March 30, 2015

 
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U.S. House Leaders Announce Bipartisan SGR Repeal Bill, H.R. 1470

In unusual bipartisan action, the U.S. House of Representatives last Thursday passed legislation which will permanently repeal the sustainable growth rate which is again producing a scheduled 20.1% reduction in physician payment rates under Medicare, effective April 1, 2015.  Unfortunately, the U.S. Senate left for its April recess prior to voting on the package, leaving the matters in limbo until they return.  Both Congresswoman Chellie Pingree and Congressman Bruce Poliquin voted with the majority in the House to repeal the SGR.

The House passed by an overwhelming majority H.R. 1470 which is an updated version of the legislation crafted a year ago, and which includes the following provisions listed below.  Because CMS can delay processing claims electronically for up to two weeks, it is hoped that physicians will not see a reduction in rates until a final vote takes place in the Senate.  CMS is expected to advise physicians practices by April 11th regarding the holding and payment of claims for services rendered April 1st and after.

  • Permanently repeals the SGR funding formula;
  • Adds positive annual payment updates of 0.5% for four years;
  • Includes a 5% incentive payment for physicians participating in and meeting certain thresholds of alternative payment models;
  • Replaces current Medicare quality reporting programs with a consolidated merit-based incentive payment system (MIPS);
  • Extends the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for 2 years;
  •   With total cost exceeding $200 billion, the proposed legislation offers only a partial cost offset of $70 billion, an issue that could seriously hamper the effort to pass the bill in the Senate. Nonetheless, this proposal represents the best chance medicine has had to permanent repeal the flawed formula. Go to the FixMedicareNow website to see what you can do to help pass the bill.  No more temporary patches, no more excuses.  This needs to get done when the Senate returns in two weeks.

The Maine Medical Association also participates in the so-called GEM (Geographic Equity in Medicare) Coalition which will again try to ensure the 1.0 Work GPCI floor is extended as part of any SGR Patch or fix.  Without Congressional action, we will lose the 1.0 Work GPCI floor effective April 1st.  The 1.0 Work GPCI floor has been in place by Congressional action since 2004 to prevent cuts to GEM states' Medicare physician payments that are based on flawed data regarding measurement of the Work GPCI adjuster.  The purpose of the GPCIs is to adjust for the cost of delivering a service, i.e., local price differences in rent, wages, malpractice, and physician work.

The GEM Coalition is comprised of 25 state medical societies plus the American Society of General Surgeons.

The 2015 Work GPCI for Southern Maine (Cumberland and York counties) is 0.982 and for the rest of Maine it is 0.967.

Join MMA and BayState Financial at Ri Ra in Portland, Wednesday evening, April 8 for Fiscal Fitness for Life

Are you beginning to wonder about how you will address the many issues which could challenge your ability to maintain your lifestyle throughout your years of retirement?

 If so, then why not enjoy an evening of Ri Ra’s relaxed hospitality and join us for a lively conversation regarding the many variables which may impact your financial well-being during retirement?

The evening’s theme is, Retirement Income Distribution Strategies: Avoiding the Potholes in Retirement.  This workshop is the first in a series of programs brought to you as part of MMA’s and Baystate’s Fiscal Fitness for Life initiative and is intended  to help you form a perspective from which you will be able to make informed decisions regarding the many complex and often confusing retirement planning issues such as:

  • Earned Income to Unearned Income -Coordinating  sources of cash flow while transitioning from your career into retirement.
  • Investment Risks - Understanding the various risks as they relate to your cash flow needs.
  • Income Taxes- Creating strategies to minimizing their impact.
  • Social Security Benefits - Choosing the timing that is best for you and your family.
  • Modeling – Comparing the effectiveness of various strategies available to you,

Finding the right balance in retirement between  maintaining your personal income, continuing to care for family member needs  and maybe a charitable commitment or two is no easy task.  It will take a good deal of forethought, why not jumpstart your thinking and join us on the 8th

Ri Ra, 72 Commercial St., Portland, ME

Please RSVP to Brian Falconer at bfalconer@baystatefinancial.com ; 401.432.8836

 
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Doctors' Day, 2015

Doctors' Day is being celebrated today, Monday, March 30, 2015.  On this day, many patients, facilities, and the Maine Medical Association will pause to thank physicians for the work they do every day for their patients, population health, and public health.  

The first Doctors' Day observance was March 30, 1933 in Winder, GA.  The idea came from Eudora Brown Almond, spouse of Dr. Charles B. Almond and the date was the anniversary of the first use of general anesthetic in surgery.  On March 30, 1842, in Jefferson, GA, Dr. Crawford Long used ether to remove a tumor from a patient's neck.

The U.S. House of Representatives adopted a resolution commemorating Doctors' Day on March 30, 1958.  In 1990, the U.S. Congress approved legislation establishing a National Doctors' Day and President George H.W. Bush signed the resolution.  The first National Doctors' Day was celebrated on March 30, 1991.

The Maine Medical Association extends its profound thanks to all its members and especially the officers, Board of Directors, and committee members.  Thanks for all you do all year long for your patients, the Maine Medical Association, and the health of all Mainers.

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Get an In-Depth Look at Practice Integration Options

The reasons physicians consider practice integration are varied, and an AMA resource can help you understand your options when it comes to integration.

Why might a physician integrate?  Some physicians may be motivated to create the collaborative environment needed to make significant quality and cost-effectiveness improvements or to develop economies of scale and raise capital sufficient to implement health information technology.  Other physicians may want to take advantage of participating in performance-based reimbursement programs and lawfully bargain collectively with payers. "Competing in the marketplace," which covers practice integrations ranging from mergers to a wide variety of other contractual arrangements, is written to help you understand these and other topics associated with a rapidly changing market and regulatory environment that encourages practice integration.

Physicians in solo or small group practice may think integration is prohibitively expensive and time consuming, which is not necessarily true.  Many physicians may simply be unaware of the flexibility permitted by available integrative options.

In many cases physicians will be able to enjoy the benefits of integration and still:

  • Remain in their local practice settings
  • Oversee many day-to-day practice operations
  • Be rewarded based on individual productivity.

For additional information regarding "Competing in the marketplace," please contact Wes Cleveland or Henry Allen of the AMA, or call (312) 464-5000.

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MMA Legislative Committee Weekly Conference Call, Tuesday, March 31st at 8 p.m.

The next MMA Legislative Committee weekly conference call for the First Regular Session of the 127th Maine Legislature will take place tomorrow, Tuesday, March 31st 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

Passcode:  729-7185

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 amaclean@mainemed.com 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 1030, An Act To Better Coordinate the Work of Mental Health Crisis Agencies with Law Enforcement Agencies (monitor or support; psychiatrists)*

LD 1045,  An Act To Modify the Laws Regarding the Collection and Recycling of Mercury-added Thermostats (monitor; Public Health Committee)*

LD 1057,  An Act To Increase the Safety of Amusement Rides (monitor or support; Public Health Committee, pediatricians)

LD 1058,  An Act Regarding Medical Marijuana Registered Testing Laboratories (monitor; Public Health Committee)

LD 1061,  Resolve, To Create the Commission To Study a Stable Continuum of Care for Persons with Intellectual Disabilities and Autism (monitor or support; pediatricians, psychiatrists)

LD 1065,  An Act To Amend the Law Regarding Temporary Powers of Attorney over Minors and Incapacitated Persons (monitor or oppose; pediatricians)*

LD 1076, An Act To Enact the Vaccine Consumer Protection Program (oppose; Public Health Committee, pediatricians)*

LD 1077,  An Act To Ensure Access to Public Health Nursing Care and Child and Maternal Health Nursing Care in Washington County (monitor)

LD 1090,  Resolve, To Establish a Pilot Project for Medicaid Reimbursement for Acupuncture Treatment of Substance Abuse Disorders (monitor; psychiatrists)

LD 1098,  An Act To Protect Children from Exposure to Pesticides (monitor; pediatricians, Public Health Committee)

LD 1100, An Act To Expand Options for the Prevention of Domestic Violence (monitor or support; pediatricians, Public Health Committee)*

LD 1108,  An Act To Protect Children and the Public from Electronic Cigarette Vapor (support; pediatricians, Public Health Committee)*

LD 1114,  An Act To Protect Maine's Children from Sexual Abuse and Exploitation (monitor; pediatricians)

LD 1115,  An Act To Make the State's Standard for Lead Exposure in Children Consistent with the Federal Standard (monitor; pediatricians, Public Health Committee)*

LD 1117,  An Act To Clarify the Policy for Withdrawal of Life Support from Minors (oppose; pediatricians)*

LD 1118,  Resolve, To Establish the Study Commission on the Social Emotional Learning and Development of Maine's Young Children (monitor or support; pediatricians)*

LD 1125,  An Act To Expand Public Access to Epinephrine Autoinjectors (monitor or support; Public Health Committee)*

LD 1129, Resolve, To Support Home-based Care(monitor)

LD 1134,  An Act To Require the Department of Health and Human Services To Distribute Information Regarding Down Syndrome to Providers of Prenatal and Postnatal Care and to Genetic Counselors (oppose; OB/GYNs, pediatricians)*

 

 

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POLITICAL PULSE: HHS Committee Scheduled to Make Biennial Budget Report to Appropriations Tuesday Afternoon

HHS COMMITTEE FINISHING BIENNIAL BUDGET REPORT TODAY; SCHEDULED TO REPORT BACK TO APPROPRIATIONS COMMITTEE TOMORROW AT 3 P.M.

Members of the HHS Committee have spent about a month of work on the DHHS portions of the Governor's FY 2016-2017 biennial budget proposal.  Once the Appropriations Committee receives the final committee of jurisdiction reports this week, the biennial budget negotiations likely will occupy much of the rest of the session, some time in June. 

 You can find the documents on the Governor's proposed biennial budget on the Bureau of the Budget web site.

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).

HHS COMMITTEE BEGINS HEARINGS ON BILLS OTHER THAN BUDGET

Last Thursday, the HHS Committee took up LD 319, a bill to expand Medicaid payments to cover family planning and other reproductive health diagnostic and treatment measures.  The hearing featured testimony from many groups and individuals, among them ACLU Maine, Maine Family Planning, Planned Parenthood, the Christian Civic League and Maine Right to Life.  MMA’s testimony focused on the fact that uninsured women tend to have far fewer diagnostic tests as well as the cost savings of expanded contraceptive services which reduce the costs of unintended pregnancy as well as the incidence of abortions.  Opponents testified that increased access to contraception makes women less healthy because contraceptive medication is dangerous.  Senator Geoff Gratwick, M.D., is one of the sponsors of LD 319 and spoke in support.

The MMA also presented testimony in the Utilities Committee in opposition to a bill which would change the way fluoridation issues are voted on in towns.  We stressed the public health benefits of fluoridation as well as the technical problems with the bill, which calls for voting by “customers” of water utilities rather than citizens of the municipalities involved.

Friday saw four bills come up for public hearing in HHS.  LD 423, which would require child-proof packaging for liquid nicotine, had universal support, including positive testimony from R.J. Reynolds.  MMA thanks Dr. Syd Sewall for his very helpful testimony in favor of the bill, which is likely to receive a unanimous “ought to pass” vote from the committee this coming week.  LD 661, calling for increased funding for HIV, STD and hepatitis screening, also had only supportive testimony.  There were very few questions from the committee members.  A bill calling for increased warnings to the public about the risks of Bisphenol A (BPA), LD 667, had a rockier path through its hearing. Speakers for the National Chemistry Council and the Can Manufacturers’ Institute testified that BPA is safe, prevents food-borne illness and helps prevent injuries by making plastics shatterproof.  They criticized the position of the AAP and public health people as not based on sound science.  Dr. James Maier spoke well in favor of the bill. The MMA is working with the Maine chapter of the AAP and others to provide the committee with additional information about the scientific basis for the concerns about BPA.  Finally, the MMA spoke "neither for nor against" LD 469, a bill on proper disposal of prescription drugs that would require retail pharmacies to accept returned drugs.  While a recent change in federal law permits any DEA registrant with a pharmacy to establish a drug return program, the MMA joined pharmacy and other health care provider groups in opposing the mandate.  The MMA did, however, describe its interest and that of the Maine Association of Psychiatric Physicians (MAPP) in this issue.

IFS COMMITTEE HEARS BILLS ON SINGLE PAYER HEALTH CARE REFORM, PRESCRIPTION EYE DROPS, AND OTHER DRUG MANAGEMENT ACTIVITIES BY INSURANCE CARRIERS

Last Wednesday afternoon, the Insurance & Financial Services Committee held a public hearing on two bills dealing with a single payer approach to health care reform in the State of Maine.  LD 384 would ask the State to study the feasibility of a single payer approach to health care reform in Maine while LD 815 would pass a single payer initiative.  The hearing brought out an excellent group of articulate speakers, including numerous physicians, in favor of the bills.  Many of the physicians are active in Maine AllCare.  The MMA testified in favor of the study bill (LD 384) but "neither for nor against" the implementation bill (LD 815) and offered the Committee the organization's standing policy statements on health care reform as well as the results of 2008 and 2014 physician surveys showing increasing support for a single payer approach to health care reform in Maine.  In the 2014 survey, more than 60% of physicians supported a single payer approach to health care reform, compared with a plurality in 2008.  In other IFS action last week, MSEPS President Linda Schumacher-Feero, M.D. testified in support of LD 572, a MSEPS bill asking Maine health insurance carriers to cover early refills of eye drop prescriptions for seniors who may run out before their refill date because they not infrequently miss their eyes with the drops.  MMA also presented testimony in favor of LD 289, a bill to provide some patient safety limits on health insurance carriers' prescription drug step therapy programs.  

 

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CMS Publishes Stage 3 Meaningful Use EHR Rule Today

On March 20th, CMS released two proposed rules directed at improving the use of electronic health records and ultimately the patient experience of care.  One rule is the Stage 3 Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Program and the other is the Office of the National Coordinator's HIT certification criteria for those participating in the meaningful use program.  The proposed Stage 3 rule and the proposed certification rule both were published in today's Federal Register.  The comment period for both ends May 29th.  [return to top]

MMA's ICD-10 Training Sessions Scheduled for May 8th and 9th; Physician Organizations Continue to Press CMS on Transition Plans

Anticipating the October 1, 2015 deadline, physicians are concerned with preparations for transitioning to the ICD-10 diagnosis code set, 100 state medical societies and national specialty organizations, including the AMA, recently told the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). 

A letter from the physician groups to CMS underscores the significant challenges of implementing ICD-10 and the need to have sound contingency plans in place to minimize claims and payment disruption for physicians. It presses CMS to release the detailed findings of the end-to-end testing conducted in January as soon as possible. 

The AMA will continue urging CMS to address the concerns outlined in the letter and to sensitize the administration to the challenges of moving to the new code set. Read more about the concerns physicians outlined in the letter at AMA Wire®.

While the AMA continues its push to reform the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) ICD-10 implementation plans, physicians are reminded to stay abreast of Medicare coverage policies that are being updated by CMS on a rolling basis.

The most recently changed coverage policies can be accessed through the AMA's ICD-10 Web page under "Medicare Testing and Payment." Physicians are urged to review any policies that may impact them.

Following up on successful educational training sessions offered in 2014, the Maine Medical Association will again sponsor a two-day training session for coders and others involved in the transition to ICD-10 in a medical practice. Taught by experienced trainer Laurie Desjardins, CPC and offered through her firm, CDI Coding Strategies, the two-day course will be held at the MMA offices in Manchester on May 8th (Friday) and May 9th (Saturday).  Pricing will be similar to last year and the promotional materials for the course are being developed this week.  Watch your e-mail or next week's Update for further details.  This two-day training is to be distinguished from the Annual Coding Seminar April 3rd which is one of the regular First Friday education programs and is available both live in Manchester and via Webex.  The two-day training is only available on site.

Registration Form and for details on the two-day course, call Gail Begin at 207-485-1341.

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New York's Highest Court Considers Case on Physician's Duty of Care

Do physicians owe a duty of care to someone other than their patients?  This question is at the center of a case before the New York Court of Appeals after a bus driver was injured in a head-on collision with a car driven by a recently discharged patient.

A patient was treated in the emergency room of South Nassau Communities Hospital, examined by a physician and given several medications, including a narcotic medication.  After the patient was discharged, she allegedly became unconscious as a result of the medications she took and crashed into a bus.

The bus driver filed a medical liability claim alleging the physician's duty of care extends to third parties who might be potentially at risk.  A lower court found the bus driver's claims were insufficient, since he had no patient-physician relationship with the physician.  The bus driver has appealed.

The Litigation Center of the AMA and State Medical Societies and the Medical Society of the State of New York last month filed an amicus brief in support of the physician who treated the patient and South Nassau Communities Hospital.

"A physician's duty of care is ordinarily owed to the patient and does not extend to the community at large," the brief said.  "A critical reason underlying the court's reluctance to expand a doctor's duty of care is the recognition of the potential profound harm to society that would result and that expanding a duty of care to non-patients would render doctors liable to a prohibitive number of possible plaintiffs."

Such a precedent would be economically and socially burdensome, the brief said.

Further, with physicians already practicing in a costly medical liability system, a decision for the bus driver could have a chilling effect, potentially leading physicians "to hesitate providing patients with treatments that have inherent risks and potential side effects," the brief said.

Visit the AMA Litigation Center's Web page to learn more about this case and others related to medical liability.

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Health Insurance Marketplace Tax Penalty Special Enrollment Period: March 15 through April 30, 2015

The Open Enrollment Period for 2015 Marketplace health coverage is over, but consumers may still be able to get covered and avoid a tax penalty next year. There is a new Special Enrollment Period (SEP) for consumers who find out they must pay a tax penalty because they did not have coverage in 2014.  You are eligible for this SEP if you:

  • are not currently enrolled in 2015 Marketplace coverage,
  • attest that when you filed your 2014 tax return you paid the fee for not having health coverage in 2014, and
  • attest that you first became aware of, or understood the implications of, the Shared Responsibility Payment after the end of open enrollment (February 15, 2015) in connection with preparing your 2014 taxes.

This SEP will begin on March 15th and end on April 30th. Consumers who qualify must complete the entire enrollment process (that is, including selecting a plan) by 11:59 pm E.S.T. on April 30th.

Other life events that may qualify you for a Special Enrollment Period include:

  • Getting married
  • Having a baby, adopting a child or placing a child for adoption or foster care
  • Losing other health coverage
  • Permanently moving outside your plan’s coverage area
  • Gaining citizenship or lawful presence in the U.S.
  • Gaining or continuing status as a member of an Indian tribe or an Alaska Native shareholder.
  • Leaving incarceration
  • For people already enrolled in Marketplace coverage: Having a change in income or household status that affects eligibility for premium tax credits or cost-sharing reductions

If you think you my qualify for a Special Enrollment Period, you can apply at healthcare.gov or by calling 1-800-318-2596. For free in-person help with your application go to www.enroll207.com to find an assister near you.  More information about Special Enrollment Periods is available at www.healthcare.gov/coverage-outside-open-enrollment/special-enrollment-period/

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Upcoming Events

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Maine Concussion Management Initiative Training Programs – Level 1 and Level 2

General Information for 2015

When and where held:

              March 13, 2015 in Bangor at St. Joseph’s Hospital  

              May 1, 2015 in Machias at DownEast Community Hospital                       

              June 12, 2015 in Waterville at Colby College

              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)

              8:00am – 8:15   Registration and Continental Breakfast (Level 1 and Level 2 are run simultaneously)

              8:15am-12:00pm            Level 1 – An Introduction to Concussions and Concussion Management

          • The Diagnostic and Return to Play Dilemma
          • 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

   8:15am-12:00pm            Level 2 – Interpreting Neurocognitive Testing             

          • Using ImPACT Testing in Concussion Management
          • Interpreting ImPACT Test Results
          • Case Reviews
          • Review and Wrap-up

              Registration Fee:

              $100 for Health Care Professionals (MD, DO, NP, PA, Neuropsychologist, ATC, RN, PT, OT, SLP)

              $40 for school personnel and all other attendees

                             (School nurses, coaches, school athletic directors, administrators, parents, etc.)

              $20 for students – currently enrolled in a college program

Registration Fee Includes:

  1. Handouts
  2. Continental Breakfast and mid-morning break
  3. CEU/CME credits for Health Care Professionals

Registration Confirmation will be sent by email and will include:

  1. Directions to training location.            
  2. Training agenda.

For more information contact:

              Jan Salis, PT, ATC

              MCMI - Membership Committee Chair

              jsalis@aol.com

              (207) 577-2018

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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.

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Please join us for the Northern Maine Interprofessional Collaborative Practice (IPCP) Summit

The University of New England (UNE) invites you to participate in the Interprofessional Collaborative Practice Summit, taking place on April 14, 2015 on the campus of Northern Maine Community College in Presque Isle.

Funded by UNE’s Maine AHEC Network (Area Health Education Center) and the Josiah Macy, Jr. Foundation, the Summit will host national and local experts to address the relationship between health professions education, clinical practice, and national healthcare reform.

During the course of the day healthcare providers will have an opportunity to learn more about:

  • Trends in and principles of interprofessional team-based practice 
  • Tools to implement interprofessional practice
  • How to develop interprofessional student clinical experiences that prepare the future workforce and help address healthcare shortages 

We encourage you to attend as individuals or as interprofessional teams!

THERE IS NO COST TO ATTEND THOUGH AN RSVP IS REQUIRED OF ALL ATTENDEES

Register online: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/CYLZD32 and/or visit www.une.edu/ahec for more information

For assistance, please contact: Dawn Lovelace at 207-221-4561 or dlovelace1@une.edu or Dora Anne Mills at dmills2@une.edu or 207-221-4621

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OPHTHALMOLOGISTS TAKE NOTICE

Maine Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons Spring Meeting

FRIDAY, MAY 1, 2015

Harraseeket Inn, Freeport, ME

CODEquest:  The Ultimate Course for Combating Ophthalmic Coding Challenges

7:00am – 12:00pm

7:00 – 8:00 – Registration & Breakfast for CODEquest Program

8:00 – 9:30 – CODEquest Course

9:30 – 9:45 – Break

9:45 – 12:00 – CODEquest Course

REGISTER FOR CODEquest:  http://www.aao.org/codequest-maine.cfm

After the morning CODEquest program, we will begin the afternoon program (Staff are welcome to join us for the 12:15pm – 2:15pm portion of the afternoon, but MUST contact Shirley Goggin by 4/22 to indicate plans as we need accurate headcounts for the Harraseeket.  Please be sure to communicate this to your staff.)  The afternoon program will be as follows:

MSEPS Educational Program & Business Meeting

12:00pm – 4:30pm

12:00 – 1:15 – Lunch/Visit Exhibitors (Please Note:  We ask that everyone please take time to visit with the exhibitors during this time as they are showing their support of our Society and this will be the only time they get with you.)

1:15 – 2:15 –  Electronic Health Records:  The Promise and the Pitfalls (Presented By Ophthalmic Mutual Insurance Company) – Presenter:  Mark Lavoie, Esq., Norman Hanson & DeTroy 

NOTE: 10% discount on OMIC premium for current Maine Society Members who attend this risk management talk.  5% discount for non-Maine Society Members.  One discount per year applied upon renewal with OMIC.

2:15 – 4:30 –   MSEPS Business Meeting

A finalized agenda and form regarding your attendance plans for the OMIC Presentation and Business Meeting will be sent out next week. Make sure you plan accordingly.

OVERNIGHT ROOMS ARE AVAILABLE – The Harraskeet Inn has set aside a block of rooms for our group at a rate of $150 for Thursday evening, 4/30/15 based on the early start time and travel distance for some.  In order to reserve one of these rooms, please call the Harraseeket Inn at 207-865-9377 and tell them you are with the CODEquest or MSEPS Meeting taking place on May 1st.  If you run into any issues, contact Shirley at 207-445-2260 or sgoggin@mainemed.comI WOULD RECOMMEND YOU MAKE YOUR RESERVATIONS EARLY!

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MEDICAL GROUP MANAGEMENT ASSOCIATION NEW ENGLAND REGIONAL CONFERENCE

The Tides of Change in Health Care

Don't miss the boat to ride the tide!!!

Registration is now open for our New England Regional Conference being held at the beautiful Samoset Resort in Rockport Maine, May 13-15, 2015.

The 2015 New England MGMA Regional Conference features a wide range of speakers who will provide you with the insight and tools you need to help your practice thrive.

In addition to our great keynote and breakout speakers, we have pre-conference activities including ACMPE, Fellowship and Excel workshops and we are also holding a pre-conference golf tournament!   Won't it be nice to walk on grass instead of snow?

This is a great event for you and your colleagues to meet and network with members of Maine, Vermont, New Hampshire and Massachusetts/Rhode Island MGMA and our vendor sponsors.  On Wednesday evening we will be providing  a gift card so you can have an opportunity to visit the local restaurants.

Please go to the following link to begin your registration and review the conference agenda: http://www.newenglandmgma.com/registration-information/.

We accept all Visa, Master Card, Discover and American Express.  If paying by check, please make check out to NERC/NHMGMA.

If you have any questions please contact Pam Beaule at PBeaule@StMarysMaine.com.

We hope you will join us and help make this conference a success!

Denise Andrade, FACMPE, Marketing Chairperson

 

 

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Job Openings

Gastroenterologist Job in Central Maine

Challenging, Lucrative, 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 getaway!

Must-haves: 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 certification.

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.

For more information contact John Poulin: john.poulin@va.gov

4/20/15

State Epidemiologist Sought

As State Epidemiologist in the Division of Infectious Disease, you will provide guidance and support to approximately 12-15 epidemiologists in the Infectious Disease Epidemiology Program for disease investigations and outbreak control, surveillance activities, and planned epidemiologic studies. Additionally, you will provide medical guidance, as needed, to all other programs within the Division; the Maine Immunization Program and the HIV, STD and Viral Hepatitis Program. You will be involved in formulation of statewide public health policy including providing legislative testimony by request for the Department. You will participate in the development of disease investigation protocols and the review of case investigations. You will consult with physicians and other health care professionals on disease prevention and control measures. You will respond to inquiries from the public and will coordinate response to media inquiries as directed by the Director of Maine CDC. You will interact with staff in the Division of Public Health System's, Public Health Emergency Preparedness Program, and the Health and Environmental Testing Laboratory, as well as the Division of Environmental Health's Health Inspections Program and other programs as requested. You will be part of the on-call rotation for nights and weekends (for telephone consultation, not on-site work) and provide technical support to other staff as needed when they are on call. As State Epidemiologist, you will supervise the medical epidemiology team which includes the Deputy State Epidemiologist and the Healthcare Associated Infections Coordinator. You will also provide medical guidance and oversight to the Tuberculosis Control Coordinator. You will serve as a liaison between federal CDC and Maine CDC on issues related to infectious disease. The State Epidemiologist will report to the Director, Division of Infectious Disease.

Requirements

Graduation from an accredited school of medicine or osteopathy with board certification in an appropriate medical specialty. A twelve year combination of training and experience in medicine and public health, to include a minimum of four years experience as an epidemiologist, OR a Masters Degree in Public Health or a related field and six years experience in the field of medicine and public health, to include a minimum of four years of experience as an epidemiologist. 

SPECIAL REQUIREMENT: Applicants must be eligible for a license to practice medicine in the State of Maine and must have a valid license prior to the start of employment. 

APPLICATION INFORMATION:  For additional information about this position please contact Jeremy Wilson, Human Resources Assistant at (207) 287-1873 or by e-mail @ jeremy.p.wilson@maine.gov. To apply, please forward a completed State of Maine application form and cover letter to: 

Department of Health and Human Services 
J. Wilson, Human Resources Asst. 
#11 State House Station 
Augusta, ME 04333-0011 

Direct hire applications are available at www.maine.gov/dhhs/jobs 
Applications must be postmarked by March 31, 2015.

3/30/15

MaineRockport, Maine  – Hospitalist

Located on the shore of the Atlantic Ocean in Rockport, Maine, Pen Bay Medical Center is seeking a BC/BE physician to join our Hospitalist team. Enjoy a dynamic practice opportunity featuring:

  • 7 on/7 off scheduling
  • Paid time off
  • Broad subspecialty support
  • Competitive salary with incentives 
  • 148 shifts per year - Additional pay for additional shifts
  • Comprehensive benefits including medical, life & disability insurance
  • Relocation & CME reimbursement
  • Generous medical school loan repayment program

Join us, where the quality of the work and quality of your life are exceptional!

Send CV and confidential inquiries to John Bragg, Director, Physician Recruitment at jbragg@penbayhealthcare.org or call (207) 921-5894.

04/06/15

Assistant Medical Director Sought

The Assistant Medical Director is responsible assisting the Chief Medical Officer with all areas of medical and behavioral treatment policy, pharmacy, utilization review and management, disease / case management and quality management and for the medical oversight of daily case management and utilization management activities and decisions.

MD or DO with unrestricted medical license in Maine or New Hampshire required. Board certification in primary or specialty care. 

Minimum of five or more years of direct clinical experience in area of clinical practice, participation in a leadership role in medical staff organization activities, and management experience within a health care delivery system.  Minimum of three years’ experience in medical management in a managed care setting or the equivalent.

Apply online at www.JobsinME.com or email your information to blovejoy@maineoptions.org.

04/13/15

Family Practice Physician

The Bucksport Regional Health Center, a Federally Qualified Health Center, has a unique opportunity for an experienced Family Practice Physician to work at a small, independent, community-based primary care facility that offers great quality indicators, a team atmosphere, and excellent working conditions.  Responsibilities will include the diagnosis, treatment, coordination of care, preventive care and provision of health maintenance services to patients of all life cycles.  

Candidates must have graduated from an accredited medical school and completed a residency in Family Practice or Med/Peds, have a current State of Maine Medical License and D.E.A Certificate, and at least five years of experience in the practice of family or internal medicine. The successful candidate will be offered a generous compensation package, including a competitive salary and excellent benefits.  

The Bucksport Regional Health Center has been offering easy access to quality, affordable care for persons of all ages since 1974.  Interested applicants should apply with a resume and cover letter to Carol Carew, Executive Director, 110 Broadway, Bucksport, Me 04416 or via email at ccarew@brhc.info (or call 207-469-7371).

04/20/15

Family Medicine and Outpatient Internal Medicine Physicians

Katahdin Valley Health Center is recruiting dedicated Family Medicine and Outpatient Internal Medicine Physicians that are committed to providing quality health care services to the people in Central/Northern Maine.  Join our practice in one of the newly expanded facilities.  We are seeking physicians for our Millinocket and Brownville outpatient only practices.  KVHC is a fully electronic medical record site and offers a Four day work week with a competitive salary ($170,000 to $190,000 annual) and benefit package which includes: a 10% of first year salary sign on bonus, generous amounts of paid time off and $2500 annually toward CME.  The call schedule is 1 in 9 with additional coverage from the Open Access Clinic.  Physicians who join KVHC are eligible to apply for NHSC Loan Repayment.  HPSA scores at the KVHC sites increased in 2015.

To learn more about KVHC and Practitioner Opportunities, please contact Michelle LeFay at mlefay@kvhc.org or visit our website at www.kvhc.org.  KVHC is an equal opportunity employer.

06/01/15

Lincoln, ME:  Family Medicine Opportunity with Leadership Option

  • Federally Qualified Community Health Center with 6 Locations
  • 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 populations
  • 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 Access Hospitals
  • 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

3/30/15

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 psychiatry.jobs@dartmouth.edu.  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.

6/01/15

   
 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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