2015 Issues

December 2015

Do you believe the quality of care provided by advanced practice providers such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants can be as good as that provided by physicians?

Please read this article and participate in this month’s online opinion poll: Do you believe the quality of care provided by advanced practice providers such as nurse practitioners and physician assistants can be as good... View Article

December 2015

Enhanced Screening Seeks to Prevent Military Suicides

Is it possible to prevent military suicide by regularly monitoring troops’ resilience, just as their physical fitness is now measured?

December 2015

VA Questioned on Handling of Presumptive Status for Toxic Exposures

Senators questioned VA on how it is determining presumptive status for veterans with conditions liked to topic exposures and pressed the agency to move quickly to ensure veterans receive benefits.

December 2015

New Gout Classification Criteria Released Recently

The American College of Rheumatology/European League Against Rheumatism recently came out with new 2015 Gout Classification Criteria.

December 2015

Research Suggests Gout Drug Could Lower Diabetes Risk Among Veterans

Could a common drug used for gout lower the risk of diabetes? That’s what a recent study in the journal Clinical Therapeutics endeavored to find out.

December 2015

Evaluation of Allopurinol Use for Acute Gout Attack

SAN ANTONIO — Allopurinol traditionally has not been initiated during an acute gout attack to avoid prolonging the painful arthritis.Instead, the 2012 American College of Rheumatology Guidelines for the Management of Gout suggest that urate-lowering... View Article

December 2015

MD Lawmakers Urge VA to Hire Scribes to Increase Physician Efficiency

With medical staff often overwhelmed by documentation and data-entry requirements, VA should use medical scribes more widely across its system, two physician lawmakers recently urged.

December 2015

TRICARE Promises Cost Savings for Everyone with RX Shift

It’s a case of bad news-good news: TRICARE beneficiaries, as of Oct. 1, have fewer options for getting certain prescriptions filled, but their costs are lower.

December 2015

Cirrhosis Expected to Peak by 2021 in VA; Liver Cancer Epidemic Continues

For the VA, the combination of effective treatment options and much lower prevalence of HCV in younger veterans may offer a light at the end of the tunnel — and a turning point in the steady rise of HCV-associated complications such as cirrhosis and hepatocellular carcinoma (HCC) in only a few years.

December 2015

DoD, VA Scolded Again for EHR Interoperability Delays

By Sandra BasuWASHINGTON — DoD informed Congress last month that it has met key interoperability requirements set forth in the 2014 National Defense Authorization Act.DoD Undersecretary of Defense for Acquisition, Technology and Logistics Frank Kendell... View Article

December 2015

‘Big Data’ Helps Predict Which Soldiers Most Likely to Commit Violent Crimes

Technology Could Help DoD Better Address Workplace ViolenceBy Annette M. BoyleCAMBRIDGE, MA — As the DoD struggles with implementing a uniform workplace violence program that includes prevention and response protocols, a key tool has been... View Article

December 2015

Diabetes Overtreatment Continues for Older VA Patients

Some Clinicians Worry More About Malpractice Than HypoglycemiaBy Brenda L. MooneyANN ARBOR, MI — Despite a VA campaign to raise awareness of hypoglycemia and recommendations from the national Choosing Wisely campaign to less aggressively treat... View Article

December 2015

Veterans with Skin Cancer Lacked Awareness of Personal Risks

SAN ANTONIO — Veterans with skin cancer might not be as aware of the dangers of sun exposure or the necessity for skin protection as they should be.In a study published recently in Military Medicine,... View Article

December 2015

Scarce Sun Protection in Iraq, Afghanistan Put Troops at Risk

NASHVILLE, TN — It wasn’t only the climate that increased the risk of skin cancer for military personnel serving in Iraq and Afghanistan. Lack of sun protection also was a contributing factor, according to a... View Article

December 2015

VA-Led Study: NPs, PA Provide Comparable Cardiac Care to Physicians

All Fail to Consistently Meet Performance MeasuresBy Brenda L. MooneyHOUSTON — Cardiac patients and even some medical staff might assume they will receive the best ongoing care when they see a physician, not an advanced... View Article

December 2015

Winter Event Director Promotes Fitness for Disabled Veterans

By Stephen SpotswoodGRAND JUNCTION, CO — When Teresa Parks arrived at the National Disabled Veterans Winter Sports Clinic in 1999, she brought with her a lifelong belief that sports and recreational activities could be used... View Article

December 2015

For Treated Patients, HIV Status No Greater Risk for Surgery Than Older Age

Subhead: Post-operative Mortality Rates Low Among ART UsersBy Annette M. BoyleWEST HAVEN, CT — Historically, high post-operative mortality rates among HIV-infected patients caused many physicians and patients to defer or avoid surgery all together. For... View Article

December 2015

Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders

“Leaders don’t create followers, they create more leaders.”               — Tom PetersI have been ruminating for the past few months over the bureaucracy of federal medicine and the importance of selfless service to... View Article

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