Sonography could play role in diagnosing pediatric hand fractures | U.S. sees decline in stroke rate in past 2 decades | Study: Lifesaving medtech saves money, too
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July 22, 2014
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Sonography could play role in diagnosing pediatric hand fractures
Bedside ultrasound is a reliable screening tool for pediatric hand fractures, according to a report in the Archives of Disease in Childhood. While X-ray is still considered the standard of care, the researchers note that ultrasound can help ensure that X-rays are used only when needed, helping avoid use of radiation. The authors note that the use of a water bath improves imaging and reduces discomfort. The researchers warn that hand ultrasound is only useful when implemented by a highly skilled sonographer using high-quality equipment. Medscape (free registration)/Reuters (7/14)
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U.S. sees decline in stroke rate in past 2 decades
The overall first-time stroke rate among Americans dropped 24% from 1987 to 2011, with a greater drop seen among people age 65 and older, according to an analysis in the Journal of the American Medical Association. Researchers found a 20% overall decline in stroke-related deaths per decade. HealthDay News (7/15), (7/15)
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SDMS Annual Conference—Register by 7/25 & Save $100+
Join the SDMS in Louisville, Kentucky for the 2014 SDMS Annual Conference, September 25-28 and experience the premier conference for the diagnostic medical sonography community. With over 90 educational sessions and tracks focused on Abdomen, Cardiac, OB/GYN, and Vascular, you will have the opportunity to earn up to 23.5 CME credits. Learn More
Technology Update
Study: Lifesaving medtech saves money, too
Medical technology, including imaging tools, offsets the high cost of disease by some $23 billion annually, according to a Milken Institute report. Researchers evaluated medical technology for heart disease, colorectal cancer, diabetes and musculoskeletal disease, and they found that services including echocardiography resulted in cost savings and health benefits. (free registration) (7/18)
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Other News
Practice News
Alleviating, preventing tennis elbow in sonographers
Lateral epicondylitis, commonly known as tennis elbow, can be a problem among sonographers because the profession requires repetitive movements that cause pain in the tendons and muscles of the forearm near the elbow, write sonographer Doug Wuebben and strength coach Mark Roozen. The problem may actually originate elsewhere in the body including the neck and back, they note, offering techniques to alleviate pain for those already experiencing discomfort and ways of preventing injuries in the first place. (free registration) (7/17)
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Changes planned for sites to simplify ratings
The CMS plans to add a rating system using stars to its Home Health Compare, Dialysis Facility Compare and Hospital Compare websites to make it easier for consumers to understand the ratings. The additions will be made throughout the rest of this year and into 2015, Dr. Patrick Conway, CMS deputy administrator for innovation and quality and chief medical officer, wrote in a blog post. The websites are all part of (7/15)
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Patient Care in Medicine
Poll sheds light on the challenge of finding a doctor
Sixty percent of Americans responding to a recent poll said they rely on physician recommendations from friends and family, close to half trust referrals from their doctor and fewer rely on online patient reviews, health insurer ratings, news media or the government. Only 22% expressed confidence in their ability to find information to compare doctors based on quality. Some states have begun publishing online "report cards," and the CMS is working on the Physician Compare rating system. The Washington Post (tiered subscription model)/The Associated Press (7/20)
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Legislative & Regulatory Update
Lawmakers present breast density bill in Senate
The Breast Density and Mammography Reporting Act of 2014, which requires mammogram reports to notify women if they have dense breast tissue, was introduced in the Senate by Sens. Dianne Feinstein, D-Calif., and Kelly Ayotte, R-N.H. The bill also recommends women consult and discuss with their doctors whether additional screening is needed and orders HHS to research improved screening options for women with dense tissue. (free registration) (7/17)
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Moody's: Hospitals, doctors can benefit from proposed Medicare payment changes
The CMS' proposed Medicare reimbursement rates for 2015 will yield "relatively modest" gains for most health care providers, according to a report by Moody's Investors Service. If Congress once again delays cuts in physician reimbursement rates under the sustainable growth rate formula, the estimated 20.9% reduction would not affect rated hospital companies, analysts said. (7/17)
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Verify ARDMS certification: Search by last name
Quickly and easily check the status of a credential/certification through the Status Verification tool found on the homepage of the ARDMS website. Verify today!
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Ultrasound Technician (Ultrasound & X-Ray)Southeast Alaska Regional Health Consortium (SEARHC)Sitka, AK
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Sonographer OB/GYNMelinda M. Martin, M.D., AZ
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Too often we enjoy the comfort of opinion without the discomfort of thought."
-- John F. Kennedy,
35th U.S. president
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