Weekly Member Update - June 3, 2011


Friday, June 3, 2011


Dan Thought You Would Like to Know

ASSH Introduces Featured Members

Self-Assessment Exam – Deadline Friday, June 10th

Final Days to Pre-Register for 2011 Comprehensive Review – Deadline June 14th

The Online Consultation Corner Returns June 7th- Carpal Tunnel Syndrome

Advanced Techniques in Reconstructive Elbow Surgery

Health Volunteer Overseas

Thank You to AFSH Donors

Physician Survey Can Help Reduce Burden of Recoupment – from the AMA


Dan Thought You Would Like to Know

In direct response to American Medical Association (AMA) and American College of Surgeons advocacy, CMS staff announced that the agency is issuing a proposed rule on modifying the eRx penalty program.  Read the complete CMS statement in the following PDF: 42 CFR Part 414.pdf.  They expect that the Final Rule will be published in August.  On a media conference call, CMS staff provided an overview of the proposed rule.  If physicians are unable to meet the current eRx requirement (e-prescribe & report 10 G codes on your Medicare Part B claims by June 30, 2011), they will have an opportunity to apply for an exemption by using a web-based tool to avoid the eRx penalty.  CMS will review the requests and provide exemptions from eRx penalties on a case by case basis. 

The exemption categories include (1) already participating in the Medicare/Medicaid EHR incentive programs, (2) prescribe controlled substances, (3) treat Medicare patients, but issue few prescriptions, and (4) are able to e-prescribe, but are unable to report e-prescriptions due to eRx program requirements.  The regulation was just posted to the website and is under review by AMA, ACS and AAOS staff. 

I would like to extend many thanks to Andy Gurman, MD, ASSH member and vice speaker of the AMA House of Delegates, for keeping us in the loop on this very important issue.  The AMA and the American College of Surgeons were instrumental in convincing CMS to change the eRx rules.  The ASSH will continue to follow this issue.


ASSH Introduces Featured Members

According to the recent Members Value Survey, as well as surveys from previous years, collegiality ranks among the most valued of the intangible benefits of ASSH Membership.  But with thousands of members spanning the globe, connecting with all of your colleagues presents a huge challenge.  To begin bridging that gap, the Hand Society is exploring the creation of a new feature in Weekly Member Update which would introduce different members and share about their career. 

Featured members will be selected, in part, based on the completeness of their online profile in the ASSH database.  Your profile is linked with our online Membership Directory and our Find-a-Hand-Surgeon tool, so the more complete your profile is, the easier it will be for patients and other members to find you when they search for specific information.  Take a moment to login to www.assh.org and update your profile today. 

All featured members will be contacted by Tara Havenga prior to their inclusion in Weekly Member Update.  If you have questions, or would like to be featured, please contact Tara (thavenga@assh.org). 


Self-Assessment Exam – Deadline Friday, June 10th

Just one week left to send in your 2011 ASSH Self-Assessment Exam answer sheet!  All answer sheets must be postmarked and in the mail by Friday, June 10th.  Answer sheets not postmarked by this date will not be scored.  Any unscored exams are not eligible for CME credit.  No exceptions to the deadline are being made, so please return your sheets on time.  If you need a new answer sheet please contact Bridget Treccia at btreccia@assh.org.  Thank you for participating in this year’s exam!

Please note: Score exams must meet or surpass the 39% minimum passing score requirement, or CME credit will not be given.


Final Days to Pre-Register for 2011 Comprehensive Review – Deadline June 14th
July 15-17, Chicago, IL

Do not miss your opportunity to pre-register for this advanced review course to refresh your knowledge, while you earn over 22 CME hours this summer.  Expert faculty will present on the topical concepts of anatomy, biomechanics and pathology as well as diagnostic and treatment methods relating to hand, wrist and elbow surgery.  See a full list of topics and faculty

Need a General Orthopaedic Review?  Add on the precourse, which is co-sponsored by ASSH and AAOS on July 14.  This one-day review course prepares you for the general orthopaedic questions on the Subspecialty Certificate in Surgery of the Hand (formerly CAQ Hand).   Learn more.
Stumped by a tricky Carpal Tunnel case?  Or, maybe you're considering a different treatment option and would like to talk it over with a colleague, or even better, consult with a “giant.”
Post your case in the ASSH Image Library and register for the Online Consultation Corner (OCC) webinar on June 7.  Space is limited so register online today.   
If you’ve got questions, ASSH has answers.  Contact us at meetings@assh.org.
Advanced Techniques in Reconstructive Elbow Surgery
Co-Chairs: Scott P. Steinmann, MD and A. Lee Osterman, MD
July 29-30, 2011
Orthopaedic Learning Center, Rosemont, IL
Don’t miss your chance to see all the current elbow arthroplasty options and learn the most innovative surgical approaches from the most experienced surgeons!  This course will provide in depth discussions of elbow arthroscopy with the entire first day devoted to elbow arthroscopy in the lab.  With plenty of hands on lab time, attendees have the opportunity to practice the newest techniques and technology as well as time to present your own cases for advice from the elbow experts.  The deadline to register is July 8, 2011.  Learn more and register today!
Volunteers needed to provide teaching and training to orthopaedic and trauma physicians at Komfo Anoyke Teaching Hospital in Kumasi, Ghana.  Volunteers should have trauma and/or pediatrics experience.   Assignments are two to four weeks in length.   For more information contact the program department or visit hvousa.org for a complete listing of opportunities.
Thanks to the partnership of hundreds of donors each year the American Foundation for Surgery of the Hand continues to make a difference in patient care, research, and education.  We especially thank these donors who made a contribution to the Foundation in the past week.
Robert L. Bass, MD
Dawn M. Briskey, CAE
Jack Choueka, MD
Kyle W. Coker, MD
Philip G. Coogan, MD
Vermon S. Esplin, MD
David L. Evans, MD
Neville A. Lewis, MD
Thomas D. Magnell, MD
Julie A. Melchior, MD
Charles P. Melone, Jr., MD
Robert L. Morrow, Jr., MD, FACS
Husam W. Najjar
Terrence M. O'Donovan, MD
Savvas C. Poulos, MD
Michael P. Rubinstein, MD
Brian S. Smith, MD
James K. Sobeski, MD
Craig R. Stirrat, MD
Benjamin D. Sutker, MD
Carrie R. Swigart, MD
Peter F. Townsend, MD
Stephen C. Umansky, MD
Christopher S. Wilson, MD
You can make a difference through your contribution today, visit www.afsh.org or contact us at afsh@assh.org.
Because overpayment recoupment efforts are a tremendous burden for physician practices, the American Medical Association (AMA) is conducting a brief survey to better understand the prevalence of these efforts and how they are affecting physician practices to aid our advocacy efforts.  If you have had experiences with recoupment efforts or have information about recoupment that you think would be helpful, please complete this brief survey.  Those who participate will also receive a complimentary copy of the survey results from the Frank Cohen Group, which is working with the AMA to conduct this survey. 
The AMA’s goal is to use the survey data to assess what measures can be taken to reduce the burden such recoupment impose on physician practices.  Visit www.surveymonkey.com/s/Recoupment  to take the survey.