Maine Medicine Weekly Update - May 8, 2017
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U.S. House Passes American Health Care Act 217 to 213. Senate Vows to Start from Scratch

Last Thursday, May 4, the U.S. House of Representatives narrowly passed the American Health Care Act repealing major portions of the Affordable Care Act, jeopardizing health coverage for millions of Americans and rolling back the expansion of Medicaid.

Maine's two Representatives took different positions on the bill with First District Congresswoman Chellie Pingree opposing the bill and Second District Congressman Bruce Poliquin supporting the proposal. All Democrats voted in opposition along with 20 Republicans.  

The bill will likely look much different after the Senate acts upon it or enacts its own bill and differences between the two are worked out in conference. Among the highlights of the AHCA are the following.

  • Both the individual and employer mandate to purchase health insurance is repealed.

  • Many taxes funding the ACA are eliminated including a 0.9% increase on the Medicare payroll tax and a 3.8% on investment income. 

  • More money can be set aside in a Health Savings Account

  • Taxes are rolled back on device manufacturers, tanning salons, drug manufacturers and health plans.

  • Older Americans can be charged up to five times more for health insurance than younger individuals (under the ACA, the factor was three times)

  • States will receive less funds for Medicaid.

  • Planned Parenthood is denied any federal funds for one year.

The House vote took place prior to the Congressional Budget Office completing its review of the fiscal impact of the proposal. An earlier version of the bill estimated that as many as 24 million individuals could lose coverage over the next few years.

MMA participated in an interview with Maine Public Radio following the vote and in a press conference with Congresswoman Pingree on Friday.  MMA noted that the proposal, opposed by both the AMA and the American Hospital Association, was adverse to the interests of those individuals who are poor, sick or elderly. Its negative impact on women was also noted. MMA will work with its partners in Maine and with the AMA to oppose the bill and to work with Senators Collins and King to draft proposals that will focus on coverage for Maine people at an affordable cost with an appropriate relationship between the state and federal governments.  

AMA Reacts to ACHA House Vote

Read the AMA Statement on House Passage of the American Health Care Act.

AMA Statement on House Passage of American Health Care Act

For immediate release:
May 4, 2017

CHICAGO – American Medical Association (AMA) President Andrew W. Gurman, M.D., released the following statement today after the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act:

“The bill passed by the House today will result in millions of Americans losing access to quality, affordable health insurance and those with pre-existing health conditions face the possibility of going back to the time when insurers could charge them premiums that made access to coverage out of the question. Action is needed, however, to improve the current health care insurance system. The AMA urges the Senate and the Administration to work with physician, patient, hospital and other provider groups to craft bipartisan solutions so all American families can access affordable and meaningful coverage, while preserving the safety net for vulnerable populations.”

###

**AMA Editor’s Note:

In January, the AMA released its health system reform objectives – primary among them that people who currently have insurance should not become uninsured – and shared them with Members of Congress. Last month, the AMA urged Congress to oppose the AHCA. Additionally, the “Envisioning Health Reform” series on AMA Wire looks deeper at the essential issues in the health system reform debate and provides updates on health reform discussions in Congress.

Last month, the AMA launched a website, patientsbeforepolitics.org, aimed at encouraging physicians and patients to join the effort to increase access to affordable, meaningful coverage for all Americans. The interactive site provides the latest information on health system reform legislation moving through Congress, as well as the AMA’s efforts to shape the future of U.S. health care.

 

AAP Reacts to AHCA Vote

American Association of Pediatrics President Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP reacts to the U.S. House of Representatives vote on the American Health Care Act.

A Message from AAP President Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP


Today, the U.S. House of Representatives passed the American Health Care Act (AHCA) by a vote of 217-213. The AAP opposed the bill and urged the Senate to start over as it considers the measure.

Your advocacy efforts played a pivotal role in blocking previous versions of AHCA and in making this vote a difficult one for the House. It also gave us the momentum we need now to continue the fight.

Even if AHCA in its current form does not become law, it sets a dangerous precedent. The most drastic cuts to Medicaid since its inception are now included in a bill that passed a chamber of Congress, making it easier to include similar proposals in the future. We cannot let that happen.

When so much is at stake, we cannot afford to let up in our advocacy, or to become defeated after a setback. We must continue to speak up for children and tell our legislators what they need to be healthy. We are our patients' voices and they are counting on us to use them.

The House is now going on a one-week recess following today's vote. I encourage you not to relent in your opposition to AHCA. Consider attending a town hall or district event next week. Or reach out via email or phone by going to federaladvocacy.aap.org and clicking on "Oppose the American Health Care Act" in the Advocacy Action Center.

If your representative voted yes on this bill, they should continue to hear from you about why you oppose that decision, and you should urge your senators to oppose the bill in their chamber. If your representative voted no, encourage them to continue pressing for better policies that prioritize children's health and protect Medicaid, and urge your senators to do the same.

Thank you for your continued dedication to this issue. As we've learned, together we can make a difference.

Sincerely,

Fernando Stein, MD, FAAP
AAP President
@AAPPres


American Academy of Pediatrics, 141 NW Point Blvd, Elk Grove Village, IL, 60007 - 847-434-4000

 

Anthem asks U.S. Supreme Court to Overturn Rejection of Proposed Anthem-Cigna Merger

Last week Anthem announced that it would ask the U.S. Supreme Court to reverse the U.S. Court of Appeals for the District of Columbia upholding of a lower court ruling halting the proposed $54 billion mega insurance merger between Anthem and Cigna. The decision was seen as a victory for both patients and physicians.

Both the American Medical Association and the Maine Medical Association had opposed the proposed merger since it was announced and both had worked with the Justice Department to build a case against it. MMA lawyers had met with the Justice Department back in January of 2016 and expressed concern about the impact of the merger on Maine physicians and their patients. The AMA submitted an amicus brief to the appellate court in support of preserving the merger injunction issued in February of this year.  Based on existing policy established by the AMA House of Delegates, the AMA advocated in 2016 that the Department of Justice block the two proposed mergers between health insurers Aetna and Humana and Anthem and Cigna.

Maine Attorney General Janet Mills also entered the litigation against the Anthem and Cigna merger. In July, 2016, MMA joined a group of organizations led by the AMA and Connecticut State Medical Society in urging the DOJ to carefully review the impact of large insurance company mergers on individual states and the country as a whole. Ultimately, the trial court found that the Anthem-Cigna merger would harm patients because ti would likely lead to higher premiums, eliminate the existing head-to-head competition between Anthem and Cigna, reduce the number of national carriers from four to three, and diminish innovation.  

The ruling is the result of 21 months of advocacy by the AMA and the coalition of physician organizations, including MMA, before the DOJ, congressional leaders, state attorneys general, insurance commissioners, and federal court. Barring an appeal to the U.S. Supreme Court, the decision last week concludes a successful campaign by the AMA and 17 state medical associations - on behalf of patients and physicians - to stop the Anthem-Cigna merger.

 

MMA, Lown Institute and Colleagues Present Challenges to Professionalism in a Time of Change, in Portsmouth, June 17

Join your professional colleagues at a day-long conference on the topic of professionalism on Saturday, June 17 in Portsmouth.

Keynote speakers are Thomas Bodenheimer, M.D., MPH and Eric Campbell, PhD.  Five of the leading clinical ethicists in northern New England will also participate on two panels moderated by Vikas Saini, M.D., President of the Lown Institute of Brookline, MA and MMA EVP Gordon Smith, Esq. Following lunch, a special presentation of the one act play, Side Effects, will be performed by actor Michael Milligan. The play tells the story of a physician stressed out by the many administrative responsibilities that can interfere with taking care of a patient.

A complete agenda and registration materials will be included with the next issue of Maine Medicine arriving around May 10. But registration is available now on the MMA website.

New England AMA Delegation Meets in Providence, R.I.

AMA delegates from New England met together in Providence, RI on Saturday to discuss resolutions that will be presented to the AMA House of Delegates in June.

On Saturday, May 6, the New England Delegation to the AMA met in Providence, R.I., to consider proposed resolutions to present to the AMA House of Delegates at the Annual Meeting in June in Chicago. Attending from Maine were AMA delegate Maroulla Gleaton, M.D., MMA President and alternate AMA delegate Charles Pattavina, M.D. and EVP Gordon Smith. AMA delegate Richard Evans, M.D., who chairs the New England Delegation was unable to attend because of an illness in his family. 

Resolutions considered and receiving the two-thirds vote for endorsement of the delegation include the following:

  • Retail Prescription Bottle Label Privacy
  • Mandatory Public Health Reporting of Law-enforcement-Related Injuries and Deaths
  • Towards Eliminating ERISA State Preemption of Health Plan Liability
  • Policy and Economic Support for Early Child Care
  • Appropriate Placement of Transgender Prisoners
  • Protection of Clinician-Patient Privilege
  • Retail price of Drugs Displayed in Direct-to-Consumer Pharmaceutical Advertising
  • Out of Network Care

The AMA House of Delegates will convene on Saturday, June 10 in Chicago.

 
 
 

MIPS Web-interface and CAHPS for MIPS Registration Open Until June 30

See guidance for group practices that intend to use the CMS Web Interface or administer the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers Systems (CAHPS) for Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) survey to meet 2017 Quality Payment Program (QPP) requirements.

Group practices that intend to use the CMS Web Interface or administer the Consumer Assessment of Healthcare Providers Systems (CAHPS) for Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) survey to meet 2017 Quality Payment Program (QPP) requirements must register with CMS by June 30. To register or learn more information, visit CMS' QPP website. Registration is open now. 

For 2017, only groups of 25 or more eligible clinicians that have registered can report via the CMS Web Interface. Groups or individuals that participate in MIPS through claims, qualified registry, qualified clinical data registry, or electronic health record (EHR) data submission mechanisms do not need to register. For 2017, only groups of two or more eligible clinicians that have registered can participate in the CAHPS for MIPS survey.

Of note, CMS automatically registered groups for the CMS Web Interface for the 2017 performance period that previously registered for group reporting under the Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) via the Group Practice Reporting Option (GPRO) Web Interface. If you need to remove your registration for Web Interface submission because your group now has fewer than 25 eligible clinicians or is reporting through a different mechanism, you must cancel your registration. If your group wants to administer the CAHPS for MIPS survey, your group will need to make an election via the registration system. 

Groups that participate in a Shared Savings Program accountable care organization (ACO) are not required to register or report; the Shared Savings Program ACO is required to report quality measures on behalf of participating eligible clinicians for purposes of MIPS.

To register, visit the QPP website. You will need a valid Enterprise Identity Management (EIDM) account with a Physician Value-Physician Quality Reporting System (PV-PQRS) role in order to register.

EIDM account information

  • Open a new account: To create or modify an EIDM account, review the CMS guide on this topic.

  • Reactivate an account: To reactivate or confirm the status of an account, contact the Quality Payment Program at (866) 288-8292 (TTY: (877) 715-6222) or qpp@cms.hhs.gov, Monday –Friday, 8 a.m.–8 p.m. EDT and provide the group name and TIN.

  • Use a current account: To request a role to access the "Physician Quality and Value Programs" application in the CMS Enterprise Portal, review the CMS guide.

  

Maine DHHS Now Accepting Applcations for Opioid Health Homes

MaineCare's new Opioid Health Home (OHH) program has begun accepting applications from organizations wishing to be considered for the designation.   

The Opioid Health Homes are a new component of MaineCare’s Value-Based Purchasing Initiative, providing counseling, care coordination, medication-assisted treatment, peer support and medical consultation for individuals who have been diagnosed with an opioid dependency.

This OHHs will provide services to MaineCare members and the uninsured through grant-funded contracts with the Department of Health and Human Services’ Office of Substance Abuse and Mental Health. The upcoming application and the program requirements apply to programs serving both the MaineCare population and the uninsured (with a few minor exceptions).

To be an OHH, an organization must:

  • Be currently using an Electronic Health Record (EHR)system;
  • Have a full team at time of application, to include at least the following personnel:
    • Clinical Team Lead;
    • Medication-Assisted Treatment Provider;
    • Nurse Care Manager;
    • Certified Clinical Supervisor;
    • Licensed Alcohol and Drug Counselor; and
    • Peer Recovery Coach.
  • Have full implementation of the Core Standards as evidenced by reporting examples of current work for the following:
    • Demonstrated leadership;
    • Team-based approach to care;
    • Population risk stratification and management;
    • Enhanced access;
    • Practice integrated care management;
    • Behavioral-physical health integration;
    • Inclusion of patients and families;
    • Connection to community resources and social support services;
    • Commitment to reducing waste, unnecessary healthcare spending, and improving cost-effective use of healthcare services; and
    • Integration of health information technology (Access to HeathInfoNet for OHHs serving uninsured members). 
  • Demonstrate that they:
    • Can monitor treatment adherence and sustain recovery for their OHH members;
    • Have an infrastructure within the organization to perform population risk stratification and population management; and
    • By using a report, have a way to track their own performance over time.

More information is at http://www.maine.gov/dhhs/oms/rules/emergency.shtml.

There are two options for reimbursement:

  • Option A:  Opioid Health Homes directly administering buprenorphine, buprenorphine derivatives and naltrexone in an office setting with a pharmacist on site will be reimbursed at a rate of $1,000 per member, per month. 
  • Option B:  Opioid Health Homes providing a prescription for buprenorphine, buprenorphine derivatives and naltrexone to be filled at an outside pharmacy will be reimbursed at a rate of $496 per member, per month.

(Thanks to Dr. David McDermott and the Maine Hospital Association for permission to share this article which first appeared in MHA's Friday Report)

Physician-focused Payment Models Recommended to Secretary Price

Group recommends that Secretary Price approve two proposals: Project Sonar and the Episode Grouper for Medicare. Learn more here!

In April, the Physician-Focused Payment Models Technical Advisory Committee (PTAC) had its first meeting to review and vote on proposals it has received. Following an in-depth review and discussion with the physician leaders who had submitted the proposals, the PTAC voted to recommend two proposals to Health and Human Services Secretary Tom Price, MD, for limited testing. 

The first, called Project Sonar, has been spearheaded by Lawrence Kosinski, MD, an Illinois gastroenterologist. With support from a private payer, it has demonstrated significant improvements in care for patients with inflammatory bowel disease (IBD). Project Sonar engages these patients in an interactive process that allows the gastroenterology team to take steps to reduce exacerbations that would otherwise lead to emergency visits and hospital admissions. 

The second model recommended by PTAC for testing is the Episode Grouper for Medicare (EGM) developed by the American College of Surgeons and Brandeis University. The EGM model will provide data to teams of physicians managing episodes of care that can help them to improve quality and outcomes of care and lower avoidable spending. 

Both models hold promise for improving patient care as well as providing a means for specialist physicians who have had few opportunities to participate in alternative payment models to effectively do so. In remarks at the PTAC meeting, Secretary Price strongly encouraged the physician community to submit additional proposals for new models to the PTAC. He emphasized the need to avoid a one-size-fits-all approach and noted that we are in a time of great innovation in clinical medicine that requires innovation in payment models as well.

Learn more about both of these models at AMA Wire, and listen to a podcast interview with Dr. Kosinski about Project Sonar. The AMA website offers additional details on APMs and how to develop APMs

Online Learning Opportunities Offering CME Credits - from the Northern New England Practice Transformation Network

 Take Advantage of Online Learning Opportunities Offering CME Credits - Available 24/7 now from the Northern New England Practice Transformation Network (NNE-PTN)

Take Advantage of Online Learning Opportunities Offering CME Credits - Available 24/7 now from the Northern New England Practice Transformation Network (NNE-PTN)

The Northern New England Practice Transformation Network, led by Maine Quality Counts in collaboration with the Citizens Health Initiative at the University of New Hampshire's Institute for Health Policy and Practice, and Vermont Program for Quality in Healthcare, Inc., is funded through the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services' Transforming Clinical Practice Initiative to provide technical assistance to support you, your practice, and your consumers in the transition to value-based payment. The QC Learning Lab has been designed to support health care practitioners and professionals, and practice teams with a wide range of continuing education offers including online courses, webinars, and learning sessions.

Topics include:

  • Improving Patient Outcomes with Cost of Care Conversation in the Clinical Practice
  • How to Transform Practice Finances for Success with Advanced Payment Models
  • Seamless Care
  • Get a Grip on Change
Click here to register for these no cost online learning opportunities, available 24/7 at your convenience.
 
This project is supported by FONCMS-1L1-15-003 from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services. The contents provided are solely the responsibility of the author and do not necessarily represent the official views of HHS or any of its agencies.

Weekly MMA Legislative Committee Conference Call Information

MMA Legislative Committee Chairs Katherine Pope, M.D. and Stephen Meister, M.D. welcome you to participate in the weekly conference calls of the MMA Legislative Committee. In addition to discussing newly printed bills, MMA staff will report on the status of bills which have come up for public hearing or work session.

MMA Legislative Committee Chairs Katherine Pope, M.D. and Stephen Meister, M.D. welcome you to participate in the weekly conference calls of the MMA Legislative Committee.

The next MMA Legislative Committee weekly conference call for the First Regular Session of the 128th Maine Legislature will take place tomorrow, Tuesday, May 2nd, 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:  207-480-4790
Passcode:  057614#

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 480-4187, or Peter Michaud, Associate General Counsel at pmichaud@mainemed.com or 480-4199.

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.

NOTE: The MMA positions stated in parentheses after the bill titles are simply staff suggestions. They are not necessarily the positions taken by the Legislative Committee or the MMA.

This year is marked by two topics that have been the subjects of an inordinately large number of bills: recreational marijuana legalization and opioids. In order to allow clearer discussion of these bills during the legislative calls, the marijuana bills will be marked with a superscript "m" and the opioid bills with a superscript "o". We welcome your comments on whether this makes things easier or more difficult for you. Following are the bills of the week: 

*LD 1564: An Act To Conform State Law to Federal Law While Promoting Safe Working Environments for Minors (Pediatrics, Family Medicine) (Monitor)

*LD 1587: An Act To Provide Economic Security to Maine Families through the Creation of a Paid Family Medical Leave System (All) (Monitor)

 

Legislative Highlights of the Week

Read what happened this past week in the Maine Legislature: hearings, work sessions and more.

Health & Human Service

Most of the bills heard in the HHS Committee this past week were peripherally related to the practice of medicine, including bills concerning transportation and housing for persons with disabilities and a controversial bill that would allow creation of safe spaces for persons with substance use disorder to inject drugs. There were also hearings on a number of bills relating to MaineCare.  The MMA did express concern about the additional administrative burden to physician practices and potential additional cost to patients about a bill (L.D. 1300) proposing a prescription requirement for methamphetamine precursor drugs.

LCRED

The Labor, Commerce, Research and Economic Development Committee held hearings and work sessions on several bills of interest to the medical community. LD 1200, dealing with maintenance of certification, was modified to cover only a prohibition for MOC requirements in licensing. In that form, it was voted unanimously "ought to pass." The same result occurred with LD 1359, approving Maine's participation in the Interstate Medical Licensing Compact. Because the Compact requires specialty certification at the time of compact licensing (but not maintenance of certification after that time), the reciprocity language was removed from LD 1200. Unanimous "ought to pass" was also the result for LD 911, which will prohibit drug manufacturers from offering gifts to physicians beyond a nominal value. It will not interfere with reasonable honoraria for speaking engagements. The MMA was successful in keeping the focus of the bill on the behavior of manufacturers, rather than on physicians who might be receiving such gifts. 

Education

The Education & Cultural Affairs Committee took testimony on May 1st on a bill to allow the concealed carry of firearms on public college campuses (excluding dormitories and places of public entertainment). While there was little testimony in support of the proposal (the NRA submitted written testimony but did not appear), those testifying against included college professors and students, the Chief of Police for the University of Maine, a physician, and the Maine Gun Safety Coalition. The MMA testified in opposition to the bill, pointing out that brain science has shown that people in the age range of college students have brains which are not yet completely developed, and the last areas that mature are those dealing with judgment, executive function, and impulse control. A work session on the bill will take place this week.

DHHS

The Department of Health and Human Services MaineCare section has proposed rule changes relating to opioid (including MAT) prescribing for MaineCare recipients. On May 8th a public hearing was held. While the MMA did not testify orally at the hearing, we, the Maine Hospital Association, and others will be submitting written testimony by the filing deadline, May 18th. Anyone who wishes to comment on the proposed rules should do so in writing by the deadline.

Transportation

The Committee held a work session last Thursday on a bill (L.D. 1426) regarding the use of bioptic telescopic lenses for driving.  During the 126th Legislature, a group of physicians including Bob Dreher, M.D., Linda Schumacher-Feero, M.D., and Dan Onion, M.D., M.P.H. participated with BMV staff and other stakeholders in a working group to review the history of the use of BTLs in driving and to make certain recommendations.  Members of the Maine Society of Eye Physicians & Surgeons (MSEPS) felt that the recommendations remained sound & that this bill went beyond those recommendations.  L.D. 1426 was submitted on behalf of a woman whose family wishes to move to Maine and feared she could not get a Maine license and use her BTLs to drive.  Dr. Schumacher-Feero attended the work session to speak briefly about the history of BTLs in Maine, the recent working group, and the circumstances of this bill.  Based upon her statement and response to the Committee's questions, the Committee tabled the bill following a motion "ought not to pass" to give the proponent an opportunity to discuss her case with the BMV staff.  While the proponent didn't attend the work session, representations made about her level of vision suggested to many that she probably could meet the current Maine standards to get a driver's license.

Insurance & Financial Services

Also last Thursday afternoon, the IFS Committee held a long afternoon of public hearings on a series of bills of interest to many physicians. First, the Committee heard a bill (L.D. 1279) that seeks to protect patient and provider protections in Maine law that precede the ACA, if the ACA is ultimately repealed in Washington, D.C.  The MMA joined other consumer advocacy organizations in support of the bill. Next, the Committee heard a bill (L.D. 1385) to clarify the nature of a "direct primary care" relationship between a physician and a patient.  Several MMA members attended and spoke in favor of the legislation. Lastly, the Committee heard a bill (L.D. 1274) advocating a single payer approach to health care reform in Maine. The Committee spent several hours hearing passionate testimony from the public, including many physicians who have been engaged in advocacy in favor of single payer health care through Maine AllCare. The MMA delivered a letter in the "neither for nor against" category, including the new Statement on Reform of the U.S. Health Care System approved by the MMA board in January 2017. The MMA also provided member survey data showing that more than 60% of MMA members support a "Medicare for All" single payer approach to health care reform. The Committee will hold an initial work session on the bills tomorrow afternoon.

Save the Date! Physicians' Day at the Legislature, May 31st

It's a great opportunity to meet  and talk with your state senator and representative, and maybe even the Governor.

The annual "Physicians' Day at the Legislature" will be on May 31st this year. Wear your white coat, come to the Legislature for the day, and demonstrate the political commitment of Maine's physicians to great health care for Maine's people. Your presence on that day not only gives you a chance to share with your representatives the issues that matter most to you, it also puts a strong exclamation point on the work your MMA advocacy staff does all year. So come on down to Augusta and make a statement!

L.D. 46 Eliminating Physician Exemption from Jury Duty Poses Threat to Physician Practices

In an ironic but dangerous twist, legislation to add nurse practitioners to the list of individuals exempt from jury duty has resulted in a near unanimous recommendation from the Judiciary Committee to eliminate all the current exemptions, including the exemption for physicians and dentists in active practice.

L.D. 46, An Act to Provide Consistency Among Medical Professionals with Regard to Jury Duty Exemption, was introduced at the request of the Maine Nurse Practitioner Association. MMA took no position on the bill, following discussion during one of the weekly calls of the Legislative Committee. But when the bill was heard before the Joint Standing Committee on the Judiciary, the lobbyist for the Judicial branch presented an amendment which eliminated all of the current exemptions. When MMA representatives were advised of the amendment, we attended the work session but none of the outside interests were provided an opportunity to present the arguments against the amendment at the work session. The bill, now with the amendment, has strong support from the Judiciary Committee but strong opposition from the sponsor of the original bill, Senator Nate Libby (D., Lewiston). As a member of leadership (Assistant Democratic Leader in the Senate) Senator Libby will seek to kill the bill in the Senate.

 
A recent survey by MMA of membership on the question of whether physicians should remain exempt from jury duty showed strong support for retaining the exemption (68% in favor, 20% opposed and 12% with no opinion). Along with Senator Libby, MMA will seek to defeat the bill on the Senate floor in the coming days. For MMA members regularly in contact with their State Senators, it would be helpful if you would mention this bill and both the process issue (no hearing on the amendment, despite it being directly contrary to the bill's intent) and the difficulty it would pose to the efficient operation of medical and dental practices.   

 A vote in the Senate was expected on Tuesday or Thursday of last week, but as of publication time on May 8th the bill remains tabled in the Senate.

Learn How You Can Be Ready for the E-Prescribing Mandate: Free Webinars on May 10, May 24, and June 7

Join the Maine Medical Association and DrFirst as we discuss what you need to know to become compliant with opioid prescribing legislation by the July 1st deadline.

Join the Maine Medical Association and DrFirst as we discuss what you need to know to become compliant with opioid prescribing legislation by the July 1st deadline.  Bring your questions and concerns for the DrFirst e-prescribing expert to answer, and see a demo on the solution that can help you comply in time.

May 10, 12-1pm: Register Here  

May 24, 7-8pm:  Register Here 

June 7, 12-1pm: Register Here

 

 

Maine Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons Spring Educational Program & Business Meeting - May 12

SAVE THE DATE - Friday, May 12th

SAVE THE DATE

Maine Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons Educational Program and Business Meeting

May 12, 2017

Brunswick Hotel & Tavern, 4 Noble Street, Brunswick, ME

Contact:  Shirley Goggin at 207-445-2260 or sgoggin@mainemed.com 

Maine Chapter, American College of Surgeons Annual Meeting - May 19-21

SAVE THE DATE - May 19-21, 2017 - REGISTER NOW!

SAVE THE DATE
 
Maine Chapter, American College of Surgeons Annual Meeting
 
May 19-21, 2017
 
Harborside Hotel & Marina, Bar Harbor, ME
 
Contact:  Shirley Goggin at 207-445-2260 or maine@mainefacs.org 

BROCHURE WITH REGISTRATION FORM

REGISTER ONLINE 

How Can I Choose Wisely? A Community Conversation on Healthcare Changes and Rising Costs June 8

Thursday, June 8, 2017 at the Brunswick Hotel & Tavern, 4 Noble Street in Brunswick

5:00 - 6:30 pm Town Hall Meeting

6:30 - 7:30 pm Quality Counts Member Mingle & Networking

Join community members in Brunswick on June 8 from 5:00 to 6:30 pm at the Brunswick Hotel & Tavern to hear different perspectives on healthcare changes and rising costs.  How can you protect yourself against rising health care costs?  What are current challenges in Maine healthcare?  How can you become more informed about health care costs before you receive treatment?  Panelists will share their thoughts to help all choose wisely when it comes to one's own health care.

Free Event - Please register by June 2nd at www.mainequalitycounts.org or by calling 620-8526 x1011.

Family Medicine Physician - Pittsfield, ME

Sebasticook Valley Hospital is seeking a full time Family Medicine physician to join Sebasticook Valley Family Care a modern practice located just off I-95 in Pittsfield.

Sebasticook Valley Hospital is seeking a full time Family Medicine physician to join Sebasticook Valley Family Care a modern practice located just off I-95 in Pittsfield.  Be part of a ten member collegial medical staff providing primary care services in a rural community. Work schedule is 4 days per week, with limited telephone call from home.  This position comes with competitive compensation, fringe benefits, assistance with medical education debt, signing/relocation bonus negotiable. 

SVH is a 25-bed modern critical access hospital located in Pittsfield which is 20 minutes north of Waterville, and 40 minutes south of Bangor. The hospital serves a population of 30,000 in this central Maine area.  SVH takes a proactive approach in helping people in the Sebasticook Valley improve the quality of their lives. The hospital works with local businesses, schools, the religious community, other healthcare providers, area organizations, and private individuals to make the Valley a healthy place to live. SVH serves has a wide range of outpatient services, including over 20 specialty services.
 
For more information, please contact Sherry Tardy, PHR, DASPR, at 207-487-4085 or email a CV for review to stardy@emhs.org.

8/7/17

Physician Assistant - Newcastle

Lifespan Family Healthcare is seeking a part-time Certified Physician Assistant, with full-time potential in the area.

Lifespan Family Healthcare is seeking a part-time Certified Physician Assistant, with full-time potential in the area.  We are a growing family practice which sees patients of all ages for acute and chronic care.  No inpatient.  Located in the beautiful coastal Maine village of Newcastle, this Patient Centered Medical Home is looking for someone to join our highly productive care team.   The ideal candidate would need at least 1 year of clinical experience and have a current Maine license. 
 
Please send a cover letter and your resume to:  Sandy Lovley at sandy@lifespanfamilyhealthcare.com or fax it to 207-563-3393.
 

5/8/17

Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner Hospitalist - Full Time or Per Diem, Bridgton Hospital

Bridgton Hospital, part of the Central Maine Medical Family, seeks a physician assistant or nurse practitioner to join its well-established hospitalist program.

Bridgton Hospital, part of the Central Maine Medical Family, seeks a physician assistant or nurse practitioner to join its well-established hospitalist program. The full time hospitalist PA/NP would be responsible for two regular weeknight shifts and every fifth weekend, allowing for a healthy work/life balance. The candidate would be responsible for overnight admissions and care of acute inpatients and swing bed patients in our 21-bed critical access hospital. This is a contracted position with opportunities for loan repayment and additional per diem hours. Previous hospital experience necessary.

 
For more information visit our website at ww.bridgtonhospital.org. Interested candidates should contact Donna Lafean, CMMC Associate Professional Staff Recruiter, 300 Main Street, Lewiston, ME 04240; email: lafeando@cmhc.org; call: 800/445-7431; fax: 207/344-0658.
 
5/22/17

Family Medicine Physician - Maine Medical Partners Primary Care - Standish, ME

Maine Medical Partners Primary Care is seeking a Family Medicine trained physician for their new outpatient practice located in Standish, just outside the greater Portland, Maine area. 

Maine Medical Partners Primary Care is seeking a Family Medicine trained physician for their new outpatient practice located in Standish, just outside the greater Portland, Maine area. Candidates will have the opportunity to help establish this new primary care office which will be closely linked to our Windham practice located 10 miles away. 
 
The successful candidate will be employed by Maine Medical Partners (MMP), a subsidiary of Maine Medical Center and Maine’s largest multi-specialty group.  This high quality team of more than 500 physicians and 200 advanced practice professionals provides a wide range of hospital based, primary, specialty, and sub-specialty adult and pediatric care delivered throughout a network of 30 locations.
 
For more information please contact Alison C. Nathanson, Director, MaineHealth Physician Recruitment Center at (207) 661-7383 or nathaa@mainehealth.org.
 
5/29/17

Primary Care Physician - Eastern Maine Medical Center

Eastern Maine Medical Center seeks a primary care physician, board-certified/board-eligible in internal medicine, to join our well-established, quality-driven, outpatient practice. 

Eastern Maine Medical Center seeks a primary care physician, board-certified/board-eligible in internal medicine, to join our well-established, quality-driven, outpatient practice. Husson Internal Medicine is one of seven primary care practices operated by Eastern Maine Medical Center. Our practice was the second in the nation to achieve “Patient-Centered Medical Home” status with NCQA. All physicians are NCQA-certified in diabetes and cardiac care. Our primary care network, largest in our area, has adopted a new practice model to include teams of one physician, one nurse practitioner, two registered nurses, and two medical assistants.

 
Eastern Maine Medical Center is a 411-bed, regional, tertiary care and level II trauma center serving the more than 500,000 residents living in central, eastern, and northern Maine We offer a collegial atmosphere, cutting-edge EMR, generous vacation and CME benefit, flexible work schedule, and reasonable call schedule. No hospital call required. Candidates in need of J-1 visa waivers welcome to apply.
 
For confidential consideration, please contact: Amanda Klausing, Eastern Maine Medical Center, Phone: 207-973-5358 or email emmccvs@emhs.org.
 
5/8/17

Outpatient Only - Internal Medicine with Loan Repayment & Sign-on Bonus

The Central Maine Medical Group seeks BE/BC Internal Medicine physician to join cohesive, well-established, hospital-employed practice in Lewiston, Maine. 

The Central Maine Medical Group seeks BE/BC Internal Medicine physician to join cohesive, well-established, hospital-employed practice in Lewiston, Maine.  We offer:
  • Up to $200K in medical student loan repayment
  • $50K sign on bonus
  • Up to $12K moving allowance
  • 4 day work week/generous outpatient call
  • Healthy work/life balance
Central Maine affords easy access to the coast and mountains where you can enjoy four seasons of outdoor activities.  We have a growing arts and restaurant scene in a very safe affordable area to live and raise a family.  To join our growing team, contact Gina Mallozzi, Central Maine Medical Center, 300 Main Street, Lewiston, ME  04240.  Email:  MallozGi@cmhc.org; Fax: 207/344-0696; Call:  800/445-7431; or visit our website:  http://recruitment.cmmc.org/.
 
6/19/17
 
 

Part-time Clinical & Part-time Research Position in Central Maine

Central Maine Medical Center and Maine Research Associates seek a physician to work 50% in your specialty and 50% as medical director of its clinical research company.  

Central Maine Medical Center and Maine Research Associates seek a physician to work 50% in your specialty and 50% as medical director of its clinical research company.  Maine Research Associates is a full service clinical trial research center with certified coordinators, over 25 years of experience, and is physician led.  Central Maine Medical Center, located in Lewiston, is a 250 bed, Level II trauma center and is part of a three hospital system serving populations of western and central Maine.   
 
Qualified candidates will be BE/BC in your specialty.  Candidates will possess experience as a Principal Investigator on clinical trials and will understand the clinical research industry, institutional review boards (IRB’s), and the general regulatory requirements of safe & responsible clinical research. 
 
Interested candidates should contact Julia Lauver, CMMC, 300 Main Street, Lewiston, ME  04240.  Fax: 207/755-5854. Email: LauverJu@cmhc.org .  http://www.maineresearchassociates.com/  
https://www.cmmc.org/ 
 
6/5/17

Family Medicine Physician - Winthrop, ME

Winthrop Family Medicine in Winthrop, Maine is recruiting a Family Medicine Physician!

Winthrop Family Medicine in Winthrop, Maine is recruiting a Family Medicine Physician! We are a MaineGeneral Health hospital-owned outpatient practice with four MD/DOs, three NPs, a PA, and integrated behavioral health with an LSW and LCSW. We are one of the original practices in Maine’s Patient Centered Medical Home pilot. We deliver team-based care to a full range of patients spanning newborns to geriatrics, including two local nursing homes, home visits, osteopathic manipulation and functional medicine consultation. There are lab, imaging and physical therapy services on site. We also routinely teach and precept medical, nurse practitioner, physician assistant and medical assistant students. Our patients are admitted by the hospitalist team at MaineGeneral’s Alfond Center for Health, Maine's newest hospital, completed in November of 2013. There are 192 private rooms at the Augusta facility. Generous benefits package offered.

Contact Tiffiny Parker, Physician Recruiter, tiffiny.parker@mainegeneral.org

5/29/17

DO or MD Physician - Augusta, ME

Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency (MDFMR), a community of allopathic and osteopathic physicians in Augusta, Maine who love to teach, is seeking a DO or MD Physician to join our faculty.

Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency (MDFMR), a community of allopathic and osteopathic physicians in Augusta, Maine who love to teach, is seeking a DO or MD Physician to join our faculty. Come teach and practice family medicine in a community and hospital system where you will be well supported! Ideal candidate has strong clinical skills and a passion for teaching. Must be willing to practice in both inpatient and outpatient settings and practice of full spectrum family medicine is a plus. We are looking for an enthusiastic, flexible candidate dedicated to high quality patient care. Maine-Dartmouth Family Medicine Residency is a successful and innovative dually accredited, community based, thirty-resident program. MDFMR is a mission-driven organization that provides healthcare to patients of all ages, with an emphasis on underserved and rural people. Our graduates go on to practice in Maine and across the country. Generous benefits package offered. 

Contact Michelle Bragg, michelle.bragg@mainegeneral.org

5/29/17

Family Medicine Physician - Waterville, ME

Waterville Family Practice, a five provider private practice in downtown Waterville, Maine, is seeking a Family Medicine Physician to join the all outpatient practice.

Waterville Family Practice, a five provider private practice in downtown Waterville, Maine, is seeking a Family Medicine Physician to join the all outpatient practice. Enjoy the many advantages and flexibility of a private practice in a brand new facility. You will be joining three other doctors and two physician assistants with an option to remain an employee or buy-in and shared ownerships after 2-4 years. Practice the full scope of family practice without OB care with the support of exceptional specialists in the Waterville area. 

Contact jphelps@watervillefp.com or call 207-873-1185.

5/29/17