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Maine Medicine Weekly Update
August 14, 2021


 
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State of Maine Announces COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate for Health Care Workers

  • Governor Mills takes action through emergency rule making.
  • Requires all employees of defined designated health care facilities, including ambulatory surgical centers, dental practices, and EMS organizations to become immunized with a final dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by September 17, 2021.
  • Only medical exemptions are allowed.
Read More


Update: Annual Membership Meeting

Important Status Update on Maine Medical Association’s 168th Annual Session
MMA CEO, Andy MacLean

Because of the uncertainty of the COVID-19 pandemic, the Maine Medical Association has planned a “hybrid model” for its 168th Annual Session scheduled for September 10-12, 2021 at the Jordan Grand Hotel at the Sunday River Resort in Newry, Maine. Our “hybrid model” was designed to accommodate the preferences of those members and guests who want a traditional in-person meeting experience and those who wish to participate in the key governance and CME activities without attending in person.

Based upon recent trends in the pandemic as a result of the “Delta variant,” MMA has reviewed its protocols for this “hybrid model” and believe we can still offer a safe in-person meeting experience as well as an excellent remote participation option. We thank those who have registered to date and encourage all members to consider the option that best meets their needs and expectations. Read More


COVID-19 Pandemic Updates, Guidance & News

US CDC Authorizes Third Dose of mRNA COVID Vaccines for Immunocompromised

  • The FDA formally amended the EUA under which the Pfizer and Moderna mRNA vaccines are already being used.
  • The CDC ACIP voted unanimously in favor of a 3rd dose of mRNA vaccines for immunocompromised people.
  • CDC ACIP recommendations and conditions for immunocompromised third doses.
  • 3rd doses were not recommended for people with other conditions (e.g., long-term care facility residents, diabetes, heart disease, etc., …)
  • Booster doses for other persons and conditions are not under consideration until the next ACIP meeting in late August.
Read More


CDC Recommends Pregnant Women Get COVID-19 Vaccine

The U.S. CDC released new data this week on the safety of the COVID-19 vaccines in pregnant people and is recommending all people 12 years of age and older get vaccinated against COVID-19 according to a news release from the agency. The agency's previous guidance said pregnant people were "eligible" and merely suggested a conversation with their health care provider. Read More


Connecting Providers and Schools for COVID-19 Administration

If you are a school nurse and interested in supplying COVID-19 vaccine to your students or are a provider interested in partnering with a local school to provide the COVID-19 vaccination, please join the Maine Immunization Program for a virtual meeting to discuss plans for the fall. Read More


School Immunizations

New Maine Immunization Law for Schools Takes Effect Sep 1

This is a reminder that a new law removing religious and philosophical exemptions for childhood immunizations to attend school in Maine is set to be implemented this school year, on September 1, 2021.

  • Overview of the New Law
  • Maine DHHS Memo: Preparing Students for the 2021-2022 School Year
  • Vax To School Maine Resources
  • ACIP & AAP Childhood Immunization Links and Resources
Read More


Maine CDC Immunizations

Maine CDC Makes New Vaccine Products Available Through Maine Immunization Program (MIP)

The Maine Vaccine Board voted to include two new vaccine products to the approved list of

available vaccines supplied through the Maine Immunization Program (MIP).

 

The newly approved vaccines are:

  • The meningococcal quadrivalent conjugate vaccine (MenACWY) vaccine formulation, MenQuadfi™ (Sanofi).
  • VAXELIS™ (Sanofi and Merck), the new hexavalent vaccine indicated for protection against diphtheria, tetanus, pertussis, polio, hepatitis B, and Haemophilus influenzae type B (Hib)
Read More


Maine CDC Vaccine Provider Training

The Maine Immunization Program isbe hosting twice weekly trainings for all VFC provider sites. These trainings will serve as a refresher of VFC requirements and will continue each Tuesday and Wednesday throughout the months of August and September. Maine CDC will re-evaluate the need to continue trainings for October at the end of September.

 

All provider staff are welcome and encouraged to join. Read More


Additional Information

AMA Letter to CMS Administrator on No Surprises Act

The American Medical Association (AMA) submitted a third self-initiated comment letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services this week related to the implementation of the No Surprises Act (NSA).  

This letter addresses the good faith estimates and advanced EOB requirements in the NSA.  The AMA previously submitted comments related to the implementation and calculation of the Qualifying Payment Amount (QPA) and the QPA audit process, as well and comments focused on the implementation of the Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) process, the Notice and Consent requirements, and the determination of a Specified State Law.   Read More


United States Senate Passes ACEP-Developed Dr. Breen Legislation

Late last week, the U.S. Senate unanimously passed S. 610, the "Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act," which the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP) helped develop and was one of the key issues recently discussed on Capitol Hill by ACEP advocates, including Maine ACEP, and MMA, members Jay Mullen, M.D., and Charlie Pattavina, M.D. Read More


CMS Proposes to Rescind ‘Most Favored Nation’ Drug Pricing Rule

According to an article in MedPage Today, the Biden administration is planning to rescind a "Most Favored Nation" rule from the Trump administration that would have tested a model requiring that Medicare pay no more for certain drugs than the price paid by some other developed nations. Read More


AMA Drafts CY 2022 Physician Fee Schedule Proposed Rule Summary

The American Medical Association (AMA) has drafted a summary of the CY 2022 Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) proposed rule released by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on July 13, 2021. The proposed rule covers diverse topics, including the CY 2022 Rate Setting and Medicare Conversion Factor, Evaluation/Management (E/M) office visit services, telehealth and other services involving communications technology, and updates to the Quality Payment Program (QPP) through Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) activities, methodology, payment adjustments, and the Promoting Interoperability performance category, amongst other provisions. Read More


MMA Members in the News

Controversial Alzheimer's Drug Continues To Draw Criticism, Concern

MMA President Karen Saylor, MD, and incoming MMA President, Jeffrey Barkin, MD, were interviewed by NEWS CENTER Maine this week on Aduhelm, the drug approved by the FDA earlier this summer to treat Alzheimer’s disease in the earliest stages. Read More


Nine Staff Members at Maine Medical Center Emergency Department Test Positive For COVID-19

The following MMA statement was included in a story by WMTW-8 News earlier this week:

“Maine's physicians first hope none of the Maine Med cases are serious. The best way out of the pandemic is vaccination. Period. We've been encouraged that Maine hospitals have recently announced mandates, including Maine Med. It's shocking that they are necessary for health care workers. The vaccines are not only very safe and effective but critical when your job includes caring for sick people.” Read More


10 Emergency Department Staff Test Positive For COVID-19, Maine Medical Center Confirms

The following MMA statement was included in a story by NEWS CENTER Maine earlier this week:

“Maine's physicians first hope none of the Maine Med cases identified are serious. While we don't know any specific details it's another chance to stress the best way out of the pandemic is vaccination. It's encouraging that Maine hospitals have recently announced mandates, including Maine Med, but shocking that they're necessary. The vaccines are not only proven very safe and effective but also critical when your job includes caring for sick people." Read More


More News

SUPPORT for ME: Strengthening Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery Services for MaineCare Members

SUPPORT for ME is a statewide effort to improve SUD treatment and recovery services for all Mainers.

  Read More


Daniel Hanley Center for Health Leadership’s Renowned Physician Executive Leadership Institute – The Advanced Course

Enrollment is now open! ONLY A DOZEN SPOTS LEFT for Cohort VII Commencing September 2021. Enroll today and strengthen and extend your leadership skills by learning about the key intersections in the science of management and the business of medicine.


Read More


Maine Community Action Partnership: Did You Know?

Did you know that almost half of parents surveyed say they are more concerned about the COVID-19 vaccine than they are of the vaccine itself?  That’s an alarming statistic, but a full 71% of all parents said they would be more likely to get their child vaccinated if in-person school could be “normal”.

  Read More


MMA-CQI Has Launched a New Module: "Increasing HPV Vaccination Rates in Clinical Practice"

The goal of this online learning module is to provide an easily accessible, quality improvement resource for pediatricians, family clinicians, practice staff, and other quality improvement healthcare professionals to increase HPV vaccination rates in their clinical practice.

  Read More


UPCOMING EVENTS

Upcoming Specialty Society Meetings

Below you will find an on-going list of Upcoming Specialty Society Meetings. Any questions should be referred to the contact person listed for each specialty.

  Read More


AAP EQIPP Course: Immunizations - Strategies for Success (for RURAL Health Providers)

The recently revised EQIPP immunization course is designed to identify immunization rates in your practice, uncover barriers to immunization delivery systems, and provide techniques to overcome those barriers using clear aims that reflect expert principles and proven quality improvement methods and tools.

 
Read More


SUPPORT for ME Training and Technical Assistance Initiative

The Maine Medical Association- Center for Quality Improvement, in partnership with the Maine Department of Health and Human Services, launched the SUPPORT for ME Training and Technical Assistance initiative.

  Read More


Working with Children & Adolescents? Maine Pediatric & Behavioral Health Partnership (MPBHP) Webinar Series (August thru December 2nd Wednesday of month)

The Maine Pediatric & Behavioral Health Partnership (MPBHP) is a partnership between Maine Centers for Disease Control (CDC), Northern Light Acadia Hospital, and MaineHealth. MPBHP is offering a webinar series for medical providers who work with children and adolescents and you will earn Continuing Medical Education (CME) credit.

  Read More


HEALTHCARE EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES

Nurse Practitioner

Nasson Health Care is seeking a qualified Nurse Practitioner to work collaboratively with a team of health and administrative professionals providing comprehensive primary care to patients while utilizing the Patient-Centered Medical Home model of care delivery.
Read More


Physician

Nasson Health Care is seeking a qualified Physician to work collaboratively with a team of health professionals providing comprehensive primary care to patients while utilizing the Patient-Centered Medical Home model of care delivery.
Read More


Physician (BC/BE in Family Medicine) - Richmond Area Health Center

Richmond Area Health Center seeks a Physician (BC/BE in Family Medicine) with outstanding clinical and interpersonal skills. In addition, an X waver is desirable.
Read More


Help educate new physicians – join our accredited Family Medicine Residency Program as faculty

Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center's Family Medicine Residency program is seeking a BC, full-spectrum Family Medicine provider to join our dynamic faculty in Bangor, Maine. 
Read More


Join our region-leading Neuroscience/Stroke Center

Northern Light Eastern Maine Medical Center’s Neuroscience Center in the vibrant small city of Bangor, Maine seeks to expand its Neurology Department.  Read More


Contract Clinical Advisor - Healthcare Coalition of Maine

We are searching for a detail oriented, highly skilled and motivated Contract - Clinical Advisor (clinically active physician, advanced practice provider, or registered nurse) to provide clinical leadership to the Healthcare Coalition of Maine and serve as a liaison between the Coalition and medical directors/medical leadership at health care facilities, supporting entities, and EMS agencies!


Read More


Medical Director

Sacopee Valley Health Center, a Federally Qualified Health Center, is seeking an experienced, Board Certified Physician to become our next Medical Director.
Read More


Northern Light Health is seeking board-eligible/board-certified Cardiologists

Northern Light Health is seeking board-eligible/board-certified Cardiologists for our well-established practices in metro/rural Maine.
Read More


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