New drug combination could better control type 2 diabetes | Teenager builds mind-controlled prosthetic arm | Kinetic Concepts gains FDA OK for advanced wound-care device
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November 26, 2013
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AOPA In Advance SmartBrief
News for Professionals in the Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics Profession

Top Story
New drug combination could better control type 2 diabetes
A new drug called MK2 can combine with an established medication, metformin, to create a superpill that doubles the potency of both in treating overweight patients with type 2 diabetes. According to the study, published in the journal Cell Metabolism, the drug combination may also be effective against the early pre-diabetes stage of the disease. Yahoo/Asian News International/Daily Express (U.K.) (11/23)
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Science and Technology
Teenager builds mind-controlled prosthetic arm
Shiva Nathan, 15, of Westford, Mass., has developed a prosthetic arm and hand that he controls through an electroencephalogram headset. His invention just won first place in the 2013 National microMedics contest, and Nathan plans to make it available online as an open-source project that anyone can download and build with a few electronic parts. At his request, the town is planning to donate space where he and other local innovators can work. The Sun (Lowell, Mass.) (11/20)
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Medical News
Kinetic Concepts gains FDA OK for advanced wound-care device
The FDA has cleared Kinetic Concepts to market the V.A.C. Via Negative Pressure Wound Therapy System, the newest version of its portable device designed for patients in need of continued wound therapy after hospital discharge. The device is set for a nationwide launch early next month. San Antonio Express-News (11/21)
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5M children in Kenya vaccinated against polio
Following a polio outbreak in East Africa, health authorities in Kenya have vaccinated 5 million children against the disease, according to UNICEF, which has set a goal of immunizing a total of 8.3 million Kenyans younger than 5. No new cases have been reported in Kenya in the past four months. The worst outbreak has been in Somalia, with about 175 reported cases, along with scattered cases in Ethiopia and South Sudan. Bloomberg (11/26)
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Lower diabetes risk seen with flavonoid intake
Dietary flavonols and flavanols, but not lignans, were associated with a lower risk of type 2 diabetes, British researchers found. "These results highlight the potential protective effect of eating a diet rich in flavonoids (a dietary pattern based on plant-based foods) on type 2 diabetes risk," study authors wrote in Diabetes Care. PhysiciansBriefing.com/HealthDay News (11/21)
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Legislative and Regulatory
HealthCare.gov's capacity expected to double by Nov. 30 with tech enhancements
Hardware and software additions this past weekend and this week will allow HealthCare.gov to handle 50,000 users simultaneously by Nov. 30, the tech team's Jeff Zients said. The website, which can currently handle 25,000 users at a time, will be able to accommodate at least 800,000 users on a daily basis because of these additions, he estimated. Politico (Washington, D.C.) (11/22)
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Business Tips and Advice
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Trend Watch
Ottobock joins Ability P&O in expanded limb donation to Philippines
Ottobock has joined Gettysburg, Pa.-based Ability Prosthetics & Orthotics in its drive to collect artificial limbs for survivors of Typhoon Haiyan in the Philippines. Ability has expanded its goal to collect $2.5 million worth of prostheses, up from the original $750,000 target. WHTM-TV (Harrisburg, Pa.) (11/26)
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Business and Finance
Basic steps can keep a small business secure
Small businesses can face security threats just as severe as those affecting larger firms, and they need to keep their physical and information assets safe, according to this article. Steps include using strong passwords and segmenting the company network to keep critical operations separate from public or guest areas. In addition, companies should prepare a security policy and educate their employees about it, including the proper role of social media. Dynamic Business online (Australia) (11/25)
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AOPA News
Breaking news from AOPA
Survive and thrive with New O&P Business Education for 21st Century Entrepreneurs – stay up to date! CMS announces a new date for PECOS implementation – stay tuned! AOPA releases a letter from CMS Director Laurence Wilson pertaining to the announcement of new HCPCS codes and the removal of 26 codes slated for the OTS List/exploding of codes treatment! Speaking of codes, mark your calendars – the popular AOPAversity December audio conference on new codes for 2014 is coming – don't miss it! Become an exhibitor at the 2014 AOPA National Assembly – the place to be! All of this and more in today's AOPA Breaking News.
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Upcoming events
Dec. 11: What's on the Horizon: New Codes for 2014 (Telephone audio conference)
Learn more or register online
Jan. 8: New Year, New Opportunity: Are You Billing For All That You Can? (Telephone audio conference)
Learn more or register online.
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Editor's Note
SmartBrief will not publish Nov. 28
In observance of the Thanksgiving holiday in the U.S., AOPA In Advance SmartBrief will not publish on Thursday, Nov. 28. Publication will resume Tuesday, Dec. 3.
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SmartQuote
Some people believe that holding on and hanging in there are signs of great strength. However, there are times when it takes much more strength to know when to let go -- and then do it."
-- Ann Landers,
American advice columnist
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