Month: February 2018

  • The local housing market is finally showing signs of cooling after growing at a rapid clip over the last five years. Last month, 2,427 homes were sold in the San Antonio area, a decline of 2.2 percent from April the year before, according to data released Thursday by the San Antonio Board of Realtors. It was only the third month since spring 2011 in which sales declined. Home sales increased by more than 7 percent for most months in 2016, but they rose only 1 percent in March and 3.4 percent in February. “The market is probably slowing down a little bit,” said Jim Gaines, chief economist at the Texas A&M Real Estate Center. “Last year was phenomenally good. You’re still seeing a good market, just not phenomenally good.” San Antonio’s housing market is still on track to break a sales record in 2017. So far this year, 8,592 homes have been sold, up 2.2 percent from the 8,408 sold at this time in 2016. The market set a sales record last year, with 29,536 homes sold. The median home price in San Antonio surged by 8.4 percent in April, to a record high of $215,500, according to SABOR’s data. That’s one of the highest price increases over the last few years. Home sales declined by 0.2 percent in Texas as a whole, by 2.1 percent in Austin’s Travis County and by 5.7 percent in Dallas County, the data show. In Houston’s Harris County, sales increased by 2.8 percent. It’s no surprise that sales are down from last year’s unusually strong numbers, Gaines said. Also, the pent-up demand from the housing crisis, when potential homebuyers delayed their plans because of the lousy economy, has finally been relieved, he said. April’s holidays, including Easter and Fiesta, might have also depressed sales,...
  • Source: Thinkstock February 05, 2018 - Methodist Healthcare Ministries of South Texas and the state’s health information exchange (HIE) HASA are partnering to launch a pilot project for linking social determinants of health data to patient EHRs. The two San Antonio-based organizations will enable providers to use a more comprehensive picture of a patient’s health for complete care delivery. As part of the partnership, Methodist Healthcare Ministries award HASA a $175,000 grant to expand its services to include social determinants of health data that may influence patient health. Using the grant, HASA will integrate social determinant data into its clinical data repository through a cloud-based app. HASA Medical Director and University of the Incarnate Word’s School of Osteopathic Medicine Vince Fonseca, MD, will spearhead the program. “We have heard from many physicians that HASA’s ability to provide clinical and up-to-date patient information at the time a patient needs care in an emergency room has become more mainstream,” HASA Executive Director Gijs van Oort told San Antonio Business Journal. “At the same time, research shows that the reasons people seek medical care are not limited to physical or emotional concerns but are more affected by social conditions such as housing, transportation and the ability to eat regularly,” he continued. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), social determinants of health include the conditions of the places where people live, learn, work, and play. These conditions can affect a variety of health risks and outcomes. Unstable housing, low income, unsafe neighborhoods, and substandard education are some of the major factors that can influence patient health. Incorporating social determinants of health data into patient EHRs may improve individual and population health management. The pilot program aims to give physicians a more holistic view of patient health that includes any clinical,...