Lawmakers seek to reform DMEPOS audit process with H.R. 5083 | Treating pediatric O&P patients needs special know-how | Technological "telepathy" holds promise for thought-controlled prostheses
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September 9, 2014
AOPA In Advance SmartBrief
News for Professionals in the Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics Profession

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Lawmakers seek to reform DMEPOS audit process with H.R. 5083
Proposed legislation in the U.S. House of Representatives would improve the efficiency of Medicare audits for durable medical equipment, prosthetics, orthotics and supplies by accepting O&P practitioners’ notes as a legitimate part of a patient’s medical record. Another part of H.R. 5083, the Medicare DMEPOS Audit Improvement and Reform Act, would separate O&P data from that of DME, giving a clearer picture of inaccurate claims. O&P Almanac (Adobe Flash required) (9/2014)
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Treating pediatric O&P patients needs special know-how
O&P practitioners who work with children have special issues to consider, such as allowing room for growth when fitting devices and selecting components with the greatest durability and adjustability that are also as small and lightweight as possible. It is helpful to involve children in the process, and educating the entire family can lead to consensus and better compliance. O&P Almanac (Adobe Flash required) (9/2014)
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Technological "telepathy" holds promise for thought-controlled prostheses
Harvard University researchers were able to transmit a word from a person in the U.S. to one in France without any contact and say the technology could be applied to developing thought-controlled prosthetic limbs. The study, published in the journal Plos One, described how the word was converted into binary numbers, e-mailed to France and transmitted to the receiver using transcranial magnetic stimulation. Yahoo/International Business Times (9/6)
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Expert: Diabetic foot infections not on the decline
Reports that diabetic foot infections have declined are misleading, according to a presenter at the Interscience Conference on Antimicrobial Agents and Chemotherapy. Changing the definition of diabetes resulted in an increase in the total number of Americans considered to have the disease, thus reducing the percentage of those with foot infections, which is a late-stage complication in more severe cases, said Bryson Duhon, clinical assistant professor of pharmacy at the University of Texas at Austin. MedPage Today (free registration) (9/9)
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Legislative and Regulatory
ACOs may be contributing to slower health care spending growth
Growth in Medicare spending has slowed substantially, driven primarily by lower spending on hospital care and prescription drugs, according to the Congressional Budget Office. Initiatives such as accountable care organizations and bundled care models that encourage better quality at lower costs are also generating savings for the Medicare program. Health plans are stepping up their focus on accountable care, and Medicare Advantage plans have made gains on chronic disease care and lower readmissions, according to an America's Health Insurance Plans spokeswoman. The Motley Fool (9/7)
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Trend Watch
Superhero claws add fun to child's 3D printed hand
An E-nabling the Future volunteer created a set of fake claws like those of the superhero Wolverine that can be attached with Velcro to a child's 3D printed prosthetic hand. Gizmodo (9/8)
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Business and Finance
Plan now to help employees enroll for health insurance
Health Insurance Policy
Matt Straz, founder and CEO of human resources and payroll platform Namely, offers advice on how employers can help workers navigate health insurance enrollment. His seven tips include familiarizing yourself with the options and how to use public and private exchanges, making sure employees have the information they need and discussing options with newly hired workers. Entrepreneur online (9/5)
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Breaking news from AOPA
#AOPA14 National Assembly is a success -- read the highlights! AOPA submitted extensive comments to the CMS on the OTS proposed rule -- get the update! The September O&P Almanac is online -- get your credits and the latest news! In O&P Memory, George Edward "Ed" Snell passed away on Sept. 7. Throughout his career, he strived to upgrade the profession and increase its respect in the medical community -- read about this great contributor to O&P! On the horizon, the St. Louis Coding & Billing Seminar is coming up. It's your gateway to everything Coding & Billing -- register today! Ottobock announces new-hire Aaron Holm as manager of consumer marketing and celebrates the five-year anniversary of its science center -- all of this and more in today's AOPA Breaking News.
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Upcoming events
Sept. 10: Urban Legends in O&P: What to Believe, Webinar conference  Learn more or register online
Oct. 8:
Medicare Enrollment, Revalidation and Participation Webinar conference  Learn more or register online
Oct. 20-21:
Mastering Medicare: Coding & Billing Seminar, St. Louis, Mo.  Learn more or register online.
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