NCMS Morning Rounds 8-7-19

It’s already Wednesday!

Time for your NCMS Morning Rounds.

Aug. 7, 2019


More Disaster Relief Delivered

Moore Orthopedics Sports Medicine in Morehead City is the latest recipient of money from the NCMS Foundation Disaster Relief Program to help in the practice’s recovery from Hurricane Florence. NCMS Director of Member Services for the eastern part of the state Frank Snyder delivered a check for $7,500 to longtime NCMS member Jeffrey Moore, MD.

Damage to the practice facilities was minimal, but because there was no water or electric service to the building for a week after the hurricane hit last fall, the practice lost significant revenue. The check from the NCMS Foundation’s fund helped them to recoup some of that loss.

The aim of the NCMS Foundation’s Disaster Relief Program is to help practices in areas hit by natural disasters recover quickly to ensure citizens in those communities can continue to have access to care.

As yet another hurricane season is upon us, some medical practices in eastern North Carolina still are struggling to return to normal in the aftermath of last year’s storms. Snyder will be distributing more checks in the coming days. If you are a practice in need of disaster relief help or know of a colleague who is in need of such support, applications continue to be accepted for our disaster relief funds. Review the guidelines and apply.

In the aftermath of Hurricane Florence, the NCMS Disaster Relief Program has distributed 19 individual disaster relief grants in amounts ranging from $2,500 to $60,000 and totaling $312,563. These have gone to practices in areas hardest hit by the storm in Whiteville, Wilmington, Morehead City, Burgaw, Goldsboro, Jacksonville and Angier.

This help is possible thanks to the generous contributions from physicians, physician assistants and other individuals in North Carolina and nationally, and through support of The Physicians Foundation and Blue Cross and Blue Shield of North Carolina.

“We are fortunate to be able to continue to support practices that suffered losses during the hurricane,” said Gerri L. Mattson, MD, MSPH, FAAP, president of the NCMS Foundation Board of Trustees. “These practices are vital to the health of those local communities. This work is central to our Foundation’s mission to help ensure access to care across the state.”

CMS’ Work on Prior Authorization

As part of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) Patients Over Paperwork initiative, the federal agency is addressing prior authorization (PA) and its impact on care delivery and administrative burdens. CMS is conducting listening sessions with various stakeholders including visiting practices to observe the PA process at work.

CMS and American Medical Association (AMA) staff met recently to discuss issues around PA, and the AMA has provided the NCMS with its talking points from those discussions. The AMA urges CMS to lead in developing a comprehensive strategy that serves as a model for commercial insurers on PA reform.

Here are some of the materials from the AMA for your review:
Results of the 2018 AMA Physician Survey on PA.
Background on the DaVinci Project, which CMS is touting as a technology solution to PA issues.
AMA’s Talking Points on PA.
Principles for PA reform. The NCMS has signed onto these.
Industry Checkup – Measuring Progress on PA.

NCMS Integral to Campbell Primary Care Fellows Program

A story in yesterday’s NCMS Morning Rounds lauded the $1.8 million, 5-year grant awarded to Campbell University’s Jerry M. Wallace School of Osteopathic Medicine for its Primary Care Champions Fellowship program. This program will train community-based practicing primary care physicians and physician assistant champions to strengthen primary care and the workforce. As you may remember from previous newsletter articles, the NCMS Foundation’s Kanof Institute for Physician Leadership team is an integral part of that program.

This Friday, NCMS Vice President for Leadership Development Kristina Natt och Dag, PhD, will be at Campbell University working with the first class of fellows on their projects. These projects will be presented by the fellows at their graduation in December.

Learn more about KIPL and the variety of leadership development opportunities available for individuals and groups.

In the News

Psychiatric Association Warns Against ‘Blaming Mass Shootings on Mental Illness,’ The Hill, 8-5-19

Learning Opportunity

TODAY, Wednesday, Aug. 7 at 11 a.m. tune into a free online chat on ‘How to Quell Vaccine Hesitancy.’ Reporters from STAT, a health care newsletter, will discuss a new and counterintuitive approach to keeping parents’ worries about vaccines from hardening into certainty. Learn more and sign up.


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