" The Voice Of Interventional Pain Management "

celebrating our 10th anniversary

March 2, 2010


·  Physicians to Get Relief from Medicare Lab Paperwork Rule

·  Medtronic Issues Clarifications on SynchroMed Infusion System Pocket Fill Recall

·  Register Now for April Review Course and Cadaver Workshop

·  13th Annual ASIPP Meeting Brochure Now Available

·  ASIPP Abstract Registration Open

·  Study Finds Inconsistencies in Black Box Warnings

·  Obama Embraces Earlier State Flexibility On Health Care Reform

·  New Most-Wanted List Targets Health Fraudsters

·  Green Practices In The Operating Room Can Mean Big Savings

·  Pharmacy Group says Florida could Save $462M in Medicaid Drug Spending

·  State Society News

·  Physicians Wanted

Physicians to Get Relief from Medicare Lab Paperwork Rule

Washington -- Responding to pressure from the American Medical Association and others, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has indicated that it will rescind a new Medicare rule requiring physicians to provide their signatures on requisitions for laboratory tests. Doctors had warned that the rule would have created paperwork headaches for medical professionals ordering and fulfilling lab test requests, ultimately having an adverse impact on patient care.

The signature policy has been on the books since Jan. 1, but it was never enforced by the Medicare agency. CMS finalized the rule in its 2011 physician fee schedule in November 2010. However, citing concerns about lack of awareness of the change in the health care industry, the agency delayed enforcement of the policy until April 1.

Lawmakers soon became involved, requesting an additional nine-month enforcement delay. Reps. Michael Burgess, MD (R, Texas) and Bill Pascrell Jr. (D, N.J.) wrote a Feb. 10 letter to the agency stating, "We worry about how the rule could affect Medicare beneficiaries where such lab services are necessary for a physician to make critical decisions that affect patients' health and well-being, often under significant time constraints, and urge CMS to consider these situations as they examine this policy." The letter was signed by 87 other lawmakers. A group of 34 senators sent a similar letter to CMS on Feb. 11.


Medtronic Issues Clarifications on SynchroMed Infusion System Pocket Fill Recall

Medtronic has issued a statement clarifying the FDA announcement last week regarding Medtronic's SynchroMed Infusion System. The FDA considers changes to instructions used for physicians as a recall. This was the only change to the pocket fill system instructions to physicians.

Medtronic states that

  • · This is not related to faulty or malfunctioning pumps or refill kits
  • · Synchromed Pumps and refill kids are not being removed from the market.
  • Neither Medtronic nor the FDA is recommending surgical removal of the SynchroMed pump.

A "pocket fill" is the inadvertent injection of medication into the pump pocket, the area under the skin where the pump is placed, instead of in the pump. Medtronic sent a letter to physicians in January that describes the information and provides recommendations regarding the refill procedure and patient management.

Read Medtronic's letter HERE.

Medtronic Recall Clarification

Register Now for April Review Course and Cadaver Workshop

Registration is now open for the April Comprehensive Review Course and Cadaver Workshop in Interventional Pain Management. The course features Basic, Intermediate, and Comprehensive Interventional Pain Management Examination section levels, and will be held April 8-10 in Memphis, Tenn. In order to maintain an optimal participant/instructor ratio, space in the course are limited so please register early to assure a spot in the course and in the level of your choice.

During the 2½-day Comprehensive Review Course and Cadaver Workshop, you can improve existing skills and/or learn new techniques. You will have the opportunity for personal interaction with our distinguished faculty comprised of excellent teachers and lecturers. It is always our goal is to create a thorough and compelling educational experience for you.

The course will take place at the Marriott Memphis, 2625 Thousand Oaks Boulevard (901-362-6200) on Friday. On Saturday and Sunday we will transport you the Medical Education and Research Institute (MERI) for a hands-on learning experience.

April brochure Click HERE for April Registration

Register for 2011 Course Today

13th Annual ASIPP Meeting Brochure Now Available

Mark you calendar to attend the 13th Annual Meeting, Legislative Session, and Capitol Hill Visits June 25-29 in Washington, DC.

This year in an effort to meet the needs of interventional pain physicians and other providers as well, we have created an educational program of the highest caliber with a focus on three very important topics for physicians, staff, and other healthcare providers all under the primary theme "A Vision For IPM In A New Decad e"; Evidence-Based Medicine, as well as Comparative Effectiveness in Interventional Pain Management and the Essentials of Practice Management.

The faculty is made up of experts in the field of IPM, practice management, and governmental affairs. We are honored to have Joseph T. Rannazzisi, DEA Deputy Assistant Administrator for the Office of Diversion Control will address the agencies' role in controlling substance abuse. Dr. James Rathmell speaks on Evidence-Based Medicine: An Academic Perspective from Harvard. From the U.K., speaker Dr Sanjeeva Gupta gives us a sneak peek of IPM in the U.K. and Europe.

Click HERE to view brochure.

Register Today!

ASIPP Abstract Registration Open

The Online Abstract Submission for the 13th Annual Meeting of the American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (ASIPP) is now open. The meeting will be held June 25- June 29, 2011 at the Hyatt Regency Crystal City in Arlington, VA.

To be considered for a presentation at the meeting, abstracts must be submitted and completed by the submission deadline of 5:00pm Central Standard Time (CST) Friday, May 6, 2011.

Abstract submission must be completed through ASIPP's interactive online form.

Click HERE to access form.

Submit Abstract

Study Finds Inconsistencies in Black Box Warnings

A new study highlights inconsistencies in black box warnings and argues for a more transparent and systematic approach to ensure these warnings are consistent across all drugs within a same category, and any additions to warnings, on the back of a drug withdrawal for example, are done within a reasonable and uniform time period.

The work by Orestis Panagiotou, MD, and John Ioannidis, MD, and colleagues from the University of Ioannina School of Medicine in Greece and Stanford University School of Medicine was published recently in the Journal of General Internal Medicine.

Black box warnings are the strongest medication-related safety warnings that can be placed in a drug's labeling information, according to the FDA. Their purpose is to highlight major drug-related risks. Because serious drug-related adverse events tend to be down to the pharmacological class of drug rather than to the individual drug, most black box warnings are typically applied to all members of a given class of drugs, according to a statement from the Society of General Internal Medicine.

HCP Live

Obama Embraces Earlier State Flexibility On Health Care Reform

Washington (CNN) -- President Barack Obama tried to seize the political middle in the continuing fight over health care reform Monday, telling a group of governors that he's willing to give states earlier flexibility in how they implement the overhaul signed into law last year.

Specifically, the president embraced a bipartisan proposal that would allow states to apply for "innovation waivers" starting in 2014, three years earlier than originally scheduled in the health care reform bill pushed through by Democrats.

Under the terms of such waivers, states would be exempt from a number of requirements in the law if they come up with their own way to adequately expand coverage without increasing the deficit.


New Most-Wanted List Targets Health Fraudsters

In an effort to draw the public's attention to the faces behind health care fraud crimes, the government has launched a 10 most-wanted list featuring the nation's worst offenders.

The list, released in February by the Dept. of Health and Human Services Office of Inspector General, is derived from a pool of more than 170 people accused of health fraud. The "OIG Most Wanted Fugitives" website includes mug shots, identification information and criminal profiles of 10 fraudsters at large.

AMA news

Green Practices In The Operating Room Can Mean Big Savings

BALTIMORE, MD - Hospitals could see substantial savings by instituting environmentally-friendly practices in operating rooms, says a study published in the February issue of Archives of Surgery.

The study's authors say healthcare facilities are the second leading contributor of waste in the United States, producing 4 billion pounds annually - 6,600 tons every day. Seventy percent of hospital waste comes from labor delivery and the operating room.

Conducted by Gifty Kwakye, MD, MPH, Gabriel Brat, MD, MPH, and Martin Makary, MD, MPH, all of Johns Hopkins University, the study blended a literature search from medical publications published between Jan. 1, 1980 and Dec. 31, 2008, with advice from a panel of seven medical green practices experts.

Healthcare Finance News

Pharmacy Group says Florida could Save $462M in Medicaid Drug Spending

WASHINGTON - The Pharmaceutical Care Management Association says Florida could reduce its Medicaid prescription drug spending by $462 million.

That estimate comes with PCMA President and CEO Mark Merritt's recent endorsement of Florida Gov. Rick Scott's new Medicaid savings proposal.

"Governor Scott is taking important steps to reduce wasteful spending in Medicaid, which is a big problem when it comesto pharmacy benefits," Merritt said. "Because of its old-school 'fee-for-service' approach, Florida Medicaid pays drugstores much more than either Medicare or the commercial market pays them. Over the next decade, Florida could save $462 million - without cutting benefits, eligibility or payments to doctor and hospitals - simply by updating its approach to pharmacy benefits."

According to Merritt, most state Medicaid programs use a fee-for-service approach in which state officials decide how much to pay Medicaid pharmacies. These officials are in turn lobbied by independent drug stores to set payment levels.

Healthcare Finance News

State Society News

RSVP now for the 2011 ILSIPP Annual Meeting

The members of the Illinois Society of Interventional Pain Physicians will meet at 6 p.m. March 17 at the the Braxton Seafood Grill in Oakbrook.

Jeffrey D. Petersohn, MD, an adjunct Associate Professor of Anesthesiology at the Drexel University School of Medicine in Philadelphia, PA, will serve as the featured speaker. His topic is "New Technology in the Treatment of Lower Back Pain."

The event is being hosted by Dr. Timothy Lubenow, ISIPP President, from Rush University Medical Center in conjunction with Kimberly-Clark Corporation.

Please direct RSVPs directly to 312-942-5773 or TTRRLLMD@aol.com. Please include the full names of each guest in your party.

FSIPP Annual Meeting 2011 set for May 13-15, 2011

Be sure to save the dates of May 13 - 15, 2011, for FSIPP's Annual Meeting, Conference & Tradeshow, to be held again at The Gaylord Palms, Kissimee (Orlando). The event will kick off Friday evening, May 13, with a Welcome Reception and a presentation on The Health Benefits of Wine!

Continuing education lectures will go on all day Saturday and Sunday morning, as has been our format for the last couple of years.

Please watch http://flsipp.org/ for developing program and registration details, or call 904-221-9171.

CASIPP Second Annual Meeting set for June 3-4, 2011 in Santa Barbara

The California Society of Interventional Pain Physicians (CASIPP) is proud to present the Second Annual Meeting June 3, 4, 2011 in Santa Barbara. As with last year's successful event, CASIPP will welcome leading experts to lecture on clinical techniques, political issues and state programs relevant to the Pain Management physician and staff.

Earn eight CME credits while enjoying the luxurious grounds of the Four Seasons Biltmore Resort. To sweeten the deal, the Biltmore has offered discounted rooms to those who register early for the meeting!

Registration is easy online at https://www.casipp.com/register.html.

Physicians Wanted

Visit the ASIPP Web site to find available positions for IPM physicians.

Physicians Wanted


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American Society of Interventional Pain Physicians ®
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Phone 270.554.9412, Fax 270.554.5394
E-mail asipp@asipp.org