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From the editor

From the Editor

Abby Van Voorhees

Dr. Van Voorhees is the physician editor of Dermatology World

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December…. ’tis the season of joyful hecticness.

Life’s already-full schedule somehow fits in more engagements. There are the parties for both work and pleasure. Then there are also the patients … mine seem to rediscover in late November that they only have a few weeks to get into the office before their deductible resets. And then of course, there are family plans with visits and gifts aplenty. Yet, we all sort of look forward to this month every year.

Squeeze just one more thing in to that hectic schedule — some must-read Derm World articles. Let’s start with the one on strategies for greening our offices. First my disclosure, I am the world’s most dedicated recycler. Despite this bias, I do think that efforts both large and small are starting to pay dividends for those who incorporate these kinds of innovations and approaches into their practices. This feature will get you thinking. Might be a good New Year’s resolution for your practice to undertake together … this might be the one that is most likely to not be disregarded in mid-January.

Also, please read the piece on the metabolic syndrome and its relevance to dermatology even before you decorate for the holidays. Gone are the days of dermatologists being able to simply say that rashes such as psoriasis are only a problem of the skin. We owe our patients an education on their risks for underlying heart disease. If you’ve not been keeping current on these new findings, you’ll find that this month’s article is a great update.

We touch on two very pressing legal topics this month. The first is a state of the union on liability reform. We tip our hats to those of you who managed to get some type of reform through your state legislatures. It will surprise none of us that this reform has led to a reduction in health care costs. I know that you’ll also find the piece on Stark regulations an important one. This is of the utmost importance to understand for those considering adding dermpath services to their practices.

In the supplement you received with this issue, we take a closer look at electronic health records. From how to get started on the road to implementation to how to use EHR to reduce costs in your practice, from tips from those who have already adopted to the ways wider adoption may enhance patient care and clinical research, this month’s supplement has something for everyone from those who are just thinking about whether to adopt to old pros.

We had exciting news this past month, an additional thing to celebrate. When Folio gave its awards, Derm World won a silver medal for our new design and format. It was sort of amazing to be mentioned in the same breath as National Geographic, Sports Illustrated, and Playboy. The Board of Directors and the staff took a chance on big changes; members should be very proud of this acknowledgement. And while you are celebrating all that is good, you can send me a toast too … I’ll be getting married later this month. So many things to be celebrating.

Enjoy your reading!

Abby S. VanVoorhees, MD