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Highlighting the Global Influence of Women in Neurosurgery

By AANS Spotlight, Cross Post, Women in NeurosurgeryNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other sources that we believe are relevant to our audience. Since this week featured International Women’s Day, we wanted to bring your attention to the March 2021 Neurosurgical Focus issue on International Women Leaders in Neurosurgery: Past and Present exploring women’s roles in neurosurgery over the years. Read More

Practice Restructuring in the COVID-19 Era

By CNS Spotlight, COVID-19, Cross PostNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other sources that we believe are relevant to our audience. We wanted to bring attention to this article from the Winter 2021 issue of Congress Quarterly titled “Considerations for Private Practice Groups in the Age of COVID.” Stacey Lang, an executive administrator at the University of Pittsburgh Medical Center and a volunteer with the Neurosurgery Executives’ Resource Value & Education Society, outlines both short-term and long-term considerations for practice restructuring in the COVID-19 era, including staffing, facility and scheduling matters. Read More

RVU Compensation Model Insufficient for Measuring the Value of Academic Surgeons

By CNS Spotlight, Cross PostNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other sources that we believe are relevant to our audience. We wanted to bring attention to the recent analysis of the worth of neurosurgeons in academic departments by Elad I. Levy, MD, FAANS, MBA, FACS, FAHA; Kunal Vakharia, MD; and Michael Cournyea, CEO of the University at Buffalo Neurosurgery, Inc. This article from the Winter 2021 issue of Congress Quarterly examines how the relative value unit (RVU) system is insufficient for effectively measuring an academic surgeon’s impact and value and proposes alternative strategies for developing appropriate compensation models for teaching faculty. Read More

Novel Strategies for Reducing Health Care Costs

By CNS Spotlight, Cross Post, Healthcare CostsNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other sources that we believe are relevant to our audience. We wanted to bring attention to the article from the Winter 2021 issue of Congress Quarterly, titled “Cost Effectiveness in Cranioplasty: Investigational 3D-Printed Method for Patient-Specific Cranial Implant.” Daniel Solomon; Jonathan A. Forbes, MD, FAANS; Joseph S. Cheng, MD, MS, FAANS; and Alice Xu from the University of Cincinnati, College of Medicine examine methods to reduce the cost of patient-specific cranial implant (PSCI) by approximately 70% via 3D printing and investigational technology. Read More

Cross-Post: Streamlining the Process of Prior Authorization for Medical and Surgical Procedures

By Cross Post, Health Reform, Prior Authorization, Regulatory ReliefNo Comments

From time to time on Neurosurgery Blog, you will see us cross-posting or linking to items from other places when we believe they hit the mark on an issue. Today’s post originally appeared in The Hill on Jan. 14, 2021. In the op-ed, Richard Menger, MD, MPA, assistant professor of neurosurgery and political science at the University of South Alabama in Mobile, Ala., highlights the need to streamline the cumbersome process of prior authorization for medical and surgical procedures performed through the Medicare Advantage program. Prior authorization is a tool insurance companies use to limit the services they provide for their customers. “Reducing the footprint of prior authorization bends the arc towards that proper direction of reform,” according to Dr. Menger.

Click here to read Dr. Menger’s full article in The Hill.

Editor’s Note: We encourage everyone to join the conversation online by using the hashtags #FixPriorAuth and #RegRelief.

2020 — A Year in Review

By Advocacy Agenda, Congress, Health Reform, Medical Innovation, Medical Liability, Prior AuthorizationNo Comments

While 2020 is a year that most people want to forget, the American Association of Neurological Surgeons (AANS) and the Congress of Neurological Surgeons (CNS) made significant strides in accomplishing its legislative and regulatory agenda, thus ensuring that neurosurgical patients continue to have timely access to quality care. Following are some highlights of these advocacy efforts.

Congress Prevents Steep Medicare Cuts

On Jan. 1, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) implemented the new CPT guidelines to report office and outpatient visits based on either medical decision making or physician time. These evaluation and management (E/M) services are valued in line with the AMA/Specialty Society RVS Update Committee (RUC) recommendations. Unfortunately, to comply with Medicare’s budget neutrality requirement, any increases must be offset by corresponding decreases, and CMS estimated that the 2021 policies would increase Medicare spending by approximately $10.6 billion. This necessitated significant cuts for many specialties, including an overall 6-7% payment cut for neurosurgery. Read More