Specialty Focus   
Volume VI | Issue 12                                                                                
March 21, 2017  
        Practice specific news, analysis and commentary 
      for Florida's Medical Specialists
                            From the publisher of FHIweekly & FloridaHealthIndustry.com

Moving from SSN to MBI: The time to prepare is now
In just about a year from now the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will start mailing out new Medicare cards to beneficiaries that will eliminate the use of Social Security Numbers, replacing them with Medicare Beneficiary Identifiers (MBI).

This change is pursuant to the 2015 passage of the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act. The new cards will be sent out in phases during a transition period that begins April 2018 and runs through Dec. 31, 2019, after which only the MBI card will be accepted. Approximately 60 million people have Medicare cards that display a social security number so as you might imagine this is no easy feat.

The new Medicare Beneficiary Identifier will be 11 digits long and contain a combination of alpha numeric characters. The goal of the initiative is to cut down on identity theft.

Orthopedic, neurosurgery & cardiac fields spurring global medical robots market

Research Nester has recently announced its latest Industry research on "Medical Robotics da Vinci robot Market: Global Demand Analysis & Opportunity Outlook 2023."

See the full research report here.

Becker's Spine has a nice summary here.

FHI logo cropped small version
Insurers weigh a simpler, cheaper treatment for artery disease: supervised workouts
Eric Boodman | STAT

When Char Zinda's doctors discovered that she had had a couple of small, undiagnosed heart attacks, their instructions were to start walking.

She was game. She tried going to the local university's indoor walking track near her house. But she couldn't even walk two-tenths of a mile. "The bottoms of my feet just felt like somebody had taken a sharp pencil and was poking it in," said the 64-year-old, who lives in Morris, Minn. The pain was so bad it made her cry.

That was a telltale sign of peripheral artery disease, which affects an estimated 8 million Americans. Zinda had a number of treatment possibilities, but the cheapest and least invasive has generally not been covered by insurance, despite years' worth of evidence that it can be as effective as other options.

That is on the cusp of changing, experts say...

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Medical Marijuana Use - Ready, Fire, Aim!
MD Whistleblower

Promoting medical marijuana use is hot - smokin' hot. States are racing to legalize this product, both for recreational and medical use. In my view, there's a stronger case to be made for the former than the latter.

Presently, marijuana is a Schedule I drug, along with heroin, LSD and Ecstasy. The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) defines this category as drugs with no acceptable medical use and a high potential risk of addiction. Schedule I contains drugs that the FDA deems to be the least useful and most dangerous. Schedule V includes cough medicine containing codeine.

On its face, it is absurd that marijuana and heroin are Schedule I soulmates.

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When Violence Savages American Communities: Important Lessons for Hospitals
This is the first in a yearlong series of articles in which H&HN Senior Writer Marty Stempniak will focus on crucial lessons from hospitals that have responded to the epidemic of violence plaguing our nation. It will examine mass casualty events like those that occurred in Orlando, Fla., and Dallas, as well as the seemingly intractable day-to-day cycle of violence the afflicts too many American neighborhoods.  

Inside FloridaHealthIndustry.com