Maine Medicine Weekly Update - April 3, 2021
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Some Small Independent Physician Practices to Receive COVID Vaccines for Patients Next Week

Due to an anticipated increased supply of vaccines delivered to Maine next week, Maine CDC will start providing Johnson and Johnson COVID vaccine doses (Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine) to independent community-based physician offices next week.

 

Due to an anticipated increased supply of vaccines delivered to Maine next week, Maine CDC will start providing Johnson and Johnson COVID vaccine doses (Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine) to independent community-based physician offices next week. 

It is important to note that the process for ramping up vaccine delivery to smaller independent physician practices is dependent on vaccine availability throughout the state and the needs of targeting priority populations, among other factors. 

Why only J&J vaccine? 

Distributing the Johnson and Johnson COVID-19 vaccine affords community clinics greater advantages than Pfizer or Moderna. For example, it does not have the same storage requirements. J&J still does come with some constraints including a requirement that timely reporting is done for every patient that receives the vaccine within 72 hours. The CDC will urge clinicians to get the data in as quickly as possible, ideally within 24 hours rather than wait closer the 72-hour standard. 

That’s great! How can my independent practice be in line to receive J&J doses for our patients? 

· Have a COVID-19 vaccine provider agreement with the state. There are currently around 30 independent practices in queue that have an approved COVID-19 vaccine provider agreement with the Maine Immunization Program. 

· The Maine Immunization Program’s existing process is to send a weekly email to all locations with an approved COVID-19 provider agreement with the state that asks how much of a supply the practice can use over the next 7-day distribution period and how many patients can plausibly be immunized at any location. 

· Maine CDC then reviews all requests and cross references them with pressing areas of need throughout the state and allocates doses based on the supply received from the federal government. 

· The Maine Medical Association is currently working with Maine CDC in developing specific communications with practices under an active COVID-19 vaccine provider agreement and those that wish to be an approved COVID-19 vaccine provider. 

Maine COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Enrollment Webpage

CDC COVID-19 Vaccination Program Provider Agreement Application (PDF) 

COVID-19 Provider Enrollment Checklist (PDF) 

COVID-19 Vaccine Provider FAQ's (PDF) 

COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Education Training (PDF) 

*Disregard the application process if already have an approved COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Agreement 

*The COVID-19 Vaccine Provider Agreement is separate from the traditional Maine Immunization Program Provider Agreement application and approval process. 

Why can’t independent physician practices get more? 

Due to supply constraints, Maine CDC will first focus on community practices that can potentially fill pockets of need and located in areas with limited other vaccine opportunities. 

The state is also in the process of activating other COVID-19 vaccine policies targeting more specific high-risk populations using J&J supplies such as: 

· Patients being discharged from hospital inpatient, ED, or behavioral health units that may be at risk for readmission and bring COVID back into the hospital setting. 

· Patients discharged to long-term care settings and psychiatric hospitals. 

· Addressing prison vaccine outbreaks and medically vulnerable and non-ambulatory people in home care settings in their 70s and 80s. 

Of course, the goal is herd immunity, getting as close to 75% vaccinated in all communities. If we are at 80% in some places and 35% in some others with the summer tourist and recreation season in sight it won’t be enough for effective herd immunity. 

If my practice starts receiving vaccines from Maine CDC do we have to accept doses every week and/or are we then guaranteed to have consistent delivery week-to-week on an ongoing bases?

Receiving vaccine in one week is not a guarantee that you will receive more the following week or in subsequent weeks. However, practices may be self-determining with their requests and ask for doses in one week, pass the next week or for a few weeks, and then request more future doses depending on practice workflow and patient availability. 

What are some J&J vaccine specifics? 

The J&J vaccine comes in vials of 5 doses which need to be used within 2-hours after puncture. 

US FDA Information on J&J’s Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine including translation document of the Fact Sheet for recipients and caregivers. 

Johnson & Johnson Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine Fact Sheet for clinicians 

Johnson & Johnson Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine Fact Sheet for patients 

Frequently Asked Questions on the Janssen COVID-19 Vaccine 

Important Notes: 

· Deliveries to Maine by the federal government are increasing but we are still supply constrained. Not every practice that starts receiving vaccines will continue getting vaccines and some that continue receiving vaccines may not get the amount requested. Some flexibility will be expected. 

· Maine can expect variances in the number of J&J vaccines delivered in coming weeks. While the order for Maine next week is approximately 20,000 doses there may be much less in following weeks but will rise again as production increases. 

· If you have not done so already, and are interested in having a COVID-19 vaccine provider agreement approved by the Maine Immunization Program visit. 

It is important for the MMA to keep working closely on a consistent message with Maine CDC on vaccine distribution, administration, and education. The vaccines are critical, and we must be leaders in advocating for a continued strong demand for the vaccine by Maine people in order to get the lives of our patients back to a better sense of normalcy. 

MMA Leadership wishes to thank Governor Mills, her staff, Maine DHHS Commissioner Jeanne Lambrew and her staff, especially Maine CDC Director Nirav Shah, M.D. Special thanks are also in order to MMA President, Karen Saylor, M.D., and MMA Board Chair, Erik Steele, D.O., for their tireless efforts over the past few months for engaging state leaders in strongly advocating for their smaller independent community practice colleagues during the pandemic and beyond. The MMA’s got your back.

 

 

Committee Reconsiders, & Unanimously Votes Down Nursing Practice Bill

Late this week, the legislative committee holding LD 295, reconsidered a previous 6-6-1 vote and instead unanimously voted Ought Not to Pass a bill that would allow nurse practitioners in Maine to practice independently immediately after graduating from nurse practitioner school.

 

Late this week, the legislative committee holding LD 295, reconsidered a previous 6-6-1 vote and instead unanimously voted Ought Not to Pass a bill that would allow nurse practitioners in Maine to practice independently immediately after graduating from nurse practitioner school. 

The bill, proposed by Maine Nurse Practitioner Association would eliminate the following language from state law in Maine’s Nursing Practice Act: 

“A certified nurse practitioner who qualifies as an advanced practice registered nurse must practice, for at least 24 months, under the supervision of a licensed physician or a supervising nurse practitioner or must be employed by a clinic or hospital that has a medical director who is a licensed physician.  The certified nurse practitioner shall submit written evidence to the board upon completion of the required clinical experience.” 

The bill has been consistently covered in recent Maine Medicine Weekly Update E-newsletters:  

Urge Your State Legislators To Oppose The Elimination of Training for Nurse Practitioners (Feb 19) 

Committee Delays Debate on Bill to Eliminate Nurse Practitioner Training (Feb 26) 

CALL TO ACTION: Committee Strongly Considering Elimination of Nurse Practitioner Training (Mar 5) 

APRN Training & Supervision: “Laws are Like Sausages. Better Not to See Them Being Made” (Mar 12) 

Committee Holds Vote on Nursing Practice Bill (Mar 26) 

The bill sponsor, Representative Ann Perry, a retired Family Nurse Practitioner stated during this week’s committee work session on the bill that during her discussions with the Maine Nurse Practitioner Association that the prospects of three different versions from the previous 6-6-1 vote coming out of the committee was not a positive development  to take to the full Legislature. She then recommended the committee reconsider its previous vote and vote Ought Not to Pass. 

The MMA would like to thank each member of the Maine Legislature’s Joint Committee on Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Services for their tireless work representing their respective constituents and the people of Maine. Being an elected official is oftentimes a thankless job and they face many difficult and contentious issues covering a broad range of public policy. Their consideration of your comments and testimony was welcomed and we look forward to working with them on other important policy issues concerning the practice of medicine and care of your patients.

Thank you: 

CHAIR: Senator Heather Sanborn, Westbrook and part of Portland 

CHAIR: Representative Denise Tepler, Topsham 

Senator Stacy Brenner, Scarborough/Gorham 

Senator Trey Stewart, Numerous towns in Aroostook County 

Representative Poppy Arford, Brunswick 

Representative Mark Blier, Limington / Standish (Part) / Buxton (Part) / Limerick (Part)  

Representative Heidi Brooks, Lewiston 

Representative Jonathan Connor, Lewiston 

Representative Richard Evans, Atkinson/ Brownville/ Dover-Foxcroft/ Lake View/ Medford/ Milo/ Orneville Township  

Representative Kristi Mathieson, Kittery  

Representative Gina Melaragno, Auburn  

Representative Joshua Morris, Leeds/ Turner/ Livermore (Part)  

Representative Tracy Quint, Amity/ Bancroft/ Benedicta Township/ Cary/ Glenwood/ Haynesville/ Hodgdon/ Houlton/ Macwahoc/ Orient/ Reed/ Weston/ Molunkus Township/ Silver Ridge Township/ South Aroostook  

And a special thank you to the countless MMA members who reached out to their respective state representatives and state senators, including those not on the committee. It proved effective and was an impressive display of physician advocacy.  

For more detailed information on the bill, the process, the votes, or any other questions, comments, or concerns on this or any other legislative matter please reach out directly to MMA Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin at dmorin@mainemed.com or by phone at 207-480-4199

 

 

COVID-19 Pre-Registration & Appointment System Website: VaccinateME

If your patients are eligible or awaiting eligibility for vaccination in Maine, they may now pre-register to be notified when appointments are available at VaccinateME.Maine.gov. 

 

If your patients are eligible or awaiting eligibility for vaccination in Maine, they may now pre-register to be notified when appointments are available at VaccinateME.Maine.gov.    

They will be prompted to fill out a form with basic personal information (name, date of birth, county of residence) and they will need an email address. 

When a vaccination appointment becomes available, they will receive an email with a personal access code that allows them to look for available openings across a number of sites and schedule an appointment. 

Many vaccination sites, however, are still allowing patients to pre-register with them directly. For those patients without online access, or an email address, that need help getting information about pre-registering or scheduling an appointment, they can call the Maine COVID-19 Community Vaccination Line at 1-888-445-4111.

 

Maine Legislature “Adjourns” After Passing Two-Year State Budget; Committee Work Continues

The Maine Legislature passed the next two-year state budget this week mostly along party lines with only two of the 102 Democrats in the House and Senate voting against the process—not necessarily the budget itself. No Republican in either the House of the Senate voted for the new budget objecting to the process and lack of bipartisan agreement.

 

The Maine Legislature passed the next two-year state budget this week mostly along party lines with only two of the 102 Democrats in the House and Senate voting against the process—not necessarily the budget itself. No Republican in either the House of the Senate voted for the new budget objecting to the process and lack of bipartisan agreement. 

The ‘baseline’ biennial state budget, which covers state spending for two years starting July 1 of this year, was a passed late Wednesday. The Legislature than formally adjourned after voting to back for a Special Session on April 28 to finish taking up remaining legislation and possibly reconsider a Supplemental Budget to adjust the just passed state budget. Governor Mills quickly signed the budget into law. 

Despite formally ending the Regular Session, state legislative committee are continuing their work on remaining bills that will eventually be voted on when legislators return to Special Session in late April. 

More detailed analysis on the politics of recent legislative action concerning the state budget and the reasons for adjournment can be found in last week’s Maine Medicine Weekly Update: “Maine Legislative Calendar In Flux.” 

Please contact MMA Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin at dmorin@mainemed.com or by phone at 207-480-4199 for more information on MMA advocacy efforts, public hearing schedules, or bills and public policy issues of interest to you or your organization. 

Priority legislative updates on MMA issues of importance can also be found Facebook and Twitter

 

Maine Community Action Partnership is Working for a Successful Vaccine Roll Out for All

Maine Community Action Partnership (MeCAP) is working for a successful vaccine roll out for all, including the state’s most underserved residents. Joining forces with Maine CDC, DHHS and a broad coalition of community based organizations, MeCAP is meeting people where they are to “get shots in arms” as quickly and safely as possible.

 


Maine’s COVID-19 vaccine education is in high gear. Maine Community Action Partnership (MeCAP) is working for a successful vaccine roll out for all, including the state’s most underserved residents.  At the heart of MeCAP is a statewide network of community action agencies advocating a wide range of social services to improve the quality of life for Mainers. Joining forces with Maine CDC, DHHS and a broad coalition of community based organizations, MeCAP is meeting people where they are to “get shots in arms” as quickly and safely as possible.

If you are experiencing patients with hesitancy towards the COVID-19 vaccines, we have some updated research, education and messaging Please visit the https://mecap.org/vaxfax/ 

If you are interested in doing a pop-up clinic, please contact mleary@mecap.org 

If you are interested in having someone speak to your community, please contact mhannan@mecap.org 

If you’re interested in assistance with messaging, please contact erikagneaumann@gmail.com

 

Next MMA Legislative Call Will Be Wednesday, April 7th

MMA Legislative Committee Chair, Jay Mullen, M.D. welcomes you to participate in the weekly conference calls of the MMA Legislative Committee.

 

MMA Legislative Committee Chair, Jay Mullen, M.D. welcomes you to participate in the weekly conference calls of the MMA Legislative Committee. 

The purpose of the weekly conference calls is to discuss 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 actions of the week. The calls rarely last longer than an hour. 

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. 

The next MMA Legislative Committee weekly conference call for the First Regular Session of the 130th Maine Legislature will take place Wednesday, April 7, at 7:00 p.m. via Zoom. 

You may now join the meeting with your computer or continue to connect by phone only. Please use the following Zoom meeting information. This will remain the same for every weekly call during the session. 

Legislative Committee Weekly Update Apr 7, 2021 7:00 PM 

Join Zoom Meeting: https://zoom.us/j/92954551629?pwd=WUF1L3BkMHY5SW1iYzhGSjdscGN6dz09

Meeting ID: 929 5455 1629

Passcode: 2021 

Dial by your location: +1 646 876 9923 US (New York) 

Find your local number: https://zoom.us/u/adD6zd4sZG

A list of the bills to be discussed during the weekly call will be e-mailed to committee members and those interested early next week.  If you would like to be added to this e-mail list, please contact Sarah Lepoff at  slepoff@mainemed.com

New Maine AAP Educational Webinar Series

The Maine AAP is launching an educational webinar series beginning at the end of March until the first of June.

 

The Maine AAP is launching an educational webinar series beginning at the end of March until the first of June. 

Sessions, which will be held on select Tuesday and Thursday evenings from 7 - 8pm, cover a wide variety of topics and feature speakers from Maine and beyond. Visit the Maine AAP's event page to view the topics. 

The cost for access to the series with 12 hours of CME included is $95.  

Details:  https://www.maineaap.org/news/2021/pediatrics-in-maine-spring-2021-educational-series

 

 

PPE Available Through the MMA & ActionPPE

The Maine Medical Association is teaming with ActionPPE.org for access to PPE SUPPLIES for the safety of your patients, your staff, and communities!!

 

The Maine Medical Association is teaming with ActionPPE.org for access to PPE SUPPLIES for the safety of your patients, your staff, and communities!! 

ActionPPE.org is a nationwide organization started by a South Carolina county medical society president to help his colleagues get access to critical PPE supplies. It’s a nationwide platform of pooled resources to directly help physicians meet the needs of their practices and patients. 

Most importantly, ActionPPe.org is not just a source for PPE contacts but an actual ordering site with current and active distribution lines. You can place orders online and have them shipped directly to your offices. 

Product details and certificates the masks, gowns, face shields etc. are provided on the site. ORDER NOW! https://actionppe.org/3/mainemed/ 

Do not hesitate to contact Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin with any questions or more information at (207) 838-8613 call/text, or dmorin@mainemed.com

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                                             

A Message from Maine Responds: Volunteer Opportunity

By registering with Maine Responds at maineresponds.org, you will join our listing of volunteers against which we search for any emergent volunteer workforce needs.

 

 A Message from Maine Responds:

We appreciate all of the offers coming in to assist in Maine CDC's COVID-19 response.  By registering with Maine Responds at maineresponds.org, you will join our listing of volunteers against which we search for any emergent volunteer workforce needs. Read on for the details of joining both Maine Responds, and our more involved volunteer opportunities through Maine Medical Reserve Corps - members of both start with the same first step: register at maineresponds.org.

The Maine Responds Emergency Health Volunteer System is the online registration system for public health, healthcare and emergency response volunteers for the State of Maine.

Maine Responds is a partnership that integrates local, regional, and statewide volunteer resources to assist our public health and healthcare systems. It is part of a national initiative to train, coordinate, and mobilize volunteers during an emergency. Maine Responds coordinates verified, pre-credentialed public health, healthcare and emergency response volunteers into a single database that can coordinate the need for volunteers across county, regional and state lines if needed.

Maine Medical Reserve Corps (MRC) volunteer programs reinforce our state's public health infrastructure and support low stress/no-fault exercise environments that test critical response capabilities.  Members of both Maine Responds and MRC start with the same first step: register at maineresponds.org. You will be able to select your local MRC unit in the drop-down menu under the "Organizations" section of the registration - refer to this link to determine your Public Health District(s).  Maine Responds ESAR-VHP is our volunteer communication and activation system.

Contact: Edward Molleo  edward.f.molleo@maine.gov

Public Health Emergency Preparedness
Department of Health and Human Services
Maine Center for Disease Control and Prevention

Maine Legislature Week 12 Update

The following is a summary of happenings during week 12 of the Maine Legislature.

 

Weekly Update

Week 12: 3/29-4/1

Veterans and Legal Affairs

On Monday the public hearing for LD 605, An Act To Amend the Marijuana Legalization Act, commenced. The bill went to hearing despite being a concept draft. Hearing from the sponsor of the bill, Representative Pierce, we learned the bill would work to combined the adult and medical market. Many voiced their opposition to this point, noting that it would not benefit either market.

Health Coverage, Insurance, and Financial Services

A public hearing for LD 603, An Act Regarding the Practice of Pharmacy, was held on Thursday.  The bill seeks to add an undefined amount of healthcare services the duties that pharmacists are able to perform. The bill had wide support from pharmacists and will be having a work session soon.

LD 998, An Act to Amend the Continuing Education Requirement for Pharmacists, was heard in the same session. The bill would remove the requirement of two hours of continuing education for all pharmacists who do not administer drugs; it was met with support from MaineHealth.

Judiciary

On Thursday, the Committee held a public hearing on LD 778. The bill would amend statute to allow for electronic submissions through a portal for reporting child abuse, and would be expanded to include school personnel. The bill was supported without opposition and will move to a work session.

Later that day, the Committee held a work session on LD 642 that brought much debate. The bill, An Act to Ensure That Children Receive Behavioral Health Services, was amended by the sponsor during the public hearing, so there was some confusion as to whether written testimony spoke to the bill as written or to the amendment. The big question was whether one parent should be allowed to ensure that their children are able to access behavioral health services if the other parent disagrees, or if those services should be only allowed with permission from both parents. In the end, the Committee voted Ought to Pass as Amended 7-5.

State and Local Government

On Monday, LD 729 was heard among many other bills relating to States of Emergency and ensuring that the Legislative branch retains as much power as the Executive branch. LD 729, an Act to Provide Transparency Regarding State Contracts during a State of Emergency, had some support, but toward the end of the hearing was declared to be redundant by a government worker. Each year, 5,000 contracts are reviewed and put on a publicly accessible website, making LD 729 superfluous.

Health and Human Services

On Thursday, the Health and Human Services heard five bills of interest. The first, LD 739, An Act Regarding Credible Allegations of Fraud by MaineCare Providers, would change the language from “fraud occurred to “an allegation of fraud as been established”. The bill was a response to a fraud case filed on a foster home that housed several people with disabilities. The DHHS withheld funding from the home and left the inhabitants without services. There was a question from the committee and others who testified if this bill would work to solve this problem. Concern was raised that the change in language may harm the services further.

LD 376, Resolve, To Increase Certain Chiropractic Reimbursement Rates under the MaineCare Program, would increase the MaineCare reimbursement rate for Chiropractic services to 70% of the Medicaid reimbursement rate. Those testifying noted rates for Chiropractors have not been increased for 21 years. This bill would work to increase those who accept MaineCare and allow for Chiropractors to continue to practice.

LD 784, An Act To Amend the Law Governing Approval Authority over and Oversight of Certified Nursing Assistant Educational Programs, would work to address the Certified Nursing Assitant shortage in Maine. Current law requires that any facility that provides a CNA training program must prove there are no other training institutions and receive oversight from the Adult Education Program. This bill would rid of this requirement, making it easier for the facilities to train in accordance with their staffing and time requirements.

LD 1064, An Act To Advance Palliative Care Utilization in the State, directs the DHHS to provide reimbursement for palliative care and to adopt rules using the National Coalition for Hospice and Palliative Care Clinical Practice Guidelines for Quality Palliative care to ensure an evidence-based foundation for reimbursement. Northern Light Health’s Lisa Harvey-McPherson helped to create an amendment that would include a definition of palliative care from the existing statute, an establishment of a reimbursement rate and directs stakeholders to provide education on palliative care. 

On Friday the Committee voted on LD 118, An Act To Address Maine's Shortage of Behavioral Health Services for Minors. The committee spent time addressing the need for data in response to the report recently released by the DHHS regarding children with behavioral health needs in the Emergency Department. Representative McCreight held that while the data the DHHS released is commendable and useful, we still need to have a larger picture and understanding so we can take action to solve this problem. After an hour and a half work session, the committee voted to table the bill for a later discussion.

Public hearings for LD 432, Resolve, To Improve Behavioral Health Care for Children, and LD 783, An Act Regarding the Membership of the Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner Advisory Board, were also held on Friday. LD 432 would work to reimburse for additional collateral contacts for children’s home and community-based treatment so services provided to children (i.e. medical and educational) can work on the same approach and maximize services. The bill was met only with support. LD 783, An Act Regarding the Membership of the Sexual Assault Forensic Examiner Advisory Board, would add to the board an additional sexual assault nurse examiner (2 in total), a representative of law enforcement, and change one member from the State Board of Nursing to one member representing a school of nursing. This was also only met with support. 

 

Newly Introduced Bills in the Maine Legislature Between March 12 and March 30

For more detailed information on these bills, please reach out directly to MMA Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin at mailto:danmorin@mainemed.com.

 

LD 1049 Resolve, To Promote the Education of Students Who Participate in Sex Education Classes Regarding Common Cancer Symptoms, the Bone Marrow Registry and Organ Donation 

LD 1052 An Act To Protect the Firearm Use and Possession Rights of Maine Citizens during an Emergency 

One-liner: Declares that the transport, storage, sale and transfer and other activities involving firearms, ammunition and components and accessories are considered essential business and services during a state of emergency declared by the Governor and prohibits the regulation, curtailment, seizure or other actions to restrict otherwise lawfully owned and possess firearms, ammunition and related components and accessors and related activities during a state of Emergency. 

LD 1059 An Act To Provide Substance Use Disorder Treatment to Adolescents—HHS 

CONCEPT DRAFT: Would require the DHHS to work with stakeholders to develop and fund a continuum of evidence-based treatment services for adolescents affected by substance use disorder. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:00 AM 

LD 1064 An Act To Advance Palliative Care Utilization in the State—HHS 

One-liner: Directs the DHHS to provide reimbursement under the MaineCare program for palliative care for the entire interdisciplinary team as appropriate to the plan of care, regardless of setting, including hospitals, nursing homes, outpatient clinics and home care providers; and requires the department to adopt rules that support and standardize the delivery of palliative care in the State. 

·         (PH) Thursday, April 1, 2021 12:00 PM 

LD 1068 An Act To Restrict Access to Weapons Pursuant to Court Order in Cases of Harassment—JUD 

One-liner: Allows a court, in a protection from harassment order,  to direct a defendant not to possess a firearm, muzzle-loading firearm, bow, crossbow, or other dangerous weapon for the duration of the order. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 6, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1070 An Act To Make Assault on a Person 50 Years of Age or Older with a Preexisting Serious Medical Condition a Class C Crime—CJPS 

One-liner: Makes an assault on a person who is 50 years of age or older with a preexisting serious medical conditions a Class C crime. 

·         (PH) Monday, April 5, 2021 1:00 PM 

LD 1077 Resolve, To Promote Equity in COVID-19 Immunizations 

One-liner: (EMERGENCY) 1. Implements an outreach and education program, using existing resources, that is tailored to reach rural populations and historically vulnerably populations with information about where and ow to receive a COVID-19 vaccine, vaccine safety and prevention; 2. amends rules in Ch. 101 of MaineCare Benefits Manual to provide the activities associated with the administration of COVID-19 vaccines under the MaineCare program are reimbursed to the maximum extends allowable under federal law; 3. to report to the Joint Standing Committee of HHS on the progress the State is making in vaccinating state residents with COVID-19 vaccines beginning 7 days after the effective date of this legislation and every 6 weeks thereafter. 

LD 1080 Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Update the Rights of Recipients of Mental Health Services—HHS 

One-liner: Directs the DHHS to update the rights of recipients of mental health services regarding treatment, the delivery structure and entities that oversee the safe and effective delivery of mental health services, including to align the rights with contractual agreements with service providers. 

·         (PH) Wednesday, April 7, 2021 2:00 PM 

LD 1082 An Act To Improve Educational Opportunities by Exempting Children Who Attend Virtual Public Charter Schools from Immunization Requirements and Expanding Enrollment at Virtual Public Charter Schools—EDU 

LD 1085 An Act Relating to the Use of Genetic Information for Insurance Purposes—HCIFS 

One-liner: Repeals current law prohibiting discrimination by insurers on the basis of genetic information or testing and enacts a providing prohibiting (1/1/2022) insurers that issue individual or group hospital, health or dental insurance or life, credit life, disability, long-term-care, accidental injury, specified disease, hospital indemnity or credit accident insurance or annuities from canceling, limiting or denying coverage or establishing differentials in premium rates based on genetic information under certain circumstances and prohibiting such insurers from requesting, requiring, purchasing or otherwise soliciting genetic information in any manner for any insurance purpose. 

·         (PH) Wednesday, April 7, 2021 1:30 PM 

LD 1107 An Act To Create Needed Broadband Infrastructure in Rural Maine through the Establishment of a Satellite-based Broadband Grant Program 

One-liner: Establishes a satellite-based broadband grant program by the Public Utilities Commission, to provide grants of up to $500 to individuals for installation costs and other advance costs associated with the initial acquisition of broadband access from a satellite-based broadband provider. Grant priority is to be given to applicants from unserved or underserved areas of the State. Funding: One-time SGF of $1,000,000. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:00 AM 

LD 1108 An Act To Promote Legislative Oversight of Federal COVID-19 Relief Funds 

One-liner: This bill requires that an expenditure proposed by the Governor from discretionary funds not otherwise earmarked for use by the State that are received directly by the State from the Federal Government due to the COVID-19 pandemic following the effective date of this Act must be approved by a majority vote of both houses of the Legislature. 

LD 1113 Resolve, To Direct the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations To Study and Propose Solutions to Disparities in Access to Prenatal Care in the State 

One-liner: Directs the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations to study disparities in access to prenatal care in the State. It authorizes the commission to submit legislation that serves to create equity in access to prenatal care in the State to the Second Regular Session of the 130th Legislature and allows the members of the commission to be reimbursed for their expenses incurred in this work. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:00 AM

LD 1115 An Act To Improve Access to HIV Prevention Medications—HCIFS 

The bill requires that any drug formulary used in the MaineCare program must ensure that HIV prevention drugs are available to members covered by MaineCare. 

Requires health insurance carriers to provide coverage for an enrollee for HIV prevention drugs that have been determined to be medically necessary by a health care provider. A carrier is not required to cover a preexposure prophylaxis drug, also known as PrEP, more than a 60-day supply to a single enrollee every 2 years. 

If the FDA has approved one or more therapeutic equivalents of an HIV prevention drug, a carrier is not required to cover all the therapeutically equivalent drugs as long as the carrier covers at least one therapeutically equivalent drug at the tier with the lowest cost-sharing requirement on the carrier's prescription drug formulary. 

The bill also prohibits a carrier from imposing prior authorization or step therapy requirements on any HIV prevention drug, except that, if the FDA has approved one or more therapeutic equivalents of an HIV prevention drug, a carrier is required to cover at least one therapeutically equivalent drug without prior authorization or step therapy requirements. 

The bill's requirements regarding health insurance carriers apply to health plans issued or renewed on or after January 1, 2022. 

The bill also authorizes a pharmacist to dispense HIV prevention drugs under certain conditions without a prescription subject to rules for dispensing and protocols adopted by the Maine Board of Pharmacy. 

·         (PH) Thursday, April 8, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1117 An Act To Prevent Excessive Prices for Prescription Drugs—HCIFS 

One-liner: This bill prohibits excessive price increases for generic and off-patent prescription drugs sold in this State. The bill makes prescription drug manufacturers who violate the provisions subject to enforcement action by the Attorney General. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 13, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1118 An Act To Promote Reliable Rural High-speed Internet 

One-liner: This bill provides an income tax credit for high-speed Internet service providers who engage in a project approved by the Commissioner of Economic and Community Development that provides high-speed Internet service where the average number of potential customers per mile does not exceed 20 and the cost to the customers does not exceed the Consumer Price Index cost for high-speed Internet service in a metropolitan area. 

LD 1135 An Act Regarding Substance Use Disorder Treatment Services and Increasing Reimbursement Rates for Those Services—HHS 

One-liner: This bill codifies substance use disorder treatments to comply with trauma-informed principles of care according to the US DHHS SAMHSA. Also requires Maine DHHS MaineCare Chapter 101 rule, Section 65, Behavioral Health Services, to increase reimbursement for substance use disorder outpatient services by 25%; it also requires a 25% increase in reimbursement for services under Section 97, Private Non-Medical Institution Services, Appendix B, Principles of Reimbursement for Substance Abuse Treatment Facilities, except for detoxification services, and requires the methodology for reimbursement for detoxification services to be cost-based. 

The bill also requires the department to amend Section 97 rules, Private Non-Medical Institution Services, to change the limitations on the number of days for certain residential treatment services. 

·         (PH) Tuesday, April 6, 2021 9:00 AM 

LD 1136 An Act To Promote Fairness in Income Tax Rates by Making Them More Progressive—TAX 

One-liner: This bill changes the individual income tax brackets to provide 4 brackets rather than 3. Adds a new bracket of 10.15% on taxable income exceeding $100,000 for single individuals and married persons filing separately, $150,000 for heads of households and $200,000 for individuals filing married joint returns and surviving spouses. 

LD 1140 An Act To Establish a Sales Tax Exemption for the Purchase of Firearm Safety Devices—TAX 

One-liner: Establishes a sales tax exemption for a safe, lockbox, trigger lock or barrel lock that is specifically designed for securing firearms. 

LD 1144 An Act To Amend the Law Regarding Advance Health Care Directives—JUD 

One-liner: A written individual instruction, advance health care directive or power of attorney for health care may be signed in the principal's conscious presence by another individual directed by the principal to sign the principal's name. 

An individual appearing via telecommunication who is able to verify or recognize the identity of the principal and assess the principal's capacity is considered to be in the principal's conscious presence. If necessary due to infectious disease protocols or other health concerns, an individual outside a hospital room where the patient who is the principal is located or in a location near the patient who is the principal is also considered to be in the principal's conscious presence if the individual can verify or recognize the identity of the principal and assess the principal's capacity. 

A witness may also appear via telecommunication if that witness is able to verify or recognize the identity of the principal and assess the principal's capacity. If necessary due to infectious disease protocols or other health concerns, an individual outside a hospital room where the patient is located or in a location near the patient may also act as a witness, if that witness is able to verify or recognize the patient's identity and assess the patient's capacity. 

LD 1147 Resolve, To Enhance Access to Medication Management for Individuals with Serious and Persistent Mental Illness—HHS 

One-liner: 25% rate increase for the medication management services MaineCare Section 65, Behavioral Health Services, and requires ME DHHS to amend its rules governing medication management services to respond to the increased demand and complexity of the need. The resolve also includes an appropriations and allocations section to reflect the cost of these changes. $3 million SGF over biennial ($5.4 federal funding). 

·         (PH) Monday, April 12, 2021 1:00 PM 

LD 1151 An Act To Lower Out-of-pocket Prescription Medicine Costs by Requiring Health Insurers To Offer Plans with No Deductibles—HCIFS 

One-liner: This bill requires carriers offering individual and group health plans in Maine to make available at least 50% of health plans in each market segment without deductibles for prescription drugs covered under those health plans. The bill also clarifies the treatment of copayments and coinsurance for prescription drugs under these plans. The requirements of the bill apply to plan years beginning on or after January 1, 2022. 

·         (PH) Thursday, April 8, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1158 An Act Regarding the Application of Certain Pesticides for Nonagricultural Use—ACF 

One-liner: This bill prohibits the use of persistent synthetic pesticides except pesticides that are used in the production of agricultural products. Directs the commissioner of ACF to convene a working group to review the composition of the Board of Pesticides Control with respect to whether the board equitably represents public, environmental and industry interests and to identify whether the service of any of the board members gives the appearance of a financial conflict of interest. The commissioner is required to report to the Committee on ACF with findings and recommendations. 

·         Tuesday, April 13, 2021 9:00 AM 

LD 1173 Resolve, To Develop a Plan To Treat in Maine Those Children with Behavioral Health Needs Currently Treated Outside the State—HHS 

One-liner: Requires DHHS to submit to the HHS Committee within 30 days after this legislation takes effect, a plan for implementing Resolve 2019, chapter 54. The law requires the department to coordinate with families of children who are receiving residential treatment services for behavioral health issues outside the State to develop plans to bring the children back to the State to receive the required services that would be received under MaineCare Section 97, Private Non-Medical Institution Services. Chapter 54 also requires the department to negotiate related reimbursement rates in order to provide services to the children. 

·         (PH) Wednesday, April 7, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1177 An Act To Increase Access to Intranasal Naloxone Hydrochloride for Syringe Services Programs 

One-liner: This bill allows hypodermic apparatus exchange programs and overdose prevention programs to distribute intranasal naloxone hydrochloride through vending machines in accordance with rules adopted by the Department of Health and Human Services. 

LD 1190 An Act To Support the Provision of Universal, Affordable Broadband Internet 

Concept draft proposes to enact measures to support the provision of universal, affordable broadband Internet. 

LD 1194 An Act To Reduce Health Care Worker Shortages 

One-liner: Makes permanent the authorization for licensing out-of-state and recently retired doctors, physician assistants and nurses that was provided through executive order during the declared state of civil emergency related to COVID-19. The bill also expands the scope of health care services that can be provided though telehealth to include the use of audio-only telephone. 

LD 1196 An Act Regarding Targets for Health Plan Investments in Primary Care and Behavioral Health—HCIFS 

One-liner: Requires health carriers to meet certain targets for investment and spending in primary care and behavioral health care beginning in plan year 2023 and through plan year 2026. Overall spending may not increase to meet the targets. 

The bill establishes a benchmark for combined spending in primary care and behavioral health care as a percentage of overall health spending. The benchmark is indexed to the median amount spent by carriers on primary care and behavioral health care for plan year 2019. The bill requires carriers to increase relative spending in these areas by at least 2% per year if spending is less than or equal to the median and at least 1% per year if spending is above the median. 

Beginning in plan year 2027, carriers are required to maintain, at a minimum, the total combined spending on primary care and behavioral health care achieved in plan year 2026. 

The bill prohibits the Superintendent of Insurance from approving health insurance rates filed by a carrier unless the carrier demonstrates that the targets have been met. The bill also authorizes a carrier to meet the spending targets by supplemental payments focused on primary care and behavioral health care. 

The bill also requires the MaineCare program and the state employee health plan to meet the same targets beginning in 2023. 

·         (PH) Thursday, April 15, 2021 10:00 AM 

LD 1226 Resolve, Directing the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations To Examine Restorative Justice 

One-liner: Directs the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations to conduct a review of proposed and passed national restorative justice legislation and make recommendations in the areas of education, juvenile justice, adult diversion, and correctional settings for advancing restorative justice legislation in this State. The commission is authorized to submit legislation based on its recommendations to the Second Regular Session of the 130th Legislature. 

LD 1229 An Act To Require Certain Medical Providers To Administer Ultrasounds and Provide Information to Certain Pregnant Patients—JUD 

One-liner: Requires a health care professional to ensure that a pregnant woman undergoes an ultrasound and receives information about alternatives to abortion, including parenting the child, at least 48 hours before she can have an abortion. The existence of a medical emergency eliminates the 48-hour waiting period. 

·         (PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 1:00 PM 

LD 1235 An Act To Authorize a General Fund Bond Issue To Connect Maine with a World-class Internet Infrastructure 

One-Liner: Provides funds of $100,000,000 for world-class affordable high-speed internet infrastructure that will reach 98% of homes and businesses in the State within 5 years. *AARP Tweet

LD 1256, An Act Requiring Climate Impact Notes on Proposed Legislation and Agency Rules

One-liner: Requires a climate impact note on every rule proposed by a state agency and on all legislation that would have an apparent significant climate impact if implemented.

LD 1262, Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Develop a Comprehensive Statewide Strategic Plan To Serve Maine People with Behavioral Health Needs throughout Their Lifespans

One-Liner: Directs the DHHS, including the department’s Office of Child and Family Services, office of behavioral health and office of aging and disability services, and a variety of other interested parties and stakeholders, to develop a vision and comprehensive statewide strategic plan to serve people in the State with behavioral health needs throughout their lifespans.

(PH) Monday, April 12, 2021 1:00 PM

LD 1266, An Act To Improve the Value of Dental Insurance

(PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 11:00 AM

LD 1268 An Act To Provide Greater Access to Treatment for Serious Mental Illness by Prohibiting an Insurance Carrier from Requiring Prior Authorization or Step Therapy Protocol

One-liner: Prohibits an insurance carrier from requiring prior authorization or step therapy protocol for the prescription of medication to assess or treat an enrollee's serious mental illness.

Note: "serious mental illness" means a mental disorder, as defined in the most recent edition of the DSM of Mental Disorders that results in serious functional impairment that substantially interferes with or limits one or more major life activities.

(PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 11:00 AM

LD 1281, An Act To Prohibit Discriminatory Practices in Certain Health Insurance Policies—HCIFS

One-Liner: Establishes rating practices for employee benefit excess insurance, including maximum rate differentials for age, group size and tobacco use and requires the Superintendent of Insurance to hold a hearing if the superintendent finds that a filing does not meet the requirement that rates not be excessive, inadequate or discriminatory or that is violating a prohibited trade practice or is fraudulent and establishes the procedure and consequences for the hearing.

(PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 11:00 AM

LD 1282, An Act To Prevent Underage Tobacco and Nicotine Access and Use—HHS

One-Liner: Amends the law governing the age-verification requirement for sales of tobacco products and establishes limits on the number of electronic nicotine delivery devices and nicotine liquid containers that may be sold in a single transaction.

(PH) Thursday, April 15, 2021 10:00 AM

LD 1286, Resolve, Directing the Department of Public Safety To Apply for an Exemption from Background Checks for Holders of Concealed Weapons Permits

One-Liner: Directs the Department of Public Safety to apply to the United States Department of Justice, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives for an exemption from background checks under the national instant criminal background check system for holders of concealed weapons permits when purchasing a firearm.

LD 1290, An Act To Amend the Statement of Purpose of the Maine Emergency Medical Services Act of 1982 To Include Emergency Responses That Do Not Require Transportation

One-Liner: Amends the statutory purpose of the Maine Emergency Medical Services Act of 1982 to provide that the treatment and non-transport of the sick and injured is a key element of an emergency medical services system.

LD 1292, An Act Regarding the Parental Right To Direct the Health Care of Children

One-Liner: Requires the DHHS to obtain permission from a parent or guardian before placing an infected minor in isolation during a public health emergency and prohibits physical examinations, surgical procedures, vaccine administrations, and drug prescriptions for a minor with parent or guardian permission as well as physician’s orders not to resuscitate, to withhold an artificial life-sustaining procedure or to withhold artificial nutrition or hydration.

LD 1293, An Act To Improve Access to Certain Injectable Medications for Treatment of Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorder

One-Liner: Permits pharmacists licenses within the State to administer to adults injections of drugs approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for the treatment of mental illness and substance use disorder upon the order of a licensed practitioner or as part of a collaborative practice agreement.

(PH) Thursday, April 15, 2021 10:00 AM

LD 1297, An Act To Provide Educational Opportunities for Family Members of Deceased Veterans, First Responders and Health Care Workers

LD 1298 An Act To Provide Funds for Community-based Substance Use Disorder Treatment and Recovery Services and To Reduce by Half the Funding for the Maine Drug Enforcement Agency

One-Liner; Provides funding for community-based substance use disorder treatment and recovery services by reducing by ½ the funding for the Department of Public Safety, Maine Drug Enforcement Agency

LD 1301 An Act To Support Transitional Housing for Persons Experiencing Abuse, Dangerous Living Conditions, Economic Insecurity Due to Divorce or Separation, Chronic Homelessness, Substance Use Disorder or Mental Disorders

One-Liner; Directs the DHHS to coordinate and arrange for transitional housing and services including jobs training and health care services for persons in need of transitional housing, including those experiencing abuse, dangerous living conditions, economic insecurity due to divorce or separation, chronic homelessness, substance use disorder or mental disorders, including post-traumatic stress disorder, in every county of the State of by region of all counties are a provider for. It also provides an ongoing appropriation of $8,000,000 beginning in the fiscal year 2022-23

LD 1302, Resolve, To Change the Educational Requirements of Certain Behavioral Health Professionals

LD 1306, An Act To Include Crisis Response Services in Emergency Services Offered through the E-9-1-1 System

One-liner: Amends law regulating the provision of emergency services under the State's E-9-1-1 system by including crisis response services as part of those emergency services to be offered to individuals experiencing mental health emergencies, emergencies relating to a substance use disorder or other emergencies for which fire, emergency medical or police services are determined not to be required.

NOTE: It also directs the Public Utilities Commission, Emergency Medical Services Communications Bureau to develop protocols and procedures necessary to ensure the efficient dispatch of such crisis response under E-9-1-1.

LD 1309, An Act To Address Systemic Racism and Improve Economic Prosperity

One-Liner: CONCEPT DRAFT

LD 1314, An Act To Require Dispatch Units To Employ a Person with a Social Work Background

One-Liner: Requires public safety answering points receiving 9-1-1 calls to determine whether a 9-1-1 call requires dispatch of social work services or other emergency or law enforcement services.

LD 1315, An Act To Protect Firearm Use and Possession Rights during a State of Emergency and Require a Two-thirds Vote by the Legislative Council To Declare or Extend a State of Emergency

One-Liner: Declares that the transport, storage, sale and transfer of and other activities involving firearms, ammunition and components and accessories are considered essential businesses and services during a state of emergency declared by the Governor and prohibits the regulation, curtailment, seizure, or other actions to restrict otherwise lawfully owned and possessed firearms, ammunition and related components and accessories and related activities during a state of emergency

LD 1317, An Act To Regulate Insurance Carrier Concurrent, Prepayment and Postpayment Review

(PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 11:00 AM; HCIFS

LD 1327, An Act To Create the Maine Health Care Provider Loan Repayment Program

One-Liner: Creates a new loan repayment program for health care providers who agree to live and work in the State for a minimum of 5 years; under the program, the authority will pay up to $30,000 per year and the less of $150,000 in aggregate and 50% of the recipient’s outstanding loan balance.

LD 1331, An Act To Make Individual and Small Group Health Insurance More Affordable in Certain High-premium Counties

One-Liner; Reduces the maximum rating factor for geographic areas that may be used by carriers to determine individual and small group health insurance premiums to 1.35 plan year 2023 and to 1.25 for plan year 2024 and thereafter.

(PH) Wednesday, April 14, 2021 11:00 AM

LD 1333, An Act Concerning the Dispensation of Naloxone Hydrochloride by Emergency Medical Services Providers

One-Liner: Authorizes emergency medical services persons, ambulance services and nontransporting emergency medical services to administer trans nasal naloxone hydrochloride if they have received medical training in accordance with protocols adopted by the Medical Direction and Practices Board.

LD 1335, An Act To Provide for Exemption from the Sales Tax for Basic Needs Products and Offset the Loss of Revenue

One-liner: Amends the definition of "grocery staples" to include toilet paper, diapers or menstrual products, effective August 1, 2022 and requires state to study any sales tax revenue lost by classifying the products as grocery staples and therefore exempt from sales tax.

LD 1341, An Act To Protect Medicare Beneficiaries from Surprise Medical Billing—HCIFS

One-Liner: Prohibits physicians from balance billing Medicare beneficiaries for any amount in excess of the reasonable charge for a service, procedure or treatment paid to that physician under the Medicare program.

(PH) Thursday, April 15, 2021 10:00 AM

LD 1344, An Act To Clarify the Authority of the Department of Health and Human Services during a Public Health Emergency

For more detailed information on these bills, the process, the votes, or any other questions, comments, or concerns on this or any other legislative matter please reach out directly to MMA Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin at mailto:danmorin@mainemed.com or by phone at 207-480-4199.

 

Maine Legislature Public Hearings and Work Sessions

The following bills of interest to MMA’s Legislative Committee are scheduled for public hearings, committee discussions (work sessions), and potential votes over the next two weeks.

 

The following bills of interest to MMA’s Legislative Committee are scheduled for public hearings, committee discussions (work sessions), and potential votes over the next two weeks. 

(PH) = Public Hearing (WS) = Work Session 

Week of April 5 – April 9 

Monday, April 5, 2021 

1:00 PM— Education and Cultural Affairs– PH 

LD 429, An Act To Protect the Health of Students and Educators by Requiring the Establishment of Health and Safety Committees in School Administrative Units 

1:00 PM— Criminal Justice and Public Safety– PH 

LD 1070 An Act To Make Assault on a Person 50 Years of Age or Older with a Preexisting Serious Medical Condition a Class C Crime 

Tuesday, April 6, 2021 

9:00 AM— Energy, Utilities and Technology – PH 

LD 848 An Act To Increase High-speed Internet In Rural Maine 

LD 933 An Act To Facilitate the Expansion of Broadband to Unserved Areas of the State 

LD 1107 An Act To Create Needed Broadband Infrastructure in Rural Maine through the Establishment of a Satellite-based Broadband Grant Program

9:00 AM— Health and Human Services – PH 

LD 979 An Act To Expand Maine's School-based Health Centers-MD 

LD 1059 An Act To Provide Substance Use Disorder Treatment to Adolescents 

LD 1113 Resolve, To Direct the Permanent Commission on the Status of Racial, Indigenous and Maine Tribal Populations To Study and Propose Solutions to Disparities in Access to Prenatal Care in the State 

LD 1135 An Act Regarding Substance Use Disorder Treatment Services and Increasing Reimbursement Rates for Those Services 

9:30 AM—IDEA and Business – PH 

LD 804 An Act To Require Notice for Orthopedic Medical Device Recalls 

10:00 AM— Health and Human Services – PH 

LD 964 An Act To Expand Access to Certified Substance Use Disorder Recovery Residence Services 

10:00 AM— Judiciary – PH 

LD 1068 An Act To Restrict Access to Weapons Pursuant to Court Order in Cases of Harassment 

10:30 PM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs– PH 

5 bills seeking to either eliminate or amend Maine’s Certificate of Need Process 

LD 927 

LD 931 

LD 932 

LD 935 

LD 1004 

2:00 PM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs – WS 

LD 790 An Act Clarifying Patient Consent for Certain Medical Examination 

LD 945 An Act Regarding Notice by Health Insurance Carriers of Policy Changes 

Wednesday, April 7, 2021 

10:00 AM— Health and Human Services – PH 

LD 1173 Resolve, To Develop a Plan To Treat in Maine Those Children with Behavioral Health Needs Currently Treated Outside the State 

1:00 PM— Judiciary – WS 

LD 402, An Act To Protect an Individual's Personal Data (Note: immunizations

LD 627, An Act Relating to the Statute of Limitations for Injuries or Harm Resulting from Perfluoroalkyl and Polyfluoroalkyl Substances 

1:30 PM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs – PH

LD 1085 An Act Relating to the Use of Genetic Information for Insurance Purposes 

2:00 PM— Health and Human Services - PH 

LD 1009 Resolve, To Create a Health Care Ombudsman Position To Serve in Maine's County Jails 

LD 972 An Act To Establish the Rare Disease Advisory Council 

Thursday, April 8, 2021 

9:30— IDEA and Business – PH 

LD 942 An Act To Waive Professional and Occupational Licensing Fees for Calendar Year 2020 

10:00 AM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs - PH 

LD 1115 An Act To Improve Access to HIV Prevention Medications 

LD 1151 An Act To Lower Out-of-pocket Prescription Medicine Costs by Requiring Health Insurers To Offer Plans with No Deductibles 

10:00 AM— Health and Human Services - PH 

LD 819 An Act To Reduce Lung Cancer Rates in Maine by Requiring Testing for and Mitigation of Radon in Residential Buildings by Landlords 

2:00 PM— Judiciary – PH 

LD 747 An Act Regarding Civil Mental Health Evaluations of Former Criminal Defendants 

LD 785 An Act to Change the Standard for Assessing Risk of Serious Harm 

LD 861 Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services to Contract for Assessments for Involuntary Hospitalizations 

LD 868 An Act To Provide Consistency Regarding Persons Authorized To Conduct Examinations for Emergency Involuntary Commitment and Post-admission Examinations 

LD 869 Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Review the Progressive Treatment Program and Processes by Which a Person May Be Involuntarily Admitted to a Psychiatric Hospital or Receive Court-ordered Community Treatment 

Friday, April 9, 2021 

9:00 AM— Health and Human Services – WS 

LD 595, Resolve, To Ensure That Access to Oral and Facial Ambulatory Surgical Centers in Maine Remains Viable 

LD 674 - An Act to Support Early Intervention and Treatment of Psychotic Disorders 

1:00 PM— Criminal Justice and Public Safety – PH 

LD 769 An Act To Increase the Availability of Mental Health Services for a Defendant Who Has Been Found Incompetent To Stand Trial 

Week of April 12 – April 16 

Monday, April 12, 2021 

1:00 PM— Health and Human Services – PH 

LD 968 Resolve, To Expand Mental Health Crisis Intervention Mobile Response Services 

LD 1147 Resolve, To Enhance Access to Medication Management for Individuals with Serious and Persistent Mental Illness 

LD 1262, Resolve, Directing the Department of Health and Human Services To Develop a Comprehensive Statewide Strategic Plan To Serve Maine People with Behavioral Health Needs throughout Their Lifespans 

Tuesday, April 13, 2021 

10:00 AM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs - PH 

LD 120 An Act To Lower Health Care Costs through the Establishment of the Office of Affordable Health Care 

LD 673 - An Act to Create the Insulin Safety Net Program 

LD 675 - An Act to Protect Maine Consumers from Unsupported Price Increases on Prescription Medicines by Creating an Independent Review Process 

LD 1117 An Act To Prevent Excessive Prices for Prescription Drugs 

Wednesday, April 14, 2021 

11:00 AM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs PH 

LD 1268 An Act To Provide Greater Access to Treatment for Serious Mental Illness by Prohibiting an Insurance Carrier from Requiring Prior Authorization or Step Therapy Protocol 

LD 1281, An Act To Prohibit Discriminatory Practices in Certain Health Insurance Policies 

LD 1317, An Act To Regulate Insurance Carrier Concurrent, Prepayment and Postpayment Review 

LD 1331, An Act To Make Individual and Small Group Health Insurance More Affordable in Certain High-premium Counties 

1:00 PM— Judiciary PH 

LD 1229 An Act To Require Certain Medical Providers To Administer Ultrasounds and Provide Information to Certain Pregnant Patients 

Thursday, April 15, 2021 

10:00 AM— Health Coverage, Insurance and Financial Affairs – PH 

LD 1196 An Act Regarding Targets for Health Plan Investments in Primary Care and Behavioral Health 

LD 1293, An Act To Improve Access to Certain Injectable Medications for Treatment of Mental Illness and Substance Use Disorder 

LD 1341, An Act To Protect Medicare Beneficiaries from Surprise Medical Billing 

10:00 AM— Health and Human Services – PH 

LD 718 An Act To Improve the Health of Maine Residents by Closing Coverage Gaps in the MaineCare Program and the Children's Health Insurance Program 

LD 1282, An Act To Prevent Underage Tobacco and Nicotine Access and Use—HHS 

For more detailed information on these bills, the process, the votes, or any other questions, comments, or concerns on this or any other legislative matter please reach out directly to MMA Director of Communications and Government Affairs, Dan Morin at mailto:danmorin@mainemed.com or by phone at 207-480-4199.

 

 

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.

 

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.

UPCOMING SPECIALTY SOCIETY MEETINGS

April 15, 2021
Maine Association of Psychiatric Physicians Annual Meeting
Virtual Meeting - 6:00pm - 8:00pm
Contact: Dianna Poulin 207-622-7743 or dpoulin@mainemed.com

May 1-2, 2021
Maine Chapter, American Academy of Pediatrics Virtual CME Spring Conference

The Provider Role in Mitigating Risk and Promoting Resilience in Youth
Contact:  Dee Kerry 207-620-0806 or dee.kerry@maineaap.org

May 7, 2021
Maine Society of Eye Physicians and Surgeons Spring Meeting

Virtual Meeting - 12:30pm - 4:00pm
Contact:  Shirley Goggin 207-445-2260 or sgoggin@mainemed.com

May 21-22, 2021
29th Annual MAFP Family Medicine Update & Annual Meeting

Virtual Meeting
Full brochure and registration available after February 15, 2021 at www.maineafp.org
Contact: Deborah Halbach 207-938-5005 or maineafp@tdstelme.net

 

 

 

 

 

 

  


 

Maine CDC Physicians To Host Regular Clinician COVID Vaccine Info Sessions

CDC physicians, and MMA members, Stephen Sears, M.D, MPH, and Lisa Letourneau M.D., MPH will be hosting a series of 30-minute Clinician Info Sessions twice weekly (Tuesdays and Fridays) for the next couple of months to provide key information on the emerging COVID-19 vaccines & offer an opportunity for Q&A with clinicians statewide.

 

CDC physicians, and MMA members, Stephen Sears, M.D, MPH, and Lisa Letourneau M.D., MPH will be hosting a series of 30-minute Clinician Info Sessions twice weekly (Tuesdays and Fridays) for the next couple of months to provide key information on the emerging COVID-19 vaccines & offer an opportunity for Q&A with clinicians statewide. 

The sessions will start, Tuesday, December 15 and take place at 7:30 a.m., Tuesdays and 12 noon, Fridays until further notice. 

Dr. Sears is an epidemiologist & Maine CDC Clinical Advisor for the COVID-19 Response Team, while Dr. Letourneau is Senior Advisor for Delivery System Change at the Maine Department of Health and Human Services. We hope you’ will l take advantage of this opportunity to join these two well respected experts. 

>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>>> 

Join Zoom Meeting https://zoom.us/j/6218434986?pwd=dEJoNEVRSkVSN2dwZlJ5WEl3WjJsZz09 

Meeting ID: 621 843 4986 

Passcode: 338847 

One tap mobile: +13017158592,,6218434986#,,,,,,0#,,338847# 

AMA Designation Statement The Maine Medical Education Trust designates each Live Internet activity session for a maximum of .5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. 

Joint Providership Statement This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the Maine Medical Education Trust and the Maine Department of Health and Human Services. The Maine Medical Education Trust is accredited by the Maine Medical Association Committee on Continuing Medical Education and Accreditation to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

 

 

Suicide Prevention and Management in Healthcare Practice Settings: A Comprehensive Evidence-Based Approach

NAMI Maine is now scheduling this presentation for healthcare practice settings.

 

Suicide Prevention and Management in Healthcare Practice Settings: A Comprehensive Evidence-Based Approach
Presented by Greg Marley, LCSW - Director of Suicide Prevention, NAMI Maine

For more information and to schedule a presentation, contact the NAMI Maine Suicide Prevention Coordinator at mspp@namimaine.org or at (800) 464-5767 x2318.

A Maine citizen is 13.5 times more likely to die by suicide than by homicide (2016-2018), yet suicide is among the most preventable forms of death.  Healthcare practice settings provide an excellent venue for the identification and assessment of suicide risk and the provision of ongoing care to assist in the management of the drivers of suicide.

This 1-hour presentation will provide updated information on trends in suicidal behavior across the lifespan and an overview of the best-practice approach to suicide identification, assessment, and management of suicide within a practice or hospital setting.  Tools for practice will be offered to address assessment, Collaborative Safety Planning and coordinated follow-up.  This presentation is appropriate to any professional working in a medical, clinical or behavioral health role: medical providers, nurses, social workers and ancillary clinicians and support staff.

Attendees will leave able to

  • Articulate the rationale for a structured approach to suicide assessment and management in healthcare
  • Describe to elements of suicide assessment and Collaborative Safety Planning
  • Appreciate the recent trends in suicide across the lifespan in Maine

In collaboration with the Maine Suicide Prevention Program and NAMI Maine, the Maine Medical Association offers resources for physicians and medical practices at www.mainemed.com/suicide-prevention.


AMA Designation Statement: The Maine Medical Education Trust designates this live internet activity for a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should only claim credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.

Joint Providership Statement: This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) through the joint providership of the Maine Medical Education Trust and NAMI Maine.  The Maine Medical Education Trust is accredited by the Maine Medical Association Committee on Continuing Medical Education and Accreditation to provide Continuing Medical Education (CME) for physicians.


 

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.

 

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. 

The online course features two tracks; the 19–23-month-old track and the adolescent track with data collection activities specific to each population. The course is eligible for PI CME, NAPNAP, MOC Part 2, and MOC Part 4 credits. 

The course is free to AAP members - and for a limited time, is being offered free to ALL rural health clinicians in Maine (Pediatricians AND Family Practice) through an AAP initiative.  Additional course information is available here

For rural health care providers that are non-AAP members and interested in taking this immunization course, contact Melissa Ponce at mponce@aap.org for additional information and to have your course fee waived through the Supporting Pediatricians to Improve HPV and Pediatric Influenza Vaccination Rates Initiative - again, the EQIPP immunization course is open to all Maine physicians serving youth, and the course fee is being waived for ruralhealth clinicians!

Nurse Practitioner

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

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

  • Provides direct clinical services in accordance with the highest standards of medical and nursing practices and in full accordance with health center policies and protocols.
  • Fully embraces and carries out all applicable NCQA Patient Centered Medical Home standards and Federally Qualified Health Center requirements.

Applicants must have a Master’s degree in nursing, an unrestricted Maine license to practice as an adult, family or pediatric nurse practitioner, as well as a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency license.  Qualifications include:

  • A minimum of three years’ experience in a primary care medical practice required.
  • A working knowledge of the core concepts of evidence-based practice, social and behavioral determinants of health, population-based care, integration of medical, behavioral health and dental care, and Meaningful Use of health information technology.

Visit www.yccac.org for an application. Completed cover letter, resume, and YCCAC employment application will be accepted until April 26, 2021.

York County Community Action Corp.
6 Spruce Street, P.O. Box 72
Sanford, ME 04073
(207)324-5762 or 1-800-965-5762
Fax (207)459-2811

apply@yccac.org

EOE

4/26/21

Medical Director - ME License Required

Responsible for the administration of medical management services for company health plans and ensures clinical integrity of broad and significant clinical programs, including the overall medical policies of the Commercial business unit. Will be reporting to the Director of Medical Operations.

 Responsible for the administration of medical management services for company health plans and ensures clinical integrity of broad and significant clinical programs, including the overall medical policies of the Commercial business unit. Will be reporting to the Director of Medical Operations.

Primary duties may include, but are not limited to:

  • Evaluates requests for service coverage for medical necessity.
  • Interprets existing policies and develops new policies based on changes in the healthcare or medical arena.
  • Leads, develops, directs, and implements clinical and non-clinical activities that impact health care quality cost and outcomes.

Qualifications:

  • M.D. or D.O. required,
  • An active unrestricted ME state license required.
  • ABMS Board certification required.
  • 5 years clinical experience or any combination of education and experience, which would provide an equivalent background.

For more information and to apply visit:  https://anthemcareers.ttcportals.com/jobs/6345868-medical-director-me-license-required

4/22/21

Practice Administrator

Kennebec Anesthesia Associates is looking for a practice administrator to perform business management tasks at our medical practice.

Kennebec Anesthesia Associates is looking for a practice administrator to perform business management tasks at our medical practice.

To ensure success as a practice administrator you should demonstrate knowledge of practice administration and, ideally, have experience in a similar medical facility.

Practice Administrator Responsibilities

  • Assist with business planning and the improvement of administrative processes.
  • Act as financial manager of the practice.
  • Supervise, hire and train administrative staff.
  • Work closely with the President to recruit and hire medical staff and lead the onboarding and training process.
  • Keep informed of trends in practice administration and healthcare regulations.
  • Perform other administrative tasks as required.

Practice Administrator Requirements

  • Prefer at least five years’ experience in practice administration and personnel management in a similar environment
  • Experience in financial management
  • Proficiency using Excel
  • Organizational and time-management skills
  • In-depth knowledge of applicable healthcare regulations
  • Excellent leadership, interpersonal, and communication skills

Please send resume to: kwheeler@kennebecanesthesia.com

4/23/21

Physician

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

Nasson Health Care is seeking a qualified clinical leader to work collaboratively with a team of health and administrative professionals to provide comprehensive primary care to patients while utilizing the Patient-Centered Medical Home model of care delivery.  The Physician provides direct clinical services and works in partnership with members of the practice team to manage the care of patients, assuring a high standard of medical care.   

Applicants must have a degree from an accredited medical school in the U.S., Board certification in Family or Internal Medicine, an unrestricted Maine license to practice medicine, as well as a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency license.  Qualifications include:

  • A minimum of three years’ experience in a primary care medical practice; 
  • Demonstrated respect for cultural diversity in serving patients and families;
  • Working knowledge of the core concepts of evidence-based practice, social and behavioral determinants of health, population-based care, integration of medical, behavioral health and dental care, and Meaningful Use of health information technology;

Springvale is an iconic New England village located in western York County, Maine, less than an hour’s drive from Portland, Maine and Portsmouth, New Hampshire

Visitwww.nassonhealthcare.org for an application. Completed cover letter, resume, and YCCAC employment application will be accepted until April 26, 2021.

York County Community Action Corp.
6 Spruce Street, P.O. Box 72
Sanford, ME 04073           
(207)324-5762 or 1-800-965-5762
Fax (207)459-2811

apply@yccac.org

EOE

4/26/21

Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner

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

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

  • Provides diagnoses, conducts therapy and prescribes medication for patients with substance use disorder, psychiatric disorders and medical organic brain disorders.
  • Fully embraces and carries out all applicable NCQA Patient Centered Medical Home standards and Federally Qualified Health Center requirements.

Applicants must have a Master’s degree in nursing, an unrestricted Maine license to practice as an adult, family or pediatric nurse practitioner, as well as a U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency license.  Qualifications include:

  • A minimum of three years’ experience in a psychiatric or primary care medical practice required.
  • A working knowledge of the core concepts of evidence-based practice, social and behavioral determinants of health, population-based care, integration of medical, behavioral health and dental care, and Meaningful Use of health information technology.

Visit www.yccac.org for an application. Completed cover letter, resume, and YCCAC employment application will be accepted until April 26, 2021.

York County Community Action Corp.
6 Spruce Street, P.O. Box 72
Sanford, ME 04073
(207)324-5762 or 1-800-965-5762
Fax (207)459-2811

apply@yccac.org

EOE

4/26/21

Belgrade Regional Health Center Seeks a Physician (BC/BE in Family Medicine)

Belgrade Regional Health Center, (Belgrade, Maine) seeks a Physician (BC/BE in Family Medicine) with outstanding clinical and interpersonal skills to provide primary care to patients of all ages in a family practice with integrated behavioral health services.

Belgrade Regional Health Center, (Belgrade, Maine) seeks a Physician (BC/BE in Family Medicine) with outstanding clinical and interpersonal skills to provide primary care to patients of all ages in a family practice with integrated behavioral health services. The selected candidate will receive a $10,000 sign-on bonus, competitive salary and benefits, malpractice coverage, pension plan with employer match, loan repayment opportunities. EOE.

Founded in 1977, the health center serves over 2,100 residents and travelers each year. We reside in the peaceful, picturesque, and welcoming Belgrade Lakes region in the heart of Central Maine, renowned for its chain of seven sparkling lakes and abundant streams.

Belgrade Regional Health Center is part of HealthReach Community Health Centers, a system of 11 Federally Qualified Health Centers in Central and Western Maine with a 46-year history offering accessible, high quality healthcare with integrated behavioral health, psychiatric medication management, and referrals. HealthReach accepts Medicare, MaineCare and major insurances and a sliding fee program is available to uninsured and underinsured residents as well as assistance with applications for programs that help with the cost of healthcare and medications including the Health Insurance Marketplace.

Contact: Recruiter, HRCHC, 10 Water Street, Suite 305, Waterville, ME 04901 | 207-660-9913 | Fax: (207) 660-9901 | Communications@HealthReach.org | www.BelgradeCHC.org

4/9/21