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July 2008 Briefing - Ophthalmology

Here are what the editors at HealthDay consider to be the most important developments in Ophthalmology for July 2008. This roundup includes the latest research news from journal articles, as well as the FDA approvals and regulatory changes that are the most likely to affect clinical practice.

'Tier 4' Drugs Raise Questions About Affordability

WEDNESDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- The emergence of a fourth tier of copayment for expensive drugs calls into question how Americans are going to handle the rising costs of health care, according to a perspective article in the July 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Consequences of Genetic Non-Discrimination Act Examined

WEDNESDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- The Genetic Information Non-discrimination Act (GINA), recently signed into U.S. law, creates a troublesome distinction between those at genetic risk for a disease and those with other characteristics that predispose them to a condition, according to a perspective article published in the July 24 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Physicians to Get Bonus for Electronic Prescribing

WEDNESDAY, July 23 (HealthDay News) -- Doctors using an electronic prescriptions system will be eligible for a bonus from Medicare from 2009 onwards for four years, according to U.S. health officials.

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Brain Stimulation Benefits Adults with Lazy Eye

FRIDAY, July 18 (HealthDay News) -- Non-invasive stimulation of the visual cortex can temporarily improve contrast sensitivity in the affected eye of adults with lazy eye, according to a report in the July 22 issue of Current Biology.

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Exception Reporting Improves Pay-for-Performance Benefits

THURSDAY, July 17 (HealthDay News) -- Pay-for-performance programs benefit from use of exclusion reporting, whereby certain patients are excluded from quality calculations, and the practice of excluding patients to disguise missed targets, known as gaming, is rare, according to study findings published in the July 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Medical Education Must Adapt to Changing Times

THURSDAY, July 17 (HealthDay News) -- Medical schools must adapt their admission requirements and curricula to changes in scientific theory, and are also facing a challenge to the traditional definition of who is suited to the study of medicine, according to two articles published in the July 17 issue of the New England Journal of Medicine.

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Abstract - Jauhar
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Eye Knowledge Low in Sample of Hispanics with Diabetes

WEDNESDAY, July 16 (HealthDay News) -- Relatively few Hispanics in Baltimore with diabetes or a family history of the disease were knowledgeable about diabetes-related eye complications, according to research published in the July issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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AMA Actions Fostered U.S. Medical Racial Divide

TUESDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- From the post-Civil War years to the civil rights era a century later, the American Medical Association (AMA) made decisions that helped support a division between white and black Americans in the field of medicine in the United States, according to an article in the July 16 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association.

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Visual Impairment Raises Risk of Suicide

TUESDAY, July 15 (HealthDay News) -- Visual impairment is indirectly associated with a higher risk of suicide, researchers report in the July issue of the Archives of Ophthalmology.

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Health Cash Incentives for Poor People Debated

WEDNESDAY, July 9 (HealthDay News) -- Should disadvantaged people be paid to take care of their health? That's the question of a "Head to Head" debate published online July 8 in BMJ.

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Studies Highlight Glaucoma Treatments, Progression

MONDAY, July 7 (HealthDay News) -- The risk of adverse outcomes is higher following glaucoma drainage device implantation than after primary trabeculectomy or trabeculectomy with scarring; and in a largely black population with end-stage glaucoma, the prognosis for treated patients may be better than previously thought, according to the results of two studies published in the July issue of Ophthalmology.

Abstract - Stein
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Abstract - Much
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Retinal Signs Predict Risk of Heart Disease in Women

THURSDAY, July 3 (HealthDay News) -- Retinal vascular caliber predicts the risk of coronary heart disease in women, but does not add much to the predictive ability of the Framingham risk score, according to a report in the July 1 issue of the American Journal of Cardiology.

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Physician's Briefing