Many O&P facilities are using such care extenders as technicians, assistants and fitters to increase effectiveness and create a collaborative environment of care. It is important to ensure that a certified practitioner supervises all such work and it adheres to state licensure laws and Medicare rules.
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New, soft robots developed at the Swiss Ecole polytechnique federale de Lausanne are able to mimic the movement of human muscles and aid in rehabilitation. Eventually, these soft robots could lead to flexible exoskeletons to help patients regain lower-limb use.
Quadruple amputee Aimee Copeland, who lost her limbs to necrotizing fasciitis in 2012, wears prostheses developed by California-based biodesigns. "What we do is a patented way of compressing and releasing around the tissue so that the bone inside is fixated or stabilized so that it feels like a part of you, becomes a part of you, instead of something attached to you," said biodesigns CEO and prosthetist Randy Alley.
A 28-year-old French woman who lost both hands and both feet after developing sepsis infection received a double hand transplant at the University of Pennsylvania. Orthopedic and plastic surgeon L. Scott Levin, director of Penn's hand transplant program, collaborated on the procedure with Laurent Lantieri, a reconstructive plastic surgeon at Georges Pompidou European Hospital at Paris Descartes University.
Ponemon Institute's fourth annual IT security study showed that though the number of health care organizations with a cybersecurity response plan increased from 61% in 2013 to 86% this year, 29% haven't reviewed or updated their plan since it was implemented and 38% don't have a definite schedule for reviewing or updating it. Meanwhile, 56% of respondents lack confidence in their ability to deal with a data breach, compared with 27% that believe they have enough cybersecurity.
The CMS paid Medicare Shared Savings Program participants $646 million last year, while those organizations generated $429 million in savings that year, dealing a $216 million loss to the agency. Medicare Payment Advisory Commission Commissioner Craig Sammit, M.D., called the results "incredibly unsatisfying," and Commissioner Willis Gradison said the agency may need to nudge more ACOs to assume upside and downside risk.
Paralympian Aditya Mehta, who won two silver medals at the Asian Para-Cycling Championship 2013, said officials at an airport in Bengaluru, India, made him remove and reattach his prosthetic leg. He reported on social media that the process took 40 minutes and left him bleeding due to an earlier injury.
Dave Williams and Jake Chronister founded 2ft Prosthetics, a nonprofit that provides devices to amputees in foreign countries, and recently fit 18 people with new legs in Tonga. Prosthetist Branch Hunsaker volunteers with the group, which developed a plastic foot with tread for those who don't wear shoes or who live where there are no roads.
Only 14% of small businesses offer 401(k) plans for their employees, but the expense of doing so is coming down and more businesses are responding, say employers and business experts. This is important as the job market tightens and more states consider mandates for small businesses to offer a retirement plan, says Chris Jasinski of benefits provider Ubiquity Retirement + Savings.