NCMS Morning Rounds 4-5-19

The Weekend is almost here!

But first, your NCMS Morning Rounds.

NCMS Disaster Relief Check Presented to G & G Healthcare

Yesterday the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) Foundation publically presented G & G Healthcare in Whiteville with a check for $60,000 to help the family medical practice rebuild after being flooded out in Hurricane Florence last fall.

Melvin Gerald, MD, and his brother Keith Gerald surrounded by the practice staff, family and friends gratefully accepted the check at a ribbon cutting ceremony hosted by the Columbus County Chamber of Commerce to mark the official re-opening of the practice. Columbus County dignitaries including John Young, CEO of Columbus Regional Healthcare System and Chamber of Commerce leadership all remarked on the resilience of the Gerald family and their commitment to providing quality health care in an area that often faces a shortage of health care options. Jesse Thomas representing Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina (BCBSNC) spoke. Both BCBSNC and The Physicians Foundation were generous contributors to the Disaster Relief Fund.

NCMS Director of Member Services for the Eastern Region Frank Snyder presented the check noting that Dr. Gerald’s story of returning to the eastern Carolina community where he grew up to practice medicine exemplifies the central goal of the NCMS Foundation. “Ensuring access to health care in underserved communities is at the very core of our mission,” he said.

Dr. Gerald and his siblings operated three G & G Healthcare offices in Columbus County before Hurricane Matthew wiped out their office in Fair Bluff three years ago. They continued to see patients at their Cerro Gordo and Whiteville locations until Hurricane Florence wiped out the Whiteville practice. Many patients who frequented the office in downtown Whiteville could not make the 15-mile trek to Cerro Gordo for their care, Dr. Gerald said, making the reopening of the Whiteville location crucial to continued access to health care for many in Whiteville.

“Without this help from the medical society Foundation, we would not have been able to reopen at this time,” he said.

The NCMS Foundation’s Disaster Relief Fund anticipates making significant contributions to other medical practices recovering from the lingering effects of Hurricane Florence in the coming months. Many practices affected by the storm are still assessing the damage and waiting for insurance claims to be processed. With that in mind, applications for Disaster Relief funds are still being accepted. Funding guidelines and application are available here.

Forsyth Medical Society Discusses Access to Care with Rep. Lambeth

NCMS President-Elect Palmer Edwards, MD, DFAPA, and NCMS VP for Member Services Ashley Newton, MBA, attended the Forsyth County Medical Society meeting last Thursday in Winston-Salem. Approximately 25 area physicians turned out to hear a legislative update from Rep. Donny Lambeth (R- Forsyth) with a particular focus on Medicaid and closing the health insurance gap.

Rep. Lambeth, a former president and CEO of Wake Forest Baptist Health, has been an influential voice on health care issues at the NC General Assembly since he was elected in November 2012.

To help physicians across the state engage with their local colleagues, the NCMS is working to support and revitalize county medical societies. If you are interested in learning more about how you can help in these efforts in your community, please contact Ashley Newton at or 919-833-3836 x130.

Seeking Those Who Can Help Determine Benefits

The NC Disability Determination Services (DDS) is a Division of DHHS that makes the medical determination for Social Security Disability and Medicaid benefits is currently seeking to expand our panel of Consultative Examination Providers throughout the state of North Carolina.

Upon receiving an application, the DDS first attempts to obtain medical evidence from the patient’s own treating sources. If that evidence is unavailable or insufficient to make a determination, the DDS will arrange for a Consultative Examination (CE) in order to obtain the additional information. In those instances, DDS maintains and utilizes a panel of physicians, psychologists and other health professionals to perform these examinations. Consultative Examinations are paid on a fee-for-service basis by the DDS and are conducted at no charge to the patient. The providers performing the CEs are not responsible for making a decision as to whether the individual is disabled or not, but rather collecting functional information to assist our Division.

Learn more about this opportunity for NC Medical Board licensees. If you are interested please contact Victoria Perryman in the Professional Relations Office at 1-800-443-9360 x3370 or email Additional information, including our Reporting Requirements, Fee Schedule, and Applications can be found at our website.

In the News

FDA Is Investigating Reports of Seizures After Vaping, STAT, 4-3-19

Learning Opportunity

For Triangle area physicians and PAs: The Durham Orange County Medical Society will hold its regular meeting on Wednesday, April 10 from 6 to 9 p.m. at the University Club, Durham. The topics for discussion will be: ‘HRT Today’ with Lisa Muasher, MD, Assistant Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Duke University Medical Center, and ‘Development and Evolution of IVF’ with Suheil Muasher, MD, a Reproductive Endocrinology and Infertility Specialist with Duke Health and a Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology at Duke University Medical Center.

There is no cost for you to attend. Please bring a colleague and enjoy this evening of fine dining, networking and interesting conversation. Please RSVP online or contact Richard Simpson at (919) 833-3836 ext. 101,


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