Tuesday, November 30, 2010

Senate Widens Probe Into Bare-Bones Health Plans - WSJ.com

Senate Widens Probe Into Bare-Bones Health Plans - WSJ.com:

Medicare Advantage provision going smoothly so far

Medicare Advantage provision going smoothly so far:

In Emergency Rooms, It's Getting Tougher To Say 'No' To CT Scans - Kaiser Health News

In Emergency Rooms, It's Getting Tougher To Say 'No' To CT Scans - Kaiser Health News:

5 Essential Steps to Turning Around a Struggling ASC | ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance

5 Essential Steps to Turning Around a Struggling ASC ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance:

Conversations with... John Armstrong, MD, American College of Surgeons

5 Thoughts From Industry Experts on the Future of Anesthesia | Anesthesia

5 Thoughts From Industry Experts on the Future of Anesthesia Anesthesia:

Wear Purple to Show Your Support, November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month « Cancer

Wear Purple to Show Your Support, November is Pancreatic Cancer Awareness Month « Cancer:

Diabetes Linked to Poor Breast Cancer Outcomes --Doctors Lounge

Diabetes Linked to Poor Breast Cancer Outcomes --Doctors Lounge:

Monday, November 29, 2010

10 Benchmarking Statistics About ASC Employee Salary and Wages | ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance

10 Benchmarking Statistics About ASC Employee Salary and Wages ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance:

Medicare physician pay cut gets monthlong delay from Congress :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Medicare physician pay cut gets monthlong delay from Congress :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News:

LaMar S.. McGinnis, MD, FACS appointed Vice Chair JCR Board

NEWS RELEASE

Media Contact:                                                                          FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Elizabeth Eaken Zhani
Media Relations Manager
630.792.5914

Dr. Suet Wun Lim to chair JCR Board
Dr. LaMar S. McGinnis to serve as vice chair

(OAKBROOK TERRACE, Ill. – November 29, 2010) Joint Commission Resources today announced the appointment of Suet Wun Lim, M.D., as chair of its Board of Directors and LaMar S. McGinnis, M.D., F.A.C.S., as vice chair for 2011. JCR is a not-for-profit affiliate of The Joint Commission.

Dr. Lim has served as an outside international director on the JCR Board since 2004; he is currently vice chair on the JCR Executive Committee and previously served as a member-at-large on the JCR Executive Committee. Dr. Lim has served on the JCR Accreditation Committee since 2004 and the JCR Human Resources and Compensation Committee since 2009. He is CEO of Tan Tock Sing Hospital in Singapore.

“Dr. Lim’s years of experience with JCR and the international health care arena, his familiarity with JCI’s reach internationally as we continue our rapid growth, and his leadership experience will be important as we seek new ways to create a culture of safety that supports the continuum of health care,” says Paula Wilson, president and CEO, JCR.

Dr. McGinnis has served as an American College of Surgeons (ACS) Commissioner on The Joint Commission’s Board of Commissioners since 2005. He has served on the Joint Commission Executive Committee since 2009 and is currently chair of the Governance Committee. Dr. McGinnis has also served as a commissioner on the JCR Board of Directors since 2009, currently serving as secretary of the JCR Executive Committee; he served as vice chair of the JCR Executive Committee in 2009. He currently is chair of the JCR Accreditation Committee. He also is senior medical advisor and liaison at the American Cancer Society.

In addition to the appointment of the chair and vice chair, JCR announced the appointments of Nabil Kronfol, M.D., Dr.PH., and Tamra E. Minnier, RN, MSN, FACHE, to the Board of Directors. Both will serve three-year terms through December 31, 2013.

Dr. Kronfol is president and founder of the Lebanese HealthCare Management Association, a professional not-for-profit association that aims at the further development of the science of management in the health sector and of the health care delivery systems in Lebanon and the Middle East. He is also a professor of health administration at the University of Balamand, Lebanon and at the Faculty of Public Health, Lebanese University. Dr. Kronfol earned a doctor of public health (health services administration) and master of public health from the Harvard University School of Public Health, as well as a doctor of medicine from the American University of Beruit. He has authored and edited numerous books and publications about health care in the Middle East.

Ms. Minnier is chief quality officer for the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center (UPMC). In addition, she serves as CEO for UPMC’s Sim Medical and as executive director of UPMC’s Beckwith Institute for Innovation in Patient Care. Ms. Minnier earned a master of science in the graduate program of nursing administration along with a bachelor of science from the University of Pittsburgh. She is adjunct faculty member at the University of Pittsburgh and Chatham University and has served on the national faculty for the Institute for Healthcare Improvement. Ms. Minnier is a member of Sigma Theta Tau, National Honor Society of Nursing, the American Organization of Nurse Executives and American College of Healthcare Executives. She is a frequent presenter at health care quality and safety conferences and has authored articles for numerous health care and nursing publications.

###

Joint Commission Resources (JCR), a not-for-profit affiliate of The Joint Commission, is the official publisher and educator of The Joint Commission. JCR is an expert resource for health care organizations, providing consulting services, educational services and publications to assist in improving quality and safety and to help in meeting the accreditation standards of The Joint Commission. JCR provides consulting services independently from The Joint Commission and in a fully confidential manner. Please visit our Web site at www.jcrinc.com.

ASC Association Supports Amendment of Red Flags Guidelines to Exclude Small Healthcare Providers | News & Analysis

ASC Association Supports Amendment of Red Flags Guidelines to Exclude Small Healthcare Providers News & Analysis:

Survey Shows Health Insurers Change Prescription Medications to Save Money, Overrule... -- UPPER NYACK, N.Y., Nov. 29, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --

Survey Shows Health Insurers Change Prescription Medications to Save Money, Overrule... -- UPPER NYACK, N.Y., Nov. 29, 2010 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ --:

Is this happening in Georgia? Do you have a story to share?

Health Care Law Faces Threat of Being Undercut by Courts - NYTimes.com

Health Care Law Faces Threat of Being Undercut by Courts - NYTimes.com:

Patient Safety Is Not Improving in Hospitals, Study Finds - NYTimes.com

Patient Safety Is Not Improving in Hospitals, Study Finds - NYTimes.com:

What new insurance provisions on preventive care mean for your practice :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: What new insurance provisions on preventive care mean for your practice :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News:

amednews: FDA initiative targets safe use of medicines :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: FDA initiative targets safe use of medicines :: Nov. 29, 2010 ... American Medical News:

Doctors say Medicare cuts force painful decision about elderly patients

Doctors say Medicare cuts force painful decision about elderly patients:

Health-Care Overhaul Increases Rewards for Efficiency - WSJ.com

Health-Care Overhaul Increases Rewards for Efficiency - WSJ.com:

Sunday, November 28, 2010

Many Preventable Cancers Not Diagnosed Early Enough Despite Screening Being Available Say CDC

Many Preventable Cancers Not Diagnosed Early Enough Despite Screening Being Available Say CDC:

POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: ‘The real work lies ahead,’ Scott says - Houston & Peach - Macon.com

POLITICAL NOTEBOOK: ‘The real work lies ahead,’ Scott says - Houston & Peach - Macon.com:

Forum: Cuts in spending key for Georgia || OnlineAthens.com

Forum: Cuts in spending key for Georgia OnlineAthens.com:

Many Preventable Cancers Not Diagnosed Early Enough Despite Screening Being Available Say CDC

Many Preventable Cancers Not Diagnosed Early Enough Despite Screening Being Available Say CDC:

Medicare Patients Find It Harder to Receive Treatment | ThirdAge

Medicare Patients Find It Harder to Receive Treatment ThirdAge:

Doctors decry threatened 25 percent cut in Medicare reimbursement

Doctors decry threatened 25 percent cut in Medicare reimbursement:

American College of Surgeons Operation Patient Access

American Association For Cancer Research Hosts 102nd Annual Meeting In 2011

American Association For Cancer Research Hosts 102nd Annual Meeting In 2011:

Tuesday, November 23, 2010

New MLR rule requires payers to cut overhead costs - FierceHealthPayer

New MLR rule requires payers to cut overhead costs - FierceHealthPayer:

Exercise May Improve Complications Of Deep Vein Thrombosis

Exercise May Improve Complications Of Deep Vein Thrombosis:

AMA meeting: Association spotlights need for Medicare payment reform :: Nov. 22, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: AMA meeting: Association spotlights need for Medicare payment reform :: Nov. 22, 2010 ... American Medical News:

Study Examines Risk Of Bleeding Among Patients Taking Two Anti-Platelet Drugs

Study Examines Risk Of Bleeding Among Patients Taking Two Anti-Platelet Drugs:

Stage Of Localized Prostate Cancer Not Linked To Recurrence Risk

Stage Of Localized Prostate Cancer Not Linked To Recurrence Risk

Monday, November 22, 2010

Consumer Risks Feared as Health Law Spurs Mergers - NYTimes.com

Consumer Risks Feared as Health Law Spurs Mergers - NYTimes.com:

Patients Undergoing Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeries Benefit From Individual Blood Clot Risk Assessments

Patients Undergoing Plastic/Reconstructive Surgeries Benefit From Individual Blood Clot Risk Assessments:

Big Hospitals Dictate Premiums Using Their Clout - Kaiser Health News

Big Hospitals Dictate Premiums Using Their Clout - Kaiser Health News:

amednews: To reach male patients, market to their loved ones :: Nov. 22, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: To reach male patients, market to their loved ones :: Nov. 22, 2010 ... American Medical News:

Independent Hospitals Unite Under 'Shared Services,' Prepare for ACOs | Hospital-Physician Relationships

Independent Hospitals Unite Under 'Shared Services,' Prepare for ACOs Hospital-Physician Relationships:

Employers' health-care costs soar

Employers' health-care costs soar:

Practices with EMRs Earn nearly $50,000 More Medical Revenue Per Physician

amednews: Thinking bigger (MGMA annual meeting) :: Nov. 22, 2010 ... American Medical News:

Researchers Say Common Test For Prostate Cancer May Not Work

Researchers Say Common Test For Prostate Cancer May Not Work

FDA Approves Xgeva To Help Prevent Cancer-related Bone Injury

FDA Approves Xgeva To Help Prevent Cancer-related Bone Injury:

Repeal, Replace And Revise Are The New Health Overhaul Buzzwords As Congressional Power Changes Hands

Repeal, Replace And Revise Are The New Health Overhaul Buzzwords As Congressional Power Changes Hands:

National Outcome Differences Of Carotid Surgical Incision Vs. Carotid Artery Angioplasty And Stenting In Men, Women And Over 80s

National Outcome Differences Of Carotid Surgical Incision Vs. Carotid Artery Angioplasty And Stenting In Men, Women And Over 80s:

Beyond The CREST Researchers Call For New Trials To Resolve Issues Surrounding Surgical Intervention For Carotid Artery Stenosis

Beyond The CREST Researchers Call For New Trials To Resolve Issues Surrounding Surgical Intervention For Carotid Artery Stenosis:

Sunday, November 21, 2010

LaMar S, McGinnis, MD, FACS elected to ACS Foundation Board

ACS FOUNDATION ELECTS NEW BOARD MEMBERS

At its annual meeting during the 2010 American College of Surgeons (ACS) Clinical Congress, the ACS Foundation Board of Directors elected five new members. They are:  Robert E. Berry, MD, FACS, of Roanoke, VA; Christopher J. Daly, MD, FACS, of Mars, PA; Richard A. Lynn, MD, FACS, of West Palm Beach, FL; Lamar S. McGinnis, MD, FACS, of Atlanta, GA; and Jonathan M. Sackier, MD, FACS, of North Garden, VA. 

ACS President L. D. Britt, MD, MPH, FACS, of Norfolk, VA, has joined the Foundation Board as an Ex-officio member. Kenneth W. Sharp, MD, FACS, of Nashville, TN, was elected in August 2010.

Members of the Foundation Board provide governance regarding the goals and work of the Foundation and promote philanthropy among the College’s constituencies—Fellows, Chapters, friends, and organizations—while fulfilling fiduciary obligations on behalf of the Fellowship. 

Options for participation in the Medicare program

To help surgeons cope with the uncertainty of the SGR cut, the American College of Surgeons has prepared information about Fellows’ options for participation in the Medicare program, which can be accessed at http://t.democracydirect.com/?ti_dn__=d53e2122-5771-4ddb-9552-fe896dff951b&__u_idz=03096213&__turl=http%3a%2f%2fwww.facs.org%2fahp%2fmedicareoptions2010.html.   

ACS Surgery News: Overtriage Linked to Cost Burden at Level 1 Trauma Center

American College of Surgeons: Surgery News: Overtriage Linked to Cost Burden at Level 1 Trauma Center:

Social media strategy tips offered in new CDC tool kit :: Nov. 19, 2010 ... American Medical News

Social media strategy tips offered in new CDC tool kit.
The online service is geared toward helping healthcare organizations, including physician practices and hospitals with public health matters. Check it out.

amednews: Social media strategy tips offered in new CDC tool kit :: Nov. 19, 2010 ... American Medical News:

amednews: Long shifts, nights on call lead to depression and burnout in surgeons :: Nov. 19, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Long shifts, nights on call lead to depression and burnout in surgeons :: Nov. 19, 2010 ... American Medical News:

Soaring ED Visits Cause Hospital Overcrowding

Soaring ED Visits Cause Hospital Overcrowding:

The Truth About Selling Your Ambulatory Surgery Center | ASC Transactions and Valuation Issues

The Truth About Selling Your Ambulatory Surgery Center ASC Transactions and Valuation Issues:

Patients Can Expect A 92 Percent Limb Salvage Rate Three Years After Transpedal Revascularization Procedures

Patients Can Expect A 92 Percent Limb Salvage Rate Three Years After Transpedal Revascularization Procedures:

Healthcare law: Donald Berwick argues against healthcare repeal - chicagotribune.com

Healthcare law: Donald Berwick argues against healthcare repeal - chicagotribune.com:

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Baucus, Grassley introduce bill to extend doc pay formula - Modern Physician

Baucus, Grassley introduce bill to extend doc pay formula - Modern Physician:

Owning a Surgery Center: The Best Investment I Will Ever Make | News & Analysis

Owning a Surgery Center: The Best Investment I Will Ever Make News & Analysis:

Fat vs. Fit: MCG Researchers' "Of Mice and Men" Study | WJBF–TV

Fat vs. Fit: MCG Researchers' "Of Mice and Men" Study WJBF–TV:

Medicare Pay Cut for Doctors to Be Delayed in Deal - BusinessWeek

Medicare Pay Cut for Doctors to Be Delayed in Deal - BusinessWeek:

U.S. House picks new leaders, including some Georgians  | ajc.com

U.S. House picks new leaders, including some Georgians ajc.com:

HPV Vaccine Safe, Effective For Anal Cancer Prevention In Studies, FDA Document Says

HPV Vaccine Safe, Effective For Anal Cancer Prevention In Studies, FDA Document Says

Cancer Treatment Centers Of America® Midwestern Regional Medical Center Receives 'Gold Standard' In Accreditation For Its Breast Cancer Program

Cancer Treatment Centers Of America® Midwestern Regional Medical Center Receives 'Gold Standard' In Accreditation For Its Breast Cancer Program:

Medicare opt-out provision triggers scope-of-practice debate :: Nov. 15, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Medicare opt-out provision triggers scope-of-practice debate :: Nov. 15, 2010 ... American Medical News:

As members of GSACS, you need to let your views on this issue known.

AMA, Doctors Pushing Congress to Fix Medicare Patch : Roll Call

AMA, Doctors Pushing Congress to Fix Medicare Patch : Roll Call:

The Physician’s Place in the ACO

The Physician’s Place in the ACO:

Republicans critical as Medicare chief appears | Reuters

Republicans critical as Medicare chief appears Reuters:

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Health Care CEOs Earn Top Pay - Health Blog - WSJ

Health Care CEOs Earn Top Pay - Health Blog - WSJ:

Scorecard: How Health Industry PACs Placed Their Election Bets - Kaiser Health News

Scorecard: How Health Industry PACs Placed Their Election Bets - Kaiser Health News:

Crowley to repealers: Skip coverage - Glenn Thrush - POLITICO.com

Crowley to repealers: Skip coverage - Glenn Thrush - POLITICO.com:

CMS finalizes 2011 Medicare physician fee schedule :: Nov. 15, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: CMS finalizes 2011 Medicare physician fee schedule :: Nov. 15, 2010 ... American Medical News:

News from the American College of Surgeons: Carlos A. Pellegrini, MD, FACS, Elected Chair of American College of Surgeons Board of Regents

News from the American College of Surgeons: Carlos A. Pellegrini, MD, FACS, Elected Chair of American College of Surgeons Board of Regents:

News from the American College of Surgeons: National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) Study Reveals a Health Care Gap in the Use of Total Thyroidectomy for Treating Thyroid Cancer in Children

News from the American College of Surgeons: National Cancer Data Base (NCDB) Study Reveals a Health Care Gap in the Use of Total Thyroidectomy for Treating Thyroid Cancer in Children:

Treatment zaps high blood pressure at the source | Reuters

Treatment zaps high blood pressure at the source Reuters:

Higher Dose Of Anti-clotting Drug No Better Than Standard Dose For High Risk Patients With Drug-coated Stents

Higher Dose Of Anti-clotting Drug No Better Than Standard Dose For High Risk Patients With Drug-coated Stents:

Medical News: Preventable Harms Common for Older Hospital Patients - in Public Health & Policy, Medicare from MedPage Today

Medical News: Preventable Harms Common for Older Hospital Patients - in Public Health & Policy, Medicare from MedPage Today:

From The Joint Commission: A follow-up report on preventing suicide

A follow-up report on preventing suicide on medical/surgical units and the emergency department

Issue 46: A follow-up report on preventing suicide Joint Commission:

Hopkins CEO: Nurse practitioners could reduce need for more docs - FierceHealthcare

Hopkins CEO: Nurse practitioners could reduce need for more docs - FierceHealthcare:

U.S. patients getting care back on track - FiercePracticeManagement

U.S. patients getting care back on track - FiercePracticeManagement:

Hospital alignment: Cards are in physicians' hands - FiercePracticeManagement

Hospital alignment: Cards are in physicians' hands - FiercePracticeManagement:

Sunday, November 14, 2010

Nickel and Diming Docs Won’t Pay For Medicare | FrumForum

Nickel and Diming Docs Won’t Pay For Medicare FrumForum

Dr. Scott Ferguson - Patients Must Have Access to Quality Care

A Surgeon Confesses To Error And Hopes It's A Lesson Learned : Shots - Health News Blog : NPR

A Surgeon Confesses To Error And Hopes It's A Lesson Learned : Shots - Health News Blog : NPR

Prophylactic Mastectomy Not The Only Option For Young Women At Hereditary Cancer Risk, Australia

Prophylactic Mastectomy Not The Only Option For Young Women At Hereditary Cancer Risk, Australia

Hospitals' new specialist: Social media manager

amednews: Hospitals' new specialist: Social media manager :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

Does your hospital have a social media presence?

Tool kit aims to prepare physicians for legal implications of social media

amednews: Tool kit aims to prepare physicians for legal implications of social media :: Oct. 28, 2010 ... American Medical News

Thursday, November 11, 2010

CDC debunks myths about the uninsured - FierceHealthcare

CDC debunks myths about the uninsured - FierceHealthcare:

U.S. commission pitches $3.8T debt cutting plan that includes cutting Medicare benefits.

CBC News - Money - U.S. commission pitches $3.8T debt cutting plan: "

A commission set up by U.S. President Barack Obama is proposing an austerity plan that would reduce social security and Medicare benefits, modify personal and corporate tax rates and eliminate mortgage-interest tax deductibility.

November 17 House Call on Congress. Stop the SGR cuts!

Patients' Action NetworkAbout UsIn The NewsContact Us



Join Patients' Action Network members and doctors from around the country on Wednesday, Nov. 17 for a nationwide House Call on Congress. Use the American Medical Association (AMA) toll-free grassroots hotline: (888) 434-6200.
It's a tragedy that Congress has let Medicare erode into an unreliable, unstable system for patients and their doctors. The AMA's Patients' Action Network is doing everything we can to help set it right, but we need your help.
Between 9 a.m. and 5 p.m. EDT on Wednesday, Nov. 17, call your U.S. senators using the hotline: (888) 434-6200.
Tell your senators to:
·    Meet their self-imposed Dec. 1 deadline to address this crisis before it begins to disrupt access to care for you and your family.
·    Provide some stability for the Medicare program by stopping the cuts for at least 13 months, to allow time for fixing the Medicare mess once and for all.
·    Resolve this problem once and for all in the coming months. Baby boomers begin entering Medicare soon, and if this problem isn't fixed, these new Medicare patients may not be able to find a doctor to treat them.
We urge you to join your friends and colleagues on Wednesday, Nov. 17 and call your senators. Tell Congress its inaction is coming between you and your doctor and putting your access to care at risk! 



© AMA, Patient's Action Network | All Rights Reserved

Are Doctors Even Involved In The Healthcare Debate? View from a surgeon, Robert Sewell, MD FACS

Robert Sewell, MD, FACS is the author of this account of the recently completed AMA Interim Meeting.

Hailing from North Texas, Dr. Sewell the immediate past President of the American Society of General Surgeons and is now the ASGS Delegate to the American Medical Association. He also sits on the Board of Managers for Texas Health Harris Methodist Hospital - Southlake.

Veterans Day Look at the Army Forward Surgical Unit at the American College of Surgeons Clinical Congress

Wednesday, November 10, 2010

How Mich. Blue Cross stifled Ford's attempt to control costs - USATODAY.com

How Mich. Blue Cross stifled Ford's attempt to control costs - USATODAY.com:

Do you know of other cases or stories like this one?

Mitch McConnell to back health-care suit - Jennifer Haberkorn - POLITICO.com

Mitch McConnell to back health-care suit - Jennifer Haberkorn - POLITICO.com:

KevinMD always a good read. Medical malpractice and how legal waste increases overall costs

Medical malpractice and how legal waste increases overall costs:

Justices Reject Review of Health-Care Overhaul - WSJ.com

Justices Reject Review of Health-Care Overhaul - WSJ.com:

New GOP governors will affect health law

New GOP governors will affect health law:

Congratulations to Dr. Fred Mullins and staff - Joseph M. Still Burn Center ICU Improves Patient Care | WJBF–TV

Be sure to share this great story and video with your colleagues, patients and staff. Congratulations to Fred Mullins, MD, FACS and his staff for the great work they do at the Joseph M. Still Burn Center.

Joseph M. Still Burn Center ICU Improves Patient Care WJBF–TV:

Blast from the Past - American College of Surgeons (1983 Commercial)

GOP investigators take aim at health care overhaul

The Associated Press: GOP investigators take aim at health care overhaul:

Tuesday, November 9, 2010

amednews: U.S. plans to create massive medical claims database :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: U.S. plans to create massive medical claims database :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

Wondering what the American College of Surgeons does for you?

AMA - New AMA Policy Helps Guide Physicians’ Use of Social Media

AMA - New AMA Policy Helps Guide Physicians’ Use of Social Media:

Got any social media success and/or horror stories?

HHS chief says Obama sees SGR as "top priority".

HHS chief says President Obama sees the SGR fix as "top priority".

Part B News - latest Medicare rules with guidance, analysis and news coverage : Part B News Blog:

Trauma care remains real need in Georgia. Now what?

Forum: Trauma care remains real need in Georgia OnlineAthens.com

The need for a statewide trauma network with a sustainable funding source did not go away because Amendment 2 failed at the polls. What happens now?

Medical News: AMA Supports 13-Month Doc Fix - in Washington-Watch, Washington Watch from MedPage Today

Medical News: AMA Supports 13-Month Doc Fix - in Washington-Watch, Washington Watch from MedPage Today

Monday, November 8, 2010

amednews: Public concern high over impending Medicare pay cuts :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Public concern high over impending Medicare pay cuts :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

AMA chief says Medicare cuts will be catastrophic - Health - msnbc.com

Have you gotten out of the Medicare program? Have you stopped taking new Medicare patients? How has your decision about the Medicare program affected your practice?

AMA chief says Medicare cuts will be catastrophic - Health - msnbc.com

Conservatives' Conflict: Try For Health Law Repeal - Or Revision? - Kaiser Health News

Conservatives' Conflict: Try For Health Law Repeal - Or Revision? - Kaiser Health News

Five ways to engage patients with Facebook pages - FiercePracticeManagement

If you are intersted in using Facebook to promote your practice, this is a great read.

Five ways to engage patients with Facebook pages - FiercePracticeManagement:

FDA Reclassifies Certain Digital Mammography Devices

FDA Reclassifies Certain Digital Mammography Devices:

Deal names remaining members of his transition team

Deal names remaining members of his transition team Georgia Elections News

Deal names remaining members of his transition team
Governor-elect Nathan Deal has announced the remaining members of his transition team and they include his former campaign accountant and attorney, his daughter-in-law, several Republican heavy-hitters and one former political foe.

The other members of his transition committee are:
Jimmy Allen, a forensic accountant who was hired by the Deal campaign for governor;
Denise Deal, Deal’s daughter-in-law;
Kit Dunlap, chairwoman of the Metropolitan North Georgia Water Planning District and CEO of the Greater Hall Chamber of Commerce;
Randy Evans, who served as the attorney for Deal’s campaign;
State Rep. Melvin Everson, R-Snellville, a former candidate for labor commissioner;
Dr. Brenda Fitzgerald, an obstetrician-gynecologist and the chairman of the Board of Governors of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation;
Georgia Senate President Pro Tem Eric Johnson, R-Savannah, a former Republican candidate for governor;
Georgia House Speaker Pro Tem Jan Jones, R-Alpharetta;
Georgia House Majority Leader Jerry Keen, R-St. Simons Island;
Dan Lee, a former state senator;
Rob Leebern, a principal with Troutman Sanders Strategies who served as the chief of staff to Saxby Chambliss when Chambliss was in the U.S. House of Representatives;
Bill Lingenfelter, former president of Wachovia-Georgia;
Steven Meeks;
State Sen. Jeff Mullis, R-Chickamauga;
State Sen. Chip Pearson, R-Dawsonville;
Tricia Pridemore, a Deal supporter and founder of the Georgia chapter of Glenn Beck’s 912 Project;
Neil Pruitt, chairman and CEO of UHS-Pruitt Corp.;
Wesley Smith;
Michael Shaffer;
Joe Tanner;
Charles Tarbutton;
Monty Veazy.

Last week Deal announced that Rogers Wade, the chairman of the Georgia Public Policy Foundation, would lead his transition team. And he named a few other members:

Pete Robinson, chairman of Troutman Sanders’ lobbying arm and a veteran of the Capitol lobbying corps. Deal’s team indicated that Robinson would stop lobbying while serving on the transition team;

John Watson, Perdue’s former chief of staff and the founder of a major Atlanta lobbying firm. He is now an executive in a commercial real estate firm;

Philip Wilheit, the president of a Gainesville-based packaging firm and a major Deal donor and business partner.

Tea Party favorite Rand Paul pushes budget cuts for Social Security, Medicare and defense

Tea Party favorite Rand Paul pushes budget cuts for Social Security, Medicare and defense

Will GOP gains halt a regulatory renaissance? Does the regulatory power boost scare you?

Will GOP gains halt a regulatory renaissance? - By Timothy Noah - Slate Magazine

AMA CEO to Step Down Following Furor Over Its Stance on Reform - Surprised?

AMA CEO to Step Down Following Furor Over Its Stance on Reform | Hospital Financial and Business News

Are you surprised or reassured by this change at the AMA?

Helping doctors heal themselves while healing others :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Editorial - Helping doctors heal themselves while healing others :: Nov. 8, 2010 ... American Medical News

Physicians and the Joint Commission-The Patient Safety Partnership

Physicians and the Joint Commission


This four part document from The Joint Commission  includes:
  1. The role of the physician in The Joint Commission
  2. Focus on patient safety - accreditation process, standards and performance measurement
  3. Patient safety initiatives
  4. Enhancing physician involvement in quality and safety improvement initiatives

Nathan Deal's top aide worries ethics watchdogs  | ajc.com

Nathan Deal's top aide worries ethics watchdogs | ajc.com

Friday, November 5, 2010

Message From Dr. Dennis Ashley, Chair of GA Trauma Commission

As Chair of the Georgia Trauma Commission, I would like to take a few moments and provide some personal insights into the recent trauma campaign that was on the ballot on November 2 as amendment 2. Many thanks to all of the patients, paramedics, nurses, physicians, and the entire Yes2Savelives campaign team and supporters for their tireless efforts in attempting to provide sustainable funding for Georgia’s trauma system. This is a noble cause with the ultimate goal of providing rapid access to life saving trauma care to all Georgians involved in a serious accident.

Although disappointed in the outcome, it is important to note that 1.2 million Georgians supported access to trauma care and were willing to pay an additional fee of $10.00 per year. This is a significant amount of support even in these difficult economic times. As I traveled throughout the state and heard comments from voters and evaluating the polling data, it is clear that even the people that voted “no” want the same access to trauma care and the development of a trauma system. They however, would like the funding to be provided by the general fund of the state with no new taxes at this time. So it is important that we realize that this “no” vote is not against trauma system development, but simply an objection to the source of funding at this particular time in history.

The Tea Party has stated in various reports over the last two months that they support trauma care, but no new taxes. The Trauma Commission will take this information back to our legislators in the next legislative session and we look forward to working with them to develop a statewide trauma system that will provide the rapid access to trauma care that we need.

In closing, we must remember that the injured patient is the reason that we continue to fight this battle for trauma system development. Our patients are grateful for our support and are counting on us. I hope that everyone will continue to work with us in the development of our system and again thank you for your tireless efforts supporting trauma care in Georgia!

Dennis Ashley, MD

 
Dennis W. Ashley, MD, FACS, FCCM
Director of Trauma and Critical Care
Medical Center of Central Georgia
Professor of Surgery
Mercer University School of Medicine

Georgia election | Failed amendment leaves trauma fix unclear  | ajc.com

Georgia election Failed amendment leaves trauma fix unclear ajc.com: "Georgia election Failed amendment leaves trauma fix unclear"

General Surgeon Wins Michigan House Seat | News & Analysis

General Surgeon Wins Michigan House Seat News & Analysis

Use of Prostate Cancer Treatment Fell When Medicare Paid Docs Less

Use of Prostate Cancer Treatment Fell When Medicare Paid Docs Less: "Use of Prostate Cancer Treatment Fell When Medicare Paid Docs Less
Financial incentives influence treatment rates, study finds"

CMS Innovation Center Could Face Defunding Under the New Congress

The Brooking Institute's White Paper On CMS Innovation Center

The link above will take you to the Brooking Institutes's white papaer on the CMS Innovation Center.  Should it be defunded?

American Medical Association CEO Michael Maves to Leave in June - Health Blog - WSJ

American Medical Association CEO Michael Maves to Leave in June - Health Blog - WSJ: "American Medical Association CEO Michael Maves to Leave in June"

Critical ASC Mistake: Physician-Owners Forgetting to Prioritize the ASC | ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance

Critical ASC Mistake: Physician-Owners Forgetting to Prioritize the ASC ASC Turnarounds: Ideas to Improve Performance

Medicare's senior moment Pay, hassles have docs turning away older patients

Medicare's senior moment Cover Stories Arkansas news, politics, opinion, restaurants, music, movies and art: "Medicare's senior moment
Pay, hassles have doctors turning away older patients."

Lung Cancer Deaths Reduced by CT Scans, Study Finds - NYTimes.com

Lung Cancer Deaths Reduced by CT Scans, Study Finds - NYTimes.com:

New Republican Governors Take Aim at Health Law - WSJ.com

New Republican Governors Take Aim at Health Law - WSJ.com:

Health-care law likely to remain intact under divided Congress, at least for now

Health-care law likely to remain intact under divided Congress, at least for now:

3 Common Mistakes Providers Make When Entering Into Bundled Contracts | Hospital-Physician Relationships

3 Common Mistakes Providers Make When Entering Into Bundled Contracts Hospital-Physician Relationships

Former President and CEO of Georgia's Archbold Medical Center Indicted on Six Counts of Medicaid Fraud | Stark Act and Fraud & Abuse Issues

Former President and CEO of Georgia's Archbold Medical Center Indicted on Six Counts of Medicaid Fraud Stark Act and Fraud & Abuse Issues

AMA Responds to 23% Medicare Cuts in CMS Final Rule | News & Analysis

AMA Responds to 23% Medicare Cuts in CMS Final Rule News & Analysis

Providers to see lower Medicare payments

Providers to see lower Medicare payments:

Following this news, will you stop seeing Medicare patients or limit the new Medicare patients in your practice?

Tuesday, November 2, 2010

Georgia election | Republicans keep control of state House, Senate  | ajc.com

Georgia election | Republicans keep control of state House, Senate | ajc.com

Voters cool to trauma fee  | ajc.com

Georgia election | Voters cool to trauma fee | ajc.com

10:55 p.m. update: Austin Scott defeats U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall in Georgia's 8th District - Election 2010 - Macon.com

10:55 p.m. update: Austin Scott defeats U.S. Rep. Jim Marshall in Georgia's 8th District - Election 2010 - Macon.com

Private Practice - Is there a future?

During the recent ACS Clinical Congress, the sessions regarding hospital-employment of surgeons were very well attended and stirred a great deal of debate.  And at the 2010 GSACS Annual meeting a similar session engendered much conversation. 

The following articles from Fierce Practice Management offer more information and continue to raise questions.  Have you sold your practice to a hospital?  Are you considering selling your practice?  What are the factors that will most affect your decision? Did you always know that private practice was not your calling?

MGMA: Hospital-employment trend rippling out to affect compensation - FiercePracticeManagement:

Employed physicians' paychecks reflect a fraction of what they earn for hospitals

Are independent medical practices endangered?

Hours, Nights on Call Linked to Burnout in Surgeons --Doctors Lounge

Hours, Nights on Call Linked to Burnout in Surgeons --Doctors Lounge

GSACS Daily Briefing 11-2-10

 Don't forget to vote today for Amendment 2.  Remind your patients, family and staff to say Yes2SaveLives by voting for Amendment 2. 

Physicians face painful decision on Medicare
Washington Post
By Andrew Villegas and Mary Agnes Carey
Monday, November 1, 2010; A19

While most people are focused on the midterm elections Tuesday, the American Medical Association is gearing up for the lame-duck congressional session scheduled to start Nov. 15. Unless Congress intervenes, payments to doctors for treating Medicare patients will be cut by 23 percent on Dec. 1 and another 6.5 percent on Jan. 1.

Cecil B. Wilson, an internist from Winter Park, Fla., who became AMA president in June, is pressing for a 13-month patch that would prevent the Medicare physician cuts. In April, the Congressional Budget Office said that blocking the cuts until January 2012 would cost about $15 billion. A long-term formula fix, through 2020, would cost about $276 billion, it said.

The AMA argues that a 13-month reprieve from the reductions would give it time to work with Congress to overhaul the Medicare payment formula. In recent years, the payment formula has called for cuts, but each time lawmakers have stepped in to block them before they took effect or shortly afterward. The AMA could use a win on the issue. The organization was sharply criticized by some physicians for endorsing the new health-care law without getting the formula straightened out in return.

If Congress doesn't block the looming payment cuts, "this will be a catastrophe," Wilson said, with more and more doctors leaving the program and seniors having a harder time getting in to see doctors.

Whatever happens in the lame-duck session, the new Congress is likely to have more doctors. There are 16 physicians in Congress, but dozens more are running for the House or Senate this year. That might provide more sympathy for the AMA on the issue, but the cost of fixing the formula may still be viewed as prohibitive.

Edited excerpts of the interview with Wilson follow.

Q: What's your strategy in the lame-duck session to get the Medicare physician payment cuts canceled?

A: Our strategy is to say to Congress, "What we want from you is to stabilize Medicare payments to physicians for the next 13 months to get us through 2011." And then that will give us an opportunity working with the new Congress to develop a means of getting rid of the formula, putting in a formula or a payment mechanism that recognizes increased costs of care.

Q: But isn't it highly unlikely that's going to happen? What if Congress goes for a shorter-term fix or doesn't address the payment reduction at all?

A: There is no disagreement in Congress this formula is not working. . . . What we're saying to them and what we want seniors to say to them is, "You're threatening our access to care. If physicians cannot keep their doors open because Medicare now only pays about half the direct cost of running a practice, then we're going to lose access to care." It will be gut-wrenching for physicians to say, "I can no longer continue to see new Medicare patients." . . . But that's where we are, and if you're talking about a 30 percent cut if Congress does nothing by Jan. 1, this will be a catastrophe.

Q: The AMA has an item on its Web site helping physicians think through this very issue - should you stay in Medicare or not? Do you think that if you don't get a 13-month fix, doctors will simply say, "I'm out of this program?"

A: As a matter of fact, I participated in a webinar [recently] in D.C. Four hundred physicians across the country were involved in the webinar, in which we talked to them about their options. The reality is between now and the end of December physicians have to make a decision about their status related to Medicare. So we are trying to provide information to [them] so they can make a wise decision. Our concern, of course, is that if Congress in the lame-duck session does not address this problem, or they address it in ways that are disruptive to physicians' practices, more physicians are going to say, "You know, I'm just out of here. I cannot keep my doors open and provide care for other patients."

Q: But your efforts so far haven't worked, and now we're in a very severe fiscal situation. Maybe the AMA doesn't have the clout it used to have in Congress?

A: Well, this is not about the AMA; this is about senior citizens who need care. I can just tell you from my own [experience in] Winter Park, Fla., the conversation in the grocery store lines [or] at the shopping mart is, "Do you know any physician who is still taking new Medicare patients?" And the answer is no.

- Kaiser Health News

Kaiser Health News (www.kaiserhealthnews.org) is an editorially independent news service of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy organization that is not affiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


Requiem for the Pelosi Democrats
Veteran Democratic Rep. Brian Baird says that job creation should have been priority 'number one, two and three.'
By JOHN FUND
Washington Wall Street Journal

It took Democrats in the House of Representatives 40 years to become out-of-touch enough to get thrown out of office in 1994. It took 12 years for the Republicans who replaced them to abandon their principles and be repudiated in 2006. Now it appears that the current Democratic majority has lost voter confidence in only four years.

How did this happen? And what does the increasing speed of voter backlash mean for Republicans who will likely take control next Tuesday?

For answers, I decided to chat up Rep. Brian Baird, a six-term Democrat from Washington state. Even though he's never won re-election with less than 56% of the vote, Mr. Baird is retiring because the brutal congressional commute makes it impossible for him to see his twin five-year-old boys grow up. He's not sticking around, like so many former members of Congress, to lobby inside the Beltway. That allows him to be candid about Congress and his party.

"It's been an authoritarian, closed leadership. That style plus a general groupthink mentality didn't work when Tom DeLay called the shots," Mr. Baird says. "We've made some of the same damn mistakes, and we were supposed to be better. That's the heartbreak."

Mr. Baird, 54, is a loyal Democrat who voted for all of Speaker Nancy Pelosi's legislative priorities, including the stimulus bill, cap and trade and ObamaCare. But he admits all three have serious flaws.

Mr. Baird recalls that he was "very excited" when his party took control of Congress in 2006, but he saw ominous signs early on. Before the 2006 election, he says, Mrs. Pelosi had 30 members working on a rules package to make the House more ethical and deliberative. "We abandoned all that work after the election, and leaders told us we should trust them to clean things up. I don't know a single member of the Democratic caucus who saw the final rules package before they voted on it."

Democrats also watered down efforts to practice fiscal responsibility. "We initially had numbers a bit more honest than the Republicans—we at least included war costs in the budget," he says. "Now we're authorizing programs for three years instead of five in an attempt to pretend we're saving money."

When President Obama was elected in 2008, Mr. Baird was again optimistic that Democrats could bring real reform. But fierce Republican partisanship and the White House decision not to focus on job creation as its "number one, two and three" priority dashed that hope.

"Obama decided we weren't going to have a highway transportation bill because it might have required a gas tax increase," he recalls. After passing a misdirected stimulus bill, Mr. Obama made the fatal error of pushing forward with other priorities: cap and trade, financial services reform, ObamaCare. Each became compromised quickly.


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"You don't get real reform by pandering to every special interest. With cap and trade we wound up with a bill that didn't accomplish much, was enormously complicated and expensive." Mr. Baird is especially upset that "good solid members will lose this fall because they took a tough vote for a cap-and-trade bill that never made it through the Senate." He has told environmental groups that they lost sight of the goal of reducing carbon emissions by focusing on the minutia of regulation to achieve it.

For some of the shortcomings of financial regulatory reform, Mr. Baird blames the disillusioning battle over ObamaCare. "When the House had to pass the Senate version of health care unchanged, some members asked why should they invest the mental effort in mastering the details" of financial reform. Mr. Baird found parts of the bill mind-numbing.

Although he voted for it, he says he was troubled that Fannie Mae and Freddie Mac, the entities at the heart of the housing meltdown, weren't addressed. They have clearly exercised undue influence on Capitol Hill, he notes. "When I was first elected I was puzzled why they were holding events in my honor as a mere freshman. I asked myself, why is a federal entity so involved in political activity?"



Regarding health care, his specialty, Mr. Baird gave House Democrats real heartburn. He voted against the first version of ObamaCare in November 2009, because the Congressional Budget Office and the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services hadn't yet analyzed the bill's impact on insurance premiums and medical costs.

"What the hell were we doing voting on this? I had labor groups come to me and insist the bill was so important we couldn't wait to know what was in it," he recalls. "I asked them if they were handed a new union contract and told it was so important they had to agree to it without reading it, would they go along?" They continued to insist he vote for the bill and threatened him with a primary challenger.

Mr. Baird had developed his own health-care proposal that drew on his 23 years of experience as a licensed clinical psychologist treating patients with cancer and brain injuries. His plan would have provided universal health care but held down costs through vouchers for the poor, medical savings accounts for the middle class, and reform of malpractice insurance.

He admits to being frustrated that ideas like his never got a fair hearing in a Congress dominated by inertia and interest groups. "Our problems are now so grave we can't afford petty partisanship and closed thinking," he tells me.

The health-care bill experience spurred Mr. Baird to push harder for a "72-hour rule" that would require all non-emergency legislation to be posted online, in final form, for at least 72 hours before a floor vote. "Members are too often asked to make decisions on bills that can be longer than telephone books, and are given only a few hours to actually read them," he complains. "Both parties are guilty, and both should stop doing it."

Mrs. Pelosi eventually allowed a 72-hour pause before the final passage of ObamaCare, and Mr. Baird is pleased that Republicans have agreed to adopt the 72-hour rule if they take the House majority. He just hopes they honor it even when it's inconvenient.

Mr. Baird stands by his vote for ObamaCare, noting that something had to be done for those denied insurance due to pre-existing conditions. But he acknowledges that the bill carried within it the seeds of its unpopularity. These include the nightmare mandate that all companies report to the IRS all of their business-to-business transactions over $600, so the government can capture unreported business income. At a recent forum with small business owners in his district, Mr. Baird was stunned at the complexity of the rules they now must follow.

"I warned my fellow Democrats that the insurance companies they were whacking could increase premiums just before the midterm election and blame them for it," he sighs. "I pointed out that the major benefits wouldn't kick in till 2014, but the costs were up front. I asked them, where was the political win? There was no real answer."

In his new book, "Character, Politics and Responsibility," Mr. Baird argues that in order to afford caring for the needy, liberals will have to challenge "unsustainable entitlements." "I would eliminate the concept of entitlements and move to needs-based social insurance," he says. "The key is to both promote personal responsibility while lowering expenditures by not promising or giving money or other benefits to those who don't need it."

Although Mr. Baird believes that Republicans blocked compromise on ObamaCare and that tea party activists raised false fears, he acknowledges the political harm that Democrats have done themselves. "It looks like we're going to lose the House, possibly badly, and could lose the Senate," Mr. Baird laments. "We will lose a lot of centrists while the people in the party some voters are most mad at survive in safe districts."

"A lot of rethinking is needed" after Democrats take their drubbing, Mr. Baird says, especially since he anticipates "a huge number of retirements" from Democrats unwilling to serve in the minority. He proposes that the House elect an independent speaker who would help drain partisanship from the body. Britain's House of Commons uses such a model.

Democrats, he says, will also have to recognize why they lost touch with voters. "Back in September, we had pollsters and strategists from my party tell members that the mass of people didn't care about the deficit. The mind-boggling lack of reality coming from some of the people who give us so-called advice is stunning."



I ask Mr. Baird what he would tell the incoming class of freshmen Republicans if given the chance to address them before the new Congress convenes. He summarized his bottom line:

"Governing isn't as easy as you think. Many of you have taken pledges that are contradictory—to balance the budget and cut taxes, for example. You must be honest about the numbers, since our annual deficit now exceeds all discretionary spending combined. If you set as your goal to roll back the size of government, you have an obligation to answer the tough questions and show real courage, not just appeal to ideology. Treat the voters like adults."

Mr. Fund is a columnist for WSJ.com.


Insurance Commissioners Loom Large In Health Law
NPR News by SARAH VARNEY

Steve Poizner, California's insurance commissioner, forced health plans to scale back double-digit rate hikes. But people still don't know his name.

Voters don't give much thought to who runs their state department of insurance. But as key provisions of the new federal health law begin to take effect, the insurance commissioner will become the king of a much bigger kingdom.

Voters in four states, including Georgia and California, will directly elect an insurance chief on Tuesday. And in nearly three dozen other states, whoever is elected governor will name the commissioner.

Fame does not come easy to even the most heroic insurance commissioner. California's current chief forced health plans to scale back double-digit rate hikes, and still he's the white knight no one can name.

Steve Poizner is the California insurance commissioner, and whoever replaces him — and other insurance chiefs around the nation — could change your life.

"With the insurance market reforms, it's really going to be important for states to take a proactive role in responding to any problems that come up and making sure plans are complying with the law," says Sabrina Corlette, a health policy researcher at Georgetown University.

New Consumer Protections

She says that under the federal health law, state insurance chiefs will have a long list of new consumer protections to enforce. For example, starting in 2014, health plans can't charge women or sicker people more.

They're also helping to write the regulations for their own expanded powers. Congress left it up to an obscure group — the National Association of Insurance Commissioners — to essentially decide critical details, such as what health plans can claim as actual medical care vs. administration and profit.

Corlette says this decision made these humble regulators very popular with industry lobbyists at their spring meeting.

"I was stunned to discover that there were about 17 consumer representatives that were focused on health care, compared to over 1,000 different insurance industry representatives," she says.

Consumer advocates and industry officials say once the rules are written, state regulators will have to crack down on health plans looking to exploit fuzzy rules or weak enforcement. At the same time, if they're too heavy-handed, the plans might leave the market.

State Impact On Federal Health Overhaul

All of which means state insurance chiefs could very well play a key role in whether the federal health overhaul flies or flops. Laurie Sobel, a senior attorney with the consumer advocacy group Consumers Union, says it matters how the insurance commissioners view the new federal health law.

"If you have one that really doesn't want to enforce it, then consumers are going to need to fight it every step of the way," Sobel says.

The two candidates vying to become California's chief regulator have starkly different views on how best to protect consumers. Assemblyman Mike Villines, the Republican in the race, is a skeptic about whether the government can fix a system he admits is broken.

"When you start to get into mandating behavior and you have to tell the insurance companies there are these for-sure things in here that you have to do — I think that Californians and the nation is not quite ready for that," Villines says.

His opponent, Democratic Assemblyman Dave Jones, says the federal overhaul will offer critical protections and new choices to consumers.

"I plan to use the office both formally and informally, to take a very assertive role in terms of health insurance reform," Jones says.

Bad News For Reformers?

Overseeing the national rule-writing effort is Kansas Insurance Commissioner Sandy Praeger. She's up for re-election — a Republican in a solidly red state and running unopposed. With no challenger, she's instead spending her time worrying about all the details her group must decide.

"I don't want to get thrown under the bus," Praeger says. "We don't want to be blamed if this isn't working. So we've got a huge responsibility to try to get it right.

But many Republican candidates for governor think the law is just wrong. And in some states, those candidates — who could end up appointing new insurance chiefs — want to repeal the federal health overhaul.

With Democrats on the ropes nationwide, that could be bad news for reformers.


Monday, November 1, 2010

St. Joe CEO Kirk Wilson resigns | Atlanta Business Chronicle

What does this mean for the medical community in north Atlanta?

St. Joe CEO Kirk Wilson resigns Atlanta Business Chronicle:

AAM - November Is Heal That Claim Month

AAM - November Is Heal That Claim Month

How will the mid term elections affect national heathcare reform?

The Washington Post has an interesting analysis.  What are your thoughts?  Will a change in the US House or Senate change the implementation and direction of national healthcare?

How will the mid term elections affect national heathcare reform?  

Think this is a good idea for GA? California nurse anesthetists can practice independently, judge rules :: Nov. 1, 2010 ... American Medical News

Would this be good policy for Georgia? We need to hear from you on this issue. The Georgia legislature reconvenes in January of 2011.

amednews: Wrong-patient, wrong-site procedures persist despite safety protocol :: Nov. 1, 2010 ... American Medical News

amednews: Wrong-patient, wrong-site procedures persist despite safety protocol :: Nov. 1, 2010 ... American Medical News

Do you think provider competition improves the quality of patient care?

Check out this article from McKinsey Quarterly.

What is the impact of provider competition on the cost and quality of patient care?

Gwinnett Medical Center Holds Yes2SaveLives Rally



People rallied on behalf of a move to fund more trauma centers around the state. Air ambulance flew over Wednesday's rally outside Gwinnett Medical  Center in Lawrenceville. 


Amendment 2 would create $10 car tag fee, and the money would be dedicated to trauma funding. These are areas that are uncovered and produce substantial threats to life and limb from injury if they can't get to a trauma center in their area.   Supporters expect that fee to generate $80 million a year.





Co-payments for many preventive medical services for most workers will disappear starting Jan. 1 - latimes.com

Co-payments for many preventive medical services for most workers will disappear starting Jan. 1 - latimes.com

How will this affect your practice and your patients? How will you adjust and counsel your patients?