MASSDEVICE ON CALL — The Justice Dept. is taking a closer look at physician-owned distributorships, warning that the influence that doctors have over hospitals purchasing practices leaves room for some serious conflicts of interest.
Michigan spine surgeon Dr. Aria Sabit took center stage in the DOJ’s broader investigation of POD centers that allow docs to take a cut of profits.
Sabit, an Apex Medical Technologies shareholder, continued to use the company’s implants despite obvious conflict of interest, according to a Wall Street Journal report citing "a person familiar with the matter." The neurosurgery medical director at Michigan’s McLaren Lapeer Region hospital also had operation and distribution privileges at Detroit Medical Center and the Doctors’ Hospital of Michigan, according to the report.
Boston Children’s Hospital designs new in-hospital apps
While in-hospital mobile applications often come 2nd to EMR and meaningful use programs, Boston Children’s Hospital has found a way to bolster in-hospital app development with an award contest. Staff can submit ideas that will streamline hospital experiences and processes, and the Innovation Office, led by chief officer Naomi Fried, will help develop working apps.
Anti-ObamaCare ads to air during Saturday Night Live
An advertisement mocking Obama’s Affordable Care Act is all set to run during NBC’s Saturday Night Live and other major programs. The politically conservative advocacy group YG Network will launched the ad last weekend in an effort to diminish the administration’s recent efforts to popularize healthcare reform. The 2-minute commercial portrays a fumbling brand team trying in vain to "sell" Obamacare to the public.
IOM report suggests pegging Medicare payments to outcomes
A report by the Institute of Medicine recommended that Medicare payment methods be pegged to health outcomes, not geography. The report asked Congress to pass on a proposed "geographic value index" that would that would tie payment rates to regionally-based health benefits and healthcare costs.
GOP threats to de-fund Obamacare gain support
A growing number of elected officials have agreed to a GOP-led pact to shut down funding for healthcare reform. A troop of 12 senators and 66 Congressmen recently formalized their position on this strategy against Obamacare, promising to vote against any measure to fund government operations if it includes support for healthcare reform.