A Day in the Life: Dr. Michael Hart

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Dr. Hart grew up in Abilene, TX and ran a rural health clinic in Stamford, TX for nearly 20 years. He graduated from the University of Texas San Antonio after studying Biology at Abilene Christian University. There he was voted Most Compassionate Intern/Resident three years in a row, and it still shows in patient reviews still today. He moved to Dallas shortly after the passing of his mother for a fresh start. Dr. Hart loves his doggies, has a twin sister and amazing extended family, and can win any contest regarding musicals!

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Member Highlight: Dr. Brent Wyatt

I received my Bachelor of Science decree in Wildlife Biology from Western Illinois University and went on to study medicine at Southern Illinois University.  It was in medical school that I realized my passion for emergency medicine.  I appreciated that emergency physicians had to know so much about every aspect of medicine, while also be prepared to handle medical emergencies no matter where they occur.

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A Day in the Life: Dr. Luke Bertorelli

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Dr. Bertorelli is originally from New Jersey. He now lives in Fort Worth with his wife Alley and three children Lulu (12), Tommy (8), and Charlie (4). In his free time he enjoys fishing, cooking, traveling, and playing guitar. Dr. Bertorellu is board certified (ACOEP) in emergency medicine.

Member Highlight: Dr. Jon Steadman

Dr. Steadman is a board-certified, emergency-medicine-trained physician. He has worked in a number of different emergency room settings within the Dallas-Fort Worth area, as well as in Oklahoma and Mississippi.

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Sponsor Highlight: Quidel

Quidel began 35 years ago with a primary goal of providing improved diagnostic tools to our customers that assist in delivering more effective patient care. We believe as healthcare continues to evolve that the need for accurate, fast, simple, scalable and cost-effective diagnostic solutions that can be used at the point-of-care will continue to evolve as well. Our current platforms and those we look to develop in the future are built around helping meet the challenges of our current and future healthcare landscape.

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TAFEC Addresses Top 5 Myths About Freestanding ERs

AUSTIN, Texas – Oct. 13, 2016 – The rapid growth of freestanding emergency centers (FECs) in states like Texas is helping transform emergency care in the U.S., providing a delivery model focused on convenience, speed, and getting patients quality time with physicians. Despite this, misconceptions of these facilities and the services they provide persist.

In 2009, Texas became the first state to license independent FECs, and today there are more than 200 independent FECs and more than 100 hospital-affiliated FECs statewide. FECs are conveniently located in patient neighborhoods, which improves access to care and saves critical travel time that could mean life or death. In most cases, patients are seen by a physician within minutes of walking into the facility and are treated right away.

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Free-standing emergency centers offer top care and shorter wait times

By Nick Peters

Originally posted in the Dallas Morning News

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Member Highlight: Dr. Ryan Cradeur

During residency, I became close friends with Dr. John Turner. After several years working in emergency medicine, we discussed our frustration with hospital administrators having such a powerful influence over the way emergency medicine was practiced. We felt there had to be a better way for us to practice emergency medicine that aligned with what we considered best for the patients, staff, and ourselves as physicians. We learned about freestanding emergency centers from one of Dr. Turner's friends. The more we learned about the industry, the more we knew it was the style of emergency medicine we wanted to practice. Separating from the hospital and taking on this business venture is one of the best decisions we’ve made in our careers and we are very satisfied with the work that we are doing now.

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Sponsor Highlight: T System

T-System offers a suite solutions for the FSED market that are unique in the industry. T Sheets® and T-System’s EV™ (electronic version) provide efficient, complaint-driven bedside documentation that helps clinicians spend more time with patients and accurately reflect care and medical decision making for optimized reimbursement. FSEC Foundation™ is the only purpose-built integrated platform that provides FSECs with a full-suite of technology tools to drive clinical, operational and financial outcomes.

EV™ is an easy, efficient and effective ED information system (EDIS) and includes physician and nurse documentation, CPOE, patient tracking, clinical decision support, e-prescribing, reporting and more. Over 400 emergency departments and freestanding emergency centers have chosen EV to document patient care. T-System’s clinical experts maintain the system with the most up to date regulatory and clinical requirements.

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XtreMed in Action

XtreMed has provided concierge radiology services since the inception of the Freestanding Emergency Center (FEC) concept in 2008. Whatever is needed for your radiology suite – we make it headache-free for you.

As NAFEC’s inaugural Champion Sponsor, XtreMed successfully incorporates several aspects of your FEC project including working with the architects and physicists to design your facility and protect your staff and patients with proper shielding needs, managing your general construction company to ensure your radiology department meets your state’s regulations and your expectations.

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Emergency Care is Unlike Other Forms of Healthcare

The media and insurance providers often draw comparisons between freestanding emergency centers and urgent care facilities, despite their drastically different levels of services. There are a number of aspects that differentiate emergency care from other forms of medical care. TAFEC is here to highlight what makes freestanding emergency room visits unique, and how billing practices of freestanding emergency centers might differ from primary care physicians or urgent care centers.

Emergency care visits are unplanned. Patients don’t schedule ahead or shop out where they are going to receive emergency care beforehand like they do for primary care physicians and urgent care facilities. Patients visit freestanding emergency centers because a medical emergency has occurred. This is why freestanding emergency centers must be ready for any type of injury or illness presented at their facility. Read our Cost of Readiness blog.

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TAFEC's Response to Associated Press

A recent study, conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital and published in the Annals of Emergency Medicine, has generated a lot of media attention toward the freestanding emergency center (FEC) industry, including a recent Associated Press article. TAFEC believes there is a need for additional information so readers understand the complicated political and regulatory landscape FECs must navigate with regard to these findings, and has addressed the following areas to provide further context:

1. Access to Emergency Care for All
2. National Regulation Governing FECs
3. Relieving Pressure on Hospitals
4. Comparing FECs to Urgent Cares
5. FEC Patient Satisfaction
6. Retaining Emergency Physicians

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Sponsor Highlight: COBAIT

FEC owners and doctors are in the business of patient care with technology playing a leading role in providing comprehensive patient care and overall business management. In order to stay ahead of the curve, you need a competent and trusted technology partner to manage and maintain your infrastructure and systems 24/7. COBAIT has the expertise and resources to be that partner and unlike any other IT and Technology vendor, we bring the experience and best practices of large fortune 500 companies to the FEC market including CIO level services.

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Family ER + Urgent Care acquires Texas Emergency Care Centers (TECC) and ER Centers of America (ERCA)

IRVING, TX (August 3, 2016) – Family ER + Urgent Care announced today that it has completed its acquisition, in two separate transactions, of Texas Emergency Care Centers (TECC) and ER Centers of America (ERCA). Dedicated to providing high quality, fairly priced emergency and urgent care services, the combined company will have five (5) facilities in the Dallas, Houston and Lubbock metropolitan areas offering emergency room services, and one facility in the Dallas metropolitan area offering both emergency room and urgent care services. Each of the Emergency Room facilities are licensed by the State of Texas, Joint Commission and Commission of Office Laboratory Accreditation (COLA) accredited and Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) certified.

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Member Highlight: Dr. Matt Young

From an early age I was interested in the medical profession, thought it was also in my blood. My father was a General Surgeon, and my mother assisted with his practice. Of the 10 children in my family, two of us are ER Physicians, five are Orthopedic Surgeons, one is a nurse, one is a Doctor of Veterinary Medicine, and one is soon to be a Doctor of Education in Higher Education Leadership. Growing up, my siblings and I were exposed to the practice of medicine through volunteering in the community and working in local hospitals. I was always attracted to assisting others with acute needs and was always willing to help. Several years ago my wife and I explored the opportunity of opening a freestanding emergency center (FEC). However, the timing and circumstances weren’t right. A random Facebook message in December of 2014 turned into a fantastic opportunity for my wife and I to partner with some wonderful, experienced physicians. We opened our FEC 11 short months later.

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The True Cost of Readiness

Emergency care is unlike any other form of medical care because of the responsibility to be prepared for the unknown at all times. Our freestanding emergency centers (FEC) must be ready for any injury or illness that comes through their door – something that requires a great deal of preparation and planning. This characteristic of emergency medical care may be undervalued and underappreciated by patients, because, often times, they do not understand all of the factors that are needed to provide emergency care.

So what does it take to provide emergency services? 

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Understanding Balance Billing

For too long Texas health insurance providers have controlled the healthcare narrative, attempting to vilify healthcare providers while they slowly reduce coverage for consumers and shrink their networks. On one issue in particular, predatory underpayment, health insurance providers have been unchecked by regulation, and Texas consumers are paying the price.

The term insurance providers like to use when referring to predatory underpayment is balance billing, which means passing along the difference between the total cost of care and what is covered by insurance to patients.

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Member Highlight: Dr. Richard Parker

Since childhood, I have always had a strong interest in the biological and life sciences. Due to personal experiences with several sports injuries as an adolescent, I developed a deep sense of compassion for the sick and injured, and greatly admire healthcare providers who dedicate their lives to caring for their patients. During my undergraduate studies at Brown University, I majored in Biology and knew that pursuing a career in medicine was the right choice.

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Sponsor Highlight: Presidio Health

The rapidly growing Freestanding Emergency Center and Urgent Care market demands a fresh approach to providing excellent patient care, and starts when your customer walks through the front door. Presidio understands this requirement for excellence and has built an integrated technology platform of services that manage each unique patient experience from arrival to final bill payment, including bed-side, mobile registration and discharge payment capture with convenient payment options from credit card, eCheck and financing, payment plan program options. In addition to our concierge patient services, our revenue management technologies and services dramatically improve clinical documentation, physician productivity and facility revenue capture. By maintaining a consistent “flow” of all revenue processes, we facilitate efficient and effective operations that maximize efficiency and profits.

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Member Highlight: Winnie King, MD, PhD

When I graduated from Hood College in Frederick, Maryland with a degree in psychology, I had no idea I would eventually become an emergency medicine physician. As a teenager, I developed an interest in how the mind operates and influences our body. It seemed a natural progression to pursue a post-graduate degree and become a psychotherapist. However, with urging from my parents, I took the MCAT and found myself in medical school with the revised plan to become a psychiatrist.

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