder of company, Health BluePrints stated, “Healthcare providers are looking for solutions to increase net cash, achieve revenue cycle performance improvement, enhance operational efficiency, and improve overall patient and physician satisfaction.” The company was recently acquired by NCO Group, who along with the acquisition also released a new end-to-end Healthcare Revenue Cycle Management (RCM) solution on the 13th of September.Another company moving into the healthcare space is Tricom India (NSE:TRICOM), who is currently acquiring US healthcare service provider GTESS Corporation. The news announced on the 14th of September came after Tricom India announced that it recently secured a five-year contract from a US-based healthcare firm for $10 million. Meanwhile, Conifer Health Solutions also announced an acquisition on the 28th of September. The company is acquiring MediHealth Outsourcing in order to strengthen its position in the healthcare outsourcing space.Healthcare NumbersAs the trend of rising healthcare continues, healthcare providers and hospitals are looking to reduce costs, and at this point one of the solutions they are turning to is outsourcing – an opportunity that outsourcers are gearing to take advantage of. Healthcare, just like any other business, has to worry about the numbers.