Maine Medicine Weekly Update - 07/17/2017  (Plain Text Version)

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In this issue:
•  The Latest on the Senate Republican Health Care Proposal
•  Maine Quality Counts Taps Larry Clifford as Executive Director
•  DHHS Announces 31 Day Grace Period for Enforcement of E-prescribing Penalties
•  Learn How You Can Be Ready for the E-Prescribing Mandate: Webinar on Wednesday, July 19 12pm
•  PMP Peer Reports Expected Soon
•  Board of Licensure in Medicine Proposes Changes to Chapter 1 Rules
•  Loan and Trust Committee Approves $515,000 in Loans to Medical Students from Maine
•  Nominations for the 2017 Mary F. Cushman Award Due By August 1
•  Opportunities at the VA for Volunteer Physicians
•  Many Physicians, Still Fuzzy on Details, Feel Unprepared for QPP
•  MMA Annual Golf Tournament
•  Legislative Report
•  State Budget Vote Report
•  Opioid Prescribing Presentation: Wednesday, July 19 from 5-8:30pm in Auburn
•  Call-in Program on MIPS and APM - July 26, August 9 & August 30
•  16th Annual Downeast Ophthalmology Symposium - September 15-17
•  Patient Safety Academy - September 29
•  Register Now for the MMA and Maine Health Management Coalition 2017 Symposium on October 11
•  Online Learning Opportunities Offering CME Credits - from the Northern New England Practice Transformation Network
•  New Free CME on Alzheimer's Risk, Detection, and Management
•  Family Medicine Physician - Pittsfield, ME
•  Primary Care Physician - Eastern Maine Medical Center
•  Outpatient Only - Internal Medicine with Loan Repayment & Sign-on Bonus
•  Part-time Clinical & Part-time Research Position in Central Maine
•  Family Medicine Physician - Winthrop, ME
•  DO or MD Physician - Augusta, ME
•  Family Medicine Physician - Waterville, ME
•  Family Medicine Physician/Clinician Leader - Portland, ME
•  Family Medicine - Windham, ME
•  Nurse Practitioner - Swift River Family Medicine - Rumford, ME
•  Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner - Bridgton, ME
•  Hospitalist - Brunswick, ME
•  Gastroenterologist - Brunswick, ME
•  Ophthalmologist - Brunswick, ME
•  Family Nurse Practitioner - Sacopee Valley Health Center
•  BC/BE Family Medicine Physician Livermore Falls, ME
•  Internal Medicine Physician - Bangor, ME
•  Family Medicine Physician - Scarborough, ME


State Budget Vote Report

In case you missed our report on the State budget vote, here it is again.

A little after 1:00 a.m. on July 4th, the Maine Legislature passed and the Governor signed a budget agreement that put State government back to work on July 5th. Sighs of relief could be heard in most, but not all, parts of the State.

The final vote was 35-0 in the Senate and 147-2 in the House. There will be no lodging tax increase in exchange for a two-year moratorium on behavioral health reimbursement rate cuts (familiar to many as the “Burns & Associates Rate Study cuts”) and $575,000 per year in increased funding for Head Start, the latter two points to be funded by TANF surplus. The budget entirely repeals the 3% surcharge on high-income earners passed by referendum in November and offers a mixture of one time and on-going spending for education totaling around $162 million. Most concerning disappointing to public health advocates is a $10 million (0ver the biennium) cut in the Fund for a Healthy Maine, a program funded by tobacco settlement money that has been earmarked for tobacco and obesity prevention. The compromise uses the Fund to pay for wage increases for direct care workers who care for the elderly. This program is an aspect of MaineCare, Maine's version of Medicaid, and has historically been funded, like other parts of Medicaid, by state and federal taxes.

The budget, as enacted, can be found here. (It's a very large document.)

The amendment which constitutes the compromise agreement, which is significantly shorter (euphemistically speaking) than the budget itself, is here.