Editor's Note: Red Tape Tango

Yes, we’re all feeling it. It’s a sticky situation—the red tape that regulates our daily lives is also what keeps us moving together in a forward direction. It’s a sort of red tape tango where the love/hate relationship between partners— We the People and the Powers that Be—struggle, hesitate, and change direction amongst the crowded masses in dramatic style. If you look closely, you’ll even see some kicks exchanged. The tension is palpable.

Two thousand fourteen promises to bring some real changes to The Dance—the intricate steps that form the policies and procedures that govern health care here in America. It’s too early to say if they will land us one step forward or two steps back from where we started. Thus far, the poster child for chaos in the medical industry, the Affordable Care Act or, “Obamacare,” seems to be doing a fine job at spinning us about. Are you ready to take the dance floor?

This issue-of VEIN explores some of big government’s movements that will directly affect you in your practice this next year. We start with Dr. John Blebea’s explanation of how the Sunshine Act will affect your partnerships with the pharmaceutical and device industries as well as continuing education. While on the topic of industry, get a feel for what the FDA has been up to in the venous dance floor with our article on Varithena™, the first approved polidocanol foam for sclerotherapy, along with a Q&A with Dr. Ted King, a primary investigator of the drug. And Joe Zygmunt and AJ Riviezzo help us to better understand policy, while covering a plethora of reimbursement issues of which you should be aware.

Changes abound within our own governing bodies as well. Don’t miss Dr. Neil Khilnani’s piece introducing the Intersocietal Accreditation Commission’s new guidelines for Vein Center Accreditation. Check out the new moves that went into effect in November 2013.

And as if policies weren’t enough, we learn about the changing HIPAA status of a long-used platform from Jeff Mongelli in his article on Windows XP. As it always is with HIPAA, staying in step is the only way to keep your toes from being stomped on the dance floor.

Whew! The intricate choreography has us wondering which directions we’ll be heading in next. But be sure that VEIN will be following each of the dancers in our market very closely as the performance builds to the unforeseen crescendo. Meanwhile, watch your toes and keep reading VEIN!
Jana Acciacca
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