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October 2015 - Vol. 34, No. 09
The dawn of a new era
I have just returned from a most exciting AAO-HNSF 2015 Annual Meeting and OTO EXPO held in Dallas, Texas, which showcased a number of initiatives designed to add value to your Academy membership. Our new format and pricing structure allowed most attendees to markedly increase their CME activities at the meeting.
Of gavels and goals
When Gayle E. Woodson, MD, passed me the gavel at the Annual Meeting Opening Ceremony in Dallas last month, she was symbolically putting our Academy into my hands, which is a solemn trust. The Academy’s many strengths include the strategic plan, responsiveness to external forces affecting otolaryngologists, staff support, and finances.
Clip, copy, and share: Clinical practice guideline plain language summaries for patients
The AAO-HNSF clinical practice guideline (CPG) plain language summaries (PLS) are developed by the guideline development group (GDG), consumers, and AAO-HNSF staff, with final sign-off by the CPG leadership.
Nobel laureates who contributed to otolaryngology
Nobel laureates Emil Theodor Kocher, Róbert Bárány, and Georg von Békésy contributed major advances to the field of otolaryngology. Through retrospective research, we explored their lives and present their discoveries.
Coding Companion for ENT/Allergy/Pulmonology 2016
Consolidate the coding process with the one-stop resource developed exclusively for those who code for ENT, allergy, and pulmonology. Co-produced with the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery (AAO-HNS), this comprehensive and easy-to-use guide includes 2016 CPT®, HCPCS, and ICD-10-CM code sets specific to ENT, allergy, and pulmonology.
PROPOSED CY 2016 MEDICARE PHYSICIAN FEE SCHEDULE (MPFS)What does it mean for you?
On July 8, 2015, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) posted the proposed Medicare physician fee schedule (MPFS) for calendar year (CY) 2016. The Academy submitted comments to CMS on the proposed rule on September 8, 2015. The Academy also developed a Member summary, which goes into greater detail of all of the important proposed requirements.
The power of data raises the bar on patient care
At our spring Boards of Directors meeting, the BOD made the courageous decision to fund an otolaryngology-specific clinical data registry. That decision will “empower our Members to provide the best patient care” as well as satisfy reporting requirements for both CMS and private payers. The BOD charged the Registry Task Force, chaired by Lisa Ishii, MD, MHS, to create a business plan and select both a model and vendor for our registry.
Thoughts on the June 2015 health policy course at the Heller SchoolExpanded from the print edition
When I applied for the AAO-HNS/ACS Scholarship to attend the Health Policy and Leadership Course at the Heller School, I knew that I had ascended to a high level of leadership in medicine but that I needed more intense and detailed education on various aspects of U.S. healthcare policy, financial assessment, and leadership skills. I was grateful when I received the scholarship, but even more so once I attended the week-long course in June.
Academy collaborates with Anthem to refine ear tubes medical policy
Thanks to the Academy physician leaders’ comments and clinical recommendations, Anthem has revised the Anthem Medical Policy for Myringotomy and Tympanostomy Tube Insertion. Key changes include a revised pediatric extended otitis media effusion (OME) hearing loss requirement from 30 dB to 20 dB, new medical necessity indicators, and allowance for myringotomy as a stand-alone procedure for select populations.
AMA HOUSE OF DELEGATES REPORTIssues impacting otolaryngology
The American Medical Association (AMA) House of Delegates (HOD) held its annual meeting June 2015 in Chicago. Representing the Academy were Liana Puscas, MD, Delegation Chair; Delegates Michael S. Goldrich, MD, and Shannon P. Pryor, MD; Alternate Delegates Robert Puchalski, MD, and Academy EVP/CEO James C. Denneny III, MD. Of note, Dr. Puchalski gave a stirring AMPAC speech about the importance of engaging in advocacy in his new role as Chair of AMPAC, the AMA’s political action committee.
CALL FOR SCIENCE Be part of the 2016 AAO-HNSF Annual Meeting & OTO EXPOSM
We invite you to submit proposals and abstracts to be considered for presentation at the AAO-HNSF 2016 Annual Meeting & OTO EXPOSM in San Diego, CA, September 18-22.
Gearing up for 2016 legislative sessions
During the 2015 state sessions, legislators across the nation introduced a wide variety of bills that would inappropriately expand the scope of practice for certain nonphysician healthcare providers.
Tech assessment of imaging for diagnosing rhinosinusitis
As Members may know, the Washington State Health Care Authority (HCA) paves the way for many public carrier policies across the country through its Health Technology Assessment (HTA) program. The HTA program was designed by the state to ensure medical services paid for by its state entities are safe and effective. This program has created a following with many other states entities looking to it when creating their own policies.
Journal showcases young physicians
The October 2015 issue of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery celebrates the achievements of young physicians. The issue comprises 40 articles whose first authors are under 40 years of age. These “40 under 40” submitted their articles in response to the journal’s first-ever young physicians call for papers.
FROM THE MEDICAL DEVICES AND DRUGS COMMITTEEThe reprocessing of devices so designatedExpanded from the print edition
Reprocessing of medical devices is an important—and largely transparent—part of an otolaryngologist’s practice. Whether it is in the office setting or operating theater, reprocessing of durable devices is essential to our ability to deliver safe, effective care. This has been in evolution and under scrutiny recently.
Cleft lip and palate surgery in CebuExpanded from the print edition
Although I was not a stranger to large walk-in clinics before arriving in Cebu, our screening day was nevertheless an eye-opening experience. More than 200 patients, plus their families and sponsors, were packed like sardines into the hospital rooftop gymnasium-turned-waiting-room.
2016 Cochrane Scholars travel grants available
Interested in systematic literature review training? SAGE, the publisher of Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, will offer two grants of up to $4,000 to help Members attend the October 2016 Cochrane Colloquium in Seoul, South Korea.
2016 G-I-N Scholars travel grants available
Interested in Guideline development, dissemination, and implementation? Through the G-I-N Scholars program, the AAO-HNSF will fund up to five Members to attend the September 2016 G-I-N North America meeting in Philadelphia, PA.
The value of mentoring relationships
Of all the relationships possible during the lifetime of an individual, mentoring relationships are some of the most formative you’ll ever experience. These relationships can exist for a short period or last a lifetime, but whatever their length, they can change lives forever.
Gold Humanism in Medicine Award
In 2009, the Arnold P. Gold Foundation selected the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery Foundation (AAO-HNSF) as one of three medical specialty societies to confer the Gold Foundation’s new Humanism in Medicine Award, with the goal of advocating for the compassion, empathy, and sensitivity displayed by practicing physicians caring for their patients.
BOARD OF GOVERNORSResponding to those who say guidelines don’t make sense
I was recently at an otolaryngology conference in line for lunch with some friends when the topic of tonsillectomy guidelines came up. One of my good friends, Dr. X, explained to me that he was not following our AAO-HNSF guideline recommendation to stop using antibiotics after tonsillectomy. Dr. X explained to me that “Guidelines don’t make real sense. They are made up by a bunch of academicians who don’t grasp what surgery practice is like in the real world.”