Current Bulletin

  • Team NCMS Proudly Supports MedAssist

    medassistThis Saturday much of the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) staff and their families will line up in Cary to run a 5k in support of the NC MedAssist program, which provides life-saving prescription medication to poor, vulnerable and uninsured North Carolina residents.

    As of Bulletin press time, the Team NCMS was the fourth largest team participating with 13 members running (WakeMed had the largest contingent with 25 team members). NCMS was in third place for fundraising behind the North Carolina Hospital Association and WakeMed.

    Please consider supporting this worthy cause by running (registration link) or making a donation.

     
  • Give Us Your Best Shot

    chiang-homepage-header4The ever-popular North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) photo contest is open for submissions from members, with the winning entries to be featured in the NCMS 2018 calendar – one of our most popular giveaways.

    Learn more about the entry rules, categories and deadlines.

     
  • In the News

     
  • Learning Opportunities

    TODAY! United Healthcare will hold a ‘listening session’ for Medicaid providers on Wednesday, June 14, from 5:45 to 8 p.m. in Raleigh at the Bank of America, Optum Offices, 4242 Six Forks Road. Dinner will be served. The session is billed as an “informal discussion on the challenges, opportunities and actions” United Healthcare and providers “can take together to improve the health of our state.” Learn more about United Healthcare’s outreach to physicians and physician assistants. RSVP for the dinner and listening session to Patti Boone at patti.boone@uhc.com.


    June 20, from noon to 1 p.m. Lunch and Learn webinar on ‘How to Get the Best Out of Your Team And Lead Effectively’ with Kristina Natt och Dag, PhD, VP Leadership Development and Executive Director of KIPL, and Erin Grover, Program Manager Leadership Development with Kanof Institute for Physician Leadership. Learn the importance of understanding how interpersonal relationships and behaviors impact collaboration, key components to effective leadership, and how to develop individual roles to achieve the highest potential from each team member. Lunch and Learn Webinars are provided by NCMS Foundation and NC MGMA. Register here.


    A 4-hour online seminar titled “MGMA online MACRA Readiness Workshop” will be held virtually on June 21 beginning at noon.  This workshop offers tactical advice including a comprehensive tool kit.  There are CE credits available. Learn more and register.


    Meet payer representatives at the Multi-Payer Provider Expo in Asheville on July 18from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. at the Doubletree Asheville – Biltmore, 115 Hendersonville Road. Learn more and register.


    The next in the series of workshops presented by the National Rural Accountable Care Consortium and Caravan Health to help practices make the transition to value-based reimbursement will held in Raleigh at the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Center for Leadership in Medicine on Tuesday, Aug. 1. This workshop will focus on behavioral health integration, patient satisfaction and advancing care information. Learn more and register.


    The Southeastern Medical Legal Symposium, Physicians Reviewing Physicians, Sept. 18-19, in Atlanta, GA, brings together stakeholders in the various professions involved in litigated medical claims. In its fourth year, the symposium is sponsored by the American College of Legal Medicine [ACLM]. Invitees include health care professionals (e.g., physicians, medical directors, psychologists, and nurse case managers), attorneys, dual degreed MD/PhD/DDS/DPM-JD’s, risk managers, claims managers, adjusters, judges, and others. Learn more and register.


    Save the Date for the 29th Annual Fall Foliage Cancer Conference focusing on Updates on Breast and Prostate Cancers, at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, Oct. 20-21, 2017Learn more.


    MAHEC, working with the North Carolina Academy of Family Physicians, The Governor’s Institute on Substance Abuse and Project Lazarus: A Project of CCNC, is offering A Guide to Rational Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain, an online education course. The course is designed for all prescribing health care practitioners who are interested in an overview of the rational prescribing approaches for persons with chronic pain disorders. It will fulfill the North Carolina Medical Board’s requirement of at least one hour of continuing education designed specifically to address prescribing practices for chronic pain management. The course cost is $15 for the first 6 months. Offers 3 hours of AAFP, AMA/AAFP Equivalency, and CDE; www.mahec.net/opioid.


    NCTracks has Computer-Based Training (CBT) courses on a variety of topics available to providers 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, every day of the year. Anyone who is a registered user with NCID access to the NCTracks secure Provider Portal can access and take a self-paced course. A list of courses available can be found here and under Quick Links on the NCTracks Provider Training page of the public Provider Portal.

     

     
  • Legislative News: NC House Budget Vote This Week

    As the Bulletin goes to press Wednesday afternoon, the North Carolina House is considering amendments to its spending plan, released yesterday.

    House leadership anticipates the budget to be voted on tomorrow and Friday. While the total spending of $22.9 billion aligns with the Senate’s budget, there are differences that will need to be worked out in conference committee beginning next week. Legislative leaders are hopeful that consensus can be reached and the General Assembly will adjourn in time for the July 4 holiday.

    Read the North Carolina Medical Society’s (NCMS) summary comparison of the House and Senate budgets as they currently stand.

     
  • NCMS Prioritizes Improving North Carolinians’ Health and Expanding Professional Leadership

    At an innovative retreat held in Chapel Hill the weekend of May 19-21, the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Board of Directors defined a creative and strategic course for the organization over the coming decade. Under the guidance of a facilitator, Board members reflected on and debated how the NCMS can best impact the current health care environment to improve the health of North Carolina’s citizens and ensure physicians and physician assistants are leaders in this process.

    In keeping with NCMS members’ long tradition of being catalysts for positive change and health care leaders, these priorities are the latest extension of why the NCMS is crucial to the future of health care in North Carolina.

    Led by NCMS President Paul Cunningham, MD, and Strategic Planning Officer Dev Sangvai, MD, and with the expert help of facilitator Bruce Flye, Board members left the retreat energized and committed to success. To broaden their perspective, the Board hosted several guest speakers. Mandy Cohen, MD, Secretary of the NC Department of Health and Human Services, outlined her vision for the NC DHHS, and Peter Ubel, MD, addressed physician burnout and its relationship to the move to value-based health care.

    The following themes emerged as priorities:

    • A commitment to representing and engaging members. When the NCMS House of Delegates voted to suspend operations, the NCMS Board promised members that it would evaluate the evolution of the governance process and member engagement. The Board has conducted regional meetings and solicits member feedback online and through county and specialty medical societies.  Priorities identified in this area include an organizational commitment to surveying members, seeking technological solutions for communications, and revising board and staff responsibilities to include more active local outreach.
    • A commitment to driving statewide policy that accomplishes population health goals. Based on its successful history as a convener of best practices, the Board identified the NCMS’ role in population health as engaging all stakeholder groups, both within and outside of direct health care delivery. They acknowledged that resources will be needed to carefully define outcomes measured by data-driven processes and that success in this area will not only improve state health system performance and leading health indicators among North Carolinians, but also improve professional satisfaction in the medical community.
    • Actively creating physician leaders and promoting physician leadership throughout health care delivery systems. The Board acknowledged that in today’s health care marketplace, clinical skills are not the only skill set needed by physicians to be successful. This commitment includes inventorying current physician leadership positions in NC, identifying areas of need, and providing education, coaching and mentoring via the Kanof Institute for Physician Leadership (KIPL) to ensure   the medical profession is represented and leading clinical and administrative needs for   health care delivery.

    “What we really wanted out of the planning weekend was to reinvigorate ourselves as leaders representing the NCMS membership, and to engage physicians across North Carolina,” Dr. Cunningham said.    “Much of our discussion came back to the issue of health inequities in our state as the purpose for convening our profession. What developed (during the weekend) was a renewed commitment to our membership and our patients in a variety of exciting projects aimed at connecting the dots in our fragmented health care system. If we are passionate about addressing health inequalities as a profession, it is going to take patience and persistence, but I believe that we—as a professional organization—have it within us to do the job.”

    Watch upcoming issues of the Bulletin for information on the NCMS Strategic Plan and how NCMS members are engaging in the above projects.

     
  • MSSP & Next Gen Council Members Share Best Practices

    The NC MSSP & Next Gen Council held its second quarter meeting of 2017 on Thursday, May 25, at the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Center for Leadership in Medicine in Raleigh with representatives from 13 North Carolina ACOs taking part. Participation on the Council is reserved for those ACOs involved with the federal Medicare Shared Savings Program (MSSP) or those that are Next Generation ACOs. The Council, which is part of the NCMS-spearheaded Toward Accountable Care (TAC) Consortium and Initiative, offers Council members a venue to share best practices as well as the challenges involved with the MSSP and Next Gen program.

    Participants at last week’s meeting included: Carolina Medical Home Network ACO, CaroMont Health, three CHESS ACOs, Coastal Carolina Quality Care, Coastal Plains Network, Duke Connected Care, Mission Health Partners, Physicians Healthcare CollaborativePhysicians Healthcare Collaborative, Tar River Health Alliance, Triad HealthCare Network, UNC Senior Alliance, and WakeMed Key Community Care.

    Melanie Phelps, JD, senior vice president of Health Systems Innovation for the NCMS, welcomed members and introduced Peter Freeman, MPH, Executive Director of Carolina Medical Home Network (CHMN), the program’s featured ACO.  Freeman outlined the CHMN’s underlying objective: to serve as a center of excellence and “pilot program” for care delivery innovations for the 37 Federally Qualified Health Centers (FQHCs) across the state.  Kathleen Evans, the ACO’s Program Manager explained how their integration of provider feedback and direction in deploying their data analytics platform and dashboard is helping them to accomplish this goal.

    During the open forum, members shared their accomplishments and ideas on how they are tackling what they identify as the biggest challenges to realizing the Triple Aim (improved patient experience, improved population health, and reduced costs).  A recurrent topic was the challenge of identifying and addressing social determinants of health. Rob Fields, MD, the Medical Director at Mission Health Partners, noted that sharing information across non-affiliated organizations and breaking down information “silos” remains a challenge.  Steve Neorr, Executive Director of Triad HealthCare Network, more specifically noted that the long-term success of any ACO is predicated on understanding and addressing the broad social determinants driving health care utilization.

    Gary Salamido, vice president of government affairs for the North Carolina Chamber closed the event with a discussion of the Chamber’s health reform initiative:  Transforming Health Care: A Roadmap to Value.

    The next Council meeting is scheduled for Nov. 16, 2017 in Raleigh.  For more information, please contact Dana Lucas at dlucas@medsoc.org or 919-833-3836.

     
  • Carolina Complete Health Network Leadership Named

    CCHN-logo_RGB headerCarolina Complete Health Network, Inc. (CCHN), a company formed by the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) to build and support a patient-focused, physician-led Medicaid health network, has named its Board of Directors and executive leadership.

    Jeffrey W. Runge, MD, FACEP, serves as President and CEO and as a member of the Board of Directors. Dr. Runge has over 30 years as a board-certified emergency medicine physician, practicing in Charlotte until 2001. From 2001 to 2008, he was the chief executive of two Federal government agencies. Since that time, he has served as a consultant in public policy and business strategy for companies in the fields of biodefense, medical preparedness and road safety. He also is a member of the NCMS Board of Directors.

    John J. Meier, IV, MD, MBA, serves as a Director. Dr. Meier is a practicing internist and pediatrician at Wake Internal Medicine Consultants in Raleigh. He serves as treasurer on the Board of Directors of WakeMed Key Community Care, an Accountable Care Organization that is part of the Medicare Shared Savings Program. Prior to attending medical school, Dr. Meier held positions of increasing responsibility in operations, manufacturing and finance at a Fortune 100 company. He was also the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer for Kieffer Paper Mills and Kieffer Pulp Mills. Dr. Meier also is a member of the NCMS Board of Directors.

    John R. Mangum, MD, serves as a Director. Dr. Mangum practices family medicine at the Sanford Medical Group, where he has been a principal for 33 years. The Sanford Medical Group has been part of Pinehurst Medical Clinic since 2010. He is a past president of the NCMS (2011) and is the chair of the North Carolina delegation to the American Medical Association. Dr. Mangum has served on the Board of Directors of The Carolinas Center for Medical Excellence since 2006, serving as chair 2011-2014.

    Stephen W. Keene, MBA, JD, LLM, serves as CCHN’s Secretary-Treasurer. Mr. Keene is also the NCMS Chief Operating Officer and General Counsel, with 28 years of experience in serving organized medicine in public policy and advocacy.

    Vincent T. “Vince” Morgus, MBA, CPA serves as CCHN’s Chief Operating Officer. Mr. Morgus comes to CCHN from The Fahrenheit Group, where he served as Managing Partner for its Carolinas consulting practice. In addition to Fahrenheit, during Mr. Morgus’ 25 plus years in the Research Triangle Park business community, he has served in chief financial officer, corporate development, and corporate finance positions. Most notably, for 16 years, he held various corporate finance, operational finance, and corporate development roles at Quintiles Transnational Corp. Over the course of his career, Mr. Morgus has led and participated in securing more than $500 million from the capital markets to fund growth initiatives.

    “The establishment of the Board of Directors and the executive team is the next important step toward ensuring that physicians are the ones making clinical decisions for their patients as Medicaid transitions to managed care,” said Robert Seligson, CEO of the NCMS, which is currently CCHN’s sole shareholder. “We look forward to CCHN continuing to grow its board and its team as the state gets closer to choosing the health plans that will care for this patient population to which the NCMS has long been committed.”

    CCHN is “testing the waters” under Regulation A under the Securities Act of 1933, as amended, to gauge market demand from potential investors for an offering of securities. No money or other consideration is being solicited, and if sent in response, will not be accepted. No offer to buy the securities can be accepted and no part of the purchase price can be received until an offering statement is filed with, and qualified by, the Securities and Exchange Commission. Any such offer may be withdrawn or revoked, without obligation or commitment of any kind, at any time before notice of its acceptance given after the qualification date. A person’s indication of interest involves no obligation or commitment of any kind.

     
  • Ambulatory Surgery Centers See Medicaid Recoupment

    NCTracks has issued a notice to 34 Ambulatory Surgery Centers (ASC) throughout the state that a claims reprocess for non-covered services will be taking place in the June 6 check write to recoup any overpayments.  The claims that are affected were originally processed and paid between July 2, 2013 and August 9, 2016 and included codes that are non-billable per the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).  The specific codes and respective end dates can be seen here and were included in the September 2016 Medicaid Bulletin. The North Carolina Division of Medical Assistance (DMA) also issued a special May 2017 Medicaid Bulletin with more information on the recoupment.

    Once NCTracks became aware of the overpayments, they changed the system to remove the non-billable codes in August 2016 for all subsequent payments, but previous overpayments were not recouped at that time. Those overpayments will be retrieved in the upcoming checkwrite on Tuesday.

     
  • NCMS Comments on State’s Medicaid Reforms

    Over the month of May, the North Carolina Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) held four listening sessions throughout the state to get input on the proposed changes to the Medicaid program under legislation passed by the General Assembly in 2015. Watch North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) President Paul R.G. Cunningham, MD, deliver comments at the session in Raleigh. Watch video of other physicians’ comments on our 2017 Legislative Blog.

    The NCMS also submitted written comments addressing each of the seven areas identified by NCDHHS Secretary Mandy Cohen, MD as areas of particular importance as NCDHHS works with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to receive a waiver to move the state to managed care. Read the NCMS’ comments.

    The NCMS’ principles guiding how best to reform the state’s Medicaid program have remained constant from the first request for input in 2013 from then-Gov. Pat McCrory until today. The NCMS strongly supports reform of our health care delivery and payment system centered on the Triple Aim of better health, better care and lower costs.