News in Brief: Week of Feb. 23-27

February 24, 2015 12:04 pm News Staff

This roundup includes the following news briefs:

[News in Brief]

Duodenoscopes Linked to Bacterial Infections, FDA Warns

In response to reports of patients in one health care facility becoming infected with carbapenem-resistant Enterobacteriaceae, the FDA issued an alert( on Feb. 19 advising health care professionals that the complex design of endoscopic retrograde cholangiopancreatography (ERCP) endoscopes (also called duodenoscopes) may impede effective reprocessing of the devices, possibly leading to bacterial contamination.

The multidrug-resistant bacterial infections occurred in patients who had undergone ERCP with reprocessed duodenoscopes, even though manufacturer reprocessing instructions were followed correctly.

The FDA recommends that health care professionals:

  • inform patients of the benefits and risks associated with ERCP procedures,
  • discuss with patients what they should expect after the ERCP procedure and what symptoms (e.g., fever or chills, chest pain, severe abdominal pain, trouble swallowing or breathing, nausea and vomiting, black or tarry stools) should prompt additional follow-up and
  • consider taking a duodenoscope out of service until it has been verified to be free of pathogens if a patient develops an infection with a multidrug-resistant organism after ERCP, and a link between the duodenoscope and the infection is suspected.

Health care professionals are encouraged to report adverse events or side effects related to the use of these products to the FDA's MedWatch Safety Information and Adverse Event Reporting Program by completing and submitting the report online.(

Help CMS Test Innovations in Advanced Primary Care

CMS is looking for ideas from physicians, consumers, health plans, associations, health IT vendors and other stakeholders on how to test innovations in advanced primary care.(

The agency wants to create mechanisms to encourage comprehensiveness in primary care delivery by improving the care of complex patients, facilitating robust connections to the medical home neighborhood and community-based services, and moving payment from a health care encounter model to one that is value-driven and population-based.

The official "Request for Information"( is available for those interested in submitting suggestions. All forms must be submitted by March 16. Questions regarding submissions should be emailed to with "RFI" in the subject line.

Conference on Practice Improvement Seeks Presentation Ideas

The Society of Teachers of Family Medicine recently issued a call for presentations( for its annual Conference on Practice Improvement( scheduled for Dec. 3-6 in Dallas.

The conference provides a forum to showcase and discuss a variety of practice transformation topics, such as team-based care, population health, patient engagement, care coordination, care management, billing and coding, and other issues.

Submission instructions are available online; the submission deadline is April 20.