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June 2013 Briefing - Urology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Urology for June 2013. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

Avoidable Health Care Costs Exceed $200 Billion in 2012

FRIDAY, June 28 (HealthDay News) -- In 2012, avoidable health care costs in the United States exceeded $200 billion, according to a report published by the IMS Institute for Healthcare Informatics.

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Bipartisan Recommendations Can Strengthen Health System

THURSDAY, June 27 (HealthDay News) -- Leaders of the Bipartisan Policy Center Health Care Cost Containment Initiative have developed a series of recommendations to strengthen the U.S. health care system, according to a sounding board piece published online June 26 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Adults With Chronic Conditions Earn C+ for Meds Adherence

WEDNESDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- On average, adults with chronic conditions earn a C+ for medication adherence, according to a report published June 25 by the National Community Pharmacists Association (NCPA).

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Hospital Teaching Intensity Affects Readmission Rates

WEDNESDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital teaching intensity significantly affects readmission rates for the most common inpatient diagnoses, particularly for safety-net hospitals, according to a study published in the July issue of Medical Care.

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HHS Launches Insurance Marketplace Website, Call Center

WEDNESDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has launched the Health Insurance Marketplace education effort, with a consumer-focused website and a consumer call center, to help Americans prepare for enrollment in the new Health Insurance Marketplace.

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8.5 Million Enrollees to Receive Health Insurance Rebates

WEDNESDAY, June 26 (HealthDay News) -- About 8.5 million enrollees will receive a rebate of about $100 per family as part of the Affordable Care Act "80/20" rule, according to a report published by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services.

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High-Tech Therapies Up in Men With Low-Risk Prostate Cancer

TUESDAY, June 25 (HealthDay News) -- The use of advanced treatment technologies increased in men diagnosed with prostate cancer between 2004 and 2009 who were at low risk of dying from the disease, according to research published in the June 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Growing Mismatch in Med School Graduates, GME Places

TUESDAY, June 25 (HealthDay News) -- Although the number of medical school enrollees and graduates is increasing, the number of U.S. graduate medical education (GME) programs has not increased at the same rate, and consequently physician shortages are likely to become more apparent, according to a perspective piece published online June 19 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Publicly Reported Mortality Predicts Hospital Performance

TUESDAY, June 25 (HealthDay News) -- Hospital performance on publicly reported medical conditions is indicative of overall hospital mortality rates, according to a study published online June 24 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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AH: Most Acute Care Costs Not Avoidable for High-Cost Patients

MONDAY, June 24 (HealthDay News) -- For high-cost Medicare beneficiaries, only a small percentage of costs are related to preventable emergency department visits and hospitalizations, according to a study published online June 24 in the Journal of the American Medical Association to coincide with presentation at the Annual Research Meeting of AcademyHealth, held from June 23 to 25 in Baltimore.

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Sexual Dysfunction Linked to CVD in Extreme-Duration T1DM

MONDAY, June 24 (HealthDay News) -- For males who have had type 1 diabetes for at least 50 years, sexual dysfunction is associated with large vessel cardiovascular disease, according to a study published online June 18 in Diabetes Care.

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Survival of England's National Health Service Questioned

MONDAY, June 24 (HealthDay News) -- Recent criticism of England's National Health Service (NHS) has called its survival into question, according to a perspective piece published online June 19 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Guide Issued for Tying Primary Care to Regional Organizations

MONDAY, June 24 (HealthDay News) -- The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality has developed a new guide to help primary care practices to assess readiness for connecting electronic health records (EHRs) to regional health information organizations (RHIOs).

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AMA Awards Grants for Medical Education Innovation

FRIDAY, June 21 (HealthDay News) -- The American Medical Association (AMA) has awarded funding to 11 U.S. medical schools in response to their proposals regarding educational innovations aimed at transforming how future physicians are trained.

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AHRQ Offers Strategies to Prevent Adverse Drug Events

FRIDAY, June 21 (HealthDay News) -- Strategies to prevent adverse drug events (ADEs) have been recommended and published in a report by the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ).

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Study Presents Mechanisms of Estrogen's Benefit on UTI

FRIDAY, June 21 (HealthDay News) -- Estrogen treatment induces the production of antimicrobial peptides and physically strengthens urinary tract tissue, providing support for its beneficial effect on urinary tract infections (UTIs), according to a study published in the June 19 issue of Science Translational Medicine.

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Obesity Is a Disease, Says American Medical Association

THURSDAY, June 20 (HealthDay News) -- The American Medical Association has adopted policy that recognizes obesity as a disease, a step that the association hopes will help focus more attention on treatment and prevention efforts, and that some suggest may lead to greater acceptance by insurance providers to cover treatment.

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CMS Implementing Physician Quality Reporting System

THURSDAY, June 20 (HealthDay News) -- To promote the reporting of quality information by eligible professionals, the Physician Quality Reporting System is being implemented, according to a report from the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS).

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Practices Are Not Prepared for Implementation of ICD-10

THURSDAY, June 20 (HealthDay News) -- Physician practices have made little progress in preparing for implementation of the 10th revision of the International Classification of Diseases (ICD-10), according to a report published by the Medical Group Management Association (MGMA).

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New Rule Proposes Insurance Program Integrity Guidelines

WEDNESDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- A new proposed rule, which provides program integrity guidelines for Affordable Insurance Exchanges, or Health Insurance Marketplaces (Marketplaces), has been released by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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EHR Implementation First Step Toward Quality Improvement

WEDNESDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- Implementation of electronic health records (EHRs) is a first step toward quality improvement and should be accompanied by use of new payment models to allow physicians to see a return on their investments, according to Farzad Mostashari, M.D., of the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology, who was recently interviewed by the American Academy of Family Physicians.

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Potential of Mobile Remote-Presence Devices Discussed

WEDNESDAY, June 19 (HealthDay News) -- Mobile remote-presence devices have the potential to increase access to and improve delivery of health care in the developed and developing world, according to an innovations report published online June 17 in CMAJ, the Journal of the Canadian Medical Association.

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State-Based Health Care Price Websites Lacking

TUESDAY, June 18 (HealthDay News) -- State-based, patient-oriented websites reporting health care prices need to be improved, according to a research letter published in the June 19 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Unauthorized Immigrants Make Up 1.4% U.S. Medical Spending

TUESDAY, June 18 (HealthDay News) -- Unauthorized immigrants have substantially lower health care expenditures than legal residents, naturalized citizens, and U.S. natives, according to a study published online June 12 in Health Affairs.

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Racial Discrepancy in Oncologic Outcomes for Low-Risk PCa

TUESDAY, June 18 (HealthDay News) -- Among men with very-low-risk prostate cancer (PCa) who meet criteria for active surveillance but undergo radical prostatectomy, African-American race is associated with poorer outcomes, with higher rates of disease upgrading and adverse pathology, according to a study published online June 17 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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About 15 Percent of People Currently Uninsured in U.S.

TUESDAY, June 18 (HealthDay News) -- In 2012, nearly 15 percent of U.S. people of all ages were currently uninsured, according to a data brief published online June 18 by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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FDA Discusses Cybersecurity for Medical Devices, Hospitals

MONDAY, June 17 (HealthDay News) -- Medical device manufacturers and health care facilities should ensure appropriate safeguards are in place to reduce the potential harms that may result from cyberattacks, according to a safety communication issued by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration.

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Oncological Outcomes Similar Despite Timing of Prostatectomy

FRIDAY, June 14 (HealthDay News) -- Outcomes are similar between men with histologically comparable prostate cancer who receive a radical prostatectomy after a period of active surveillance and those with low-risk disease who undergo immediate prostatectomy, according to a study published in the July issue of The Journal of Urology.

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EHR Improves Coordination of Care in Hematuria Work-Up

FRIDAY, June 14 (HealthDay News) -- Care coordination, enhanced using an electronic health record system, can reduce the number of health care visits needed for the work-up of hematuria, according to a study published in the July issue of The Journal of Urology.

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New Treatments Outperforming Placebo Becoming Less Common

FRIDAY, June 14 (HealthDay News) -- The efficacy of new medical treatments compared with placebo has sharply declined over the last few decades, suggesting that comparative effectiveness studies are needed, according to a study published in the June issue of Health Affairs.

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Converting Urology Practice Affects Cancer Treatment

THURSDAY, June 13 (HealthDay News) -- Converting a urology practice to an integrated prostate cancer center (IPCC) results in greater use of intensity modulated radiation therapy and lower use of androgen deprivation therapy, according to research published in the July issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Survey Examines Physician Satisfaction With EHRs

THURSDAY, June 13 (HealthDay News) -- About three-quarters of physicians report that their practice either has a fully implemented electronic health record (EHR), uses a hospital or corporate EHR, or is in the process of implementing an EHR, according to a technology survey published by Physicians Practice.

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PCA3 Assay Ups Predictive Accuracy for Repeat Biopsy

WEDNESDAY, June 12 (HealthDay News) -- For men with at least one prior negative biopsy, urinary PCA3 scores, together with serum prostate-specific antigen and other clinical information, improve the prediction accuracy for repeat biopsy outcome, according to a study published in the July issue of The Journal of Urology.

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Fertility Preservation Guidelines for Cancer Patients Reviewed

WEDNESDAY, June 12 (HealthDay News) -- No major, substantive revisions were necessary, but clarifications were added to update the American Society of Clinical Oncology (ASCO) guidelines on fertility preservation for children and adults with cancer, according to a report published online May 28 in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

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Use of EHRs Can Enhance Doc-Patient Communication

WEDNESDAY, June 12 (HealthDay News) -- Electronic health records (EHRs) can be used during clinical encounters to enhance the physician-patient relationship, encouraging communication during the clinical encounter, according to a viewpoint published in the June 12 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Switch to Vegetable Fat May Cut Death Risk in Prostate Cancer

TUESDAY, June 11 (HealthDay News) -- For men with non-metastatic prostate cancer, the risks of lethal prostate cancer and all-cause mortality are significantly reduced with replacement of carbohydrates by vegetable fats, according to a study published online June 10 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Doctors Do Not Spend Enough Time Planning Their Finances

TUESDAY, June 11 (HealthDay News) -- Physicians do not spend enough time reviewing their finances, and half are behind in their retirement planning, according to a report published by the American Medical Association (AMA) Insurance Agency.

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Most Doctors Feel They Are Under-Using Mobile Apps

TUESDAY, June 11 (HealthDay News) -- Most physicians feel they are not maximizing use of mobile applications, and would utilize additional electronic health record (EHR) functionalities if they were available, according to poll conducted by Black Book Market Research.

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Estrone Levels Predict Incident Type 2 Diabetes in Men

MONDAY, June 10 (HealthDay News) -- Levels of estrone are associated with increased risk of incident type 2 diabetes in a cohort of community-dwelling men, according to a study published online May 20 in Diabetes Care.

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HHS: Marketplaces Open New Insurance Options for Consumers

THURSDAY, June 6 (HealthDay News) -- Health Insurance Marketplaces, due to be introduced in October 2013, will increase the coverage options for many consumers, according to a memo released by the U.S. Department of Human & Health Services.

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One-Third of Women Willing to Delay Rx for Suspected UTI

WEDNESDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- When asked to by their doctor, more than a third of women with urinary tract infection symptoms are willing to delay antibiotic treatment, according to a study published online May 31 in BMC Family Practice.

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Profitability Index Checks Financial Health of Practices

WEDNESDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- An overall downward trend in profitability has been identified based on a practice profitability index, developed to assess the financial health of U.S. physician practices, according to a report published by CareCloud.

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Few Physicians Meeting Meaningful Use in Early 2012

WEDNESDAY, June 5 (HealthDay News) -- In early 2012, few physicians met meaningful use criteria, and using electronic health records (EHRs) for patient panel management was difficult, according to research published in the June 5 issue of the Annals of Internal Medicine.

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CDC: Small Drop in Those With Difficulty Paying Medical Bills

TUESDAY, June 4 (HealthDay News) -- There has been a slight decrease in the percentage of individuals aged younger than 65 years who are in a family with difficulty paying their medical bills, according to a June data brief issued by the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS).

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Vegetarian Dietary Patterns Tied to Lower All-Cause Death

MONDAY, June 3 (HealthDay News) -- Compared with non-vegetarians, vegetarians have reduced all-cause mortality, according to a study published online June 3 in JAMA Internal Medicine.

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Independent Payment Advisory Board's Future Questioned

MONDAY, June 3 (HealthDay News) -- Established as a part of the efforts of Affordable Care Act (ACA) to contain health care costs, the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB) has been surrounded by controversy, and still has no members, according to a perspective piece published online May 29 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Health of Nation Reviewed With Focus on Emergency Care

MONDAY, June 3 (HealthDay News) -- Recent trends in the health of the nation are described, with particular focus on emergency care, in the 36th annual report published by the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

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