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Emergency Medicine Days Wrapping Up

Emergency Medicine Days was a great success! Thank you to all of our sponsors!

Florida Emergency Physicians (FEP)


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Florida Association of EMS Medical Directors (FAEMSMD)

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Martin Gottlieb & Associates

SW Florida Emegency Physicians, PA

Lee Physcians Group, Emergency Physcians

Florida Chapter of the American Academy of Emergency Medicine (FLAAEM)

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Dear FCEP Members,

FCEP Councilor Positions Available for the Upcoming ACEP Council

Interested members wishing to be considered as an FCEP Councilor for the ACEP Council are encouraged to submit letter (email) of interest.

Per FCEP Bylaws:

Candidates must meet the following criteria:
  1. Member of Chapter for at least two years prior to nomination.
  2. Active involvement in Chapter as evidenced by committee membership and/or attendance at the meetings of the Board of Directors.
  3. Plans to attend Councilor meetings for two-year term.
Councilors will be elected for two-year term with term beginning immediately upon election.

Should a Councilor resign or be elected to office that is a designated Councilor, then the remaining Councilors will elect an Alternate Councilor to fill the unexpired term. If there are no Alternate Councilors available to be seated, then the Executive Committee shall have the right to name Alternate Councilors to be seated or designated as Councilors.

Please email no later than March 28, 2014.

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TV ads slam Tampa Bay hospitals for opposing new trauma centers

Tampa Bay residents are being bombarded by menacing advertisements that accuse three leading hospitals of trying to "pull the plug on lifesaving care all over Florida."

Tampa General, St. Joseph's and Bayfront hospitals are the targets of a political-style campaign spearheaded by the 60 Plus Association, a conservative advocacy group that doesn't disclose where it gets its money. But it has acknowledged spending $250,000 on its "Save Our Trauma Centers" drive, with companion ads airing in Ocala and Tallahassee.

The attack ads mark the most in-your-face round yet in the state's long-simmering brawl over who gets to run the trauma centers that treat the most critically injured patients. The intensifying fight has pitted long-established trauma centers against the powerful HCA hospital chain, whose new statewide trauma network includes hospitals in Pasco and Manatee counties.

At stake, the ads suggest, is life or death.

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Bill giving nurses right to initiate Baker Act passes first committee
Florida Current
A bill that would allow nurses and physician assistants to initiate involuntary psychiatric examinations under the Baker Act unanimously passed a House committee on Monday before a room full of nurses and educators.

HB 829 will give the same powers already given to police, physicians and mental health professionals to Advanced Registered Nurse Practitioners and physician assistants. The only caveat to the bill was that future professionals would require training to accurately initiate the Baker Act.

"Mental health is very important in our state and the correct decisions must be made before someone decides that another person needs help," said Rep. Daphne Campbell, D-Miami Shores, who sponsored the bill. "This is why we would need to increase the training."

The bill received the support of audience members that included Barry University College of Health Sciences Dean John McFadden, who told the House Select Committee on Health Care Workforce Innovation it was about time.

"This bill is long past due," McFadden said to the panel, adding that the roles of nurses and physician assistants have changed since the act was passed in 1971. "This bill benefits Florida citizens by allowing them access to a health care workforce with validated and verified competencies and it allows that workforce to do their jobs to the fullest capacity."

The Baker Act allows the involuntarily institutionalization of someone who may be going through a mental crisis. Many nursing and physician assistant training programs already include coursework on mental health.

Campbell said there was an amendment that required training but it was later withdrawn due to a problem with language.

"We will get that language cleaned up and get the amendment back in the bill," said Campbell.

Rep. Elaine Schwartz, D-Hollywood, joined other panel members in support of Campbell's bill but not without drawing her own personal complaint.

"Rep. Campbell, I don't know how your fellow reps can condone your past nasty, demeaning and unprofessional attacks and gestures that you've done while others are presenting bills in committees, but I'm not going to stoop to getting involved in that," Schwartz said. "I will support your bill and do what's right."

After the meeting, Campbell said she was not sure what Schwartz meant.

"We're both Democrats," said Campbell. "Things like this shouldn't be said in public."

Also during the meeting, a committee bill was unanimously approved that would require the state to provide lawmakers with a consistent stream of data on the status of the state university system medical programs. Rep. Matt Hudson, R-Naples, said a recent study by the state Office of Program Policy Analysis and Government Accountability showed previous claims of a shortage in residency training slots were false.

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Hospitals: New Medicaid formula devastating
A proposal to redistribute Medicaid money collected by local communities is being criticized by three South Florida hospital executives, according to the South Florida Sun Sentinel.

Carlos Migoya, CEO of Jackson Health System; Frank Nask, CEO of Broward Health; and Frank Sacco, CEO of Memorial Healthcare System, wrote that the Legislature’s proposed calculation would divert $600 million in South Florida taxes and matching federal funds under the plan being considered in Tallahassee.

The money, part of a complicated calculation, is designed to help pay for the care of indigent patients.

"You might be shocked to learn that legislators are reallocating our money to other hospitals across Florida, including for-profit hospitals and hospitals in communities that – unlike Broward and Miami-Dade counties – have not chosen to give local public health funds to care for the indigent," they wrote in the Sun Sentinel. "Earnings generated by for-profit hospitals leave the state; these hospitals do not distribute any of their profits to assist other hospitals."

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Follow @FCEP and @FCEPprez on Twitter

FCEP has been working to grow our social media reach using popular channels; one of those is Twitter,

We intend to use Twitter as a means of communication; most tweets will be done in conjunction with the latest news regarding FCEP's legislative hot topics and to let you know of any changes happening around here.

Connect with FCEP:           

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July 17-20, 2014

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Save the date!
April 8, 2014 FCEP Board Conference Call
May 7, 2014 FCEP Committee Meeting
May 8, 2014 FCEP Board Meeting at FCEP
May 18-21, 2014 ACEP Leadership and Advocacy Conference
June 10, 2014 FCEP Board Conference Call
June 16, 2014 FCEP Board Conference Call
July 17-20, 2014 ClinCon
Aug. 7-10, 2014 Symposium by the Sea
Aug. 7, 2014 FCEP Board of Directors Meeting

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Saint Luke's Health System is sponsoring their 7th Annual Forensic Investigations Conference, May 14-16, in Kansas City, MO! ACEP is trying to improve the availability of specific medical-forensic content for ACEP members (sexual assault, domestic violence, elderly and child abuse), as well as our forensic colleagues in nursing, criminal justice and advocacy. Last year we had over 480 participants who came to KC for forensic education, fun and great BBQ!

ACEP will offer a specific Pre-Conference, an "Advanced Sexual Assault Medical-Forensic Course for Physicians," on May 12 & 13. This ACEP Category I CME approved course has been well received by physicians, residents and program directors across the country and it concentrates not only on up-to date necessary clinical forensic skills, but important sexual assault program medical director, court room and legal issues. This intense 2-day presentation is taught by physician colleagues with over 50 years of experience in these medical-forensic areas.

Please click on the below link to access the full conference brochure details and registration.

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State should invest in Florida's healthcare future
Miami Herald
Sometime in 2014, Florida will pass New York to become the third-most-populous state in the United States. Approximately 70 percent of new Floridians come from other states or other countries. They are drawn here by our wonderful weather, beautiful environment, unmatched recreation, low taxes, job opportunities and cultural diversity and acceptance. They also find world-class healthcare. Our 300 hospitals and dozens of specialized medical centers offer state-of-the-art care to Florida residents, and scores of additional patients come from outside Florida each year to take advantage of procedures that are unavailable or not as advanced where they live.
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ER visits for low blood sugar common among insulin users
Almost 100,000 people in the U.S. are sent to emergency rooms every year for low blood sugar or errors related to a common diabetes drug, according to a new government study. What's more, about a third of those people end up being hospitalized, the researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention found. "This is important because many of these emergency department visits for insulin-related hypoglycemia are preventable," said Dr. Andrew Geller, the study's lead author.
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Looking for similar articles? Search here, keyword(s): Emergency care for diabetics.

Are we trading happy physicians for efficient ones?
Becker's Hospital Review
Healthcare reform is meant to make hospitals and physician offices more efficient, but that is proving to have its costs. To say a physician is stressed is like saying water is wet. Physician stress and engagement issues were not born from reform. Take this quote from a surgeon, featured in an article published 10 years ago: "The stress of our jobs is increasing due to the decrease in reimbursement for professional activities, increasing regulatory requirements and severe financial constraints placed upon the hospitals in which we must practice."
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Florida trauma centers charge outrageous fees
Tampa Bay Times
Every day in Florida, injured people face the same kind of outrageous entry fees because they are taken to a state-designated trauma center. With virtually no government oversight, these specialized hospitals can charge what they want, when they want, with little chance of being flagged for profiteering. Patients have no clue about the fees until they get their bill.
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ER wait times on rise nationwide
Wait times at emergency departments across the country are soaring, as various hospitals report wait times far above the national average. Wait times at Kings County Hospital Center in New York, for example, are up to 113 minutes, four times longer than the national average, according to the New York Daily News. The average wait time nationwide to see a physician, nurse practitioner or physician assistant is 28 minutes, according to a report released by ProPublica.
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Telemedicine: The future of medicine
Rosemary Sparacio
There are many reasons for the increasingly prevalent use of telemedicine. What may have started out as a way to deliver improved health care services to rural areas, has now exploded to include ways to extend the availability of services to everyone and produce cost benefits both to health care providers and to the patient.
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Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Priscilla Lauture, FCEP Communications Specialist, 407.281.7396, ext. 232  
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