Maine Medicine Weekly Update - 12/11/2017  (Plain Text Version)

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In this issue:
IN THE SPOTLIGHT
•  MMA Legislative Committee Meets to Prepare for Next Legislative Session
•  Online Links to Opioid CME
•  Congressional Stopgap Spending Plan Fails to Include CHIP 2018 Funding
•  Health Insurance Marketplace 2018: Open Enrollment Ends Friday
•  New AMA, CMS Resources Aid Transition to the New Medicare Card
•  Sanofi Genzyme: Arthritis Medication Should Not Be Used Due To Side Effects
•  Maine CDC Message on Immunizations
•  Naloxone Research Shows Importance of Post-Administration Intervention
•  Opportunities for Year-End Giving at MMA
•  Improving Opioid Prescribing and Patient Safety: Monday, 12/18 at EMMC
•  Peer Navigation Program from Facing Our Risk of Cancer Empowered
128TH MAINE LEGISLATURE
•  Legislative Calls to Resume When Legislature Returns
•  Highlights of Recently Enacted Legislation: L.D. 911 (c. 267) Prohibiting Gifts to Practitioners from Sellers
UPCOMING EVENTS
•  Online Learning Opportunities Offering CME Credits - from the Northern New England Practice Transformation Network
•  New Free CME on Alzheimer's Risk, Detection, and Management
•  Webinar on Improving Opioid Prescribing and Patient Safety: Wednesday, December 13
HEALTHCARE EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES
•  Chief Executive Officer - Pines Health Services
•  Clinical Cardiology Opportunity
•  Family Medicine Physician/Clinician Leader
•  BE/BC Family Practitioner - Lewiston, ME
•  Primary Care Physician - Eastern Maine Medical Center
•  Relocate to Beautiful Southwestern Maine - Medical Director/Family Practice Physician
•  Palliative Care Provider
•  Gastroenterologist - Brunswick, ME
•  Hospitalist - Brunswick, ME
•  DO or MD Physician - Augusta, ME
•  Outpatient Only - Internal Medicine with Loan Repayment & Sign-on Bonus
•  Physiatrist - Brunswick, Maine
•  Opportunities at the VA for Volunteer Physicians

 

Highlights of Recently Enacted Legislation: L.D. 911 (c. 267) Prohibiting Gifts to Practitioners from Sellers

The general effective date for legislation enacted during the First Regular Session (2017) of the 128th Maine Legislature was earlier this month on November 2, 2017. For the next several months, the MMA will highlight one enacted bill each week in this newsletter. We hope this helps your organization's compliance efforts and please call the MMA legal staff with any questions you may have.

 The MMA staff has posted the Annual Report of the Legislative Committee, a summary PowerPoint presentation, and other advocacy resources on the MMA web site here.

This week, we'll highlight a bill that prohibits some gifts from manufacturers and wholesalers of drugs and medical devices to practitioners.  It is L.D. 911, An Act to Prohibit Certain Gifts to Health Care Practitioners (P.L. 2017, Chapter 267). The bill essentially codifies into law gift limits that are already dealt with in AMA and medical technology (AdvaMed) ethics codes.

The new law prohibits licensed manufacturers and wholesalers from offering or giving health care practitioners the following:

  • Cash gifts in any amount
  • Gifts for which reciprocity is expected or implied
There are reasonable exceptions to the prohibition:

  • Drug samples for distribution to patients
  • Educational materials
  • Modest meals and refreshments, which will be defined by Board of Pharmacy rules, in connection with meetings or presentations about the seller's product..."as long as the meeting or presentation occurs in a venue and manner conducive to informational communication"
  • Funding to academic institutions and residency and fellowship programs to support participation in professional and educational meetings, but the funds are to be distributed without specific attribution to sponsors
  • Reasonable honoraria and reimbursement of reasonable expenses, defined by the Board, for professional or educational conferences and meetings.

As one can see from the language of the statute and its placement in the part of the law governing pharmacy, it governs the actions of manufacturers and sellers and is not intended or designed to punish practitioners.

Since the effective date of all 2017 enactments has passed, this law is currently in effect.