“Findings of this study indicate that the targeted mindful meditation-based intervention is feasible and safe in patients with opioid-treated chronic low back pain. Mindful meditation-based interventions are particularly attractive for the treatment of chronic disabling conditions because they promote an acceptance-based, self-reflective process, which can encourage a patient-empowering and personalized approach addressing the whole patient. This approach extends beyond the traditional, disease-focused treatment model of chronic pain and passive nature of pharmacotherapy, offering a valuable therapeutic option for those with refractory chronic low back pain requiring daily opioid therapy.” (Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine, August) Click here to read full-text.
News and Updates
AAMC is among hospitals nationwide working diligently to improve the ED patient experience. We are taking action to improve processes in order to move patients as quickly as possible through the ED. Many nurses, doctors and other employees from several departments and units have come together and are doing excellent work to achieve this goal.
What we know is that ED wait times are not solely dependent on processes within the ED. Our ability to get patients admitted to units quickly is a big factor as well. So as part of our improvement work, we are making several changes to other clinical units in the hospital. The Observation Unit on the first floor of Hospital Pavilion North recently expanded from 12 patient beds to 17 patient beds. Here are other changes that are happening soon:
SUNDAY, OCTOBER 2:
- The Special Care Unit on the third floor of Hospital Pavilion North will become the Intermediate Care Unit (IMU). Intensivists will manage these patients. The Special Care Unit on the sixth floor of Hospital Pavilion North will become part of the Acute Care for the Elderly (ACE) Unit. These changes will help us provide patients with the appropriate level of care. (Special kudos to these clinical teams who have been working hard to prepare for these changes.)
- The Critical Care Unit is changing its name to Intensive Care Unit (ICU) to better reflect the patient population.
- The Heart and Vascular Unit (HVU) will move from the fourth floor of Hospital Pavilion North to the third floor of Hospital Pavilion South. The new location puts the Heart and Vascular Unit closer to the Intensive Care Unit, allowing us to better serve these patients and their families.
THURSDAY, OCTOBER 6:
- A second Medical/Surgical Unit (MSU) will open on the fourth floor of Hospital Pavilion North. We will refer to this unit as MSU-4 to differentiate from the other MSU on the sixth floor of Hospital Pavilion North.
We appreciate everyone’s hard work as we strive to improve the patient experience. If you have questions about these changes, please talk to your leader.
Please welcome the following new medical staff members:
- Sozdar Abed, MD - AAMG Chesapeake Women’s Health
- Jeanette Abell, MD - AAMG Palliative Care
- Gina Ambrose, DO - Doctors Emergency Service, P.A.
- Eyob Amdemichael, MD - AAMC Adult Medicine Hospitalist
- Adamu Ayene, MD - Mid-Atlantic Permanente Medical Group
- Karen Benitez, DDS - Kent Island Pediatric Dentistry
- Emily Clarke-Pearson, MD - Sullivan Integrated Aesthetic Center
- Geetha Jeyabalan, MD - Cardiology Associates, LLC
- Ravilla Mahidhar, MD - AAMG Cardiology Specialists
- Charles Mugera, MD - AAMC Adult Medicine Hospitalist
- Afua Nyanin, MD - AAMG Chesapeake Women’s Health
- Richard Palladino, MD - Annapolis Asthma Pulmonary & Sleep Specialists
- Rhoda Raji, MD - AAMC Ob/Gyn Hospitalist
- Leah Colligan, CRNP - Bayside Pediatrics
- Mandy Ervin, CRNP - Chesapeake Palliative Medicine
- Kelly London, PAC - Physicians Inpatient Care Specialists, L.L.C.
- Carrington Wendell, PhD - AAMG Neuropsychology
The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA), Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and Advanced Alternative Payment Models…change is coming and the timeline for making big decisions is short. Please be aware of how federal and state changes will impact you, your practice, and your colleagues. Our talented and diverse medical community has long enjoyed success in a fee-for-service environment. But soon, the payment model will change, and our incomes will be tied to patient outcomes.
Do you have the internal systems in place to handle the mandated requirements starting next year? Are you prepared to take on risk? In order to thrive in 2017 and beyond, we must recognize that our individual success is interdependent on the performance of our fellow colleagues and disciplines. That is why many clinicians across the country are joining clinically integrated networks that will allow them to weather future challenges while maintaining autonomy.
The Collaborative Care Network (CCN), chaired by Robert Hanley, MD, of Anne Arundel Urology, was established in August 2015 to support our medical community’s successful navigation of care redesign and payment transformation. The CCN is our local, physician-led platform that allows the health system to join forces with independent and employed physicians to share data, resources and opportunities to improve care, create efficiencies, and demonstrate the value that an integrated, cohesive medical community can deliver.
The CCN provides the necessary infrastructure and support to help you prepare for coming changes. It gives you the power to partner with your colleagues to improve health outcomes for the population we serve, while sustaining your autonomy and professional satisfaction.
We will all be responsible for health outcomes. We will all have to take on risk. We are interdependent upon one another to succeed. We will succeed and be rewarded as a high-performing, integrated medical community.
For more information on the CCN, or to request a presentation for your practice, please contact Heather Matheu at hmatheu@AAHS.org or 443-481-6617.
(NEJM, June 16) “The first full year of Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) contracts was associated with early reductions in Medicare spending among 2012 entrants but not among 2013 entrants. Savings were greater in independent primary care groups but not among 2013 entrants. Savings were greater in independent primary care groups than in hospital-integrated groups.” Click here to read full text.
An update from Mary Clance, MD, hospital epidemiologist: It has now been six months since the epidemic of Zika virus in South America came to the attention of U.S. public health authorities. During that time, the transmission zone has expanded northward from Brazil and now includes more than 25 countries in the Caribbean, South and Central America and Mexico. Local transmission is dependent upon two mosquito species, Aedes aegypti and albopictus, which have been established in the U.S. following importation from overseas. Both are now present in Maryland.
As of June 1, 2016, a total of 21 cases of Zika virus infection have been reported in Maryland. All were acquired in an area of known transmission outside of the U.S.
The West Nile Virus, a related Flavivirus, was imported (by humans) into the U.S. in 1999, and has since become established even though the vector mosquito (Culex) primarily feeds on birds and is less aggressive compared to the Aedes mosquitos, which are aggressive biters that prefer humans.
Considering the magnitude of international travel in this hemisphere, urban crowding, the presence of the vector mosquito adapted to both urban and suburban environments, the fact that most human infections are asymptomatic and therefore undetected, and entry into the summer mosquito season in the northern hemisphere, it is very probable that the Zika virus will become established in the U.S.
Old-fashioned public health measures regarding control of the vector are needed. This includes the removal of stagnant water sources that are mosquito breeding sites and the selective use of pesticides for both larvae and adults. Individual vigilance and tactics to avoid exposure to and bites by mosquitos are especially important this summer.
The James and Sylvia Earl Simulation to Advance Innovation and Learning (SAIL) Center recently hosted a first-of-its-kind virtual grand rounds based on simulation and surgical education and research. Adrian Park, MD, chair of the Department of Surgery, kicked off this new series of grand rounds sponsored by the American College of Surgeons and their Accredited Education Institutes.
Ivan George, director of the Earl SAIL Center, led the concept, development and implementation of the event. He conceptualized a novel and low-cost interactive video platform bringing together surgeons, researchers and medical experts from 30 facilities and 17 time zones at once to discuss the latest in surgical and simulation methodologies. Leaders participated from organizations such as Mayo Clinic, Cleveland Clinic, Cedar Sinai, and Tripler Army Medical Center, along with institutes in Greece, France, and many others.
Inaugural speaker Dr. Park provided an overview of his 11 years of experience in clinical video conference-based grand rounds, sharing wisdom learned over the years. Guest speaker Mark Pinsky, a dentist, international airline captain, and aviation expert, discussed how aviation methodologies can be applied to surgical processes. He presented a concept of adapting the use of aviation checklists as an organizational tool to empower each member of the surgical team to organize thoughts, identify errors, and increase situational awareness. Combining such systematic solutions with simulation practice could have a positive impact on improving quality and outcomes. The presentation fostered a lively discussion among practitioners and experts across many centers about translating the aviation principles into practice.
This groundbreaking event — for both simulation and surgical grand rounds — provided a unique opportunity for AAMC as discussion leaders. The Earl SAIL Center plans to continue its involvement in this new series of grand rounds in the future. If you would like more information, contact Ivan George at 443-481-6053. Read more about how airline industry strategies are being adapted for medicine.
On Wednesday, March 30, Anne Arundel Medical Center is celebrating National Doctor’s Day as a way to say “thank you” to our doctors. At Anne Arundel Medical Center, we are proud to have you as valued members of the medical staff. Thank you for your compassion, dedication and trust, and for all you do for the patients and families in our community. Come to the luncheon on March 30 from 11am to 2pm at AAMC in the Hospital Pavilion South first floor medical staff lounge. View the terrific menu here.