Monday, February 07, 2005

Post-election fears focus on finances

"With the presidential election and makeup of the U.S. Congress finalized, the political landscape for the next couple of years is settled.

As we did four years ago, BioMechanics spoke with some of the leaders in the various practice areas we cover about how decisions made in the capital will affect the industry. In speaking with these leaders about clinical and reimbursement areas, certain questions were repeatedly raised: How does the administration handle the surge in new, and sometimes expensive, patient care technologies? How do all practitioners, manufacturers, and officials combat the near epidemics of obesity and diabetes? The population is aging and there is a need for practitioners and quality patient care-how are these needs being addressed?

Practitioners' concerns center on the challenge of providing quality patient care while reimbursement rates are declining and insurance premiums are rising. The issue of tort reform may seem distant to some practitioners, but for larger organizations, such as the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons and the American Podiatric Medicine Association, this is an issue that is driving good practitioners out of the profession and that needs resolution. "

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