Local physicians weigh-in on medical hot topics for 2015

In your opinion, what are some of the top concerns for the medical industry in the coming New Year?

Obesity remains a health care concern for 2015.  The overweight and obesity rate for adults and teens in Polk County is higher than the state average.  Polk Vision’s Building a Healthier Polk initiative is a partnership of organizations, businesses, government, and individuals working toward the goal of reducing the obesity rate.

Social factors negatively impacting health care include the number of children living below the poverty level and children with food insecurity, to name a few.

Access to healthcare for uninsured and underinsured individuals remains a concern.  Groups in both the public and private sector, along with free and faith-based clinics, continue to work to provide a healthcare safety net for Polk County residents.  Although improved, gaps in access to medical care still exist.

ICD-10 implementation planned for October 2015 will impact the medical industry as physician practices and hospitals prepare and transition to this updated coding system.

Dr. Joy Jackson
Medical Director
Florida Department of Health in Polk County, Bartow

There are many challenges facing physicians.  2015 brings a tremendous burden on primary cares physicians to lead the way to better quality of life and patient/doctor relationships.  This requires a lot of work on all aspects of a medical practice, from improving operations to maximizing cash flow.

In my opinion, the healthcare care industry is in the throes of a great change.  Local physicians and local hospital systems working together have the best opportunity to provide the best quality care possible, and this is because patients prefer leaders from their own community who can relate to their social and background necessities.

As physicians, we face challenges with payment structure, government mandates, staff turnover, and more.  The only practices that are going to succeed are those willing to adapt, innovate, and respond to these challenges.

Dr. Ratnamani Lingamallu 
Ear, Nose and Throat Physician
Central Florida ENT Associates, Lakeland

To read more about top medical concerns for 2015 from Dr. Lingamallu, click here.

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