Today’s Top Story

Trump administration rolls out short-term health plan option

The departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury issued a final rule that allows health insurers to offer short-term, limited-duration coverage that is less expensive but also less comprehensive. The short-term plans are available for up to 12 months and can be renewed for a maximum duration of 36 months in total. The administration estimates that premiums will be a third of the cost of comprehensive coverage, but a survey from the Kaiser Family Foundation found that none of the short-term plans covered maternity care, many did not cover prescription drugs, and all may include dollar limits on coverage. Open enrollment for these plans will begin in October for coverage starting January 2019. These plans are not required to comply with federal market requirements under the Affordable Care Act.

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Read the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) press release…

Read the final rule…

Other News

CMS updates Medicare payment policies for acute care facilities

CMS finalized payment policies and rates under the Inpatient Prospective Payment System (IPPS) and the Long-Term Care Hospital (LTCH) Prospective Payment System (PPS) to provide acute care hospitals an average payment increase of approximately 3 percent for fiscal year 2019. The increase reflects rate updates required by law and payments for new technologies and uncompensated care, according to the agency. The IPPS/LTCH PPS final rule also updates geographic payment adjustments for IPPS hospitals.

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FDA announces recall for piperacillin and tazobactam for injection, USP 3.375 g

The Food & Drug Administration (FDA) reports that AuroMedics Pharma LLC voluntarily recalled two lots of piperacillin and tazobactam for injection, which is used to treat moderate to severe infections caused by susceptible isolates of the designated bacteria in intra-abdominal, skin and skin structure, and female pelvic infections, as well as community-acquired and nosocomial pneumonia. The recall was due to the identification of glass and silicone material in two vials of this drug. The administration of glass or silicone particulates may lead to local irritation or swelling, but more serious potential outcomes could include blockage and clotting in blood vessels, which may be life-threatening.

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GAO says nationwide cyber security issues require swift action

A report from the Government Accountability Office (GAO) revealed four cybersecurity problems and recommended 10 actions to address them. “Securing these [information technology] systems and data is vital to the nation’s security, prosperity, and well-being,” said Gene L. Dodaro, comptroller general at GAO, in an accompanying statement. “The security over these systems and data is inconsistent, and urgent actions are needed to address ongoing cybersecurity and privacy challenges,” he added. The challenges include establishing a comprehensive cybersecurity strategy and performing effective oversight, securing federal systems and information, protecting cyber critical infrastructure, and protecting privacy and sensitive data. GAO has made more than 3,000 recommendations over the last eight years regarding cybersecurity problems and said that roughly 1,000 have yet to be put in place.

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Women remain underrepresented in orthopaedic surgery

Female surgeons remain especially underrepresented in orthopaedic surgery, according to a report by Modern Healthcare. Just 5 percent of active physicians in orthopaedics are women, only 14 percent of orthopaedic residents are female, and some orthopaedic residency programs have no women. In addition, female orthopaedic surgeons earn 11.1 percent less annually than their male counterparts The AAOS Diversity Advisory Board is dedicated to researching obstacles faced by women in orthopaedics and putting together an action plan to combat those challenges.

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Learn more about AAOS’ diversity efforts…


Women in orthopaedic leadership pave the way for future generations

Jothi Murali, MD, first met Lisa K. Cannada, MD, an orthopaedic trauma surgeon, when she was a medical student at Emory University in Atlanta. Dr. Cannada served as her mentor throughout medical school, residency, and fellowship, and she continues to do so now that Dr. Murali is a practicing orthopaedic surgeon. Dr. Murali spoke with Dr. Cannada to gain more insight into her career path and tips for reaching professional goals.

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Last call: Apply for Biomedical Engineering Committee member position

The Biomedical Engineering Committee has an open member position, a two-year term that runs from March 17, 2019, to March 21, 2021. The committee monitors and reviews scientific regulatory developments in the field of biomedical engineering as they relate to orthopaedic surgery. The last day to submit an application is Aug. 13.

Learn more and submit your application… (member login required)


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