Senate passes bill to fund Paralympics team | High-school students make prosthetic hand for young girl | Indian researchers test new approach to insulin pills
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December 19, 2013
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News for Professionals in the Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics Profession

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Senate passes bill to fund Paralympics team
The Senate has passed legislation that would give $8 million in grants to U.S. Paralympics Inc. and would continue funding of $2 million a year through the Department of Veterans Affairs to support disabled veterans competing in the Paralympics through 2018. The legislation previously passed the House of Representatives and will now go to President Barack Obama for his signature. The Hill (12/18)
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Science and Technology
High-school students make prosthetic hand for young girl
A high-school robotics team in Grand Rapids, Mich., built a prosthetic hand for a 4-year-old girl, working with Mary Free Bed Rehabilitation Hospital to obtain a cast of Harmony Taylor's residual limb to ensure a good fit. Harmony will be able to use her new hand to pick things up and catch a ball. WOOD-TV (Grand Rapids, Mich.) (12/19)
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Medical News
Indian researchers test new approach to insulin pills
Researchers at India’s National Institute of Pharmaceutical Education and Research demonstrated in lab rats that insulin delivered in a new type of pill form can successfully be delivered to the bloodstream without being destroyed by digestive enzymes. In the study, published in the American Chemical Society journal Biomacromolecules, insulin packed into small liposomes and layered with folic acid and polyelectrolytes lowered blood glucose levels almost as much as injected insulin. MedicalDaily.com (12/18), The Times of India (12/19)
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Weight-loss procedures prove safe, effective in review
Weight-loss surgery was associated with significant reductions in BMI and improvements in obesity-related conditions including diabetes, hypertension and sleep apnea in severely obese individuals, according to an analysis in JAMA Surgery. Researchers also noted a very low death rate associated with the procedures. U.S. News & World Report/HealthDay News (12/18)
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Legislative and Regulatory
Work on HealthCare.gov continues ahead of Monday deadline
The White House is continuing efforts to fix glitches and ensure the accurate reporting of enrollee data, CMS spokeswoman Julie Bataille said. Visits to the federal website totaled 500,000 over the weekend, she said. The revamped website will face tests in the next two weeks, as consumers who lost coverage that did not satisfy Affordable Care Act requirements try to enroll in the health exchanges by Monday to get insurance in place for the start of the new year. The Washington Times (12/16)
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Trend Watch
Caspers to receive lifetime achievement award
Certified prosthetist-orthotist Carl Caspers will be honored with the Titus-Ferguson Lifetime Achievement Award by the American Academy of Orthotists and Prosthetists at its annual meeting in Chicago in February. Caspers, of Sartell, Minn., was inducted into the Minnesota Inventors Hall of Fame last year. He has 18 patents in prosthetics. St. Cloud Times (Minn.) (tiered subscription model) (12/18)
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Business and Finance
Veteran-hiring tax credit set to expire this month
A federal tax credit that benefits businesses that hire veterans and other target groups is set to expire at the end of this month. Employers can get a credit of up to $9,600 for each worker they hire who qualifies as a veteran. Fox Business Small Business Center (12/16)
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4 reasons to keep your books in order
Concentrating on building your business while ignoring your bookkeeping responsibilities can be a costly mistake, financial strategist Renee Butler writes. Poor accounting practices can prevent you from getting a loan and bad numbers can catch you by surprise if you're not keeping track of costs. "By keeping accurate books, you can track your actual costs ... and get a much better picture of where your company's operations stand," she writes. SCORE Small Business Success Blog (12/13)
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AOPA News
Breaking news from AOPA
AOPA's first 2014 Coding & Billing Seminar goes to New Orleans--get the latest information on medical policies, documentation and compliance--register your staff today! It's almost the end of the year--be sure to check out AOPA's New Online Business Education Programs for end-of-the-year credit opportunities! Become a presenter at the Las Vegas 2014 AOPA National Assembly--the place to be! The Amputee Coalition presents Limb Loss Education Day in Nashville--all of this and more in today's AOPA Breaking News.
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Upcoming events
Jan. 8: New Year, New Opportunity: Are You Billing For All That You Can? (Telephone audio conference)
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Feb. 12: Billing for Diabetic & Orthopedic Shoes, Mastectomy Services, and Surgical Dressings (Telephone audio conference) Learn more or register online.
March 12: The ABC's of Audits: What to Expect and How to Respond (Telephone audio conference)
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SmartQuote
Having once decided to achieve a certain task, achieve it at all costs of tedium and distaste. The gain in self-confidence of having accomplished a tiresome labour is immense."
-- Arnold Bennett,
British writer
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