• December 20, 2011

    In This Issue:



    CMS Will Hold Medicare 2012 Claims Through Jan. 17

    While the healthcare community awaits legislation that would halt an SGR-mandated, across-the-board 24.7 percent fee cut for physician services provided under the 2012 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has instructed its claims administration contractors to hold payments through Jan. 17, 2012 if needed. Whether or not a legislative fix for the SGR is passed by then, CMS will need to issue payments at that time; if legislation follows, CMS will need to address changes retroactively.

    On Friday night, the Senate passed a bill providing a “patch” that would delay the cuts until March 1, 2012. Last night, House Republicans postponed a planned vote on this Senate-passed bill. Stay tuned...

    Read CMS's Communication

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    SCAI Calls for Stringent Review Policies for Stent Cases in Maryland

    Responding to draft recommendations by the Maryland Health Care Commission Technical Advisory Committee (MHCC TAG), SCAI and the Maryland Chapter of the American College of Cardiology called for new policies requiring two levels of review for stenting in Maryland. The state has been the site for two high-profile cases of alleged stent overuse. The cardiovascular societies commented on the MHCC TAG's less rigorous proposal for oversight, recommending that hospitals should be required to submit on an annual basis a written plan detailing how they will conduct internal peer review. SCAI and ACC also recommended an external auditing mechanism.

    SCAI thanks Kerry Prewitt, MD, FSCAI, and John Wang, MD, FSCAI, for representing SCAI and ACC, respectively, on the MHCC TAG. They have been instrumental in shaping the cardiovascular societies' recommendations on behalf of Maryland patients.

    The Baltimore Sun's Coverage of These Recommendations

    Read the SCAI-ACC-Maryland Media Statement

    SCAI's Comments to MHCC

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    Society President Makes the Case for Expansion of Stroke Care Teams

    It is unacceptable that less than 2 percent of acute stroke patients in the United States receive any form of reperfusion therapy, says Christopher J. White, M.D., FSCAI, in his latest President's Page (e-published in Catheterization & Cardiovascular Interventions this week).

    Pointing to the dramatic successes achieved with door-to-balloon times for acute myocardial infarction patients treated in PCI-capable hospitals, he urges changes in the care of patients suffering from stroke. He would start with a "patient-centered national quality mandate to improve access for on-demand stroke reperfusion therapy." The key to success is to expand stroke teams to include carotid-stenting-capable physicians who can share the on-call coverage.

    Read Dr. White's Latest President's Page

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    Don't Forget! Extended SCAI 2012 Abstract Deadline is January 4

    The abstract submission deadline for SCAI 2012 Scientific Sessions has been extended to January 4, 2012.

    SCAI 2012 will take place May 9-12, 2012 at the Mirage in Las Vegas. In addition to attracting an audience including the world's leading figures in interventional cardiology, there are several other reasons that you should think about SCAI 2012 first when submitting your research:

    • Top 3 Abstracts receive “Best of the Best Abstract Awards”
    • Top 10 Abstracts selected for Oral Presentation
    • Catheterization and Cardiovascular Interventions- Interventional Cardiology's leading journal - will publish all presented abstracts
    • Complimentary Registrationfor Presenting Author
    • Abstract Submission is FREE


    More Info on Submitting Abstracts to SCAI 2012

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    SCAI Fighting OMB Approval Needed for Pre-Payment Audits of PCI Urges Office of Management and Budget to Deny CMS Request

    In SCAI's fight against pre-payment audits of PCI in Florida and 10 other states, the Society submitted comments to the Office of Management and Budget (OMB) last week, urging OMB to deny the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' request for emergency clearance due to inaccuracies and inconsistencies of information. CMS needs OMB to approve this request in order to move forward with these audits.

    SCAI points out that CMS has not provided critical information to the public about the implementation of these prepayment review programs. In addition, the benefit of prepayment review compared to post-payment review has not been clearly established by CMS and in cases, the criteria for medical necessity is not available to patients or providers.

    Read SCAI's Comment Letter to OMB

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    Hartford Courant Features Transradial PCI, Quotes SCAI Members

    The Hartford Courant highlighted the use of transradial angioplasty in an article published over the weekend. The article leads with the story of a patient who underwent the procedure and joined the hospital's record books for its fastest door-to-balloon time: 21 minutes. Hartford Courant journalist William Weir interviewed SCAI member Michael Azrin, MD, who performed the procedure, as well as Francis Kiernan, MD, FSCAI, and SCAI Transradial Working Group Co-chair Samir Pancholy, MD, FSCAI. The physicians are quoted on the benefits of the technique for some patients, the importance of careful patient selection, and how transradial PCI is gradually gaining acceptance in U.S. cath labs.

    Read the Story

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    Wiley Offering SCAI Members 40% Discount on Titles Through 2011

    Looking to ring in the new year with resolutions? From must-have cookbooks to bestselling travel guides and everything in between, SCAI is offering members a special discount to help find the perfect book(s) to help you do just that.

    As an added member-benefit, SCAI's publishing partner for Catheterization & Cardiovascular Interventions (CCI), Wiley-Blackwell, is extending to you a 40% discount on virtually all John Wiley & Sons print books. The discount is good through December 31, 2011, and can be accessed at: www.wiley.com/promo/HH1.

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    Show Us Some Love! Like SCAI and SecondsCount on Facebook

    Connect with your colleagues on SCAI's New Facebook Page.

    It's simple to do. CLICK HERE and then click on the "Like" icon.

    Once you join the SCAI group you'll be able to post responses to the SCAI wall and discussion board, view photos and videos and much more. If you are an active Facebook user, it's a no-brainer!

    Like SCAI's Facebook Page Now!

    Like the SecondsCount Facebook Page Now!

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