New otitis media guidelines take tougher stand against routine treatment | Anti-anxiety medication doesn't raise dementia risk, researchers find | Read the AAFP's clinical practice guideline on dementia that was reaffirmed in April 2013.

February 5, 2016
Family Medicine SmartBrief

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New otitis media guidelines take tougher stand against routine treatment
New guidelines on otitis media with effusion call for screening at-risk children or those who have developmental delays or conditions that put them at higher risk, according to the American Academy of Otolaryngology—Head and Neck Surgery Foundation. The guidelines, published in the journal Otolaryngology–Head and Neck Surgery, update 2004 recommendations and include a tougher stand against using medical treatment for otitis media unless there are exceptional circumstances. Medscape (free registration) (2/4)
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Clinical NewsAdvertisement
Anti-anxiety medication doesn't raise dementia risk, researchers find
A study published in The BMJ found that benzodiazepines, used to fight anxiety, do not raise risk of dementia among seniors. Other studies have found a link between the drugs and cognitive problems. Findings based on over 3,400 seniors at least 65 years old show that while 23% of patients developed some form of dementia, patients who took the highest dose of benzodiazepine were no more likely to experience cognitive problems than others. HealthDay News (2/3)
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ADHD tied to higher obesity risk in females, study finds
Female patients diagnosed with attention-deficit/hyperactivity disorder during childhood had a twofold increased likelihood of developing obesity in childhood and adulthood than those who didn't have ADHD, according to a study in Mayo Clinic Proceedings. Researchers assessed 1,001 individuals with and without childhood ADHD, all born between 1976 and 1982, and found no association between obesity and stimulant treatment among those with the disorder. Medical News Today (2/4)
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Combined metformin, canagliflozin beneficial for diabetes
Drug-naive patients with type 2 diabetes experienced significantly greater reductions in HbA1C and body weight 26 weeks after taking 100 mg canagliflozin plus metformin or 300 mg canagliflozin plus metformin, compared with metformin alone. The findings in Diabetes Care, based on 1,186 patients with a mean age of 54.9, also showed patients on canagliflozin monotherapy had comparable HbA1C reductions and greater weight loss than metformin monotherapy. Healio (free registration)/Endocrine Today (2/4)
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Study links ART to cancers, developmental delays in children
Children conceived with assisted reproductive technology had a 67% increased risk of leukemia and were almost four times more likely to have Hodgkin lymphoma, compared with other children, according to a study of more than 1.6 million Norwegian children born between 1984 and 2011. A second study, based on data from more than 330,000 deliveries from 2004 to 2008, found that ART-conceived babies had a 27% increased chance of being referred to Massachusetts' Early Intervention program. Both studies were published in Pediatrics. The findings are preliminary and may reflect factors not related to ART, researchers cautioned. Reuters (2/4)
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Data Security and HIPAA Compliance in Mid-sized Healthcare Organizations
The 21st century is facing an uphill battle for better data security, and the healthcare industry is at the front lines. Healthcare providers deal with tremendous amounts of sensitive, legally protected data labeled protected health information (PHI), which requires certain security measures as defined by HIPAA. Learn how to ensure that all PHI is handled, transferred and stored properly.

Practice Management
DPC model offers price transparency, greater access to care, physician says
Switching to a direct primary care model offers patients price transparency and expanded access to care, said family physician Kimberly Legg Corba in Fogelsville, Pa. AAFP President Wanda Filer, M.D., M.B.A., commented that direct primary care is a viable option for physicians frustrated with insurance plans and doctors who make the switch love it. "Quality improves and the patients with multiple chronic diseases really benefit, because they get the face-to-face time," Filer said. The Morning Call (Allentown, Pa.) (2/1)
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PCMH study shows cost savings, reductions in ER, hospital use
Studies of 30 primary care patient-centered medical home initiatives found 21 of 23 that tracked costs showed reductions in at least one financial category, according to a report from the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative and Milbank Memorial Fund. The report found that out of 25 studies reporting utilization metrics, 23 showed reductions in at least one category, including hospital admissions and readmissions and emergency department visits. (2/4)
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Health Policy & Legislation
12.7M Americans signed up for coverage under ACA, Burwell says
HHS Secretary Sylvia Mathews Burwell announced Thursday that about 12.7 million Americans signed up for health care coverage through Affordable Care Act exchanges, up from last year's final tally of 11.7 million. The number fell within the range of federal estimates and included 2.7 million people ages 18 to 34. The federal exchange garnered 5.6 million return customers and almost 4 million first-time enrollees, Burwell said. Reuters (2/4), Bloomberg (2/4)
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Professional Issues & Trends
Study analyzes sources, impact of EHR-related medical errors
A study showed 31% of cases of electronic health record-related harm were related to medication errors, 31% were linked to complications from treatment and 28% were related to diagnostic mistakes, researchers reported in the Journal of Patient Safety. The study showed 80% of malpractice cases related to EHRs involved moderate or severe harm, and that errors more often were found in ambulatory care settings than inpatient settings. Health Data Management (2/3)
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Inside the AAFP
Family medicine: The Force awakens
AAFP Leader Voices blog
Achieving the goals of family medicine cannot rest solely on the shoulders of a few. Just like characters in the latest Hollywood blockbuster, everyone has to play their part. Marie-Elizabeth Ramas, M.D., has more in the latest Leader Voices Blog post.
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AAFP CareerLink - Connecting Family Physicians and Employers
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Whatever you think the world is withholding from you, you are withholding from the world."
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About AAFP
This news roundup is provided as a timely update to AAFP members and other health care professionals about family medicine topics in the news media. Links to articles are provided for the convenience of family physicians who may find them of use in discussions with patients or colleagues. Opinions expressed in Family Medicine SmartBrief are those of the identified authors and do not necessarily reflect the opinions or policies of the American Academy of Family Physicians. On occasion, media articles may include or imply incorrect information about the AAFP and its policies, positions or relationships. For clarification on AAFP positions and policies, we refer you to
External Resources are not a part of the AAFP website. AAFP is not responsible for the content of sites that are external to the AAFP. Linking to a website does not constitute an endorsement by AAFP of the sponsors of the site or the information presented on the site.

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