"We're both rotten!"
"Yeah, only you're a little more rotten!"
Fellow bloggers, Barbara Stanwyck's and Fred MacMurray's dialogue in the American film noir co-written by Billy Wilder and Raymond Chandler can be an appropriate description of the spine world that we live in. Life can imitate art. Potentially our moment will play itself out beginning in November of 2011. If life does imitate art, then Senator Chuck Grassley (R-IA) and Herbert Kohl (D-WI) will play the dual role of Barton Keys (Edward G. Robinson), whose job it was to find phony claims in the movie Double Indemnity.
November 2011 and the subsequent date of March 31, 2013 will usher in a new era of compliance. The Secretary of Health and Human Services shall establish policies and procedures to ensure compliance with the requirements authored into provisions within the Sunshine Act, aka the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act of 2009, passed by the Senate on December 24, 2009, and the House on March 21, 2010. On November 1, 2011 the Secretary will begin conducting audits to determine that hospitals are also under compliance. No longer will some of our highly esteemed hospital administrators be able to look the other way when it comes to questioning some of the current concepts in spine. Hospital compliance officers will actually have to start being accountable.
If there ever was a time to accelerate the arrival of March 31, 2013, the time is now. TSB can hear the outcry, especially, from our celebrated commentator whose constant derision of our blog includes labeling us a socialist and liberal forum. Our only response is that some people wouldn't know the boogeyman if he jumped out and bit one in the derriere. If your personal freedom's are so threatened, please do not read our blog, your utter non-sense will not be missed, but then we do believe in free speech, therefore, rant on. Whether one agrees with our opinions, the reality is that once again our society needs to find balance in the individual roles we play in our lives, in our financial expectations, and the fact that maybe the illusion that we have created can no longer be translated into reality. Dr. Leary, where are you when you are needed? Change will be good, and everyone will learn how to adapt or perish. The recent outcry for less government is theater at its best. TSB can hear all those phony teabaggers, only to be contradicted by the recent events of Hurricane Irene whom invited herself into many of your lives and showered you with the wrath of Mother Nature. And you know what Michelle Bachmann says, "it's not nice to full Mother Nature." Ironically, the cry from Democratic and Republican bureaucrats on the state level in the East has been for more federal intervention, blaming the federal government for the mismanagement of their finances, and lack of action when it came to addressing the damns, rivers and streams that were never fortified in the event of a major disaster. Whatever happened to personal accountability and less government? But this isn't what this post is about.
On March 31st, 2013 and the 90th day of each calendar year beginning thereafter, any applicable manufacturer that provides a payment or other transfer of value to a covered recipient shall submit the following to the Secretary,
Name of that individual
Amount of Payment
Date of Payment
Description of Payment
Cash or Cash Equivalent
In Kind Items or Services
Stock or Stock Options
Any Other Form of Payment or Transfer (POD)
Compensation for Services other than Consulting (POD)
Royalty or Licensing Fee
Current or Prospective Ownership or Investment Interest (POD)
Direct Compensation for Serving as Faculty or Speaker for Medical Education
Any Other Nature of Payment or Other Transfer of Value,
These are just a few of the guidelines that will be enforced. Hopefully the DOJ will look at every company excluding no one, especially some of the smaller companies that attempt to fly under the radar. There are plenty of lawyers, surgeons and distributors burning the midnight oil in anticipation of how to circumvent the law. Whether the law will reign in the terror that we have inflicted upon ourselves will be determined by time. Will this legislation dampen the endless schemes that are hatched by individuals in our industry whom condemn the law, yet rely on the law to find new and creative ways to circumvent the very laws that they decry? Will we see a return to innovation? Will we see the demise of POD's, and phony consulting agreements? Regardless of your role in the industry, the stench that many of you smell is the infestation of corporate dollars in buying business rather then developing newer and innovative modalities of treatment. By leveling the playing field, we can separate the contenders from the pretenders, and stop the insanity that many of us are consumed with on a day to day basis. Who knows? So in closing TSB wants to know, is the Moon in the seventh house and will Jupiter align itself within Mars, is this the dawning of the Age of Aquarius?
Let the sunshine, let the sunshine in, the Sunshine in...........................................................