Oct. 2, 2013

Telemedicine Public Policy Symposium via webcast
On Aug. 27, 2013, Florida's telemedicine stakeholders and providers met together for the first time to discuss public policy issues, including practice standards and payment reform. State Representatives Mia Jones (D-Jacksonville) and Cary Pigman (R-Avon Park) hosted the event on the campus of Mayo Clinic in Florida. Both the Florida Legislature and the Florida Board of Medicine are expected to address telemedicine in the coming year.

If you were not able to make the in person event of the Telemedicine Public Policy Symposium, the webcast and handouts are now available online.

The webcast is a two part series. The first video is two hours in duration, the second video is 29 minutes.

The Symposium speakers' PowerPoint presentations as well as a variety of informative collateral are available for download. Download NowMore

Listen to FCEP's Gary Goodman, MD, discuss the dangers of acetaminophen overdose on ACEP's ER101 program
Tylenol Overdose: More Common than You Think

Tylenol, or acetaminophen, is one of the most commonly used over-the-counter (OTC) drugs.

However, it can be extremely dangerous. In fact, over 150 people die each year from an acetaminophen overdose. Even as few as 4-8 extra pills a day can do severe harm to your liver and the rest of your body.

Acetaminophen is especially dangerous for children, as many of the children formulas for colds and flu contain it. Parents — to no fault of their own — often over-medicate, simply due to concern for their little one.

The dangers are very real. Special guest, Dr. Gary Goodman, MD, joins Dr. Leigh to share important information about acetaminophen and how you can avoid a deadly overdose.More

New jobs were added to the Job Bank on Sept. 8, 2013.More

Study: More children visiting ER for sports concussions
HealthDay News
Many more children are showing up at emergency departments with traumatic brain injuries — such as concussions — from sports activities, a new study finds. The number of emergency department visits for these injuries increased 92 percent between 2002 and 2011. Meanwhile, although the number of children admitted to the hospital rose in proportion to emergency department visits, the hospitalization rate held at a steady 10 percent. One bright spot in the study was that the severity of injuries decreased. And the rise in emergency department visits is probably due in part to better awareness, experts said.More

Navigating the new marketplace
Health News Florida
Florida's online marketplace for health insurance opened Oct. 1 for browsing at HealthCare.gov, with only 34 licensed "navigators" ready to offer advice to the millions who may need it. That's only 1 navigator for every 100,000 uninsured people in the state who have to obtain coverage for 2014 to comply with the Affordable Care Act. The following are some ways that shoppers can find help with enrollment.More

CDC data shows migration to public insurance
Government Health IT
As the federal government prepares for one of the largest health campaigns in history, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has a new portrait of Americans’ insurance status and has found one demographic of middle class workers especially struggling. The nation's uninsured rate for the first three months of 2013 decreased slightly since 2010, at the same time that more Americans with incomes that leave them "near poor" are enrolling in Medicaid, according to new survey data by the CDC.More

Childrens' race may play a role in ED treatment for pain
Black children who are brought to the emergency department for stomach pain and cramps are less likely than white children to be given painkillers, a new study suggests. Using records from more than 2,000 ED visits, researchers found that white children and teenagers more often received painkillers available over the counter, such as ibuprofen and acetaminophen (Tylenol), or more powerful opioids, including oxycodone.More

ACA aside, we already need more doctors
Pensacola News Journal
Florida won't know the full impact of the Affordable Care Act on its shrinking physician populations for at least another year or two. Yet, with or without ACA mandates, Florida is still facing one of the worst physician shortages among the 50 states. Physician groups and hospital associations say the problem is due, in part, to the state's high medical liability insurance rates — more than double the national average.More

Clinical decision rule may help doctors identify patients with headache in ED
The Medical News
Researchers have developed a simple clinical decision rule that may help doctors identify patients with headache in the emergency department who have subarachnoid hemorrhage (bleeding in a certain area of the brain), according to a study in the Sept. 25 issue of JAMA. According to the study, headaches account for approximately 2 percent of all emergency department visits, and subarachnoid hemorrhage is one of the most serious diagnoses, accounting for only 1 percent to 3 percent of these headaches. Although the decision to evaluate patients with new neurologic deficits is relatively straightforward, it is much more difficult to determine which alert, neurologically intact patients who present with headache alone require investigations.More

How much are you leaving on the table? Improving your practice's after-tax financial efficiency
David B. Mandell, JD, MBA, and Carole Foos, CPA
Most emergency physicians strive to achieve two goals in their practice — to "do good," by being a quality practitioner and helping patients; and to "do well" in terms of financial rewards. Unfortunately, as to the second goal, many emergency physicians do not operate their practices with optimal after-tax efficiency. In fact, we often see doctors leaving tens of thousands of dollars "on the table" each year — which can equate to nearly $1 million of lost wealth over a career. The good news is that many of you reading this can likely improve your post-tax bottom line in a number of ways and this article provides doctors a number of ideas to make such improvements in 2013.More