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Surgical Products Daily

Medicare's Pay For Performance Effort Begins, Targeting Quality And Readmissions

October 1, 2012 6:55 am | by Jordan Rau | Comments

Monday is the start of the federal fiscal year, and with it begins Medicare’s biggest effort yet at paying for performance. Starting Oct. 1, Medicare is withholding 1 percent of its regular hospital reimbursements in the new Value-Based Purchasing Program, which was created by the 2010 health care law.

Can The AMA Be Fixed?

September 28, 2012 6:33 am | by George Lundberg, M.D. | Comments

There is nothing more powerful than an idea whose time has come. There is nothing less powerful than an idea whose time has come and gone. In 1846, and for more than 100 years after that, the American Medical Association as a nationwide organization for all physicians was a powerful idea whose time had come.

Why Care Under The Affordable Care Act Will Be Unaffordable

September 26, 2012 7:11 am | by Richard Amerling, M.D. | Comments

Several recent articles should dispel any remaining notion that care provided under the so-called Affordable Care Act will in fact be affordable. Just the opposite is true. The Wall Street Journal reported that when physicians sell their practice to hospitals and become hospital employees, services they provide to patients become significantly more expensive.

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The Effect Of The Robot On Surgical Education

September 25, 2012 4:51 am | Comments

Having taken an extended break from writing about the problems associated with robotic surgery, I think it’s time to explore an area not previously discussed. What is the effect of the robot on surgical resident education? Let’s review a few points about robot-assisted surgery. The surgeon actually doing the case is not scrubbed.

How To Improve Communication In The Medical Setting

September 24, 2012 6:02 am | by Donald Tex Bryant | Comments

“What we have here is a failure to communicate.” A famous quote from the movie  Cool Hand Luke.  As many know poor communication is common in healthcare. Consider the following examples. According to Charles Duhigg in his newly released book,  The Power of Habit , Rhode Island Hospital was one of the nation’s leading medical institutions.

Death After Surgery May Be More Common Than We Think

September 21, 2012 5:58 am | by Dr. Chandani Patel | Comments

In 2006, an otherwise healthy 53-year-old Ezekiel C. Mobley Jr. underwent routine surgery to remove an infected appendix. A Los Angeles native, he was planning to get back to hosting Pittsburgh's first Spanish-speaking television show. But he died before leaving the hospital. "I was really shocked -- very, very shocked," said Ora Mobley Sweeting, a human rights activist and Mobley's mother.

Doctors Need To Make Room For Disagreement With Patients

September 19, 2012 5:30 am | by Ishani Ganguli, M.D. | Comments

While our  dad was in the hospital  last winter, my brother shared with me his strategy for talking to the doctors we encountered – an approach honed over ten years of marriage to an internist and dozens of pediatrician visits for his two little boys. He asked smart questions that used medical terms to earn their respect, he told me.

Remember The Professionalism APGAR During Times Of Stress

September 18, 2012 5:31 am | by Dawn Baker, M.D., M.S. | Comments

Sepetmeber 18, 2012 What does it mean to be a professional? And how do we maintain our professionalism at a time when things such as stress, burnout, and caregiver fatigue threaten our motivation? As an anesthesiologist, the ability to remain professional in many scenarios is something I constantly strive for.

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Don't Blame The Patients For Long Wait Times

September 17, 2012 4:28 am | by Chris Rangel, M.D. | Comments

Dr. Anthony Youn, a plastic surgeon practicing in Detroit  places most of the blame  for long office waiting times at the feet of the patients themselves. He comes up with three general categories; patients who arrive late for their appointments, emergencies that require the physician to leave the office, and “oh by-the-way” scenarios: “Here is a typical scenario: It’s the end of a 10-minute office visit, scheduled as a follow-up for high blood pressure.

Pressure From Insurers, Government Cuts Radiology Use And Spending

September 14, 2012 5:40 am | by Jay Hancock | Comments

Here’s another reason health care inflation is down: The slowing growth in MRI scans, CT sessions and other diagnostic imaging that began in the mid-2000s has continued, paired with sharply lower Medicare reimbursements The end of the MRI boom may not rank with the poor economy, high-deductible health plans and expiring blockbuster drug patents as a factor in slowing cost trends — scans make up about 5 percent of total medical spending, according to the American College of Radiology —  but it should please insurers and government officials  who were complaining about it a few years ago.

Does The Timing Of Appendectomy Influence The Wound Infection Rate?

September 12, 2012 7:08 am | Comments

“Yes,” says a large review of a single institution’s experience with appendectomy for acute appendicitis. The study looked at over 4500 patients who underwent appendectomies over the 8-year period between 2003 and 2011. The main findings of the study were that patients who developed surgical site infection (SSI) had a significantly longer delay in going to the operating room.

Decision Aids Show Promise In Reducing Medical Procedures

September 10, 2012 6:39 am | by Ankita Rao | Comments

While policymakers debate complex changes to reduce health spending, promoting patients’ involvement in treatment decisions could have an immediate effect. A new  Health Affairs report  about decision aids — materials given to patients to help educate them about treatment options — shows they can help hold down costs by reducing demand for medical procedures.

Don't Always Blame Anesthesia For Problems In The OR

September 7, 2012 4:52 am | by ANESTHESIOBOIST T., M.D. | Comments

People blame anesthesia personnel for everything. You name it, they blame us for it. They call us by the umbrella name “Anesthesia” and if there’s a problem, it’s always “Anesthesia’s” fault. Got into the room late? Blame Anesthesia. (Even though the anesthetist’s been sitting at the bedside for twenty minutes waiting for the surgeon or the nurses to be ready.

How Will Doctors Handle The Flood Of Newly Insured Patients?

September 5, 2012 7:09 am | by Albert Fuchs, M.D. | Comments

I distinctly remember that in first grade I had an idea of breathtaking wisdom and profundity. Candy should be free. You may have had a similar thought at the same age. This idea was supported by an incontrovertible rationale, namely that I really liked candy. Tragically, it only took a moment for my parents to expose a flaw in my otherwise revolutionary scheme.

How To Create YouTube Videos For Patient Education

September 4, 2012 6:01 am | by Neil Baum, M.D. | Comments

Many doctors are now getting into movie production and making videos that are loaded onto YouTube. These videos are effective in attracting new patients and educating your existing patients. There are a few guidelines that you can use to create an effective script for each of your videos. These scripts can be loaded onto your computer in a PowerPoint format and will serve as poor man’s teleprompter to assist in your video presentation.

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