MMA Completes Productive Board Retreat, Jan. 23-25
The Board of Directors of the Maine Medical Association held its annual planning retreat this past weekend at the Samoset Resort in Rockport. Following a business meeting on Friday, the Board focused on the twenty services and products MMA makes available to members in order to prioritize and focus the Association's work. On Sunday morning, the Board examined the current membership model.
The President's Retreat was chaired by Lisa Ryan, D.O., MMA's current President. Dr. Ryan practices pediatrics in Bridgton. The current Board chairman is Charles Pattavina, M.D., chief of emergency medicine at St. Joseph's Hospital.
In prioritizing the services, Board members attempted to identify the most highly valued services and to take resources from the marginal offerings that members had indicated were not as highly valued. Much of the focus was on three specific services, as follows: educational sessions (particularly the First Friday series), the annual Practice Educational Seminar, the Annual Session, and the print publications. The Board voted to make some changes immediately although the Annual Session dates and schedule for 2015 remain unchanged. Because of dwindling attendance, the First Friday educational sessions scheduled for October, November, and December will be canceled. The Practice Education Seminar will be moved to November and will focus on recent state and federal legislative and regulatory changes. The location will also be moved to the Portland area.
Watch for further changes to be announced in the Maine Medicine Weekly Update.
Storm Causes Closure of MMA Office Tomorrow, Cancellation of Senior Section Meeting Wednesday
Because of the unusual duration and intensity of the snow storm anticipated tonight through early Wednesday, the Frank O. Stred Building, MMA's headquarters, will be closed tomorrow, Tuesday, January 27th. Most MMA staff will be working from home, so feel free to communicate with them by email. All MMA staff member email addresses follow the same format: first name initial followed by last name (no punctuation between) @mainemed.com. If you have an urgent legal or policy matter, please contact one of MMA's 3 lawyers by cell phone:
- Gordon Smith, 215-7461
- Andrew MacLean, 215-7462
- Peter Michaud, 475-3312
All state legislative activities scheduled tomorrow have been canceled. The MMA office expects to reopen on Wednesday, January 28th.
Also because of the storm, the MMA has canceled the Senior Section meeting scheduled for Wednesday, January 28th. The next Senior Section meeting is scheduled for Wednesday, April 29th. [return to top]
Enrollment Opens For McAfee Fellows/Advanced Physician Leadership Program
Enrollment is now under way for the Hanley Center's fourth annual Physician Executive Leadership Institute--Advanced Program.
Physicians enrolling in the program are designated as McAfee Fellows, in honor of former AMA and MMA President Robert McAfee, M.D.
Over the past three years nearly 90 physicians have participated in the Advanced Program. The fourth class will begin April 9 at the Samoset Resort in Rockport and continue through January, 2016. After the opening session, the remainder
of the residential program will take place in Brunswick. There are six two-day sessions, each running from Thursday evening through late Saturday morning. Sixteen physicians already have enrolled in the upcoming class. The Hanley Center is planning for
the class to include about 30 physician leaders from Maine and New Hampshire.
More than 200 other providers have participated over the past three years in the Hanley Center's Foundational programs at 12 sites across Maine and New Hampshire. Programs are now under way at Mercy Hospital and York Hospital. A program
begins on January 28 at Central Maine Medical Center in Lewiston. A pilot program aimed at physician-administrator Dyads was launched late last year at St.Mary's Regional Medical Center, also in Lewiston.
A distinguished five-member faculty team from the Heller School at Brandeis University delivers much of the program content, joining with Maine-based subject matter experts and physician leaders. McAfee Fellows receive 80 hours of Category
One CME for their participation in the full program.
Two important dates are coming up:
- 7 a.m. Tuesday, February 10: Information Call/Webinar 866-740-1260, Code 5231501#
- Friday, March 6 Deadline for enrollments
To learn more, please visit
www.hanleyleadership.org or contact the Hanley Center's Jim Harnar at
firstname.lastname@example.org or Kathy Vezina at
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New England QIN-QIO Announces Diabetes and Cardiac Health Projects
- Everyone with Diabetes Counts (EDC) Project. The project will improve the quality of life for your patients with diabetes and help them avoid complications. Collaborate with key stakeholders in your community to identify and increase opportunities for Diabetes Self-Management Education (DSME) among under-served populations.
- Improving Cardiac Health and Reducing Disparities in Care Initiative. The initiative will help improve the quality of care for your patients with cardiac disease and position your practice for financial incentive programs including Meaningful Use and value-based payment programs.
The New England Quality Improvement Network – Quality Improvement Organization (NE QIN-QIO), CMS’s new Quality Improvement Organization (QIO) for the state of Maine and the six New England States region, will be working with a small number
of provider practices on Medicare’s latest quality improvement initiatives to improve the quality of care for your patients with cardiac disease and diabetes.
Goal: The primary objective with these initiatives is to reduce disparities in diabetes and cardiac care and improve the quality care by partnering with providers to promote health literacy, engage patients and families in diabetic self-management, improve targeted
clinical outcome measures and optimize the use of electronic health records.
Benefits to your practice: At no cost, the NE QIN-QIO will support eligible practices by offering training and technical assistance with important QI initiatives such as Meaningful Use, PQRS, and Value-Based Modifier, Everyone With Diabetes Counts and Million Hearts ® Initiative.
Healthcentric Advisors, is a Rhode Island-based not-for profit company that was recently awarded the CMS contract to provide healthcare quality improvement services in Maine. It is the prime contractor, in partnership with Qualidigm (the
former QIO for Connecticut), and serves as the CMS Quality Innovation Network – Quality Improvement Organization (NE QIN-QIO) for all 6 New England States. Healthcentric Advisors opened a state office in Brunswick, Maine, with a team of quality improvement
staff, who will be accessible to work with providers in all settings of care throughout Maine.
To discuss how your practice may take advantage of this opportunity and participate in one of these initiatives, call Doreen Bedaw, Program Coordinator, NE QIN-QIO, at
877-904-0057 x3105 or email her at: email@example.com.
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MMA Legislative Committee Weekly Conference Call, Tuesday, January 27th, 8 p.m.
The first MMA Legislative Committee weekly conference call for the First Regular Session of the 127th Maine Legislature will take place tomorrow, Tuesday, January 27th at 8:00 p.m.
Legislative Committee members and specialty society legislative liaisons are strongly encouraged to participate. Any physician, practice manager, or other staff member who is interested in the MMA's legislative advocacy also is welcome to participate. It is not necessary to RSVP for the calls.
Please use the following conference call number and passcode. These will remain the same for every weekly call during the session.
Conference call number: 1-619-326-2772
The purpose of the weekly conference calls is to review and finalize the MMA's position on bills printed the previous week, to hear the views of specialty societies on the new bills or their concerns about any current health policy issues, and to discuss the highlights of legislative action of the week. The calls rarely last longer than an hour. The MMA staff lists a suggested position for each bill and any medical specialty particularly affected by the bill.
If you have an opinion about any of these bills, but cannot participate in the call, please contact Andrew MacLean, Deputy EVP & General Counsel at firstname.lastname@example.org or 622-3374, ext. 214.
The following are bills of interest to the physician community printed last week. We will discuss the priority bills marked with an asterisk (*) first. This will be important when the list grows in the next few weeks.
LD 69, An Act To Require Drug Testing of the Driver of a Motor Vehicle Involved in a Fatal Accident (monitor; Public Health Committee; emergency physicians)
LD 75, Resolve, To Strengthen Health Care Services for Maine Residents Affected by Neurodegenerative Diseases (support; neurologists)
LD 81, An Act To Amend the Workers' Compensation Laws as They Pertain to Employee Representation (monitor; physiatrists)
LD 83, An Act To Strengthen the Consent Laws for Abortions Performed on Minors and Incapacitated Persons (oppose; OB-GYNs)
LD 84, An Act Concerning Screening of Newborns for Lysosomal Storage Disorders (monitor or oppose; pediatricians)
LD 85, An Act To Prohibit Synthetic Plastic Microbeads in Personal Care Products and Over-the-counter Drugs (monitor or support; Public Health Committee)
LD 87, Resolve, To Implement the Recommendations of the Commission To Continue the Study of Long-term Care Facilities (monitor or support; geriatricians)
LD 91, An Act To Allow Dental Hygienists To Prescribe Fluoride Dentifrice and Antibacterial Rinse (monitor; Public Health Committee; pediatricians)
LD 101, An Act To Strengthen and Reform Maine's Welfare System (monitor)
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Brief of the Week: Integrating Behavioral Health with Primary Care
Each week through mid-February, the Weekly Update is featuring one from a series of policy briefs featuring content covered in the document Payment Reform Update: Current Context and Emerging Issues, prepared by health care attorney Ben Townsend for the Maine Medical Association. This week's topic is:
Integrating Behavioral Health with Primary Care
A complete set of the payment reform policy briefs can be accessed on the Payment Reform Resources webpage.
Come and learn more about shared savings programs and related topics when Ben Townsend, Kozak & Gayer, speaks at the February 6 First Friday program on "Current Issues in Payment Reform" along with Frank Johnson, Director of System and Payment Reform, Maine Health Management Coalition and Lisa Letourneau, MD, MPH, Executive Director, Maine Quality Counts. To register, email Lisa Martin at email@example.com or complete this form. [return to top]
POLITICAL PULSE: Legislative Committees Continue Orientation Activities
Members of the 127th Maine Legislature returned to the Capitol in Augusta on January 7th to begin the substantive work of their First Regular Session which is expected to last until mid-June. The new legislature includes the following four physicians:
- Senator Geoffrey Gratwick, M.D. (D-Penobscot) serving on the Insurance & Financial Services Committee
- Representative Linda Sanborn, M.D. (D-Gorham) serving on the Appropriations & Financial Affairs Committee
- Representative Heidi Brooks, M.D. (D-Lewiston) serving on the Insurance & Financial Services Committee
- Representative Patricia Hymanson, M.D. (D-York) serving on the Health & Human Services Committee
Much of January will be devoted to organizing and orienting committees. Legislative sessions are scheduled for Tuesdays and Thursdays through the end of February and will involve mostly referencing of bills to committees. You can find more information about the legislature on its web site.
On Friday, January 9th, Governor LePage released his proposed biennial budget for SFY 2016-2017, the $6.3 billion budget for the two state fiscal years beginning July 1, 2015. You can find the documents on the Governor's proposed biennial budget on the Bureau of the Budget web site. We anticipate that the Appropriations Committee will begin public hearings on the biennial budget in early February. The Governor will present a State of the Budget address to a joint session of the legislature at 7 p.m. on Tuesday, January 3rd.
The following are high points from the “Medical Care - Payments
to Providers” or “MAP” account, the primary account dealing with physician & hospital reimbursement:
- Provider-base reimbursement, p. A-336. Total cut in each year is $7.3 M state & federal. Description says, “Reduces funding by eliminating the separate facility fee payments that are billed on a UB-04 claim form and paid to hospitals for the services of hospital-compensated physicians, and provides funding to equalize reimbursement rates
of hospital-compensated physicians and non-hospital-compensated physicians and eliminates the cost settlement component of hospital-compensated physician reimbursement. This would eliminate the two separate fee schedules of reimbursement and ensure all physicians
billing under Section 90 of the MaineCare Benefits Manual would be reimbursed on the non-facility fee schedule.” There is no separate language in Part C, the language section of the budget.
- Health Homes, p. A-336. Replaces lost federal funding, so GF amount is $5.6 M/$7.8 M in the first & second years of biennium respectively. Description says, “Provides funding for Health Homes for adults
with serious and persistent mental illness and children with serious emotional disturbance (Stage B) and Health Homes for individuals with one or more chronic conditions (Stage A) due to the elimination of the enhanced federal match of 90/10 under the ACA.”
- Primary care fee increase, p. A-336. The amount is $7.4 M GF, $12.5 state & federal funds in each year
of biennium. Description says, “Provides funding for the reimbursement of primary care physicians at an enhanced rate which replaces expiring funds provided through the ACA.”
- Community-based behavioral health services provided by hospital-affiliated entities, p. A-337. Reduces
funding by $1.3 M in each year of biennium. Description says, “Reduces funding by requiring all community-based behavioral health services, including those that are operating as part of a hospital or in an administrative unit of a hospitality to bill and receive
rates of reimbursement under Section 65 of the MaineCare Benefits Manual.”
- Critical Access Hospital (CAH) reimbursement, p. A-337. Saves $4.2 M in each year of biennium by reducing reimbursement from 109% to 101% of costs.
- Methadone treatment coverage eliminated, p. A-339. Savings is $1.2 M/$1.5 M state & federal.
- ER rates, p. A-339. Savings is $1.9 M/$2.6 M state & federal. Description says, “Reduces by changing reimbursement on non-emergent use of emergency services to be paid at an office visit rate.”
- Medicare Shared Savings Program cuts, p. A-339. Savings is $29 M/$34 M state & federal. Description says, “Reduces funding by reducing the Federal Poverty Level (FPL) in the Medicare Savings Program (MSP) to the federal minimum.”
- Section 65 BH services 10% reimbursement cut, p. A-337. Savings in this line is $10.4 M in each year of biennium state & federal. There's also at least one line on this cut in the BDS part of the DHHS budget. FYI, despite the merger
in the Baldacci years, the BOB still breaks the DHHS budget down into 2 parts, “DHHS, formerly BDS” (behavioral & developmental services) & “DHHS, formerly DHS” (human services).
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Doctors’ Lounge Networking Forum, Wednesday, January 28, 5:30-7:00 pm, Ri Ra’s, Portland
Join Specialty Solutions at the Doctors’ Lounge, a monthly networking forum for physicians and advanced practice providers.
Historically, physicians have had more face-to-face interaction, but with time constraints, the loss of funding for hospital-based doctors’ lounges, and the regionalization of physician practices, it has
become extremely challenging for physicians to have informal interactions with their colleagues. Through the Doctors’ Lounge, physicians can connect and develop bonds that will be helpful as care delivery continues to change.
The next Doctors’ Lounge is Wednesday, January 28, 2015 from 5:30 to 7:00 p.m. at Ri Ra’s on Commercial Street in Portland. For more information, please firstname.lastname@example.org.
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One Month until Open Enrollment Ends for Health Insurance Marketplace
The Open Enrollment period to get health insurance for 2015 through the Marketplace ends on February 15, 2015. Patients may be able to get help paying for insurance premiums and out-of-pocket costs for Marketplace health insurance.
- Consumers can apply online and get more information at www.healthcare.gov, and can ask questions and get enrollment help by calling the Marketplace Call Center at 1-800-318-2596.
- Free in-person enrollment help is available in Maine. Search for local assistance at www.enroll207.com.
- Free brochures are available at enroll207. Go to www.enroll207.com/material-order-form/ for free materials to help patients get covered and use their new insurance plan.
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More information and links to Marketplace resources, including upcoming Health Insurance Marketplace 101 webinars, are available at the Maine Medical Association website. For additional resources for your patients and updates or training for your practice, contact ACA Outreach Coordinator Sue Kring at email@example.com or 662-2364.
First Friday's Educational Programming Resumes on Feb. 6 with Physician Payment Reform
MMA resumes its educational programming on Friday, Feb. 6 with a presentation on physician payment reform. Faculty includes attorney Benjamin Townsend of Kozak & Gayer, Frank Johnson of the Maine Health Management Coalition, and Lisa Letourneau, M.D., M.P.H., Executive Director of Quality Counts. Attorney Townsend will review the toolkit on payment reform he prepared for MMA and Mr. Johnson and Dr. Letourneau will review the various initiatives of their organizations, many of them supported by the state's SIM (State Innovation Model) grant. The program will be held from 9:00 am to noon at MMA's offices in Manchester but is also available for remote participation. Category one CME has been applied for and there is a $70 fee. Registration is available on the MMA website or by calling Lisa Martin at 622-3374, ext. 221.
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MMA will present seven First Friday presentations in 2015. The Annual Coding Seminar will be held on Friday, April 3 and the Annual HIPAA Training will be on Friday, May 1.
Job in Central Maine
Gastroenterologist job in central Maine - honoring and serving Veterans. An experienced Gastroenterologist is needed
in Augusta. Develop your skills of diagnosing,
treating, and managing patients, while living in an all-season recreational
Fellowship-trained and B/C specializing in Gastroenterology, fellowship-trained
in Transplant Hepatology, and fellowship-trained in Advanced Endoscopy;
experience in Upper Endoscopy (including EGD, Barrett's Esophagus diagnosis and
treatment, vatical bleeding, bleeding ulcers, dilation, stent placement for
esophageal strictures, and treating food impactions); experience in Colonoscopy (diagnostic and therapeutic),
ERCP, EUS with FNA (for both solid and cystic lesions), Push enteroscopy, Deep
small bowel enteroscopy, Capsule endoscopy, and Combined Interventional and
Endoscopic interventions (Rendezvous procedures); experience in hepatology and
liver diseases; lastly, an unrestricted medical license and current BLS
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.
Salary will be
commensurate experience, using VA’s market-based physician pay system. 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. Relocation expenses are not authorized. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org. 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.
Family Medicine Opportunity with Leadership Option
- Federally Qualified Community Health Center with
- Medical Director opportunity if desired
- Serves 19 small, rural towns in North Central
Maine with over 14,000 active patients
- Focused mission to serve/support underserved
- Service area: +/- 24,000
- 4-day work week
- Phone call 1:8
- Excellent salary and benefit package, including
FTCA malpractice insurance
- Superb team of 25 multidisciplinary healthcare
professionals, with collegial professional environment
- On-site lab and radiology services
- Work collaboratively with two local Critical
- National Health Service Corps, and/or other
student loan repayment programs
- J1 visa candidates welcome
Home of 13 Lakes. Thousands of miles of accessible recreational
woodland and waterways appeal to those seeking nature, but this region is also
within 45 minutes of Bangor, Maine’s third largest city, and UMaine’s
flagship campus in Orono.
Contact: Jamie Lynn Grant at JGrant@NEHS.net or (207)745-7059
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MMA First Friday Forum
February 6, 2015 "Current Issues in Payment Reform"
8:30am Registration, 9am-12pm Program
Benjamin Townsend, JD, Kozak & Gayer
Frank Johnson, Director of System and Payment Reform, Maine Health Management Coalition
Lisa Letourneau, MD, MPH, Executive Director, Quality Counts
Available on the MMA website or by calling Lisa Martin at 622-3374 ext. 221.
February 6, 2015 - DOT Physical Exam Certification Training for Health Professsionals: MD, DO, PA, NP & Chiropractors available at the Maine Association of Physician Assistants 25th Annual Winter CME Conference at Sunday River Resort
WHY WAIT WHEN YOU CAN SKI & LEARN?? Your Department of Transportation (DOT) Physical Exam Certification program is just around the corner! Join us for comfortable, affordable, live, DOT physical exam training event in February of 2015, at the Grand Summit Hotel & Conference Center. National guidelines now require all providers of DOT Exams to be certified, and we are here to assist. Our program combines years of occupational DOT experience with the current National Guidelines for Certification in an enjoyable, interactive educational setting. Our providers, Howard Jones, MD and Lisa Gordon, PA-C facilitate an excellently received day of learning for all providers able to perform DOT Physicals under the National Regulations, including Medical Doctors (MD), Doctors of Osteopathy (DO), Physician Assistants (PA) , Nurse Practitioners (NP) and Chiropractors. They are also available as a continued resource for those who need information on sleep study facilities and much more.
This enjoyable day of learning is slated for Friday, February 6, 2015 at the Sunday River Resort, Newry, Maine. Wonderful skiing, local eateries and entertainment abound. BRING YOUR FAMILY and BRING YOUR FRIENDS! We are happy to be able to include additional CME offerings at the time of this event.
A certificate of completion is provided at the end of the day, which will allow attendees to sit for the exam. Details of this process will be discussed and reviewed at the time of the education. Visit www.mainepa.com/conference for more information or contact Diane McMahon at email@example.com or 207-622-3374 ext. 216.
Dementia Care in Primary Care
Friday, March 13, 2015
Join us to learn about, and work with colleagues, on the implementation of best practices for Dementia Care in Primary Care. This symposium will be offered on Friday, March 13. The focus of this symposium is on implementation of a standardized approach to memory related problems in Primary Care. The symposium will be useful to all providers working in Primary Care. It will be an all-day event, offering CME as well as an opportunity to engage in an office based Quality Improvement process.
The symposium is sponsored by the Office of Aging and Disability Services and is free to participants. We encourage bringing a member of your support staff who might be integral to implementation of process improvement.
The primary site will be at MaineGeneral in Augusta, but work is in progress to transmit to both EMMC in Bangor and MMC in Portland.
Cliff Singer, MD Roger Renfrew, MD, FACP
Geriatric Mental Health and Neuropsychiatry Facilitator Clinical Geriatrics
Acadia Hospital and EMMC MaineGeneral Medical Center
Maine Concussion Management Initiative Training Programs – Level 1 and Level
General Information for 2015
When and where
March 13, 2015 in Bangor at
St. Joseph’s Hospital
May 1, 2015 in Machias at DownEast
June 12, 2015 in Waterville at Colby
October 20, 2015 in Portland
in conjunction with the Maine Brain Injury Conference
(Registration and fees will be through the
Maine Brain Injury Conference for October 20)
Training Program: Training
programs in 2015 will be updated.
Level 1 - An Introduction to
Concussions and Concussion Management
Level 2 – Interpreting Neurocognitive
Testing (Level 1 is a prerequisite for taking Level 2)
– 8:15 Registration and Continental
1 and Level 2 are run simultaneously)
1 – An Introduction to Concussions and Concussion Management
○ The Diagnostic and Return to Play
○ Sport Related Concussion: Short and
Long Term Sequelae
○ Concussion Sideline Assessment
○ Concussion Risk Factors, Treatment
and Return to Function
○ Tools in Concussion Management
○ Concussion Case Studies
○ Review and Wrap-up
2 – Interpreting Neurocognitive Testing
○ Using ImPACT Testing in Concussion
○ Interpreting ImPACT Test Results
○ Case Reviews
○ Review and Wrap-up
for Health Care Professionals (MD, DO, NP, PA, Neuropsychologist, ATC, RN, PT,
for school personnel and all other attendees
nurses, coaches, school athletic directors, administrators, parents, etc.)
for students – currently enrolled in a college program
Continental Breakfast and mid-morning break
CEU/CME credits for Health Care Professionals
Confirmation will be sent by email and will include:
Directions to training location.
Salis, PT, ATC
Membership Committee Chair
SAVE THE DATE: Maine Academy of Family Physicians Spring Events
23rd Annual MAFP Family Medicine Update – April 8-10, 2015, at the Atlantic Oceanside in Bar Harbor
April 11th (tentative) Certified Medical Examiner Training (for DOT Exams) – dependent on registration minimum met
For more information check our website: http://www.maineafp.org/cme/mafp-cme-meeting
Complete schedule and registration available after January 15th. [return to top]