Energy-saving prosthetic feet are better for amputees, study says | Study: Patellofemoral orthoses reduce osteoarthritis symptoms | Bionic exoskeleton to help with physical therapy, heavy lifting
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October 29, 2013
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AOPA In Advance SmartBrief
News for Professionals in the Orthotics, Prosthetics and Pedorthics Profession

Top Story
Energy-saving prosthetic feet are better for amputees, study says
Energy-saving prosthetic feet allow amputees more flexibility, steps and safety when walking, according to a study funded by AOPA. Results of the study will lead to further research and specific clinical recommendations, said Silvia Raschke, who led the study and presented the findings at the AOPA World Congress last month. Michael Orendurff, who also took part in the research, noted that studies such as this one could help payers better understand device choices made by practitioners. "The medical world demands published results of efficacy," he said. O&P Almanac (Adobe Flash required) (10/2013)
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Science and Technology
Study: Patellofemoral orthoses reduce osteoarthritis symptoms
Osteoarthritis patients with patellofemoral joint pain and bone marrow lesions saw a significant improvement in their symptoms after using a patellofemoral orthosis for six weeks, according to a recent study. The orthosis did not reduce bone marrow lesions in the tibiofemoral joint, however. Healio (free registration) (10/28)
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Bionic exoskeleton to help with physical therapy, heavy lifting
A bionic upper-body exoskeleton device called the Titan Arm was developed by engineering students at the University of Pennsylvania to help patients with upper-body injuries or muscular-skeletal disorders and those who perform jobs that require them to do heavy lifting. "With the Titan Arm, we wanted to create something that could both augment a user's natural strength as well as help someone perform physical therapy in their own home. We wanted to create something that was low-cost and easy for a user to put on and strap to themselves," said Elizabeth Beattie, one of the students who invented the Titan Arm. CNN (10/25)
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Medical News
WHO confirms 10 polio cases in Syria
The World Health Organization confirmed 10 polio cases among babies and toddlers in northeast Syria on Tuesday, and the organization is investigating 12 other suspected cases as the country's civil war continues to limit access to vaccinations. The last outbreak in the region was 14 years ago. Before the civil war, almost all Syrian children were vaccinated against the disease, which officials said could spread further, Time.com (10/29), Voice of America (10/29)
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Legislative and Regulatory
ACA brings in predominance of Medicaid enrollees in some states
Medicaid enrollees are making up the majority of people signing up for health insurance on the Affordable Care Act's new insurance exchanges that were launched at the beginning of the month. Washington state found 87% of its new enrollees signed up for Medicaid, while 82% in Kentucky and 64% in New York enrolled in Medicaid. While the influx of people signing up for Medicaid benefits is good news for the law's supporters, whose goal is to expand the number of Americans with health insurance coverage, fewer enrollees have signed up for private health insurance, which was slated to grow under the ACA. The Wall Street Journal (tiered subscription model) (10/27)
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New HIPAA rules apply to business associates
HIPAA security rules now apply to business associates, including vendors, and assume that health care entities perform due diligence before contracting and monitoring throughout the contract, writes CynergisTek CEO Michael McMillan. The Omnibus Rule lifts constraints on the ability of the Office for Civil Rights to assess formal penalties and gives the Office for Civil Rights greater latitude in determining financial penalties. To avoid formal action, regulated entities should stay informed about privacy and security requirements, make privacy and security a priority, conduct risk analyses, train staff, ensure oversight and accountability and monitor security, McMillan writes. Government Health IT online (10/28)
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Business Tips and Advice
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Trend Watch
R.I. group uses 3D printing to make prosthetic hands for children
The 3DP PVD group met last week in Providence, R.I., to create plastic prosthetic hands for children in East Africa using 3D printing technology. The effort was part of the global "Make the World: Prosthetics" virtual event, which encouraged groups to gather and work on designing, improving and producing prostheses for global amputees in need. The Providence Journal (R.I.) (free registration) (10/28)
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Indian business students provide 50 amputees with prostheses
Students from the Indian Institute of Management Bangalore provided 50 amputees with the Jaipur Foot at a medical camp organized by social-responsibility initiative Prayaas, which also provided patients with glasses and cataract treatments. "It was heartening to see the dedication of the Jaipur Foot team. Seeing a person walk with a new leg was quite an emotional moment," said European exchange student and volunteer Johanna Burnann. The Times of India (10/29)
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Other News
AOPA News
Breaking news from AOPA
Set your calendar for 2014 and fix your sights on the AOPA National Assembly in Las Vegas! Get the latest on the recent administrative law judge rulings to support the use of practitioner records – don’t miss it! AOPAversity is hosting an audio conference in November on advocacy – take an active role in controlling the future of O&P treatment by registering today! Be sure to take some time to review the World Congress wrap-up in the November O&P Almanac –  all of this in today’s AOPA Breaking News.
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Upcoming events
Nov. 13: Advocacy: A Potent Weapon for Change (Telephone audio conference)
Register online
Dec. 11: What's on the Horizon: New Codes for 2014 (Telephone audio conference)
Register online
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SmartQuote
We are here to laugh at the odds and live our lives so well that Death will tremble to take us."
-- Charles Bukowski,
German-born American writer
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