ProfNet Experts Available on Zadroga Act, Terrorism, Medicare/Medicaid Fraud, More

Also in This Edition: Jobs for Writers, Media Industry Blog Posts

Dec 23, 2015, 09:27 ET from ProfNet

NEW YORK, Dec. 23, 2015 /PRNewswire/ -- Below are experts from the ProfNet network that are available to discuss timely issues in your coverage area.

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  • Zadroga Act Reaffirms Support for First Responders
  • Body-Language Signs of Terrorists
  • Medical Device Manufacturers and the ACA
  • New Rule of the Road: Electronic Driver Logs
  • False Medicare/Medicaid Claims Cost Taxpayers Billions


  • Digital Content Producer – FOX31 (CO)
  • News Reporter – Univision Television (IL)
  • Anchor – Bloomberg Radio (NY)


  • Five Video Trends for 2016
  • 2016 Journalism and Media Predictions
  • A Conversation With NPR's Here and Now


Zadroga Act Reaffirms Support for First Responders
Stephen Cassidy
Uniformed Firefighters Association
"New York City remains the No. 1 target for terrorism, and our firefighters stand ready to respond should tragedy strike again. The job our members do is more dangerous than it has ever been and, at any moment, firefighters will be expected to once again run into harm's way. By reauthorizing the Zadroga Act in a bipartisan manner, Congress is reaffirming its support for those firefighters who sacrificed their health and, tragically, their lives while effectuating the largest civilian evacuation on U.S. soil, as 25,000 were saved on 9/11. After many months and years of fighting in Washington, D.C., for a permanent solution, it is good to finally have this result. Our thanks go out to the New York delegation and the Congressional leadership for seeing this result to the end."
Cassidy can discuss the agreement to fund and extend the Zadroga Act, which provides health care for those sickened by the toxins in the air around Ground Zero in the aftermath of the 9/11 attacks.
Contact: Tom Butler,

Body-Language Signs of Terrorists
Lillian Glass, Ph.D.
Body-Language Expert
In light of President Obama's statement that the nation should remain "vigilant" in light of this month's shootings in California, Dr. Glass can offer insight into the body-language signs of terrorists: "Anxiety, fear, anger, and numbness are the four emotions that a terrorist usually exhibits. These emotions are usually given away via his or her body language and voice and speech behaviors. Terrorists, like Mohamed Atta and the rest of the 9/11 team, often make it a point to fit in, by wearing Western-looking attire while committing their acts of terror. However, there are some terrorists, like Shoe Bomber Richard Reid, whose disheveled appearance was cause for concern. Wearing layered, bulky, or inappropriate clothing for warm weather may be other giveaways. And then there are terrorists who dress in tactical or military garb and look like the terrorists they are. Sweating that is out of synch with weather conditions is also a signal, especially when you see sweating over the upper lip. This may indicate nervousness or anxiety. It is not uncommon to see women terrorists walking with bowed heads and rounded shoulders. In male terrorists, we may see the opposite -- someone walking with purpose, rapidly with a wide stride, head up, and shoulders back as though they are on a mission. Upper-chest breathing, along with constantly gulping in many deep breaths, is often seen in terrorists and is an indicator of fear and anxiety. This was often seen in the Last Will tapes of the 9/11 terrorists."
Dr. Glass can share 12 body-language signs of terrorists. She is an expert in the field of communication and the psychology of human behavior. She has authored 18 books, including the best-seller "Toxic People." As a renowned body-language expert, she demonstrates her skills in numerous fields. She has also applied her skills in the legal field, where she is an expert witness, jury and trial consultant, and mediator.
Contact: Ryan McCormick,

Medical Device Manufacturers and the ACA
Dr. Bill Bithoney
Managing Director and Chief Physician Executive
The BDO Center for Healthcare Excellence & Innovation
Medical device manufacturers will get a windfall if the U.S. budget nixes the medical device tax. But with the Cadillac tax and medical device tax on the block, the Affordable Care Act needs to find new funding sources, and care providers are going to be under increasing pressure to reduce costs that aren't going down as fast as they need to. Says Dr. Bithoney: "Medical device companies that have raised prices and reduced their workforces and their employees' health benefits in the lead-up to the tax will receive a windfall if it's repealed. While some camps will be legitimately relieved at the repeal of these levies, the simple reality is that the funds from both the Cadillac tax and the medical device tax are important to funding the Affordable Care Act. How will the projected billions of dollars raised by these taxes be replaced?"
Specializing in efficient clinical and hospital management and the development of accountable care organizations (ACO), Dr. Bithoney has developed managed care and academic strategies, managed a Medicare Advantage ACO, and developed self-sustaining models for performance and quality improvement, utilization review, utilization management and research strategies. He is an experienced healthcare professional with more than 25 years of experience as a physician executive in diverse academic and hospital systems.  He served as chief of general pediatrics primary care at Boston Children's Hospital for 17 years, where he was also named senior associate in medicine, the highest clinical appointment available at Harvard Medical School.  He has been a professor at both Harvard and the SUNY Downstate Medical School, and served as vice dean and professor at NY Medical College. In addition, he served as chief medical officer for several large health systems with revenues between $1 billion and $2.5 billion per annum.
BDO Knows Healthcare Blog:
Contact: Liz DeForest,

New Rule of the Road: Electronic Driver Logs
Peyton Inge
Chamblee, Ryan, Kershaw & Anderson in Dallas
An estimated 3 million commercial drivers must now electronically record their hours behind the wheel under a new government rule designed to prevent driver fatigue. Special devices automatically record driving time by monitoring engine hours, vehicle movement, miles driven and location information. While some truckers have complained that the devices are no more effective than paper logs, regulators estimate the industry will save $1 billion per year through paperwork reductions, while also saving lives and preventing accidents. Says Inge: "Most large companies already use electronic logs, so the regulations will most directly affect smaller operators, forcing even the unwilling to comply. The long-term effects should be positive as drivers and companies won't be able skirt the rules, and the roads will presumably be safer." The rule goes into effect in February, and drivers will have two years to start using the devices.
Contact: Barry Pound,

False Medicare/Medicaid Claims Cost Taxpayers Billions
David Kwok
Assistant Professor
University of Houston Law Center
The federal government is cracking down on healthcare fraud that annually costs taxpayers billions of dollars in false Medicare and Medicaid claims. The courts, however, have differed on what constitutes fraud under the False Claims Act. It's clear that fraud has been committed when the government is billed for services that have not actually been provided, but what about when a provider knowingly fails to meet certain regulatory standards? Is it legally fraud or simply a matter requiring remediation? Some courts seem concerned that penalties for violations are too high for the apparent harm, while other decisions hinged on whether a medical practitioner's "certification" with regulations was expressed or implied. Kwok can explain the complexities of the "whistleblower" case of Universal Health Services v. United States ex rel. Escobar, for which the Supreme Court granted cert on Dec. 4, and how it might reshape the government's efforts to recover fraudulent payments.
Says Kwok: "My main hope is that the Supreme Court articulates clear reasoning that will help both whistleblowers and companies understand when fraud is being committed. A clear, unified rule that makes it easier for non-attorneys to understand fraud will benefit all parties involved."
Based in Houston, Kwok earned a B.S. from Northwestern University, and M.P.P., J.D., and Ph.D. degrees from the University of California, Berkeley.  He teaches and writes in the areas of white-collar crime, public policy, and law and the social sciences.
Contact: Carrie Criado,



Following are links to job listings for staff and freelance writers, editors and producers. You can view these and more job listings on our Job Board:

  • Digital Content Producer – FOX31 (CO)
  • News Reporter – Univision Television (IL)
  • Anchor – Bloomberg Radio (NY)


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