SRS Newsletter
March 2012

President's Message

SRS president

Greetings from Dallas, Texas, where the springtime's warmth and emerging colors are upon us. This has been a wonderful year to be a part of the SRS team, as the Society's productivity has never been greater. Much has happened since our last newsletter in December. We held a productive Board of Directors (BOD) meeting during the February 2012 American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) Annual Meeting in San Francisco, California, USA. From the committee reports delivered, our 33 committees and ten taskforces are hard at work completing their numerous charges.

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James Warren Tupper, MD

Barbara Jane Manna, RN

Kenneth "Van" Jackman, MD

Aaron W. Perlman, MD

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CPGs and AUCs - What Do the Abbreviations Mean, and Why Should I Care?

James O. Sanders, MD
Evidence-Based Committee Chair

James O. Sanders

As you may know, the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and North American Spine Society (NASS) have been heavily involved in creating evidence-based Clinical Practice Guidelines (CPGs). AAOS is currently beginning development of Appropriate Use Criteria (AUC), which was previously pioneered by the American College of Cardiology (ACC). At the 47th Annual Meeting, a Lunchtime Symposium explained these tools along with the more fundamental tool, systematic reviews.

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Upcoming Worldwide Conferences and India Conference Update

Ahmet Alanay, MD
Worldwide Conference Committee Chair

Ahmet Alanay

The first Worldwide Conference of 2012 was held in New Delhi, India with great participation! Munish Gupta, MD was the SRS Chair for the conference and has prepared the report below. You can also visit the SRS website to see more highlights.

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Research Grant: Fall 2011 and Spring 2012

John M. Flynn, MD
Research Grant Committee Chair

John M. Flynn

The Research Grants Committee is completing a significant transformation, designed to responsibly distribute very limited funding, increase the number of reviewers evaluating each grant and improve grant recipient accountability. These changes have required new limits on grant awards, a new model for grant reviews, and careful scrutiny of outcomes from grants awarded.

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Globalization Committee Update

Lawrence G. Lenke, MD
Globalization Committee Chair

Lawrence G. Lenke

The Globalization Committee was formed in 2011 as a refinement to the Global Affairs Advisory Board (GAAB). The purpose of this new committee is to pilot the regionalization of our society with three areas singled out to start: Asia-Pacific, Europe, and Latin America. We have elected regional co-chairs whose charges are to begin the process of adding additional members to their regional sub-committees.

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"The time is always right to do right." Martin Luther King Jr.

J. Abbott Byrd III, MD
Ethics Committee Chair

J. Abbott Byrd

As defined by The American Heritage Dictionary, ethics are the rules or standards governing the conduct of the members of a profession. Recognizing the importance of this topic, the Ethics and Professionalism Committee was formed in 2008 as an advisory body to the SRS Board of Directors (BOD). The primary goal of the committee is to focus on the ethical and professional issues that face both the society as a whole and its individual members and to offer some guidelines as how to address these issues.

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Updating the Policy & Procedure Manual

Michael C. Albert, MD
Bylaws and Policies Committee Chair

Michael C. Albert

The SRS Bylaws and Policies Committee's primary goals are to respond to questions regarding the bylaws and to monitor activities ensuring compliance with bylaws and written policies. In addition, the committee updates the Policy & Procedure Manual when action items are approved by the Board of Directors (BOD), communicating changes to the SRS office and staff liaison.

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Coding for Deformity Combined with Degenerative Stenosis: A Case Example

Patrick Cahill, MD
Coding Committee Member

Patrick Cahill

Spinal deformity surgery and spinal surgery for degenerative conditions are not mutually exclusive fields. If a Venn diagram were used to describe the two fields, there would be significant overlap. Even on the level of a single patient, degenerative and deforming processes may be contributing to pathology. ICD-9, however, attempts to stratify and codify surgical procedures into one category or the other. This can be confusing for surgeons and those coding their procedures.

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Website Updates

Michael S. Roh, MD
Website Committee Chair

Michael S. Roh

SRS E-Text Open to Public: The SRS E-Text is a compendium of chapters covering a wide variety of topics relevant to spinal deformity, written by experts in the field. Though initially reserved for SRS members, the E-Text may now be accessed by the general public and healthcare professionals alike. SRS members should feel free to refer other physicians and providers, medical students, and interested patients to the E-Text site as a valuable educational resource, and full access will be granted following a simple registration process.

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Fellowship Committee Report

Carlos Tello, MD
Fellowship Committee Chair

Carlos Tello

The Fellowship Committee diligently reviews Candidate, Associate and Active applications twice annually providing its recommendations to the Board of Directors (BOD) for final approval at the September and February Board meetings. SRS Fellowship continues to grow at a gradual pace with very enthusiastic and qualified individuals. We are pleased to announce our new 2012 Fellows.

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Call from the Historical Committee: Classic Articles

The Historical Committee is developing a list of classic articles on spinal deformity. Suggestions are welcome from members to add to this historical bibliography. Please submit your suggestions as either just a standard library-style reference or a full pdf copy for inclusion in this collection.

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Global Outreach

Kenneth Paonessa, MD
Global Outreach Committee Chair

Kenneth Paonessa

The Global Outreach Committee has been very active since the 2011 Annual Meeting in Louisville, Kentucky, USA. The committee has encouraged the membership to help care for affected patients in developing countries as well as teaching surgeons in these areas to be able to provide care of spinal deformities. Part of the charges is also to encourage surgeons in developing countries who are interested in deformity care to attend the Annual Meetings or consider becoming a member.

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Governance Council Update

Hubert Labelle, MD
Governance Council Chair and Secretary

Hubert Labelle

The Governance Council consists of (in alphabetical order) the Advocacy and Public Policy, Bylaws and Policies, Coding, Ethics, Fellowship, Globalization, Historical, Industry Relations, Newsletter, and Public Relations Committees. The main responsibility of the council is to act as liaison between committees within the council and the Board of Directors (BOD). I am happy to report the all of the committees have active charges and are engaged in activities in support of the SRS.

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2011 Corporate Supporters

We are pleased to acknowledge and thank those companies that provided financial support to SRS in 2010. Support levels are based on total contributions throughout the year and include the Annual Meeting, IMAST, Worldwide Conferences, Global Outreach Scholarships, Edgar Dawson Memorial Scholarships, SRS Traveling Fellowships and the Research Endowment Fund. Their support has helped SRS to offer high quality medical meetings and courses throughout the world, fund spinal deformity research, develop new patient materials, and provide educational opportunities for young surgeons and those from developing nations.

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Strategic Plan & Vision Statement

The SRS will increase its recognition domestically and internationally as the leading source of information and knowledge on spinal disorders affecting all patients, regardless of age.

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