Specialty Focus   
Volume VIII | Issue 36                                                                                        
Sept. 3, 2019    
Practice specific news, analysis and commentary for Florida's Medical Specialists  
                            From the publisher of FHIweekly & FloridaHealthIndustry.com

DOJ Cites Significant Costs and Burdens on Request to Dismiss Qui Tam Case
The Department of Justice has once again exercised its authority under the False Claims Act in seeking the dismissal of a relator's qui tam lawsuit. Government attorneys, in their motion to dismiss filed on Aug. 20, told the court that further litigation would result in imposing "significant costs and burdens on the government and waste precious judicial and government resources." The lawsuit, Polansky v. Executive Health Resources, Inc. was filed in 2012 by Dr. Jesse Polansky, a former employee of Executive Health Resources, a UnitedHealth subsidiary. He alleged that Executive Health perpetrated a scheme to generate higher Medicare and Medicaid reimbursements for its client hospitals by advising them to admit patients when outpatient observation would have been appropriate and less expensive.
Amyloid's last hope? Prevention studies next big test for Alzheimer's research
Jonathan Gardner reports for Healthcare Dive:  
A study set to read out early next year could be the final curtain for an Alzheimer's disease hypothesis that has prevailed for more than 20 years - or it could spur a re-evaluation of why past efforts failed. Efforts to reverse the devastating neurodegenerative disorder in symptomatic patients by targeting amyloid beta lesions in the brain have come up empty time and time again. The DIAN-TU study and a number of parallel trials, however, are seeking to prevent Alzheimer's from developing in the first place among patients genetically predisposed to the condition. any call these long-shot studies. But the rationale is that early intervention in patients with a high probability of developing amyloid-driven cognitive impairment will delay disease onset and help lessen symptoms, with possible lessons for physicians eager to prevent Alzheimer's in the broader population.  
Firing Doctor, Christian Hospital Sets Off National Challenge To Aid-In-Dying Laws 
JoNel Aleccia
A Christian-run health system in Colorado has fired a veteran doctor who went to court to fight for the right of her patient to use the state's medical aid-in-dying law, citing religious doctrine that describes "assisted suicide" as "intrinsically evil." Centura Health Corp. abruptly terminated Dr. Barbara Morris, 65, a geriatrician with 40 years of experience, who had planned to help her patient, Cornelius "Neil" Mahoney, 64, end his life at his home. Mahoney, who has terminal cancer, is eligible to use the state's law, overwhelmingly approved by Colorado voters in 2016. The growing number of state aid-in-dying provisions are increasingly coming into conflict with the precepts of faith-based hospitals, which oppose the practice on religious grounds. Morris' dismissal presents an early test of state laws. The Trump administration has moved to broaden the latitude of providers to refuse to participate in medical interventions they object to on religious grounds, though that has previously applied primarily to abortion and contraception. As hospitals across the country have consolidated, five of the top 10 hospital systems by net patient revenue are associated with the Roman Catholic Church...
My hand surgeon should have been paid $4.5 billion. Instead, he didn't get even $1,000.
I believe that health care providers aren't paid anything close to what they are worth to society. I don't mean this in the sappy emotional sense in which the "value of any human's life is infinite," or any other subjective standard. I am talking about real-world, measurable economic impacts. Using the entrepreneurs' 10% reward as a guide, health care providers create astronomical value for which they are paid a small token. In 2016, self-made billionaire Naveen Jain asked and answered: "If you want to make $1 billion, all you have to do is solve a $10 billion problem." That 10% reward for an entrepreneur's creation is a useful rule of thumb: Jeff Bezos is worth $100 billion because he created a $1 trillion solution to retail sales. I applied this scale to a hand surgeon using a real-world patient - me - and was surprised by the results.