Maine Medicine Weekly Update - 12/17/2018  (Plain Text Version)

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In this issue:
•  Governor-Elect Mills Nominates Jeanne Lambrew, PhD as HHS Commissioner
•  MMA Holiday Hours
•  U.S. Federal Court in Texas Strikes Down the Affordable Care Act
•  Maine on the Short End of Federal Opioid Funding
•  Important Notification to Physicians & Staff from CMS
•  PCSS Offers Free 8-hour X-waiver Course for MAT
•  Measles Cases Rise, Pockets of Vaccine Refusal Threaten Community Health
•  End-of-year CME Opportunities Available Through AMA
•  AMA Podcast on Alternative Payment Models
•  Legislative Leaders Selected; Constitutional Officers Elected
•  Upcoming Specialty Society Meetings
•  Improving Opioid Prescribing and Patient Safety - Monday, December 17 5pm Augusta
•  Enrollment Underway for Maine’s Physician Executive Leadership Institute - The Advanced Course - Deadline for Enrollment: January 30, 2019
•  Identifying Substance Use Early Saves Lives! - SBIRT with Motivational Interviewing Training - 1-day Sessions Offered on Feb 2, Mar 2, Apr 6
•  Urgent Care Physician - South Portland, ME
•  Full-time Board Certified/Board Eligible MD/DO
•  Outpatient Family Medicine - Brunswick, Maine
•  Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner - Nasson Health Care
•  Primary Care Physician – Family Practice
•  Emergency Medicine Physician Assistants or Nurse Practitioners in multiple locations – BlueWater Emergency Partners
•  Physician – Leeds
•  Psychiatric Mental Health NP - Leeds
•  Outpatient Internal Medicine Physician – Bangor, Maine
•  Internal Medicine MD or DO (BE/BC)
•  Anesthesiologist - Kennebec Anesthesia Associates PA
•  Opportunities at the VA for Volunteer Physicians
•  Volunteer Opportunity with Partners for World Health


Measles Cases Rise, Pockets of Vaccine Refusal Threaten Community Health

Measles cases are increasing around the world, fueled at least in part by parents refusing to have their children immunized. Vaccine refusers are disproportionately represented in early stages of outbreaks. Public health officials are concerned about clustering of vaccine refusers which can provide the critical mass to start outbreaks.


[from AMA Morning Rounds]

The New York Times (11/29, Gladstone) provides coverage of a report issued yesterday by the World Health Organization and the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention warning that the number of measles cases around the world, particularly in Latin America and Europe, is on the rise, partly fueled by parents refusing to vaccinate their children. In the case of Latin America, the increase in cases “was partly attributable to an economic calamity afflicting Venezuela, where many public health services have stopped or are mired in dysfunction.”

The Washington Post (11/29, Omer) discusses the declining vaccination rate in the U.S. and its potential to negatively impact the populations’ herd immunity. The article says the situation could be further worsened by “clustering of susceptible individuals.” In addition to this trend, the piece references “an analysis of U.S. measles outbreaks since 2000” finding “that vaccine refusers are disproportionately represented in early stages of outbreaks,” meaning “people who deliberately go unvaccinated can provide the critical mass of susceptible individuals that can help start outbreaks that vaccination would otherwise have prevented.” The article concludes “as the vaccine-refusal rate inches up, public health authorities, physicians and parents need to pay attention to clustering as well as overall rate of vaccine refusal. Otherwise, we are likely to continue to see more and larger outbreaks.”