August 18, 2014

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Board of Licensure in Medicine Adopts New Telemedicine Policy

Effective June 10, 2014, the Maine Board of Licensure in Medicine has adopted new Board policy regarding telemedicine-distance learning.  The new policy is based upon recommendations of the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) and makes clear that a Maine medical license is required for the practice of telemedicine-distance medicine.

The only permissible exception to Maine licensure is a physician providing infrequent episodic care where there is an existing, on-going, established patient-physician relationship.  

Highlights of the new policy include the following:

  • Telemedicine-Distance Medicine is defined as the practice of medicine at a distance through the use of any electronic means.
  • The practice of medicine occurs at the originating site, defined as the location of the patient at the time of examination, diagnosis, or treatment.  
  • Medical records must be kept at the distant site, meaning the location of the physician providing telemedicine services.  Medical records must be accessible to local health care providers and local health care facilities upon request.  Medical records maintained at the distant site are expected to meet all medical record standards and confidentiality rules.
  • Evaluation and Treatment.   The telemedicine interaction must include all the recognized components of a patient-physician encounter required to establish a diagnosis and provide treatment.  The interaction, treatment recommendations, and the issuance of prescriptions will be held to the same standards of appropriate practice as those in traditional face-to-face settings.
  • Telemedicine physicians providing primary care, other than acute episodic care, must have a face-to-face visit with their patients once a year.
  • Prescribing.  The physician prescribing via telemedicine must ensure that the clinical evaluation and rationale for the resulting prescription are appropriately documented and meet the same standard of care as that of a traditional patient-physician interaction.  
  • The prescribing of all controlled medications via telemedicine is prohibited.

The entire policy is available on the Board's website.


FSMB to Release Interstate Medical Licensure Compact by October

On August 1st, the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) announced that it plans to release a final version of its proposed Interstate Medical Licensure Compact that would make it easier for physicians licensed in one state to practice in another, both in-person and via telemedicine.  The Compact is designed to make physician licensure portable among states that adopt it.  The FSMB House of Delegates has strongly endorsed this effort.  The FSMB expects at least 15 states to adopt the Compact in 2015 and 2016 and medical licensing boards in Texas, Oklahoma, and Washington already have agreed to support the Compact.  Maine's Board of Licensure in Medicine started the national discussion leading up to this Compact nearly 3 years ago by advocating its "platinum" proposal whereby licensees with clear records could get licensed in secondary states immediately, a pattern followed by this Compact.  Seven states must adopt the Compact before it can become effective and Maine's Board also expects to be among the early adopters. 

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Still Time to Register for MMA's 161st Annual Session in Bar Harbor

 The MMA's 161st Annual Session will take place at the beautiful Harborside Hotel & Marina in Bar Harbor, Maine from September 5-7, 2014.  Our room block at the hotel has closed, but there are plenty of alternative accommodations in downtown Bar Harbor.  You can find information about the meeting, including registration information, the agenda, and hotel reservation information on the MMA web site here.  We encourage you to take a look at the meeting materials because we have made some changes this year in hopes of providing a better experience for physicians and their families.  The changes include:

  • A shorter time commitment.  The meeting will begin with an opening reception on Friday, September 5th and will close mid-morning on Sunday, September 7th;
  • Child care will be available throughout the meeting;
  • The business part of the meeting, the General Membership meeting, has been shortened from a half a day on Saturday to two hours;
  • Free time.  You will have some opportunities to network with your colleagues from other parts of the state and/or to enjoy Mount Desert Island with your family - MMA will make some group dinner reservations at local restaurants for Friday evening and Saturday afternoon is free time;
  • More relaxed.  Rather than the formal Saturday evening banquet, we will have a casual lobster bake at the Bar Harbor Club on Saturday evening;
  • Relevant CME.  The CME agenda for the meeting includes presentations through MMA's Academic Detailing program, by a national expert on health care economics and payment systems, and by professionals focused on physician health and wellness; and
  • Exercise.  You will have a chance to walk or run in the 34th Edmund Hardy, M.D. Road Race on Sunday morning!

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MMA Seeking Volunteers for Social Media/Digital Marketing Review

The Association is seeking volunteers for an ad hoc committee to review the MMA's current efforts at member engagement and to recommend initiatives in the area of social media including Facebook, Twitter, blogs, etc.  The goal would be to have an integrated digital marketing strategy that would include enhancements to the current website and use of the current e-newsletter and the quarterly printed newsletter.  The Association retained the Portland firm of flyte media to prepare a Digital Marketing Plan and we would like to share that plan with members who are interested in this topic.  The ad hoc committee will meet a few times this fall but much of the work can and will be done via conference calls.

If you have a particular interest in social media, either as a member or as a practice manager, please contact Gordon Smith, MMA EVP at to volunteer.  Or feel free to call Gordon on his cell phone at 207-215-7461.

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MMA Seeking Volunteers for Committees and Board of Directors

The MMA Committee on Nominations, chaired by Kenneth Christian, M.D. of Holden, will meet via conference call on August 21st to prepare the final list of nominations for MMA committees and the Board of Directors for presentation at the Annual Meeting on September 6th at the Bar Harbor Club in Bar Harbor (adjacent to the Harborside Hotel and Marina).  Members willing to consider serving on an MMA committee or on the Board of Directors should communicate by the 21st to Gordon Smith, MMA EVP via e-mail to or by calling Gordon at 215-7461 (cell).  Information on the committees can be found on the MMA website at  

During the next 12 months there will be many important decisions made about health care, both in the nation and in Maine.  MMA would welcome your active involvement as the Association works hard to represent the needs of Maine physicians.



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Donations Sought for MMA Silent Auction Held at Annual Session
MMA members are encouraged to donate an item to the Silent Auction that is conducted annually at the Annual Session.  The proceeds of the auction benefit the scholarship fund within the Maine Medical Education Trust.  The fund will be used to give scholarships to medical students from Maine. These scholarships are expected to enhance the loans from the Maine Medical Education Foundation.

Popular items in the past have included original paintings and carvings by Maine physicians and other artists, gift certificates to favorite restaurants and weekends at summer camps or winter condominiums.  
Donations can be sent to Dee deHaas at MMA.  Dee can be reached at 622-3374 or via e-mail to

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DHHS Prepares Year 2 Work Plan for State Innovation Model (SIM) Project

 The Maine Department of Health & Human Services recently has prepared its work plan for Year 2 of the SIM Project and submitted it to the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Innovation (CMMI) on August 1st.   You can find more information about the SIM Project on the web here.  The next meeting of the SIM Steering Committee will take place on August 27th.  [return to top]

Office of MaineCare Services Working Towards ICD-10 Compliance Date of October 1, 2015

 The Office of MaineCare Services is actively preparing its employees, processes, and systems for the transition to ICD-10 by October 1, 2015.  You will find information about the Office's implementation work, including frequently asked questions (FAQs) on the DHHS web site here.   [return to top]

Wellpoint, Inc. Plans to Change Name to Anthem, Inc.

In a statement released August 12th, Wellpoint, Inc. announced that it will change its name to Anthem, Inc. in a process that it expects to conclude by the end of the year.  The company is the second largest health insurance carrier in the country and the largest in the Maine market.  Wellpoint cites increased marketing directly to consumers through the ACA exchanges as the rationale for the decision.  The company sells health plans in 14 of the ACA insurance exchanges.  The company has about 2 million customers who buy products directly, including 769,000 through the ACA exchanges. [return to top]

CMS Public Launch of Open Payments System Back on Track

The Open Payments System listing payments from drug and medical device manufacturers to physicians is scheduled to go public on September 30th after physicians and teaching hospitals were given until Sept.8 to review the information reported about them and dispute anything they believed to be incorrect. The Sunshine Act Portal had been shut down for more than a week in order to resolve data errors and problems and problems with the site's functionality.

In an August 5th letter to CMS, 108 medical associations and medical specialty societies, including the Maine Medical Association, expressed serious concern with  implementation of the Open Payments System.  We urged CMS to extend both the review deadline and the public launch date and urged CMS to make other changes, including an exclusion related to CME and to reconsider its decision not to cover medical text books, journal article supplements, and reprints within the existing statutory exclusions for educational materials that directly benefit patients.

The AMA says that physicians have reported various problems with the review and dispute process, including:

  •  a requirement to create a registration profile on the CMS Enterprise Portal before registering for the Open Payments program, which takes several steps and involves the submission of detailed personal information;
  • no clear guidance on where to go to register in the Open Payments system;
  • an Open Payments registration process that takes at least 30 minutes and has taken some physicians more than 2 hours;
  • a requirement that the Open Payments registration process be completed in one sitting, with no data saved if a physician comes back to the process later; and
  • a requirement that registrations can only be done using the Internet Explorer browser.


Also, some physicians have completed their registrations, attempted to review their information, and received error messages.

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Upcoming Events

5th Annual Patient Safety Academy

Friday, September 5, 2014

 9 am – 4 pm

University of Southern Maine, Portland campus, Abromson Center

Cost: $50, with a discounted rate of $25 for students

Registration is now open. To register, click here or visit the Patient Safety Academy webpage



Health Care (HC4ME) For Maine

2nd Annual Health Care for Maine Conference

"Successfully Implementing the ACA in Maine"

Keynote Speaker:  Ron Pollack, Founding Executive Director of Families USA

Tuesday, September 16, 2014 from 8:30 a.m. to 4:00 p.m.

Augusta Civic Center

Agenda and registration available on the Consumers for Affordable Healthcare website


Direct Primary Care (DPC) Workshop

with Dr. Brian Forest, Founder, Access Healthcare Direct & AAFP DPC Workgroup Leader

& Maine physicians developing an integrated Maine Direct Care Network for existing practices

 Calling Doctors & Consumers: Come explore the options.

September 26, 1-5pm and September 27, 8:30-12:30pm,  2014

Maine Medical Association, Manchester

For further information email


Psychopharmacology for Medical & Behavioral Health Professionals

Focus:  Individuals with Autism or Intellectual Disabilities

Thursday, October 2, 2014

10 a.m. to noon

Woodfords Training & Resource Center, 100 Larrabee Road, Westbrook

Cost is $25, but register before 9/26/14 & the fee is $20

The presenters are Katherine Ray, M.D., Psychiatrist, and David Payne, PA-C.  The course is intended to enhance understanding of the appropriate use of psychotropic medications with children and adults with developmental disabilities, such as autism spectrum disorder.  Drug interactions, dosage, side-effects, and the need for alternative or adjunctive methods, such as behavioral interventions and counseling will be discussed.  Participants will have the opportunity to discuss actual cases.

This course is appropriate for direct care providers such as primary care physicians, nurses, physician assistants, licensed clinical social workers, and licensed clinical professional counselors.

Seating may be limited.  Advance registration is recommended.  FMI or to register, contact Training Coordinator Maria Romano, 207-878-9663, ext. 4131, or

This training is supported in part by a grant from the Maine Developmental Disabilities Council



The Maine Public Health Association’s (MPHA) 

30th Annual Fall Conference

October 7, 2014

Augusta Civic Center

Keynote speakers include: Erik N. Steele, D.O., FAAFP, Senior Vice President, Chief Medical Officer, Summa Health System and Paul Kuehnert, DNP, RN Team Director for the Bridging Health and Health Care Portfolio, Robert Wood Johnson Foundation

For more information or to register, click here.


Maine Concussion Management Initiative Training

October 21, 2014 in Portland in conjunction with the Maine Brain Injury Conference

7:30 a.m. - 12:00 p.m. 

Includes An Introduction to Concussions and Concussion Management & Interpreting Neurocognitive Testing (including using ImPACT)

$100 for Health Care Professionals  (CEUs/CME available); $40 for school personnel and all other attendees

For more information or to register, contact Jan Salis,, (207) 577-2018

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Job Openings


A progressive 25-bed critical access hospital in central Maine is seeking a FP to join their employed primary care group.  This is a full time opportunity which consists of 32 patient contact hours per week, allowing time to enjoy what this region of Maine has to offer! 

Sebasticook Valley Health (SVH) in Pittsfield, Maine is an integral member of the communities it serves. SVH takes a proactive approach in helping people in the Sebasticook Valley improve the quality of their lives.  SVH serves an area of approximately 30,000 people and has a wide range of outpatient services, including over 20 specialty services.  SVH is a proud member of the Eastern Maine Healthcare Systems which ensures access to high quality care to Maine residents and visitors.

For Further Information, please contact:

Sherry Tardy, Director Business Development/Provider Recruitment
Sebasticook Valley Hospital
447 North Main Street
Pittsfield, ME  04967

By email at: or by phone at: 207-487-4085


Physician Opportunities at Mayo Regional Hospital

Live and work in the beautiful Maine Highlands between Moosehead Lake and Bangor. Mayo Regional Hospital currently has the following physician opportunities:  Family Practice, Outpatient IM, OBGYN, Hospitalist, Emergency Department. Also, Family Practice PA & NP and Psych NP openings. Exceptional schools and a wonderful rural setting with proximity to Bangor and Orono.

Contact Brad Clark, Director of Provider Recruitment or 207-564-4342.


Gastroenterologist Jobs in Central Maine!

Challenging, Lucrative, Gastroenterologist jobs in central Maine - honoring and serving Veterans. Gastroenterologists are needed in Augusta. Must-have an unrestricted medical license (from any U.S. state), and current ACLS certification. This is your opportunity to use and develop your skills of diagnosing, treating, and managing patients according to standard, usual, and acceptable methods and techniques.

B/C or B/E specializing in Gastroenterology by the appropriate accrediting agencies required.

This is the opportunity for you to receive a competitive salary, a generous leave package, excellent health & life insurance benefits, and retirement benefits. You'd be eligible to participate in a pension program as well as a matching Thrift Savings Plan which is similar to a 401K. If you are a veteran, you may be able to combine accrued military retirement credit with VA pension benefits.

Your salary will be determined by local Physician/Dentist Compensation Panel (commensurate with education, experience and qualifications). By law, U.S. Citizens will be given 1st preference but non-citizens will be considered in the absence of qualified citizens. A signing bonus may be available.  Equal Opportunity Employer. Disabled persons and/or veterans are encouraged to apply.


Department of Psychiatry Faculty Position

The Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth, Department of Psychiatry, in a productive collaboration with the State of Maine, is seeking psychiatrists to join our faculty for inpatient responsibilities at the Riverview Psychiatric Center.

Riverview Psychiatric Center is a 92-bed acute psychiatric facility located in Augusta, ME and is the flagship inpatient treatment center for Maine’s public mental health system.  Psychiatrists with expertise in general inpatient psychiatry or forensic psychiatry are encouraged to apply.

Academic duties can include teaching and supervision of medical students and residents. Research opportunities available and encouraged.

Candidates should be board certified or eligible in Psychiatry. This position will include a faculty appointment at The Geisel School of Medicine at Dartmouth at a rank and salary commensurate with experience. Curriculum vitae and three letters of reference, addressed to Dr. William Torrey, Search Chair, should be e-mailed to  Please reference search number PS0314D.

Dartmouth College/Dartmouth Hitchcock Clinic/Geisel School of Medicine is an equal opportunity/ affirmative action employer with a strong commitment to diversity. In that spirit, we are particularly interested in receiving applications from a broad spectrum of people, including women, persons of color, persons with disabilities, veterans or any other legally protected group.


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For more information or to contact us directly, please visit l ©2003, Maine Medical Association