Table of Contents -- April 2000

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Vol. 96 No. 4  


Interim Studies
Contrary to what many people think, Texas lawmakers do work between the biennial sessions of the Texas Legislature. But this year's interim period is marked by a record number of studies on health care-related issues that could lead to new laws affecting physicians and their patients. Led by the Council on Legislation, Texas Medical Association councils and committees and staff members from all policy areas and divisions are monitoring the studies.

By Ken Ortolon 


Tax Time
To paraphrase boxing immortal Joe Louis, you can run but you can't hide. In this case you can't run or hide from death or taxes, especially this month with the filing deadline approaching with the velocity of a left hook. There are many things physicians need to keep in mind when preparing their taxes or looking at estate planning, and some financial experts offer their advice.

By Johanna Franke


Physician Gifts
There's no question that some overzealous pharmaceutical industry sales people have offered some questionable gifts to physicians for prescribing drugs made by their companies. The American Medical Association Council on Ethical and Judicial Affairs and TMA's Board of Councilors have weighed in on the issue and developed ethical guidelines that physicians can use to avoid problems. And as one TMA legal staff member says, most physicians know the right thing to do.

By Monica Maldonado


Alexander Fleming's discovery of the first antibiotic in 1928 has led to antibiotics being prescribed for a wide range of infectious conditions. Under the theory that no good deed goes unpunished, what some believe is the overuse of antibiotics has resulted in the birth of the so-called antibiotic-resistant Supergerms. As a result, a special committee has set out to teach physicians and patients how antibiotics can hurt as much as they heal.

By Johanna Franke


Academic Payment Hassles
The setting may be different, but physicians at Texas' academic health centers are having as much trouble getting paid as their counterparts in the private sector. So a special TMA subcommittee is preparing a pilot project in San Antonio to use TMA payment advocacy efforts to help the academic physicians get the reimbursement they deserve. It's part of an effort to demonstrate the value of TMA membership to physicians on campus.

By Monica Maldonado


Avoiding the Legal Pitfalls in Mental Health Commitments  

By Regina Stone-Harris, JD


Call your legislator * Medicine's future * Medical errors * TexMed 2000 preview * Clinicians and cancer * Project WATCH online * Foundation donors * MedBytes * In Case You Missed It * Dateline Health * Fraud fallout




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