Elisabeth Rosenthal has continued her series on healthcare costs, “Paying Til It Hurts,” in the New York Times (12/16, Rosenthal), focusing this time on echo. The article labels echo as a “stable technology that hasn’t changed much in decades” and plagued by a healthcare pricing system that has wide price disparities. Some ASE members were interviewed during her research and Dr. David Wiener, chairman of the Advocacy Committee of ASE, is quoted in the article, which states in part: “He attributed the variations to multiple factors, including how many hospitals and doctors perform the procedure, state regulations and the need to subsidize poorly reimbursed services.” Needless to say, many of the things cited in the article are inaccurate (echo has had major advancements in the past 20 years with color, Doppler, STI, strain, 3-D, TEE, stress, etc.) and/or misleading (cardiologists do not order most echo testing, for instance) and ASE has written a response to the NYT and encourages our members to also reach out and respond.
Happy Holidays! ASE would like to give you a gift to thank you for your membership. Beginning December 10, you will receive a free tote bag with the purchase of any product from ASE MarketPlace. Start shopping today at www.asemarketplace.com.
Echocardiography in children is the focus topic of the December issue of JASE, now online. The lead article is “ACC/AAP/AHA/ASE/HRS/SCAI/SCCT/SCMR/SOPE 2014 Appropriate Use Criteria for Initial Transthoracic Echocardiography in Outpatient Pediatric Cardiology: A Report of the American College of Cardiology Appropriate Use Criteria Task Force, et al.” Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC) have been established for echocardiography in adult patients but this is the first such document published for echocardiography in pediatric patients. As noted in the article’s introduction, “This set of AUC should be useful not only for pediatric cardiologists, but also for general pediatricians and family practitioners, who are frequently the first clinicians to consider the need for this modality.”
On Thursday, December 11 at 3:00 pm ET, ASE is proud to present a LIVE webinar entitled, “2015 Update: How the New Reimbursement Changes to Medicare Will Impact You.” ASE’s coding experts will provide Q & A time for participants.
With the release of the U.S. CMS’s finalized changes to the Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) and the Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (HOPPS), ASE is hosting a live webinar to relay the numerous changes to echocardiography-related codes. Specific focus will be given to the new Interventional TEE code and the new Medicare requirements that will be applicable to echo providers in a number of states.
Register now at www.aseuniversity.org/ase/webinars to ensure your spot in this high-demand event. Please note: No CME is associated with this webinar.
Because of your generosity, the ASE Foundation not only reached its Giving Tuesday goal of $3,000, but exceeded it and ended the day with a total of $5,201 in donations. Did you miss Giving Tuesday? Don’t worry, there’s still time to make a U.S. tax deductible charitable contribution to the Foundation’s 2014 Annual Appeal. Click here to donate to an initiative of your choice.
Giving Tuesday begins tomorrow! What ASE Foundation initiative will you be donating to? Help the Foundation reach its $3,000 goal by making a charitable contribution to the Foundation on December 2.
There’s now less than one week until Giving Tuesday, an international day of giving! Join the ASE Foundation’s Giving Tuesday Team and pledge to make a donation to the Foundation on December 2. Click here to find out if your company will match your charitable donation. Help us reach our $3,000 Giving Tuesday goal!
Applications for travel grants for the Councils on Perioperative Echocardiography, Pediatric and Congenital Heart Disease, Vascular Ultrasound and Cardiovascular Sonography are now being accepted. Please visit the websites for each council for details.
ASE depends on its members to get involved and advance our mission. Volunteers serve on the committees, councils, task forces, and writing groups that lead the Society and affect the profession. Our volunteers help set standards, develop products, create courses, direct subspecialty activities, advocate for echo on the federal and state levels, and more. If you are interested in serving on an ASE committee, log in to the ASE member portal, click on “Committee” in the menu bar, and complete the Committee Interest form. For more information on volunteering for ASE, click here. The application process will remain open through January 2015.