August 14, 2013
- Harvard Health Policy Review
Publishes ACA Article
- Voluntary recall for another
- Anti-oxidants offer great
potential as a treatment for neuropathic pain
- Few Doctors Have Adequate Training to
Effectively Treat Chronic Pain
- Dealers Now Being Charged in Drug
- 2014 Physician Fee Schedule: cuts and
quality and data! Oh my!
- Some fear doctor shortage as Medicaid
is set to expand
- Throbbing pain isn't a matter of the
heart, UF researchers find
- Ohio State's Wexner Medical Center
Implants One Of First MRI-Safe Spinal Cord Stimulators In US
- Medicare SGR reform bill passes key
- Malpractice not cause of
- State Society News
- Physician Wanted
Policy Review Publishes ACA Article
Dr. Laxmaiah Manchikanti
and Dr. Joshua A Hirsh recently published an article titled
Regulatory Burdens of the AffordableCare Act in the
Harvard Health Policy review.
Click HERE to read
for another compounding facility
Fifteen patients have been
hospitalized in Texas after getting calcium gluconate injections, according to
the Food and Drug Administration.
The FDA has issued a
national voluntary now for all sterile-use products produced by Specialty Compounding LLC, based in Cedar Park,
offer great potential as a treatment for neuropathic pain
Neuropathic pain - pain
that results from a malfunction in the nervous system - is a daily reality for
millions of Americans. Unlike normal pain, it doesn't go away after the stimulus
that provoked it ends, and it also behaves in a variety of other unusual and
disturbing ways. Someone suffering from neuropathic pain might experience
intense discomfort from a light touch, for example, or feel as though he or she
were freezing in response to a slight change in temperature.
A major part of the answer
to the problem of neuropathic pain, scientists believe, is found in spinal nerve
cells that release a signaling chemical known as GABA. These GABA neurons act as
a sort of brake on pain impulses; it's thought that when they die or are
disabled the pain system goes out of control. If GABA neurons could be kept
alive and healthy after peripheral nerve or tissue injury, it's possible that
neuropathic pain could be averted.
Few Doctors Have
Adequate Training to Effectively Treat Chronic Pain
Pain is the most common
reason a patient sees a physician but few physicians have received adequate
training to help their patients, according to a Henry Ford Hospital article
published in the Journal of American Osteopathic Association. Pain management
typically falls to primary care physicians, many of whom lack the skills to
effectively treat pain.
A recent study of 117 U.S.
and Canadian medical schools found that only four U.S. medical schools offered a
required course on pain management. Dr. Raymond Hobbs, M.D., a Henry Ford
Internal Medicine physician and senior author of the evidence-based clinical
review article, offers these recommendations for physicians to help their
patients with chronic pain: Work in collaboration with a team of specialists
comprising primary care, physical or occupational medicine, pain management and
Patients being considered
for oral opioid therapy like morphine, codeine and fentanyl should be screened
for substance abuse using a five-point risk assessment tool. Set a threshold
dose of 200 mg/d or less of oral morphine equivalents per day. Follow the
so-called Universal Precaution model that calls for a complete medical
evaluation and regular assessments of the four A's of pain medicine analgesia,
activity, adverse effects and aberrant behavior.
Henry Ford Health
Dealers Now Being
Charged in Drug Overdose Deaths
With the number of heroin
overdoses skyrocketing nationwide, a growing number of law enforcement agencies
are dusting off strict, rarely used drug laws, changing investigatory techniques
and relying on technology to prosecute drug dealers for causing overdose
The aggressive change in
tactics comes as more people turn to heroin because of crackdowns on powerful
prescription opiate painkillers that make them more expensive and inaccessible.
The popular prescription drug OxyContin has also been reformulated to make it
difficult to crush and snort, making it less desirable on the street, law
enforcement officials said.
Nationwide, the number of
people who said they have used heroin in the past year skyrocketed by 66 percent
between 2007 and 2011, according to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health
Services Administration. The number of people who died of overdoses and had
heroin present in their system jumped 55 percent from 2000 to 2010, according to
the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.
2014 Physician Fee
Schedule: cuts and quality and data! Oh my!
The Centers for Medicare
and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently released the calendar year 2014 Physician
Fee Schedule Proposed Rule (Proposed Rule). The Proposed Rule highlights CMS's
(and Congress's) continued focus on the principles of high-quality care,
exceptional patient experience and affordability that has only increased since
the passage of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2010. In
fact, almost all of the provisions of the Proposed Rule are directly or
indirectly related to statutory provisions in the ACA.
The Proposed Rule would
revise adjustments to the geographic practice cost indices to increase the
weight of work expenses and reduce the weight of practice expenses and revisions
to the calculation of the Medicare Economic Index, which is used to update
physician payments for inflation in the same manner. As is customary, the
Proposed Rule does not include revisions to the sustainable growth rate (SGR)
formula because these calculations are statutory in nature. If Congress fails to
take action on the SGR before the end of the year, physician reimbursement rates
may be cut by nearly 25 percent.
Some fear doctor
shortage as Medicaid is set to expand
As massive Medicaid
expansion under nationalized health care looms, Virginia and other states could
find a key group - doctors - shrinking from the demand, especially the red
Medicaid rolls are expected
to increase 42 percent under the federal Affordable Care Act. While many medical
professionals welcome the expansion, they wonder whether there are enough
doctors willing to take on new Medicaid patients.
Caring for that group adds
burdens that extend beyond the examination room. Reimbursement rates typically
lag behind Medicare. Nationwide, the Medicaid reimbursement rate is 58 percent
of Medicare fees, according to an index compiled by the Kaiser Family
Foundation. In Virginia, the rate is 73 percent. But it's still far behind
private insurance rates.
isn't a matter of the heart, UF researchers find
Throbbing pain may pound
like a heartbeat, but University of Florida scientists have discovered the
sensation is all in your head, or more precisely, in your brain
The finding could
drastically change how researchers look for therapies that can ease pain, said
Dr. Andrew Ahn, a neurologist at the UF College of Medicine, a part of UF
Health. Ahn and his colleagues reported their findings in the July issue of the
"Aristotle linked throbbing
pain to heart rhythm 2,300 years ago," Ahn said. "It took two millennia to
discover that his presumption was wrong."
People who have experienced
a toothache or a migraine - or even just hit their shin on the coffee table -
may have noted a throbbing quality to the pain that physicians have long
associated with arterial pulsations at the location of the injury. Some
medicines even constricted blood vessel walls in hopes of lessening the
Wexner Medical Center Implants One Of First MRI-Safe Spinal Cord Stimulators In
COLUMBUS, Ohio -
Neurosurgeons at The Ohio State University Wexner Medical Center are among the
first in the United States to successfully implant an MRI-safe spinal cord
stimulator to help patients suffering from chronic back or limb pain.
Neurosurgeons Dr. Ali
Rezai and Dr. Milind Deogaonkar performed the surgery Aug. 5 to help relieve
intense foot pain due to a peripheral neuropathy that 78-year-old John Garvin of
Worthington, Ohio, has suffered for more than 20 years. Garvin is among the
estimated 100 million Americans living with chronic pain, according to the
Institute of Medicine of the National Academies.
Ohio State University Exner
reform bill passes key House committee
Legislation to repeal the Medicare sustainable growth rate formula and revamp
the physician payment system so it rewards high-quality care has garnered
unanimous approval from a key House committee and constructive criticism from
organized medicine groups.
The House Energy and
Commerce Committee voted 51-0 on July 31 to approve its version of payment
overhaul legislation. While eliminating the SGR would address the chief Medicare
complaint many physicians have had for years, the American Medical Association
and other organized medicine groups said they still will advocate for additional
changes to improve the bill as other congressional committees take up their
versions of reform legislation.
cause of healthcare cost
While healthcare costs
continue to skyrocket, medical malpractice payments fell to a new low,
undermining the argument that malpractice litigation costs contribute
significantly to healthcare costs.
A newly released report from advocacy group
Public Citizen shows the results of an analysis of data from the federal
government's National Practitioner Data Bank, which has tracked malpractice
payments since the fall of 1990.
State Society News
CASIPP Plans Fall
The California Society of Interventional Pain Physicians will hold its 4th
Annual Meeting this September 20-22 at the Terranea Resort
Palos Verdes, CA.
Societies of Interventional Pain Physicians Schedule Symposium
is now open for the Pain Medicine Symposium, 2013, which is set for Thursday,
November 7, 2013-Sunday, November 10, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency, Jersey
the great success of the 2012 program, this program again will be a joint effort
between the New York and New Jersey Societies of Interventional Pain Physicians.
The curriculum is presented by Course Directors: Sudhir Diwan, MD and Peter
Speakers will be Sanjay Bakshi,
MD, Sudhir Diwan, MD, and Peter Staats, MD.
Click here to register for the
NYNJSIPP Pain Symposium.
Click HERE for more
* Please send in your
State Society meeting news to:
Holly Long at email@example.com