Today’s Top Story
- GAO report notes potential flaws in Medicare physician screening system.
A report released by the U.S. Government Accountability Office (GAO) highlights weaknesses in the screening procedures used by the U.S. Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to prevent ineligible or potentially fraudulent providers and suppliers from enrolling in the agency’s Provider Enrollment, Chain and Ownership System. GAO reviewed four enrollment screening procedures and identified weaknesses in the way provider practice location and physician licensure status were verified. GAO states that an examination of 2013 data found about 23,400 of 105,234 (22 percent) of practice location addresses to be vacant, invalid, or otherwise potentially ineligible. In addition, GAO found 147 out of about 1.3 million physicians listed as eligible to bill Medicare who, as of March 2013, had received a final adverse action from a state medical board for crimes against persons, financial crimes, and other types of felonies, but whose revocations from the Medicare program were either significantly delayed or never processed. Read more…
- Study: Transition to ACO model may offer little benefit to physicians in terms of reimbursement.
Data published in the July/August issue of the journal Annals of Family Medicine suggest that changes in reimbursement for physicians who transition from a fee-for-service to accountable care organization (ACO) model may be negligible. The authors drew data from a national survey of primary care physician practices and found that physicians in ACO and non-ACO practices with no substantial risk for costs generally received nearly one-half of their compensation from salary, slightly less from productivity, and about 5 percent from quality and other factors. Physicians not working in ACOs but with substantial risk for primary care costs received two-thirds of their compensation from salary, nearly one-third from productivity, and slightly more than 1 percent from quality and other factors. The authors noted that participation in ACOs was associated with significantly higher physician compensation for quality, whereas financial risk was associated with much greater compensation from salary. Read more…
- Study: TKA highly effective in reducing RA knee pain.
Findings from a study published online in the journal Arthritis & Rheumatology suggest that total knee arthroplasty (TKA) may be effective for the reduction of knee pain for patients with rheumatoid arthritis (RA). The researchers reviewed data on 834 RA and 315 osteoarthritis (OA) patients who underwent index TKA between the ages of 65 and 68 years. Post-TKA, they noted significant improvements for most domains of pain, function, and health-related quality of life across both disease groups. However, they noted an even greater impact among OA patients. Overall, a diagnosis of RA, lower income, and pre-operative anxiety were independently associated with lower improvements in index knee pain following TKA. Read more…
- Study: Administration of dicloxacillin may reduce warfarin efficacy.
A research letter published in the July 21 issue of The Journal of the American Medical Association suggests that use of the antibiotic dicloxacillin may be associated with a reduction in efficacy for certain blood-thinning medications. The researchers reviewed data on 236 patients in Denmark who filled a prescription for dicloxacillin while receiving warfarin therapy. They found that, prior to dicloxacillin exposure, the mean international normalized ratio (INR) level was 2.59, which dropped to 1.97 at 2 to 4 weeks after dicloxacillin exposure. Overall, 61 percent (n = 144) of patients experienced subtherapeutic INR levels (<2.0) within 2 to 4 weeks after dicloxacillin treatment.> Read more…
In the States
- New Jersey.
NJ.com reports that the governor of New Jersey has signed into law a bill that will require all physicians and pharmacists in the state to register for access to the state’s prescription monitoring program. The new law also requires physicians to check the prescription management program database when patients return for a second refill on medication. The law is part of a series of bills designed to target opioid and heroin abuse in the state. Read more…
- So close—just 732 votes needed to reach required goal. Vote today!
Balloting on AAOS resolutions and bylaw amendments has reopened for a second 30-day period, extending until Friday, Aug. 21. As of 2 p.m., July 21, 4,029 AAOS fellows had voted on AAOS resolutions and bylaw amendments—732 short of the 20 percent required for an official fellowship vote. If you have not voted, please help by casting your ballot to retain or rescind AAOS resolutions or bylaw amendments. The ballot should take no more than 2 minutes of your time. Cast your ballot…(member login required)
- Apply now to take part in the AAOS Leadership Fellows Program.
The AAOS Leadership Fellows Program (LFP) offers an exciting opportunity to all AAOS fellows age 45 and younger as of Jan. 31, 2016. The LFP is a 1-year program that starts at the AAOS Annual Meeting and is designed to facilitate the development of future AAOS leaders among younger members who have previous volunteer or leadership experience. The LFP combines didactic and experiential leadership training with an ongoing mentoring program. Fellows are matched with an established leader within the AAOS fellowship who serves as a mentor throughout the program. The program has the following goals:
- Introduce fellows to the AAOS Governance structure
- Observe AAOS leadership at work
- Participate in interactive leadership development programs
- Engage in opportunities for peer to peer interactions and learning
- Experience service on an AAOS committee
Applications are now available online. This is a year-long commitment with 6 mandatory meetings. Please review the LFP schedule prior to completing the application to ensure you will be able to attend all meetings. The deadline for applications is July 31, 2015. Learn more and submit your application…(member login required)
For more information, contact Kristen Erickson at 847-384-4343, or via email at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Call for volunteers: ACGME Review Committee for Orthopaedic Surgery.
AAOS seeks to nominate one member to the Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) Review Committee for Orthopaedic Surgery. This committee establishes and revises ACGME accreditation standards, subject to approval by ACGME; provides a peer evaluation of programs or institutions to assess the degree to which the program or institution complies with the published set of educational standards; and confers an accreditation status for programs and institutions meeting those standards. Applicants for this position must be active fellows; hold current certification by the American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery; have additional expertise or fellowship certification in at least one of the following orthopaedic surgery subspecialty areas: adult reconstructive, spinal surgery, or trauma; and have served a program director in an ACGME-accredited program. The application deadline is Aug. 15. For more information, please contact David D. Teuscher, MD, AAOS president, at: email@example.com