May 2010

Casey M McMillan ACP Member examines a patient after the Haitian earthquake Photo courtesy of Dr McMillan

Volunteer internists help to rebuild Haiti

Physicians in Haiti face a new set of challenges as they stem the spread of infectious diseases and restore medical care to a country that had little before a devastating earthquake struck.

Summit covers myths and evidence of competing with clinics

Providers and administrators of retail medical clinics try to assess the evidence base behind the care delivered at these facilities. Office-based practitioners ignore the increasing number and expanding capabilities of storefront medicine clinics at their peril.

Getting to quality and safety by ‘degrees'

Programs in quality and patient safety initiatives have come to the fore as graduate-level degrees, adding prestige to a new body of knowledge that has emerged in the past decade.

With EHRs or paper, outpatient practices can improve safety

The idea is evolving that improving transitions of care from hospital to outpatient settings reduces readmissions. From medication lists to tracking labs to missed referrals that delay diagnosis, an expert in the field considers it all.

Bringing comfort to patients through palliative care

A primary care internist with a background in hospital medicine, hospice care and psychiatry explains how he grew an inpatient consult service to include outpatient services, home services and research programs.

Warnings on clopidogrel, high-dose simvastatin, ear candles

Warnings, recalls and approvals from the Food and Drug Administration.

‘Reform’ hasn't always equaled improvement of health care

ACP's incoming president lays out his agenda for the upcoming year and how the patient-centered medical home improves the enjoyment found in practicing primary care internal medicine.

In Haiti, flawed health care infrastructure complicates rebuilding

Internists help pick up the pieces in Haiti, a country facing a public health crisis following a devastating earthquake.

Health reform could improve the lives of patients, internists

Health reform legislation represents a historic shift in the federal government's role in health care, but debate continues whether it will be good for America and for internal medicine.

Coding for anticoagulation as tricky as managing it

Diagnosis, lab tests and management make up the three key considerations when coding for anticoagulation management through Medicare. An expert sorts out the issues and scenarios for a variety of scenarios.

The confusing world of EHR incentives

The federal government's substantial incentive program for electronic health records is no reason to rush out and buy one. Final rulings on how to interpret issues such as “meaningful use” won't be decided upon until the summer. Diligence is needed to choose a system that matches the practice workflow.

ACP honors outstanding chapter activities with Evergreen Awards

ACP presented Evergreen Awards to 10 chapters at Internal Medicine 2010. The Evergreen Program provides recognition and visibility to chapters that have successfully implemented programs to increase membership, improve communication, increase member involvement, enhance diversity, foster careers in internal medicine and improve management of the chapter.

MKSAP Quiz: Red eye and pain

A 35-year-old man is evaluated for red eye and acute onset of right eye pain. He wears contact lenses daily. Fluorescein staining is positive for corneal abrasion without a dendritic, or branching pattern. He is instructed to stop wearing the contact lens until the abrasion is healed. He calls the next day to report that the pain has worsened, even though he has not worn his contact lenses. What is the most likely diagnosis?.