Home E-Weekly July 25, 2017

News & Notes

Published: July 24, 2017

  • Persistence pays off for Iowa surgeon in long-running CON dispute It took 5 attempts, a decade of frustration and a federal lawsuit, but ophthalmologist Lee Birchansky, MD, finally earned the certificate of need required to re-open an existing outpatient surgery center next to his Fox Eye Laser & Cosmetic Institute in Cedar Rapids, Iowa. Although the center had been dormant for several years, Dr. Birchansky previously performed surgeries there in a partnership with a nearby hospital. He was forced to shutter the center when the hospital terminated the rental agreement to build a surgery center of its own, at which point the Iowa Supreme Court declared that he needed to obtain a CON. He did so but was summarily denied 4 times. The situation drew the national spotlight last month, when Dr. Birchansky and other plaintiffs filed a federal lawsuit arguing that "unconstitutional" CON laws stifle competition by letting hospitals and other established healthcare centers oppose newcomers.
  • Fujifilm recalls duodenoscopes for upgrade Fujifilm Medical Systems USA is recalling all ED-530XT duodenoscopes and will upgrade them in accordance with a new design recently approved by the FDA. The upgrade consists of replacing the forceps elevator mechanism, including the O-ring seal, and the distal end cap. The company will also issue new operation manuals. The call for an improved design was prompted by outbreaks of antibiotic-resistant infections linked to duodenoscopes made by Fujifilm and others.
  • Are antibiotics overkill before lap choles? Antibiotic prophylaxis doesn't appear to be needed to lower the already low risk of infection following elective laparoscopic cholecystectomy, even though the practice is commonly used, according to a new study in the journal Surgical Infections. Researchers who studied the outcomes of 570 patients who underwent lap choles between March 2007 and February 2010 found the SSI rate was 1.2% with no difference among patients who received placebo or first- and second-generation cephalosporin.
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