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Letter from the Editor #608

Over the past two years there have been numerous postponements of the enactment of Medicare’s sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula for physician pay. The SRG was an original attempt to reduce the reimbursements to physicians for Medicare patients. These reductions have now added up to a whopping 27%. We have written in the past about how this would adversely affect patient care. Now a new report from the Congressional Research Service, with data from the Congressional Budget Office (CBO) has estimated that junking the SGR and freezing Medicare rates for 10 years would cost roughly $300 billion. This cost would have to be absorbed either by Medicare beneficiaries, or the Federal Government, two things that would not be popular in this election year. Look forward to more haggling when the recent postponement comes up for renewal in March.

Last week gave you the results of a survey rating the 25 best weight loss diets. Many of you pointed out that although these may great for weight loss, they may not be the best for your diabetes patients. This week we have an interesting article about the use of bariatric surgery and reversing diabetes (Item #5), that along with Item #1, Diabetes Prevention Program Can Delivery Modest Weight Loss, points to the reason weight loss programs can work.

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Announcements:

TCOYD Conference and Health Fair, Walter E. Washington Convention Center, Washington, DC, Saturday, February 11, 2012

Join Steven Edelman, MD and Special Guest, Urban Miyares (Blinded Veteran, Entrepreneur, Motivational Speaker) for a day focused on diabetes education, health and wellness.

dLife.com: January 15, 7PM ET on CNBC

Topics: An American Idol shares her diabetes challenges on the road to fame, and Jim Turner hits the streets to talk about diabetes fears. Plus, a low carb salad with a sweet and sour twist in the dLife kitchen. Special Guests: Crystal Bowersox and Toby Peterson. Sundays on CNBC at 7 PM ET, 6 PM CT, and 4 PM PT. Catch up on dLife.com.

NEW CME available! 13 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits are now available from CardioCareLive. See our CME page for all of CardioCareLive’s enduring CME available.

Please answer this week’s poll: How many of your diabetes patients are also suffering from depression?

Vote in and then see results from previous polls here.

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We can make a difference!
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Check out this week’s “Test Your Diabetes Knowledge” question!

Dave Joffe, Editor-in-chief