NCMS Morning Rounds 8-16-21

Welcome to a new week and your Monday Morning Rounds!

August 16, 2021

NCMS Legislative Update

The main focus at the General Assembly last week was the release late Monday afternoon of the NC House budget proposal, which was passed late Thursday afternoon on a 72-41 vote. Several Democrats joined Republicans in supporting the proposal. Read our summary of the House budget here.

House budget provisions that are NCMS legislative priorities include:

• Telehealth parity language as outlined in HB149 – Improving Access to Care Through Telehealth, was included in the House budget, but did not appear in the Senate’s budget proposal. This will likely be part of the negotiations between the chambers in the coming weeks.

• Funding for the Brody School of Medicine at ECU was included in both House and Senate budget proposals.

• The House budget includes $36 million in funding for local health departments, which is of particular importance now as the COVID-19 pandemic continues as well as for future public health needs.

• Also included is an historic allocation of $1 billion for investment in broadband throughout the state.

Next week the budget conferees in both the House and Senate will be announced and begin their negotiations on a final budget proposal for the state.

Beyond the budget, legislators are also beginning the re-districting process based on the latest census data.

Also of note last week, two other health related bills we’ve been tracking moved:

SB35 – Amend Lawful Age to Marry to 18 Years of Age continued to move forward through committee.

HB608 – Dignity for Women Who Are Incarcerated moved on to the Senate Judiciary Committee where we hope it receives a favorable vote. The NCMS is pleased to partner with the NC Obstetrical and Gynecological Society, which has been taking the lead on this proposal aimed at improving infant and maternal mortality rates.

Several committees have already announced meetings this week, including the House Health Committee. Watch your NCMS Morning Rounds and our legislative blog for updates on committee work as well as the budget process.

Have an Impact on the Next Generation of Health Care Professionals

The NCMS plays an integral role in Campbell University Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine’s Master of Health Professions Education (MHPE) program. This degree program trains clinicians as educators and leaders, enabling them to enhance their practices, improve population health and increase capacity for training of more health professionals in areas of need.

NCMS staff members serve as faculty in the leadership development portion of the MHPE curriculum. Learn more about the curriculum here.

If you are interested in pursuing a degree that will help in this crucial work to train the next generation of health care professionals, click here to learn more and apply.

Are You Working for Positive Change Beyond Your Clinic Walls?

For our upcoming issue of the NCMS Bulletin e-magazine, we would like to profile NCMS members who are working beyond their practice to make change in their communities.

Certainly, as physicians and PAs you provide crucial help to your patients day in and day out by treating their medical needs. We are looking for members who have ventured into their communities to address — hands-on — the social determinants of your patients’ health. For instance, do you volunteer with Habitat for Humanity to help ensure housing for those who don’t currently have a permanent place to live? Do you deliver meals or work at a food bank? We’d like to hear from you about the meaningful and perhaps new and innovative ways you are contributing to the health of NC.

Please contact NCMS Bulletin editor Elaine Ellis at with information you’d like to share about your work and she will be back in touch. Thank you for all you do!

In the News

How the Pandemic Laid Bare America’s Diabetes Crisis, Reuters, 8-12-21

Learning Opportunity

Save the Date for the Governor’s Institute Addiction Medicine Essentials Virtual Conference, Oct. 22-23, 2021. ALL clinicians, regardless of specialty, are part of the battle against addiction and this conference and the information at is a powerful tool in the fight. Learn more here.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!



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