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Young Ophthalmologists
Yo Info

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March 2011

YO Info™ is the American Academy of Ophthalmology's newsletter for young ophthalmologists (YOs) — those in training as well as in their first few years in practice.

This newsletter provides YOs with information about practice management, coding and insurance questions, balancing work and family, and many other issues relevant to YOs. You'll also learn more about resources and services that are already available to you from the American Academy of Ophthalmology and the American Academy of Ophthalmic Executives (AAOE).

Practice Management
Charging Interest to Past Due Medicare Patients
I am frequently asked about the appropriateness of charging Medicare patients interest on past-due amounts. Here's the bottom line from CMS regarding charging interest, etc., to Medicare beneficiaries. This issue has been brought up to CMS for several reasons but, basically, if a provider is a participating doctor and signs an agreement that he/she will accept assignment on his/her claims, the only amount that provider can collect from the patient is any deductible and the 20 percent co-payment.

Ophthalmic Abbreviations 101
Have you noticed how the ophthalmic community seems to talk in code? PT w/? IOP f/u VF OU. And sometimes we even make-up our own abbreviations system. To avoid confusion or even embarrassing mistakes, here are some of the most commonly used appropriate abbreviations. Use them for standardize documentation in the medical record.

No MD Degree Needed for Eye Surgery - What Happened in Kentucky?
Within just days, organized optometry in Kentucky was able to push a bill through the state legislature and have it signed into law by the state governor on Feb. 24. The bill was detected by the Kentucky Medical Association and the Kentucky Academy of Eye Physicians and Surgeons a mere 16 hours before the first committee hearing on the bill.

A General Approach to Teaching Medical Students Ophthalmology
In recent years, medical students across the country have had a deficit of knowledge in ophthalmology. This has been due to many factors, but principally to a lack of formalized education and clinical exposure during medical school. Given the limited exposure that medical students have to ophthalmology in medical school, it is of critical importance that ophthalmologists capitalize on whatever exposure medical students do receive to enhance interest in the field.

Academy Online Community Highlights
YO Info
picks the most relevant recent discussions among your peers.

OKAPs/Board Prep
YO Info
helps you prepare for the big test with questions from ProVision. Join the YO Group on to get the answers and share board-prep tips and questions with other YOs.

Study Tips from Our Editorial Board

  1. Don't forget about optics!!
  2. Review photos of common ocular diseases in the weeks before the exam; there are tons of photos on both the OKAPs and written boards.
  3. In the few days before the exam, relax, review and be confident in yourself. Remember, though these tests are important, they are only tests.

A patient has orbital cellulitis. In adults, this condition is most commonly caused by which one of the following?

A. H. Influenza sinusitis
B. Trauma
C. Fungal sinusitis
D. Polymicrobial sinusitis
Get ProVision

Mooren ulcer is a chronic, progressive, painful, idiopathic ulceration of the peripheral corneal stroma and epithelium. Management of Mooren ulcer includes which one of the following?

A. Liver ultrasound
B. Systemic antiviral medication
C. Surgical resection
D. Systemic antifungal medication
Get ProVision

Events and Resources

EyeWiki Contest Winner: Peripheral Ulcerative Keratitis
Juliette M. Stenz, MD, of the State University of New York at Buffalo, was one of the winners of the first-ever EyeWiki Challenge, for her post on peripheral ulcerative keratitis. She will be recognized, along with the other winners, during the Advocacy Ambassador briefing and reception at the Mid-Year Forum, April 6. Want to win a trip to next year’s Mid-Year Forum? Ophthalmology residents based in North America have until Dec. 1 to enter.

Going to the Mid-Year Forum? You Could Win a Flip Camera or Academy Store Voucher
Last year’s Advocacy Day story contest returns for Mid-Year Forum attendees, and this year you could also win for a photo submission! Details on both contests are in the Mid-Year Forum group in the Academy Online Community.

Help Us Improve YO Info! Take Our Brief Survey
If you haven’t had a chance to respond to our reader survey yet, would you answer seven questions for us? It should only take a couple minutes, but will help us tailor coverage to the needs and interests of our readers. Thanks! Take the survey.

Preferred Practice Patterns: EHR Central
As a service to its members and the public, the Academy has developed a series of guidelines called Preferred Practice Patterns™ (PPP) that identify characteristics and components of quality eye care. YO Info will regularly include a link to a PPP, policy statement or other resource to help familiarize young ophthalmologists with these important resources.