Friday, January 23, 2009

Just When You Thought You Were Safe From Outsourcing Because You Are in Healthcare…

Apparently the safety of the notion that healthcare providers are practically immune from outsourcing overseas is being challenged if not crushed.  Note this article from have long clung to International Medical Trade Turns Big Business.

According to the article in India alone revenue from so called “Medical Tourism” rose from $264 million in 2000 to $4.07 billion (yes that is BILLION with a B) in 2005.

This will be a trend worth watching.

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Physiopedia – A Challenge

I have had many conversations recently with those noting a dearth of openly available information directly related to Physical Therapy particularly when looking for information in the Physical Therapist’s voice.  Like many issues in our profession, many complain but nobody does anything.  To my relief Physiopedia is finally looking to do something about it and looks to resolve that issue.

While there is no shortage of information regarding conditions commonly treated such as ACL injury or Lower Back Pain there is a serious lack of information written in the Physical Therapists voice or that adequately demonstrates the wealth of information that comprises the unique knowledge base of Physical Therapy.  What information that is available is shielded by a legacy and in my opinion outmoded and outdated system of "by subscription only” scholarly journals.

I would urge our colleagues, particularly those who possess a unique and credible expertise in particular Physical Therapy subject matter to start or at least contribute to entries in the Physiopedia Wiki such as this entry on The Glenohumeral Joint started by Tyler Shultz, PT.

By building this open and freely available compendium of information we will demonstrate the uniqueness, credibility and value to the world, and perhaps raising the visibility of our profession just a notch higher.

My thanks to all involved with the Physiopedia project.  It is a project deserving of our time and contributions.

Tuesday, January 06, 2009

WSJ Story Pulls Back the Veil of Woo Surrounding Complementary Alternative Medicine (CAM)

Steve Salerno does an excellent job in his Wall Street Journal (WSJ) article The Touch That Doesn’t Heal.  In this article he points out some of the myths surrounding treatments that are not grounded in science and exposes them to the skeptical treatment they so deserve.

He also exposes how these pseudoscientific treatments are then passed on to insurers using rather dubious and self serving interpretations of the Current Procedural Terminology codes used to bill third parties for medical services.

This is an article well worth reading and should serve as a wake up call to the third party payer community who should be far more concerned with reducing true fraud and abuse rather than arbitrarily reducing reimbursement to all providers across the spectrum.

Well done Mr. Salerno and let’s hope that policy makers now endeavoring to clean up the mess that our healthcare system has become take notice.

Sunday, January 04, 2009

New Kid/Journal on the Block

Friday January 2nd, 2008 I received what has turned out to be a pleasant surprise in the mail in the form of a free copy of a newly published journal Sports Health.  They must have known my birthday was coming up the following day.

This particular journal is published with an emphasis on “A Multidisciplinary Approach” and is a collaborative publication of the American Orthopaedic Society for Sports Medicine, North American Society for Sports Medicine, National Athletic Trainer’s Association and the Sports Physical Therapy Section of the American Physical Therapy Association.

The Table of Contents is divided up based up the discipline.  The Sports Physical Therapy articles were solidly written and similar in quality and content as what is typically found in the Journal of Orthopedic and Sports Physical Therapy.  The focus on this particular discipline content was on ACL treatment including the article I found most interesting by Hurd, Axe, Snyder-Mackler describing Management of the Athlete with Acute Anterior Cruciate Ligament Deficiency (ACL-D).  This article goes into excellent detail in the use of a treatment algorithm developed at the University of Delaware. 

I find this publication interesting in the multidisciplinary approach and frankly I think that this will further enhance the collaborative and collegial relationship that should exist between physicians and physical therapists.  Perhaps it will help to shine a light on the significant contribution of physical therapists to the body of knowledge in the management of orthopedic conditions for physicians.

So thank you the thoughtful person who sent me this early birthday gift and I think it will even be worth the dues to join the Sports Physical Therapy Section of APTA.