Current Issue

June 2018 – Vol. 37, No. 5

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The Leading Edge

Practice in an era of healthcare disruption

More health systems are feeling the pressure of impending consolidation due to a number of factors, including narrowing margins, tightened net incomes, unpredictable national health policy, costs, increasing regulatory burdens, and time to build a population health infrastructure.

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Data and evidence

One of the most frustrating subjects permeating the medical community revolves around data and evidence. There has been a steady progression, particularly over the last decade, of the realization and acceptance that data and evidence should be the foundation of the diagnosis and treatment of medical problems.

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At The Forefront

Joint Commission: Meaningful change?

The expanding list of rules governing how one practices medicine both in the hospital and outpatient setting has been recognized as one of the greatest threats to physician well-being in the medical community today. Whether it’s the EHR, documentation requirements irrelevant to best patient care, operating room attire, sterilization requirements, or “peel-packing” of outpatient office instruments, the frustration and anger is palpable.

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Board of Governors: Mentorship through Academy meetings

During my residency and first few years of practice, I looked forward to attending the AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting because of the dynamic speakers and exciting courses to further develop my surgical skill set. Like many of you, I also enjoyed learning the latest scientific breakthroughs and getting my hands on the novel technology at the OTO Experience.

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Reg-entSM: MIPS 2018 reporting FAQs

What are the benefits of participating in Reg-ent to report MIPS 2018 instead of using another reporting mechanism? Reg-ent has numerous benefits for AAO-HNS members and is the MIPS 2018 reporting tool of choice for otolaryngologists.

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International Advisory Board (IAB) Chair election

The AAO-HNS call for nominees for the next Chair of the International Advisory Board (IAB) was highly successful and resulted in the submission of several highly qualified candidates for the position. The IAB Executive Committee selected Sady Selaimen da Costa, MD, PhD, Porto Alegre, Brazil, and Titus Sunday Ibekwe, MD, MPH, Ibadan, Nigeria, as the candidates for Chair.

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Clinical Practice Guideline: A Consumer’s Perspective Commentary: New clinical practice guideline on hoarseness (dysphonia) with permission from the National Spasmodic Dysphonia Association

Charlie Reavis, NSDA President In February 2016, I was asked by the American Academy of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) to serve on a panel as the consumer advocate to update the Clinical Practice Guideline: Hoarseness (Dysphonia). I initially questioned how much I could contribute on a panel of health professionals and, frankly, how would my participation and input be accepted.

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Humanitarian service in Belize

This past February, I had the privilege of serving on a medical mission to the Corozal Community Hospital in Corozal, Belize. It was one of the most humbling and rewarding experiences of my life. Organized through Partners for Belize, the mission targets an underserved population of 25,000 in northern Belize, many of whom belong to rural Mennonite communities.

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Proposed fiscal year 2019 (FY19) combined budget

Scott P. Stringer, MD AAO-HNS/F Secretary-Treasurer The Executive Committees of the Boards of Directors (BODs) were presented with the Finance and Investment Subcommittee (FISC) proposed budget for the next fiscal year, July 1, 2018-June 30, 2019 (FY19), and endorsed it for approval by the BODs. During the April meeting, the BODs reviewed and conditionally approved the FY19 budget that is presented here to the membership.

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Features

#OTOMTG18 Honorary Guest Lecturers

Presented in order of appearance, October 8 and 9, 2018.

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Welcome to Atlanta: Our town

In the middle of an urban resurgence, Atlanta is one of America’s most accessible cities, featuring vibrant and unique neighborhoods, chic dining, and a rich history. Around every corner is a new attraction, restaurant, or shopping opportunity. If you haven’t visited Atlanta in a few years, you haven’t really seen Atlanta.

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International Guest of Honor Series: The Colombian ENT surgeon is the product of a wonderful land

The Colombian Association of Otolaryngology, Head and Neck Surgery (ACORL) was founded in 1961 in Bogota, Colombia, as a nonprofit scientific organization. Until then referred to as specialists in Organs of the Senses, ACORL was formed to become independent of the Colombian Society of Ophthalmology and Otolaryngology and is certified under ISO 9001: 2008 Quality Standard since 2010.

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Join AAO-HNSF in new humanitarian effort: Donate medical supplies and instruments today!

Imagine turning patients away because you don’t have surgical gloves to treat them, or not being able to perform life-altering surgery on a child because you don’t have the correct instruments or supplies. This happens every day in places around the world. But you can help to change that.

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ADVOCACY: MAKING THE SPECIALTY’S VOICE HEARD: AAO-HNS takes lead role in first FDA sleep disordered breathing workshop

On April 16, the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) held its first workshop on sleep disordered breathing (SDB) devices, focusing on the appropriate design of clinical studies to evaluate devices and digital health technologies intended for the diagnosis, monitoring, and treatment of SDB in adults.

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Now available: CPT Assistant on “Updated Endoscopic Nasal Sinus Surgery” codes

For the Current Procedural Terminology (CPT®) 2018 code set, significant changes were made to the Endoscopic Sinus Surgery (FESS) and Sinus Ostial Dilation (e.g., balloon sinus dilation or BSD) family of CPT codes. To help members understand the code changes and accurately report these procedures, the AAO-HNS partnered with the American Medical Association (AMA) to develop a CPT Assistant on the updated codes.

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Payment advocacy spotlight: Wins and recent actions

The AAO-HNS ramped up its private payment advocacy efforts this year due to increased actions by payers to reduce/eliminate physician reimbursements or limit their coverage decisions. Strategic efforts were re-aligned to more actively advocate for full coverage and appropriate payment for patient procedures.

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Speak with a collective voice

ENT PAC, the political action committee of the AAO-HNS, financially supports congressional candidates and incumbents who will advance issues important to otolaryngology-head and neck surgery. Since your AAO-HNS annual dues cannot be used for political purposes, ENT PAC was established to accept voluntary contributions, enabling our members to speak with a collective voice.

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AAO-HNS leads efforts to oppose audiology direct access/physician status legislation

The AAO-HNS strongly believes a physician-led hearing healthcare team, with coordination of services, is the best approach for providing the highest quality care to patients. However, some in the audiology community continue to pursue legislation that would threaten patient safety by removing existing physician referral requirements within the Medicare program and redefining audiologists as “limited license physicians.”

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Federal legislative accomplishments

115th Congress – 2017/2018 Repealed the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) Created by the Affordable Care Act, the IPAB was charged with creating or modifying Medicare payment policy with limited congressional oversight. Repeal signed into law in February 2018. Defeated proposed cuts to Medicare physician payments An SGR-like proposal relating to “mis-valued codes” was included in a congressional spending bill and would have resulted in cuts to Medicare physician payments.

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State of States: Mid-year 2018

With all but four state legislatures convening in 2018, it has been an active year for the AAO-HNS state advocacy program. However, many of those state sessions have been abbreviated. Oregon, for example, had a historically short session lasting only 27 days. This year, most of the legislatures were slated to concentrate on their state budgets.

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