JAMA Publishes COPD Study

A new study published June 6 in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) found that chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD) participants who had mucus plugs in medium to large airways “had higher all-cause mortality compared with patients without mucus plugging on chest CT scans.”

The study — “Airway-Occluding Mucus Plugs and Mortality in Patients with Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease” — included more than 4,400 participants with COPD and was conducted by Alejandro A. Diaz, M.D., MPH; José L. Orejas, M.D.; and Scott Grumley, M.D. 

CAIRE’s Parent Company Officially Changes Name to Niterra

With the beginning of its new fiscal year in April, NGK Spark Plug — parent company of CAIRE — has officially changed its name to Niterra.

“World renowned as an ignition, sensor and technical ceramics specialist, the group rebrand reflects the journey which the company is currently on,” Niterra said in announcing the news. In a second announcement, the company said, “The name change, announced late last year, was a move to reflect the overall growth of the global organization and diversification of its portfolio — inclusive of CAIRE and its divisions of AirSep Corporation, CAIRE Diagnostics, and MGC Diagnostics Holdings, Inc.”

AMA: Greater Oversight Needed of AI Used for Prior Authorizations

The American Medical Association (AMA) has called for “greater regulatory oversight” of insurance entities using artificial intelligence (AI) to review patient claims and prior authorization requests. In a June 14 announcement, the AMA said, “While the AMA supports automation to speed up the prior authorization process and cut down on the burdensome paperwork required by physicians, the fact remains that prior authorization is overused, costly, inefficient, and responsible for patient care delays.”

The AMA’s newly adopted policy “calls for health insurers utilizing AI technology to implement a thorough and fair process that is based on clinical criteria and includes reviews by physicians and other healthcare professionals with expertise for the service under review and no incentive to deny care.”

The new policy asks for insurance companies “to require a human examination of patient records” before denying a request for care.

About the Author

Laurie Watanabe is the editor of Mobility Management. She can be reached at [email protected].

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