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Weekly Rounds
News and insights from WSMA CEO Jennifer Hanscom.

Weekly Rounds

A newsletter from WSMA CEO Jennifer Hanscom, sent to health care industry leadership and WSMA members.

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weekly_rounds_february_21_2020_positive_action_on_wsma_priority_billsWeekly Rounds: February 21, 2020 - Positive Action on WSMA Priority BillsWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2020/weekly_rounds_february_21_2020_positive_action_on_wsma_priority_bills<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>February 21, 2020</h5> <h2>Positive Action on WSMA Priority Bills</h2> <p>Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO</p> <p> One of my sons is in a new relationship, and when my husband and I inquired about the young woman's name he said, "I don't want to tell you, it may jinx it." I get it...I feel the same way about what's happening in Olympia, including an effort to raise Medicaid primary care rates. We are pleased to see at least some interest in raising Medicaid reimbursement for a segment of our membership and I'm hesitant to talk much about it for fear of jinxing it. </p> <p> Even so, it's news that's just too good not to share. As you read in last week's <a href="[@]Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20200214/lawmakers_in_olympia_open_door_to_medicaid_reimbursement_increase?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=1XeW6">Membership Memo</a>, for the first time in several years there is serious interest and momentum to implement a Medicaid reimbursement increase that would apply to all primary care services. </p> <p> Sen. David Frockt (D-North Seattle) introduced <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=6676&Year=2019&Initiative=false">Senate Bill 6676</a> and it was co-sponsored by 26 members of the Senate. This bill would raise Medicaid reimbursement rates for primary care services by at least 15% and for certain pediatric services by at least 21%, effective Jan. 1, 2021, and is expected to increase Medicaid reimbursement statewide by an estimated $65 million per year. SB 6676 passed out of the Senate unanimously this week and now heads over to the House. We have heard indications from House health care leadership that the House is planning on making an investment in Medicaid reimbursement in its budget as well. We will keep you appraised on this. </p> <p> These discussions in Olympia are a positive first step toward meaningful increases in Medicaid reimbursement rates and would, in part, help mitigate the effect of the business and occupation (B&O) tax increase on our independent physician practices. <strong>We also believe this will set us up to advocate for broader investments in specialty care in the coming years.</strong> It is imperative that legislators fund fair Medicaid reimbursements to facilitate practice viability and access to care for patients. Stay tuned for more information as SB 6676 makes its way through the Legislature—and be on the lookout for calls to action on the issue. </p> <p> In other news, thus far, we've seen good movement on WSMA priority bills, including the unanimous passage in the houses of origin of the prior authorization bill, <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=6404&Year=2019&Initiative=false">SB 6404</a>, which imposes transparency requirements on insurer prior authorization practices and creates a work group to promote standardization, and the credentialing bill, <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=1552&Initiative=false&Year=2019">HB 1552</a>, which generally provides for retroactive reimbursement for services provided while a physician's credentialing application is pending. </p> <p> Coupled with the telemedicine payment parity bill that <a href="[@]Shared_Content/News/Latest_News/2020/February20/legislative_session_week_five_highlights?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=5XeW6">passed the Senate last week</a>, our legislative agenda is generally in good shape with all our priority bills still alive and constituting significant wins if passed into law. </p> <p> Wednesday was a key deadline for the state legislative session that also saw two bills WSMA opposes fail to advance: one that would have expanded scope of practice for naturopaths and another that would have expanded "qui tam" liability for physician practices and other businesses. While nothing is truly dead while legislators are still meeting in Olympia, these are also tentatively big wins for the house of medicine. Thank you to all everyone who responded to our calls to action. </p> <p> As you know, in spite of aggressive opposition from the WSMA and our members on the B&O tax surcharge, legislators saw fit to keep their earlier promise to fund higher education, considering that to be a more pressing concern than exempting independent physician practices from the increase. That said, SB 6492, as signed by Gov. Jay Inslee last week, does reflect some improvement in the B&O tax policy, such as applying the increase at a lower rate of 1.75% (rather than 1.8%), exempting businesses that gross less than $1 million, and postponing implementation by four months. </p> <p> While not all that we'd hoped for, that is still helpful for many of our members and is a direct result of WSMA advocacy efforts. Our advocacy gains were accomplished thanks to the tenacious efforts of our team in Olympia, in addition to the presence of many of our members who went to Olympia to speak directly to legislators. </p> <p> With no physicians or physician assistants in the Legislature, it's more important than ever that we bring the physician perspective to their attention. We've done that—and are doing that—effectively this session. In addition to WSMA staff, many physicians have testified during session this year—and that really does make a difference on legislative decisions that relate to the profession and to the patients we serve (our <a href="https://vimeo.com/showcase/5729481">Doctors Making a Difference video series</a> captures some of this physician testimony). </p> <p> All of these various advocacy efforts are critical, so I hope you're planning to join us at our <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=7XeW6">WSMA Legislative Summit</a> next Tuesday. We're nearly at capacity, but if you can make it, we'd love to see you. There's still time to <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=7XeW6">pre-register online today</a> or you can register at the event itself, which is free for WSMA members. Bring your white coat because nothing says physician or PA like that visual! We want to "take the Hill" in full force, so please join us. </p> <p> I also want to say thank you to all of you who have already renewed your membership in the WSMA this year. And if you haven't yet joined or renewed, please take a moment to do so right now <a href="[@]WSMA/Membership/Join_Renew/WSMA/Membership/Join_Renew/Join_Renew.aspx?hkey=37a820cf-9d05-4812-b9dd-c29b9a75356d">online at wsma.org</a>, by calling 206.441.9762, or by email at <a href="mailto:membership@wsma.org">membership@wsma.org</a>. You belong with us! </p> </div>2/21/2020 10:10:38 AM2/21/2020 9:59:06 AM2/21/2020 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_january_31_2020_5_things_to_know_as_you_try_to_stay_dryWeekly Rounds: January 31, 2020 - 5 Things to Know as You Try to Stay DryWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2020/weekly_rounds_january_31_2020_5_things_to_know_as_you_try_to_stay_dry<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>January 31, 2020</h5> <h2 id="thingstoknowasyoutrytostaydry">5 Things to Know as You Try to Stay Dry</h2> <p>Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO</p> <p>Even after living in the Pacific Northwest for years, I still find a rainy winter like this one hard to take. Thank goodness for my recent trip to the Physicians Foundation meeting in beautiful Naples, Florida, where I was able to catch a few rays of sunshine between strategic planning sessions, committee and board meetings. </p> <p>Despite rainy days, inverted umbrellas, and ankle-deep puddles, at the WSMA we keep our focus on our work making Washington state the best place to practice medicine and receive care. To that end, while I was in Florida, I was able to give the Physician Foundation board an update on our Practice Transformation and Wellness initiative and thank them for the grant that allowed us to kick off this work. You'll recall, the Physicians Foundation also provided the seed money for WSMA's successful leadership courses. I was proud to share that more than 700 physicians have benefited from these programs. </p> <p>Now back in our state, I wanted to highlight several updates that I know matter to you.</p> <h3 id="tacklingpriorauthorization">Tackling prior authorization</h3> <p>This morning in Olympia, there is a hearing in the Senate Health & Long Term Care committee on prior authorization. <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=6404&Year=2019&Initiative=false">Senate Bill 6404</a>, introduced by Sen. David Frockt, would improve transparency and promote standardization around the prior authorization process. Supporting SB 6404 is a top priority for the WSMA.</p> <p>This transparency would provide clarity on which services are subject to prior authorization and what the result is when prior authorization is imposed (i.e., whether the request is ultimately approved or denied), informing patients, physicians, providers, and policymakers about prior authorization practices and appropriate next steps. </p> <p>The bill would also create a clinical work group to select and review services each year, and make recommendations regarding the applicability of prior authorization and the potential for appropriate use criteria to be used as an alternative, using the information collected and provided by the Office of the Insurance Commissioner. Commercial insurers, PEBB/SEBB programs, and Medicaid managed care organizations would then incorporate the recommendations into their health plans. </p> <p>Special thanks to Eugene Yang, MD, Christina Palermo, MD, and Woodcreek Provider Services CEO James Hudson, who will take time out of their busy practices this morning to come to Olympia and testify in support of SB 6404. Each will share real-life patient stories highlighting instances where prior authorization added unnecessary burden, inefficiency, and cost—in addition to needless and harmful delay—when providing patients with necessary care.</p> <p>We all know that insurance company executives love to claim prior authorization is a necessary tool to drive down costs. This bill says, "prove it!" </p> <h3 id="speakingupinolympiaatthelegislativesummit">Speaking up in Olympia at the Legislative Summit</h3> <p>Grab your white coat and join us in Olympia on Tuesday, Feb. 25 for WSMA's <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=o7qS6">Legislative Summit</a>. This is your opportunity to personally bring medicine's message to your legislators and to let them know how their decisions impact your care of patients. </p> <p>In addition to hearing from Senate Majority Leader Andy Billig and Attorney General Bob Ferguson, you'll learn about being an effective physician grassroots advocate from WSMA member Avanti Bergquist, MD, and her husband, Rep. Steve Bergquist. Our team will be there to prep you on issues to discuss during afternoon meetings with your legislators. <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=o7qS6">Register today on our website</a>. The event is free for WSMA members.</p> <h3 id="volkv.demeerleerrecommendations">Volk v. DeMeerleer recommendations</h3> <p>At the request of the Washington State Legislature, the Dr. Robert Bree Collaborative recently adopted recommendations intended to address clinician uncertainty resulting from the 2016 Washington State Supreme Court decision Volk v. DeMeerleer. <a href="http://www.breecollaborative.org/topic-areas/previous-topics/risk-of-violence/">The Risk of Violence to Others Report and Recommendations</a> can be downloaded for review from the Bree Collaborative website. You can also read more in last week's <a href="[@]Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20200123/bree_collaborative_finalizes_recommendations_in_response_to_volk_v_demeerleer?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=q7qS6">Membership Memo</a>.</p> <h3 id="advancecareplanningandspanish-languagewashingtonians">Advance care planning and Spanish-language Washingtonians</h3> <p>Honoring Choices Pacific Northwest and a team at the University of California, San Francisco have been granted an award to distribute Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI)-funded, evidence-based advance care planning resources to vulnerable and Spanish-speaking communities in Washington. UCSF researchers will collaborate with Honoring Choices PNW to further engage with community and health care partners across Washington and to build the infrastructure to disseminate and implement the PREPARE online program and the PREPARE easy-to-read advance directives. Honoring Choices PNW is a joint initiative of the WSMA Foundation for Health Care Improvement and Washington State Hospital Association with partnerships in health care and community organizations across the state. For more information about this latest development in WSMA's advance care planning outreach, <a href="[@]Shared_Content/News/Press_Release/2020/honoring_choices_pacific_northwest_ucsf_granted_advance_care_planning_award?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=r7qS6">read the press release</a>.</p> <h3 id="freetechnicalassistanceforpmpconnection">Free technical assistance for PMP connection</h3> <p>Comagine Health (formerly Qualis Health) has teamed up with the University of Washington and the Washington State Department of Health to provide free technical assistance to physician practices wishing to integrate the state's prescription monitoring program into their electronic health record system. Comagine Health tracks the progress and assists with facilitation and implementation of the technology to support your clinic to integrate the PMP directly into your patient's chart. Comagine welcomes all specialties including primary care, behavioral health, surgical, and dental to participate in this opportunity to simplify workflows. Email <a href="mailto:WAPMP@comagine.org">WAPMP@comagine.org</a> for more information.</p> <p>There's a lot of work going on across the state, focusing on making the profession better for our members and their patients. We're grateful for your leadership in helping make that happen. Stay the course, even if it's a rainy one!</p> </div>1/31/2020 10:48:11 AM1/31/2020 10:20:56 AM1/31/2020 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_january_17_2020_5_things_to_know_while_reconsidering_those_new_years_resolutionsWeekly Rounds: January 17, 2020 - 5 Things to Know While Reconsidering Those New Year's ResolutionsWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2020/weekly_rounds_january_17_2020_5_things_to_know_while_reconsidering_those_new_years_resolutions<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>January 17, 2020</h5> <h2>5 Things to Know While Reconsidering Those New Year's Resolutions</h2> <p>Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO</p> <p> As your medical association, one of our primary roles is to keep you informed of what's happening in the political and policy world. We are engaged in relevant health care discussions locally and nationally so that we can keep you up to date on current developments, as well as what's coming up next. We also ensure that your voice - as physicians and physician assistants - is heard and considered in those critical conversations. </p> <p> During this time of rapid change, we are seeing a desire and intent to reduce costs in health care by using an "easy" lever - ratcheting down physician reimbursement, among other things. It is more critical than ever that we engage in these conversations - no matter how uncomfortable - and advocate for policies and processes that will improve the health of patients, while not jeopardizing your ability to practice and to financially withstand any new payment models. Only by engaging can you realize the full potential of your expertise. Physicians and PAs have a role to play not only in healing patients' ills, but also in preventing unaffordable health care that can be a causal agent in creating those ills in the first place. </p> <h3>State legislative session begins</h3> <p> This year's session is off to a fast start, with 2,000 bills rolled over from last year, another 500+ prefiled by opening day on Monday, and another 1,000+ yet to come. On Tuesday alone, there were more than 200 new bills introduced. </p> <p> For the WSMA, our top advocacy priorities this session will be working to repeal the business and occupation (B&O) tax increase on independent physicians, promoting a sensible alternative to prior authorization, and advocating for telemedicine payment parity. </p> <p> With your help, our efforts will be even more powerful. Do you have personal experiences of egregious prior authorization requirements? The impact of the B&O tax surcharge on your practice? Problems incorporating telemedicine due to low reimbursement? </p> <p> Your stories, particularly specific instances that negatively impacted your ability to provide optimal care, help inform our advocacy. Share those stories with Sean Graham, WSMA's government affairs director at <a href="mailto:sean@wsma.org">sean@wsma.org</a>. </p> <p> As this year's 60-day session evolves, we'll keep you posted regularly on developments via our communications channels. You can also visit our <a href="[@]WSMA/News_Publications/Latest_News/Advocacy_Report/WSMA/News_Publications/Newsletters/WSMA_Advocacy_Report.aspx?hkey=fbce906b-dbfb-4af3-8790-11f84275cf1e&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=Ij0R6">online Advocacy Report page</a> for breaking news, and for weekly "insider" email updates from our legislative staff, write Alex Wehinger at <a href="mailto:alex@wsma.org">alex@wsma.org</a> to be added to the distribution list. </p> <p> Also, if you can break away from your practice, join us in Olympia at the Capitol on Tuesday, Feb. 25 for the 2020 WSMA Legislative Summit. We need WSMA members from all of Washington's 49 legislative districts to attend so that lawmakers personally meet their physician constituents and directly hear their concerns. The event is free for members - learn more and <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=Jj0R6">register online</a> today. </p> <h3>Washington's balance billing ban</h3> <p> Since the first of the year, balance billing for emergency services and for certain procedures performed by out-of-network physicians working in in-network facilities are prohibited due to Washington state's Balance Billing Protection Act (BBPA). For more on what you need to know, visit the <a href="[@]WSMA/Resources/Practice_Management/Balance_Billing/Balance_Billing.aspx?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=Kj0R6">balance billing page</a> on the WSMA website to learn about the scope of prohibition, reimbursement, determining patient eligibility, dispute resolution, network adequacy, enforcement, etc. </p> <h3>Leadership Development Conference scholarships available </h3> <p> One of our most popular, must-attend events is the WSMA Leadership Development Conference, scheduled for May 15-16 at Campbell's Resort on Lake Chelan. Providing professional development for physicians and PAs at all stages of their career is one of our top priorities, and the LDC is a centerpiece of our educational offerings. </p> <p> We believe growing leadership skills is so important, we are offering a limited number of scholarships for this year's conference. Scholarships cover registration fees, event meals, and lodging for two nights in one standard room (travel to and from the conference is not covered by the scholarship). </p> <p> To be eligible for a scholarship, applicants must: </p> <ul> <li>Be a member of the WSMA in 2020. </li> <li>Have not attended a WSMA Leadership Development Conference before. </li> <li><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/2020LDCScholarship">Submit a complete application</a> by Wednesday, Jan. 29. </li> </ul> <h3>MIPS data due March 31</h3> <p> The data submission period for Merit-based Incentive Payment System-eligible clinicians who participated in the Medicare Quality Payment Program's 2019 performance period is now open. The deadline for submission is 5 p.m. PST, March 31. Accountable care organizations and pre-registered groups and virtual groups may also submit their 2019 data through the Center for Medicare & Medicaid Services web interface. Quality measures reported via Medicare Part B claims have been submitted throughout the 2019 performance period. Sign into the CMS <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/">QPP website</a> for your preliminary feedback on Part B claims measure data processed to date. CMS will update this feedback at the end of the submission period with claims processed by your Medicare Administrative Contractor within the 60-day runout period. </p> <p> How to submit your 2019 MIPS data </p> <ol> <li>Go to the <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/">Quality Payment Program website</a>. </li> <li>Sign in using your QPP access credentials*.</li> <li>Submit your MIPS data for the 2019 performance period or review the data reported on your behalf by a third party.</li> </ol> <p> *To sign in, clinicians will need to register in the HCQIS Authorization Roles and Profile (HARP) system. For clinicians who need help enrolling with HARP, please refer to the <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/">QPP Access User Guide</a>. Clinicians who are not sure if they are eligible to participate in the Quality Payment Program can check their final eligibility status using the <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/participation-lookup">QPP Participation Status Lookup Tool</a>. Clinicians and groups that are opt-in eligible will need to make an election before they can submit data. (No election is required for those who don't want to participate in MIPS.) </p> <p> Clinicians in small practices (including those in rural locations), health professional shortage areas, and medically underserved areas may <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/about/small-underserved-rural-practices">request technical assistance</a> from organizations that can provide no-cost support. </p> <p> To learn more about how to submit data, please review the resources available in the <a href="https://qpp.cms.gov/about/resource-library">QPP Resource Library</a>. </p> <h3>Standing together yields results</h3> <p> You belong with us! Membership in the WSMA makes you part of a community of physicians and PAs who believe in a brighter health care future. It also makes you part of the largest physician professional association in the state, and the only one that represents all physicians and PAs, regardless of specialty, practice setting, beliefs or political views. </p> <p> Our work has a greater impact with your support - your time, talent, and financial contribution. If you're among the many who have already renewed your membership, thank you! If you haven't yet renewed, please do so today. </p> <p> <a href="[@]renew?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=Qj0R6">Renew online</a>, by phone at 206.441.9762, or return the renewal notice that was recently mailed to you. </p> <p> Thank you for being an important part of the WSMA! </p> </div>1/31/2020 11:05:16 AM1/24/2020 10:50:32 AM1/17/2020 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_december_30_2019_as_the_year_ends_budget_wrangling_beginsWeekly Rounds: December 30, 2019 - As the Year Ends, Budget Wrangling BeginsWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_december_30_2019_as_the_year_ends_budget_wrangling_begins<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>December 30, 2019</h5> <h2>As the Year Ends, Budget Wrangling Begins </h2> <p>Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO</p> <p> As we prepare to bid adieu to 2019 and chill the Champagne to greet 2020, I'm reflecting on federal and state budget actions that impact our work and profession. Here's a rundown on recent activities. </p> <p> Just before Christmas, the president signed two spending packages - totaling $1.4 trillion - that not only averted a government shutdown, but also included several wins for health care. One of the attached bills followed recent Washington state action as it will ban the sale of tobacco and e-cigarettes to anyone under the age of 21. The package also included $25 million for federal research on gun safety, delays Medicaid payment cuts to disproportionate-share hospitals for five months, and repeals three Affordable Care Act taxes: a 40% excise tax on employer-provided health plans that exceed certain thresholds; a health insurance tax; and a 2.3% excise tax on medical devices. </p> <p> Surprisingly, Congress did not include any provisions on balance billing, nor did it address prescription drug costs - both were issues that we had expected to see in the final package. </p> <p> As that spending package heads toward the president's desk, here in the "other" Washington, Gov. Jay Inslee released his 2020 supplemental budget proposal. This budget is primarily intended to make necessary adjustments to the two-year budget adopted by the Legislature last year, which went into effect July 1. </p> <p> In summary, the governor's proposal appropriates all forecasted revenue and does not propose to raise any new revenue, though it does rely on funds from the state's "rainy day" reserve account. Here are some highlights of interest to us: </p> <ul> <li>$1.1M toward supporting the prescription drug monitoring program.</li> <li>$8.4M to backfill Washington state family planning services that lost funding when the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services changed the rules related to abortion services.</li> <li>$10.5M to cover funding for Foundational Public Health Services that was anticipated from vapor distribution taxes, which will be insufficient given the governor's executive order banning flavored vapor products.</li> <li>$989K toward vape and tobacco cessation via counseling support services for 18- to 20-year-olds in recognition of the new state law raising the minimum age for legal sale of tobacco and vapor products to 21.</li> <li>$366K to support the Newborn Screening Laboratory since the State Board of Health added spinal muscular atrophy to the list of diseases screened through the state's mandatory newborn screening panel.</li> <li>o HCA is requesting $183K in addition to DOH's request to cover costs related to the inclusion of this test.</li> <li>$2.8M to fund ProviderOne operational costs. </li> <li>$1.2M to support a pilot program that provides mental health drop-in services.</li> <li>$558K to plan and administer efforts to implement the public option.</li> <li>$298K toward developing and implementing the prescription drug price transparency program.</li> <li>$11.3M to reconcile amounts owed to Federally Qualified Health Centers for reimbursements for Medicaid patients.</li> <li>$150K for the HCA to conduct an information request for a diabetes disease management program.</li> <li>$1.9M for the Children's Health Insurance Program (CHIP).</li> </ul> <p> You can <a href="https://ofm.wa.gov/budget/state-budgets/gov-inslees-proposed-2020-supplemental-budget">review the governor's proposal here</a>. It's worth nothing that this is only the first step in the 2020 budget process and is by no means the final product. The House and Senate will introduce their respective supplemental budgets during the 2020 session, which may incorporate elements of the governor's proposals. A final budget must be approved before lawmakers conclude their work for 2020. </p> <p> Your WSMA government affairs and policy team in Olympia is working hard in preparation for the start of the 2020 legislative session. It will be what is known as a "short" session. It's a 60-day session that occurs during even-numbered years each biennium as outlined in the state constitution. Session starts on Jan. 13, but some legislators have already <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billinfo/prefiled.aspx?year=2019">prefiled bills</a> in anticipation of session. </p> <p> Looking ahead to the new year, here are some important dates to keep in mind: </p> <ul> <li>Jan. 8: Pre-session Advocacy Council webinar (<a href="https://zoom.us/meeting/register/877b81fe318b5500c5b9141539e44ee6">click here to register</a>)</li> <li>Jan. 13: Start of regular session</li> <li>Feb. 25: <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=VAXO6">WSMA Legislative Summit</a> (be sure to join us!)</li> <li>March 12: End of regular session</li> </ul> <p> Even as 2019 comes to a close during these cloudy, gray days, there's never a dull moment as we strive to protect your interests and the profession. Your participation with us makes a difference, and we appreciate your involvement. </p> <p> And with that, here's to 2020! </p> </div>12/30/2019 9:18:48 AM12/30/2019 9:09:59 AM12/30/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_december_16_2019_the_physician_voice_influenceWeekly Rounds: December 16, 2019 - The Physician Voice = InfluenceWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_december_16_2019_the_physician_voice_influence<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>December 16, 2019</h5> <h2>The Physician Voice = Influence </h2> <p>Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO</p> <p> At a <a href="https://www.virginiamason.org/health-in-a-changing-climate-symposium">Climate and Health Symposium</a> held just over a week ago, Gov. Jay Inslee spoke to a packed room of health care professionals at Virginia Mason Medical Center in Seattle. During his keynote address, he encouraged physicians and nurses to pursue issues with legislators, saying, "You are the most credible people in Washington to influence legislators." </p> <p> And in a recent <a href="https://www.politico.com/news/agenda/2019/11/25/is-medicare-for-all-right-answer-wrong-idea-072462">Politico article on the topic of Cascade Care</a>, Washington state Rep. Eileen Cody was quoted as saying "the docs have a lot of influence." She was speaking about the physician voice that legislators and insurers loudly heard during discussions about a public option in our state. </p> <p> Lawmakers in Olympia appreciate hearing the physician perspective on health care matters. In fact, many of them have told us they've heard from you directly about concerns pertaining to the B&O tax increase, dismal Medicaid reimbursement, and the anticipated increase in MD and PA licensure fees. </p> <p> The work we do together influencing legislators does make a difference! I want to thank you for reaching out to legislators, and strongly encourage you to continue your personal outreach while legislators are home in their districts. Our policy team in Olympia has been doing the same, recently spending time meeting with members of the Legislature as they prepare for the next legislative session, which begins Jan. 13. </p> <p> Another way to make your voice heard is to contribute to WSMA's political action committee, WAMPAC. I hope you'll support our <a href="[@]WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC.aspx">$20 for 2020 campaign</a>, or even consider joining the WAMPAC Diamond Club, as I have. Your contribution will go a long way toward furthering a pro-medicine agenda in Olympia. </p> <p> We have influence—you have influence—because of the strength of the Washington State Medical Association. In 2019, the WSMA had another record-breaking membership year as our numbers reached nearly 11,300 members, making us the largest medical professional organization in the state. Not only that, our overall membership is getting younger, signaling a bright future for the house of medicine here. Today, the average age of a WSMA member is 51 and we are cultivating a new generation of engaged members with a 214% growth of early career members (medical students, residents, and 10 years or less in practice) in the last five years. </p> <p> Membership is a direct investment in improving the profession, professional fulfillment, and leadership development, which ultimately is an investment in quality care and better patient outcomes. You belong with us—and we appreciate your membership. </p> <p> We have so much to do in 2020—we need you with us. If you haven't done so already, I urge you to renew your membership today. It's easy to <a href="[@]WSMA/Membership/Join_Renew/Join_Renew_Auth.aspx">pay your dues online</a>, by phone at 206.441.9762, or return the renewal notice that was recently mailed to you. If you're part of a group that covers your dues, take a moment right now to encourage your practice administrator to remit by year end. If you pay your dues individually, remember that you can tap into your CME funds to cover dues. And, as always, for personal assistance, email <a href="mailto:membership@wsma.org">membership@wsma.org</a>—the WSMA is here for you. </p> <p> In other news, here are three highlights for you to consider while you're prepping for the holidays: </p> <ol> <li>I hope you closely reviewed our Membership Memo from last week—it provided a succinct overview of new laws and regulations that impact medicine going into effect in the new year. You'll want to be prepared, so check it out <a href="[@]Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20191211/practice_impact_new_laws_taking_effect_jan_1?_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=dK7N6">here</a>. </li> <li>To hear more insights directly from policymakers, make plans today to attend the <a href="https://stateofreform.com/conference/2020-washington-state-of-reform-health-policy-conference/registration/">State of Reform Conference</a> on Jan. 9 at the Westin Seattle Hotel. WSMA members receive a 20% discount. When you register, use the WSMA20 discount code.</li> <li>Register today for the annual <a href="[@]WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454&_zs=B3aFd1&_zl=fK7N6">WSMA Legislative Summit</a> set for Feb. 25 in Olympia. Attorney General Bob Ferguson will be one of our keynote speakers. The Summit provides you with an excellent opportunity to meet your elected representatives and to personalize priority issues on WSMA's session agenda. Hearing directly from a physician or provider constituent with firsthand expertise on complex issues helps to inform lawmakers and ensures physicians have a seat at the table as policy is being made.</li> </ol> <p> We are your fierce advocate as we work all day, every day, to make Washington state the best place to practice medicine and receive care. We're here for you, and we appreciate that you're here for us too. </p> <p> Happy holidays! </p> </div>12/16/2019 10:03:47 AM12/16/2019 9:06:03 AM12/16/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_december_2_2019_grateful_for_the_care_you_provideWeekly Rounds: December 2, 2019 - Grateful for the Care You ProvideWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_december_2_2019_grateful_for_the_care_you_provide<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>December 2, 2019</h5> <h2>Grateful for the Care You Provide </h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> My family, friends, and co-workers know that I'm more than a little bit obsessed with <a href="https://www.glassybaby.com/">glassybabys</a> (for the uninitiated, a glassybaby is a unique piece of hand-blown glass art crafted to support causes of hope and healing). </p> <p> I love the back story of how and why entrepreneur Lee Rhodes created them out of her own adversity to bring light and inspiration to people in need of it. I also love that part of the proceeds is donated to charity, and that each color has a story. </p> <p> Lately at the WSMA, when we've needed a special gift to say thank you—such as our gift for past president Donna Smith, MD—we choose a beautiful evergreen glassybaby called "gratitude." As a bonus, the color of "gratitude" perfectly matches the WSMA's new logo color. </p> <p> Gratitude is on my mind at the moment, and not just because I'm writing this column over the Thanksgiving weekend. Even as I write—from the warmth and joy of a family vacation in Maui—our trip is bittersweet because this may be the last opportunity my mom is able to travel. About two years ago, she received a diagnosis of nonalcoholic steatohepatitis, and now that her model end stage liver disease score has reached 15, we will soon determine what the next steps will be with the help of a transplant specialist. </p> <p> As we embark on this complex journey, I am grateful that we have access to the best and brightest physicians and health care professionals right in our community. And more than ever, I'm not only glad, but also incredibly proud of the work that the WSMA does to make that so. </p> <p> It's no surprise to us that one of the most pressing problems facing the physician community and our state is that there likely won't be enough physicians in the future to care for our burgeoning population here or elsewhere in the country. This is confirmed in a <a href="https://www.informz.net/WSMA/data/images/Documents/2019%20workforce%20report%20w-additions.d3.pdf" target="_blank">WSMA-commissioned workforce report</a> by John Gallagher that sheds light on state and local data to highlight the challenges ahead. </p> <p> The report quotes an analysis released by the Association of American Medical Colleges last April that the nation will experience a physician shortage of between 46,900 and 121,900 doctors by 2032 (the range reflects the difference between the 25th and 75th percentile of projections). The projected shortage of primary care physicians is as high as 55,200, and for physicians in surgical specialties as high as 23,400. </p> <p> Further, the report notes the expectation that Washington's population will grow by 1.8 million people by 2040. Most of this increase will be from people moving into the state, which will likely disproportionately impact the largest population areas in the state: Clark, King, Pierce, Snohomish, and Spokane counties. Also, the increased population will be more diverse, putting additional pressure on the need for linguistically and culturally appropriate health services. </p> <p> At the same time as the population is growing, it will also be getting older. By 2030, more than one in five state residents will be age 65 or older, compared with one in seven today. Twelve rural counties will have over 30 percent of their population older than 65, including Clallam, Jefferson, Stevens, and San Juan counties. An aging population presents more complex health conditions and needs, with a greater demand on health care and care coordination. </p> <p> What's to be done? At the WSMA, we are on the front lines advocating for access to care, debt forgiveness, increased funding for residencies, and more. This is what we do, all day, every day on behalf of you, our physician and physician assistant members. And that's a two-way street—we need you with us, and you belong with us. Help us ensure that Washington state is the best place to practice medicine and receive care by joining or renewing your membership today. </p> <p> I know that it's more challenging to be a physician today than in years gone by. But as I consider my mother's health burden, I couldn't be more grateful to those of you who've dedicated your lives and profession to caring for her and patients like her. </p> <p> I'm personally grateful to each of you. I wish you the inspiration and light of a flickering candle in a glassybaby called "gratitude," and hope that no matter the stress and the burdens you face, you'll keep caring for us all. </p> <p> Thank you. </p> </div>12/2/2019 10:21:02 AM12/2/2019 10:18:08 AM12/2/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_november_18_2019_democracy_in_action_at_the_wsma_house_of_delegatesWeekly Rounds: November 18, 2019 - Democracy in Action at the WSMA House of DelegatesWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_november_18_2019_democracy_in_action_at_the_wsma_house_of_delegates<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>November 18, 2019</h5> <h2>Democracy in Action at the WSMA House of Delegates</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Nearly three years ago, University of Washington President Ana Mari Cauce, while <a href="https://www.washington.edu/president/2017/01/16/pursuing-the-ideals-of-a-more-perfect-union/">reflecting on the ideals of a "more perfect union,"</a> said "The messiness of democracy is a feature, not a defect. The interplay of differing ideas, deeply held and passionately argued, is how we reach understanding. If we permanently retreat into like-minded bubbles of our own making, or if we treat democracy and discourse as zero sum games, then we do so at great cost to our society, and ultimately to ourselves." </p> <p> We're all reflecting these days on the messiness of democracy, as it plays out daily from the nation's Capitol to our own Hill in Olympia and in our own communities. Though it can be messy, I have seen it succeed in action. </p> <p> Most recently, your county and state specialty society delegates along with WSMA board members came forward on Oct. 12 and 13 at our 130th Annual Meeting of the House of Delegates to respectfully debate and deliberate policy for this organization. That work is member focused and member driven, as it not only represents member issues that impact the profession, but also responds to member needs in the professional environment and the care of their patients. </p> <p> We saw that quite clearly as your representatives in the House brought forward nearly 50 resolutions for consideration, many inspiring impassioned testimonies at the meeting. Once the yeas and nays were tallied, delegates had passed 45 new policies and nearly 30 directives to take action, reaffirmed four policies, modified one, and referred five items. We saw democracy at work—perhaps somewhat flawed at times—but always with good intentions and thoughtful interactions. </p> <p> In case you missed it, <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f&WebsiteKey=c182ff6d-1438-4899-abc5-614681b54927#video">watch this brief video</a> to see your peers in action. </p> <p> To recap all that happened as this energized House resolved to take progressive stands on public health policy and protect the health and well-being of physicians, here's a summary, including information on how to learn more. </p> <p> Policy adopted by delegates at the meeting typically falls into one of three categories: </p> <ol> <li>New policy (new policies are added to the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/About_Us/Policies/Whats_Our_Policy/WSMA/About/Policies/Whats_Our_Policy/Policy_Index.aspx?hkey=f42b9a91-1f83-466f-ae3e-d58a7a6bd763">WSMA Policy Compendium</a> and help inform WSMA's advocacy in the Legislature, in the media, and in the industry at large).</li> <li>A reaffirmation of existing policy.</li> <li>A directive to take action.</li> </ol> <p> Policies "referred" by delegates go to WSMA leadership (the executive committee and board of trustees) for further consideration. </p> <p> This year, delegates directed your WSMA to: </p> <ul> <li>Advocate to amend state law to exempt all physicians from the B&O tax surcharge resulting from 2019 House Bill 2158.</li> <li>Explore options for tracking physician suicides and report back to the House in 2020.</li> <li>Support services to help assist physicians, residents, students, and PAs who are suffering symptoms of depression and burnout.</li> <li>Pursue, with stakeholder input, an aggressive strategy to reduce administrative burden.</li> <li>Support advocacy to eliminate the buprenorphine DEA waiver requirement.</li> <li>Publicize the interspecialty statement on "Firearm-Related Injury and Death in the United States: A Call to Action From the Nation's Leading Physician and Public Health Professional Organizations"</li> </ul> <p> Climate change was top of mind during the meeting, with delegates adopting policy to: </p> <ul> <li>Expand WSMA climate change policy (including directing the WSMA to divest from fossil fuels and encourage others in the health care industry to do the same).</li> <li>Support legislative efforts to create a low-carbon fuel standard for Washington state.</li> <li>Support the use of reusable isolation gowns.</li> </ul> <p> Public health, an ongoing concern of the House, was addressed by policy to: </p> <ul> <li>Endorse a ban on the sale of flavored e-cigarettes.</li> <li>Reduce firearm-related injury and death, including supporting research and legislative policy based on proven public health practices.</li> <li>Advocate for the removal of barriers to the immunization of "mature minors."</li> <li>Support improvements to the state's immunization information system.</li> <li>Support policy requiring pharmacies, when administering vaccines, to notify a patient's primary care provider when possible.</li> <li>Support the reform of health care access and delivery in the criminal justice system.</li> <li>Promote greater gender equity in medicine.</li> <li>Support physician education on critical race theory in medicine to help address disparate health outcomes of black Americans.</li> <li>Support investments to decrease racial inequities in cancer care.</li> <li>Support evidence-based sexual education; encourage legislation to expand sexual education to include contraception options, condom use demonstrations, LGBTQ+ sexual health, STI education, and discussions of consent.</li> <li>Support the rights of transgender and gender-nonconforming patients, including opposing legislative or other efforts to limit access to gender-affirming health services and encouraging health care facilities that provide direct patient care to adopt gender-affirming practices.</li> <li>Encourage better data-gathering on the victims of human trafficking; educate physicians on the issue and condemn the practice.</li> <li>Support efforts to encourage the wearing of helmets when riding e-scooters and e-bikes.</li> </ul> <p> Other policy adopted by the House call on the WSMA to: </p> <ul> <li>Work with partners to support legislation calling for an increase in primary care spending as a proportion of total health care spending.</li> <li>Support patients and referring clinicians knowing both the name and credentials of the clinicians to whom they are referred.</li> <li>Acknowledge the public health threat of medical misinformation.</li> <li>Oppose digital/online "coercion" of physicians and provide resources on managing one's online reputation.</li> <li>Oppose unpaid heath care data collection and data mining work for insurance company purposes, unless the provider chooses to provide it for free without coercion.</li> <li>Support establishing a statewide credentialing and onboarding process for medical and PA students from Washington state's medical schools.</li> </ul> <p> Referred policies (those issues needing additional study before further action) included: </p> <ul> <li>Policy advocating for the tracking of physicians sanctioned by the Washington Medical Commission and physician enrollees of the Washington Physician Health Program, with specific enumeration of physician suicides.</li> <li>Policy encouraging the Washington Medical Commission to use peer review when passing judgement on standards of care.</li> <li>Policy detailing standards for the prior authorization of prescription medication requests used by insurance companies regulated by the Office of the Insurance Commissioner.</li> <li>Policy directing the WSMA to take immediate action on gender inequities.</li> </ul> <p> For details on the above policies, and for a look at all policies and actions from the 2019 Annual Meeting, download the Official Actions of the 2019 WSMA House of Delegates, available from the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/About_Us/Leadership/House_of_Delegates/WSMA/About/Leadership/House_of_Delegates/House_of_Delegates.aspx?hkey=e2c50002-384d-4ff7-9116-5ce7a51116e7">WSMA website</a>. The WSMA will update the status of these items on a monthly basis. </p> <p> This democratic work of policy setting is of the people, by the people, and for the people. The work needs you, and I hope you'll plan now to attend the 2020 WSMA Annual Meeting, Sept. 26-27 at the Historic Davenport, Autograph Collection in Spokane, and be part of it. To learn more about the Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates and its role shaping policy for the medical association, visit the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f">meeting webpage</a>. </p> <p> And don't forget: You can directly impact the democratic work of our state Legislature by attending our Legislative Summit on Feb. 25 at the state Capitol. This is medicine's moment to advocate for medicine's advocacy priorities. Be sure to save the date—free registration will be announced shortly. </p> </div>11/18/2019 9:48:09 AM11/18/2019 9:44:58 AM11/18/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_october_29_2019_make_your_voice_heard_loud_and_clearWeekly Rounds: October 29, 2019 - Make Your Voice Heard Loud and ClearWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_october_29_2019_make_your_voice_heard_loud_and_clear<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>October 29, 2019</h5> <h2>Make Your Voice Heard Loud and Clear</h2> <p>Election season is here: the 2020 election cycle is ramping up and this year's Election Day is just a week away. If you are like me, your phone has been ringing and your email has been clogged with political fundraising requests. When making your decisions on local legislative and statewide races, consider asking candidates where they stand on two critical issues facing physicians and physician assistants: <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20191023/department_of_health_adopts_fee_increases_for_mds_and_pas">impending licensure fee increases</a> and a <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative___Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative_Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/no_to_b_and_o_.aspx?hkey=d5807781-a824-4b2c-a8f4-70ed597ddfa8">20 percent business and occupation (B&O) tax increase</a>.</p> <p>Both issues are critical to the ability of physicians and PAs to practice in Washington state. Any business owner knows it’s a losing equation when expenses go up yet revenues stay stagnant or decrease. These two actions make it challenging, not only to stay in practice but also to recruit more physicians to our state, which, like the rest of the country, is facing <a href="https://www.aamc.org/system/files/2019-07/workforce_projections-15-year_outlook_-key_findings.pdf">physician shortages</a>. When the licensure fee increases go into effect on Feb. 1, 2020, Washington state will be one of the most expensive states in the country to maintain a license as an MD or PA.</p> <p>At the same time, the B&O tax stifles competition and may limit choice as where an MD or PA chooses to practice. For those physicians or physician assistants looking to practice independently, they will have an additional 20 percent surcharge added to their B&O tax. Adding new taxes on practices that already operate on thin margins not only puts our independent practices at a competitive disadvantage, it could also result in a loss of jobs or, worse, a loss of access for patients. <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative___Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative_Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/no_to_b_and_o_.aspx?hkey=d5807781-a824-4b2c-a8f4-70ed597ddfa8#impact">Learn more about how some of our members will be impacted by this tax increase</a>.</p> <p>In addition to sharing your stories with legislators and the governor, remember to vote! This year’s ballot includes a variety of issues that require your input, including Advisory Vote 24 related to the B&O tax increase. Advisory votes are nonbinding and do not change the results of the law, but they do provide the public an opportunity to register their opinion on recent tax increases enacted by the state legislature. The WSMA and a large coalition of health care partners vehemently opposed this tax increase and will continue our advocacy efforts to exempt physicians from the surcharge. A vote to “repeal” the increase can send a message to the legislature about its impact on patients and physician practices.</p> <p>For updates on WSMA’s legislative and regulatory work, be sure you are getting our advocacy news—bookmark our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/News_Publications/Newsletters/WSMA_Advocacy_Report.aspx">online Advocacy Report</a> or send a request to Alex Wehinger (<a href="mailto:alex@wsma.org">alex@wsma.org</a>) to receive our regular Outreach and Advocacy newsletter. The most recent issue includes information on the issues above and provides the latest on updates to Apple Health’s opioid prescribing policy, balance billing rulemaking, Gov. Jay Inslee’s executive order on vaping and associated physician reporting requirements, and the OIC’s efforts to monitor enforcement of the state’s new prior authorization rules.</p> <p>Recent events have shown that politics are more important than ever to physicians and the patients they serve. It’s crucial for the WSMA to be effective and influential on political campaigns, because as we all know, it’s easier to help elect someone who agrees with you than it is to change the mind of a politician who doesn’t. I hope you will take a moment right now to make a modest contribution to WAMPAC, our nonpartisan campaign arm, by <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC.aspx?hkey=665ce949-b574-4ec7-8e5a-7a796233e5d7">donating $20 as part of our $20 for 2020 campaign</a> or consider contributing at an increased level by becoming a member of the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC.aspx?hkey=665ce949-b574-4ec7-8e5a-7a796233e5d7">WAMPAC Diamond Club</a>.</p> <p>Finally, mark your calendar to join us at the Capitol in Olympia on Feb. 25, 2020, for <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/WSMA/Events/Legislative_Summit/Legislative_Summit.aspx?hkey=ec5e0510-cee2-4aa9-b549-905d63952454">the Legislative Summit</a>, WSMA’s annual day on the hill. Registration will be open soon—for now, save the date.</p> </div>10/28/2019 1:19:35 PM10/28/2019 1:13:45 PM10/28/2019 1:19:35 PM
weekly_rounds_october_14_2019_together_we_will_do_moreWeekly Rounds: October 14, 2019 - Together, we will do moreWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_october_14_2019_together_we_will_do_more<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-Hirota-645x425px.png" class="pull-right" alt="Weekly Rounds logo featuring Bill Hirota, MD" /></div> <h5>October 14, 2019</h5> <h2>Together, we will do more</h2> <p> <em>Yesterday at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates, we inaugurated our incoming president, Bill Hirota, MD. For those of you who couldn't be with us, we wanted you to have the opportunity to read an amended version of his speech, so he is our guest columnist this week for Weekly Rounds.<br /> - Jennifer Hanscom, WSMA CEO</em> </p> <p> <strong>Bill Hirota, MD, WSMA 2019-20 incoming president's speech, Sunday, Oct. 13, 2019, 9 a.m. at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center.</strong> </p> <p> Madame Speaker, Mr. Vice Speaker, members of the House of Delegates, colleagues, and friends, it is my honor to have this opportunity to serve as president of the WSMA. </p> <p> I want you to know how much I appreciate all of you who are here this morning. </p> <p> I can think of three reasons why you might have made a different choice: </p> <ul> <li>It's a Sunday and likely your day off. </li> <li>It's early and you could have slept in.</li> <li>You could be watching the Seahawks vs. Browns game at 10 a.m. </li> </ul> <p> To tell you a little about myself: I have been a full-time practicing gastroenterologist in Pierce County for over 20 years and have been involved in organized medicine at the county and state level for more than 12 years. </p> <p> For those of you who may be interested to know more about my personal background, please see the article in the latest edition of WSMA Reports. If you have already read that article, you'll learn that the most important people in my life are my family. My wife, Emillie, my mother and father, and my daughter, Jesse. </p> <p> Jesse couldn't be here today because she's in Edinburgh, Scotland, where she's studying to be a doctor of veterinary medicine. My father could also not make it due to health reasons, but my wife and my mother are here, and I'd like to thank them for being my moral compasses and continued source of inspiration, love, and support. </p> <p> And now, with these privileged moments together, I want to share lessons learned from my own health care experiences and outline reasons why the WSMA matters to our profession. </p> <p> As you know, our vision at the WSMA is to make Washington state the best place to practice medicine and to receive care. </p> <p> It's no surprise to any of us that we will all take our turn at being a patient now or in the future. As for me, I had my own health care crisis in 2013 that highlights lessons I've learned that make me a deeply committed advocate for this goal. </p> <p> Long story short, I had a significant health event that required the attention of physician colleagues and friends, who didn't hesitate to step up and provide me with top-quality care. And because I am blessed with excellent social determinants of health, I received the support, kindness, and patience of my administrators, staff, and practice partners along my path to recovery. </p> <p> Why am I sharing this personal experience? To remind you that what you do matters. If not for the excellent care I received, I wouldn't be standing here as your president today. </p> <p> Here's what I learned from that experience: </p> <ul> <li>Always have a primary care provider. If I'd had one, he or she just might have been able to prevent this from happening.</li> <li>It's good to know some doctors! I learned I could call upon my friends and colleagues, and they will be there. </li> <li>Love your family and friends. They are what's important in life and help provide the foundation for what we can achieve.</li> </ul> <p> And now for why the WSMA matters. </p> <p> Another thing you might like to know about me…I've participated in sports as a player, trainer, coach, and fan. And since this is a Seahawks Sunday, I thought I'd point out a few things that I've noticed physicians have in common with pro athletes: </p> <ul> <li>We're competitive, overachieving, and driven.</li> <li>We're constantly measured—and measured up—by all sorts of metrics.</li> <li>We're decisive, making split-second decisions in high-intensity situations.</li> <li>We're team players, depending on each other to get the job done.</li> <li>We're leaders, motivating ourselves and each other to reach our goals.</li> <li>Getting to those goals is a long game … "It's a marathon and not a sprint" as they say. </li> </ul> <p> If you think about it, playing the long game is just what we do at the WSMA. We are not only in the game; we're in it for the long haul. That's what makes us the largest medical association in the state, representing physicians and our physician assistant colleagues, of all specialties from independent practice to large group health systems. </p> <p> I'll give you a few recent examples to demonstrate how we advocate for you and our patients in the long game: </p> <ul> <li>Passing Tobacco 21: We finally pushed House Bill 1074—which raises the age of sale for tobacco and vapor products—over the finish line. But that work did not begin in 2019…our work on achieving that has been years in the making and will save thousands of lives by preventing Washingtonians from taking their first puffs at a young and impressionable age.</li> <li>Balance billing: Our team and your advocacy helped legislate a bill that benefits patients without penalizing physicians. This bill is one of the most physician-friendly balance billing laws in the country. The WSMA negotiated this issue over many years.</li> <li>Our next long-haul battle will be to repeal the business and occupation surcharge that state legislators levied this year on our independent practitioners. That surcharge is 20 percent, which is bad enough, but the WSMA fought hard to keep it from being as high as 67 percent!</li> <li>Also, I've learned from enlightened colleagues about the health impacts of climate change and the scourge of gun violence. While many in our society may not want us to participate in this important dialogue, these issues are in our lane. </li> <li>On every health issue, we want Washington state legislators to ask: "What does the WSMA think?" </li> </ul> <p> Taking these issues on—whether we win or lose—takes a unified team. And that team includes all of you. We're part of an organization that's larger than we are and it's critical that we take that fully to heart. </p> <p> Together, we will do more. </p> <p> In my time on the WSMA Executive Committee, I have seen you fight for administrative simplification, MOC reform, and protection of whistleblowers within corporate health care. </p> <p> Together, we will do more. </p> <p> I believe the biggest threats facing our profession right now are apathy, decreased personal fulfillment, and burnout. </p> <p> We are a strong and thriving association but that's not a birthright, nor is our success a given. </p> <p> You are brilliant and passionate and ready to do more. </p> <p> I ask you now to engage with the WSMA to make Washington state the best place to practice medicine and receive care. </p> <p> Oh, and go Seahawks! </p> </div>10/14/2019 12:37:49 PM10/14/2019 10:49:47 AM10/14/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_september_30_2019_pathways_to_progressWeekly Rounds: September 30, 2019 - Pathways to ProgressWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_september_30_2019_pathways_to_progress<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>September 30, 2019</h5> <h2>Pathways to Progress</h2> <p> With the return of the rain and the leaves changing to bright orange, there's no doubt that it's fall again. It's hard to believe that it's October already. </p> <p> This is the time of year when I am on the road more often than not. In addition to representing the WSMA in meetings at the local and national level, I also travel around the state to meet with physician and clinic leaders. I value that time especially because it gives us an opportunity to discuss mutual priorities, gather input on WSMA's agenda, and demonstrate that an investment in WSMA on behalf of their physicians is proof that you are valued as a professional. </p> <p> The WSMA plays a unique role in our state's medical ecosystem. We are the largest cohort of physician voices here, and, through our work, we enable physicians to bring their insight, judgment, and credibility to influence care for the betterment of all patients. By creating an environment that puts physicians first, the WSMA forges pathways for thoughtful and creative progress to improve the practice and delivery of care, not only for patients but for the care teams as well. </p> <p> As your CEO, it's a privilege to see this work happen firsthand. I never tire of seeing how the work we do makes the practice of medicine even better. Here are just a few things we're working on currently that I want to share with you: </p> <ul> <li>We are excited about the practice transformation pilot efforts under way under the auspices of the WSMA Foundation. You can read more about it in our <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Latest_News/2019/September/ending_death_by_a_million_clicks">flagship publication here</a>, and I hope you do. This is exciting and ongoing work that we believe will affect real change in alleviating burnout. </li> <li>Several physicians are working with us on the balance billing law and regulations that are about to be implemented in this state. Sean Graham, WSMA's director of government affairs, communicates regularly via email with physicians of all specialties in order to craft input and direction for the Office of Insurance Commissioner, as that office works to implement the new balance billing law. </li> <li>Our 1st Vice President, Nathan Schlicher, MD, and Jeb Shepard, WSMA's director of policy, invest significant time in combing through the state's prescribing data in order to provide opioid prescribing reports to individual physicians that inform their prescribing practices. </li> <li>Earlier this month, we convened hundreds of physicians and providers from across the country for a groundbreaking discussion on physician and practitioner agency in end-of-life care. </li> <li>And as the annual meeting of the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f&WebsiteKey=c182ff6d-1438-4899-abc5-614681b54927">WSMA House of Delegates</a> draws near (Oct. 12-13—I hope to see you there), we will be reviewing and discussing more than 40 resolutions brought forward by physicians and medical students. </li> </ul> <p> All of these member physicians volunteer their time and expertise to make medicine and care delivery better in our state—and the WSMA gives them the vehicle to do this work. </p> <p> Granted, not all of our members are able to directly engage in this work, but even so, the WSMA makes sure each is represented and informed. But we can't do this without you and/or your group's investment in us. If you are in a group that covers your WSMA dues, I'm personally inviting you to take a moment today to encourage your leadership to continue this investment on your behalf. And when you're ready to personally get engaged, we're here for you. I hope to see you during my travels. </p> <p> And now for some quick news you may have missed: </p> <ul> <li>You'll want to check out <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative___Regulatory/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative_Regulatory/Legislative_Regulatory.aspx?hkey=c0dc6e7c-4385-497a-99db-4a6b6f4e56bd#new">these new laws</a> that impact medicine and/or your practice.</li> <li>To find out more about public option and balance billing, see these <a href="http://www.wsha.org/wp-content/uploads/2019-Post-Session-Webinar-Public-Option-Balance-Billing-06-19-19-FINAL.pdf" target="_blank">webinar slides</a>. For questions, contact Sean Graham at <a href="mailto:sean@wsma.org">sean@wsma.org</a>. </li> <li>For more information on the Omnibus Burden Reduction Final Rule issued last Thursday and intended by CMS to advance its Patients Over Paperwork initiative, read the <a href="https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/press-releases/trump-administration-puts-patients-over-paperwork-reducing-healthcare-administrative-costs">press release</a> and <a href="https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/fact-sheets/omnibus-burden-reduction-conditions-participation-final-rule-cms-3346-f">fact sheet</a>. </li> <li>The Health Care Authority's "Find a Provider" tool may show you as an "active" Medicaid provider even if you are no longer accepting new patients. Update your information following the directions <a href="https://www.hca.wa.gov/assets/billers-and-providers/fs_removingacceptingnewpatientsfrombpw.pdf" target="_blank">here</a>.</li> <li>Be aware! The Washington Medical Commission <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20190814/scam_alert_fraudulent_calls_targeting_clinics_and_physician_offices">reports</a> that scam artists are calling physician practices posing as the medical board. The WMC will never call you asking for your DEA number or looking for payment. If you believe your practice has been targeted, please contact the WMC at <a href="mailto:hsqa.csc@doh.wa.gov">hsqa.csc@doh.wa.gov</a>. </li> <li>The DOH has issued <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20190925/doh_issues_new_clarification_on_state_opioid_rules_for_chronic_opioid_therapy">new clarification</a> on state opioid rules for chronic opioid therapy.</li> </ul> <p> That's it for now! Thanks for reading and enjoy the onset of another lovely Washington fall season. </p> </div>9/30/2019 10:07:47 AM9/30/2019 10:05:45 AM9/30/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_september_16_2019_five_things_to_know_while_prepping_for_seahawks_seasonWeekly Rounds: September 16, 2019 - Five Things to Know While Prepping for Seahawks SeasonWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_september_16_2019_five_things_to_know_while_prepping_for_seahawks_season<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>September 16, 2019</h5> <h2>Five Things to Know While Prepping for Seahawks Season</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> I'm beginning to appreciate the demands of a grueling travel schedule. While my travels are nothing like those of an NFL team, it sure has been busy lately. Over the past three weeks, I've traveled to Spokane, Vancouver, and Bellingham with our <a href="https://vimeo.com/359807313">WSMA Road Trips</a>, designed to connect with our members face to face. As always, it was great to connect in person with the people who make the WSMA what it is! </p> <p> At the moment, I'm on the East Coast. I'm at The Heller School at Brandeis University to participate in an annual Physicians Foundation leadership program, to be followed by a trip to North Carolina with several WSMA members and their dyad partners to work on physician wellness (see below). And when I return to Washington, I'll be meeting with physician and medical group leaders throughout the state, sharing WSMA's 2020 agenda, learning what's on their priority list, and hopefully, gaining their commitment for a group investment in WSMA membership. </p> <p> We are a member-driven organization and as such, we focus our resources on areas where we can help improve your professional development and the practice of medicine in Washington state. We believe this will lead us to our vision of making Washington the best place to practice medicine and to receive care. Here are some of the areas where we are focusing our attention. </p> <h3>Working on physician wellness</h3> <p> As part of our work to test practice interventions that could improve wellness, I'll be heading to Charlotte, NC, this week along with our eight grantee organizations for the American Conference on Physician Health. The <a href="https://www.ama-assn.org/press-center/press-releases/ama-fights-burnout-new-practice-transformation-initiative">WSMA and our pilot practices are seeking to drive improvements through the Practice Transformation Initiative being led by the AMA with support from the Physicians Foundation</a>. Our groups will work with national experts to identify solutions and share best practices for improving the clinician experience and meaningful change at the practice level. Check out the <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Latest_News/2019/September/ending_death_by_a_million_clicks">September/October edition of WSMA Reports</a> to learn more. </p> <h3>Opposing B&O tax increase</h3> <p> We are as distressed by the 20 percent surcharge on business and occupation taxes as are the businesses—and physicians—impacted by it. We are aggressively opposed to the surcharge, which impacted independent physician practices and clinics. I realize it's small comfort to know that the tax could have been much higher—an increase of 67 percent was originally proposed. While the legislature reduced the impact to a 20 percent tax hike, it's still a significant financial burden for independent physicians and practices. </p> <p> Rest assured, the WSMA has not given up. We will continue to vehemently oppose this surcharge and intend to use the interim to build momentum to overturn the surcharge in the 2020 session. It will take a village to get that done, so we will need your help to make it happen. We are asking you to keep the pressure on local legislators by meeting with them now to express the impact this tax will have on your practice and on access to care for patients in our communities. Nothing moves legislators more than personal stories of how the ripple effect of their actions impacts your business and the lives of your patients. <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative___Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative_Regulatory/No_to_B_and_O/no_to_b_and_o_.aspx?hkey=d5807781-a824-4b2c-a8f4-70ed597ddfa8">Talking points can be found here</a>. If you are unsure how to connect with your local legislator, contact Alex Wehinger at <a href="mailto:alex@wsma.org">alex@wsma.org</a>. </p> <h3>Raising the physician voice…and PAC funds</h3> <p> In many ways, the state Legislature wasn't friendly to physician interests in the 2019 legislative session. This must change in 2020. One way we can make that happen is through WAMPAC, the nonpartisan campaign arm of WSMA that builds relationships and connections between our members and their elected officials. WAMPAC works to ensure the physician's voice is heard, but it takes resources to do this effectively. </p> <p> With the 2020 election just around the corner, we need to double down to ensure candidates hear the physician voice loud and clear on the campaign trail. To that end, we're mounting a campaign to bolster the coffers. We're asking you to give $20 today to make a difference in 2020 – and encourage your colleagues to do the same. Take action right now to join our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC/WSMA/Advocacy/WAMPAC/Give_to_WAMPAC.aspx?hkey=665ce949-b574-4ec7-8e5a-7a796233e5d7">$20 for 2020 Campaign by clicking here to donate</a>. </p> <p> Whether your gift is a one-time donation or ongoing commitment, help us advance an advocacy agenda that bolsters the profession and improves patient care throughout Washington. Your contribution really does make a difference! </p> <h3>Preventing acupuncturist scope expansion</h3> <p> The Department of Health is conducting a sunrise review of a proposal from the Washington Acupuncture and Eastern Medicine Association to <a href="https://www.doh.wa.gov/AboutUs/ProgramsandServices/HealthSystemsQualityAssurance/SunriseReviews/SunriseReviewinProgress">increase the scope of practice for acupuncturists and Eastern Medicine practitioners</a>. The proposal would broaden these practitioners' ability to diagnose and treat disease, treat substance use disorder, include additional substances for point injection therapy, and more. </p> <p> While the WSMA supports and encourages the use of integrative modalities like acupuncture, especially in the context of pain management, we have serious patient safety concerns with some of the proposed scope expansions under consideration and are on the record in opposition. In fact, WSMA Policy Director Jeb Shepard testified at a recent public hearing on the proposal and the WSMA submitted a formal comment detailing our concerns. Proponents of the sunrise review have been responsive to our concerns and are working with WSMA staff to address them. </p> <h3>Holding the Medical Commission accountable for licensure delays </h3> <p> Our members brought us concerns about licensure delays and we've taken action. We reached out to the Medical Commission to learn more about the cause. In a formal response to our inquiry, the Commission indicated staffing shortages and an increasing number of applications and delegation agreements have created challenges for them to keep their application times under their average time of approximately 10 weeks. </p> <p> Subsequently, the Commission took several steps to mitigate the situation, including reassigning staff from different areas to assist with applications, completing recruitment for current openings, and authorizing overtime until performance returns to normal. </p> <p> However, if you continue to have trouble with the licensing process, hearing from you helps us advocate for you. Contact Jeb Shepard at <a href="mailto:jeb@wsma.org">jeb@wsma.org</a> with your experiences. </p> <p> Also, the Commission noted that ensuring you've submitted a complete application is key to swift licensure. They recommend that you use the Federation Credentials Verification Services provided through the Federation of State Medical Boards. Applicants who use the FCVS establish a permanent portfolio of verified credentials and all their records are kept in one repository. </p> <p> With that, I'll refocus my thoughts now on the leadership development experience at Brandeis. Thanks for reading, and as always, thanks for your engagement with the WSMA. I'm grateful for our partnership! </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:47:16 PM9/16/2019 9:41:54 AM9/16/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_september_2_2019_speaking_up_influences_policyWeekly Rounds: September 2, 2019 - Speaking Up Influences PolicyWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_september_2_2019_speaking_up_influences_policy<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>September 2, 2019</h5> <h2>Speaking Up Influences Policy</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Our House of Delegates - the deliberative body of the WSMA - was formed back in 1889 to inform policy and to be the voice of our members. This democratic structure provides a pathway for policies to rise up from the grassroots level of the organization. But the structure only works when all members are engaged, express their opinion, and use the process to advance issues that improve health care and the practice of medicine in Washington state. </p> <p> As Winston Churchill said, "There is no such thing as public opinion. There is only published opinion." Your voice matters when setting policy at the WSMA. While it's only designated delegates who vote when the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f">House convenes in October</a>, their votes are informed by your voice. And your opportunity to "publish" your opinion is to sign in to our secure, members-only <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Membership/Discussion_Forums/Reference_Committees_and_General_Discussion/WSMA/Membership/Discussion_Forums/Reference_Committees_and_General_Forum.aspx?hkey=d674a5ae-4fb5-48d6-b969-16aab9b63647">virtual reference committees</a> on the WSMA website and speak up, lending your expertise, wisdom, and opinion on the policies that will be considered for adoption by delegates at the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f">2019 WSMA Annual Meeting</a>. </p> <p> It's been an active year for resolution writing, and I know you'll be interested to see the nearly 40 resolutions that the House will hear this year. Find a short summary and a direct link to each resolution below. </p> <p> Remember, only delegates can vote. If you want to serve as a delegate, let us know and we will put you in touch with your county medical society or state specialty society. See <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/About_Us/Leadership/House_of_Delegates/WSMA/About/Leadership/House_of_Delegates/House_of_Delegates.aspx?hkey=e2c50002-384d-4ff7-9116-5ce7a51116e7">here</a> for more information on the House of Delegates; for details on voting eligibility, see our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/About_Us/Policies/WSMA/About/Policies/Policies.aspx?hkey=672dbce4-f8bc-4f92-9c63-c72558dfa7b6">bylaws</a>. If you're frustrated that, as a member, you don't have a formal vote except for through these societies, learn more about how you can <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/How_to_Write_a_Resolution/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/How_to_Write_a_Resolution/How_to_Write_a_Resolution.aspx?hkey=a22cd977-aaed-4445-9ee2-6fc4716a7136">advance a resolution</a> that could change the process. </p> <p> Below are the resolutions currently posted in the virtual reference committees and that will be up for discussion at this year's meeting at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center. Click on the resolution title to read the full resolution, any comments from your colleagues, and to comment (you'll be prompted to enter your password to enter these secure forums). All comments posted by the deadline (midnight on Wednesday, Oct. 9) will be shared with the reference committee members for their deliberations at the meeting. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=43822235-5c0f-4ff9-9e8e-fdff0bafca11">B-1 - Towards a More Effective Washington Medical Commission</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate for independent tracking of physicians for 10 years after being sanctioned by the Washington Medical Commission and request Physicians Insurance write policies to provide defense resources for medical commission actions comparable to policies for malpractice defense suits. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=c739e9cd-16de-4abc-a91f-5820ca96c734">B-2 - An Ethical and Effective Physician Health Program for Washington</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate for the establishment of national standards for PHP treatment and advocate for independent tracking of WPHP enrollees. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=561e3e3f-71ab-4ec0-8aef-61ee04f90e47">B-3 - Programs to Reduce Advanced Provider Burnout</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support efforts to fund programs and services to help Washington physicians and advanced practitioners who are suffering symptoms of depression and burnout. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=f13df142-84ae-4fc7-a4b4-07828667262e">B-4 - Climate Change</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA acknowledge several statements relating to climate change and the effects of climate change. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=9a2b4b4f-1244-4522-9fe7-350ac7235163">B-5 - Financing Medical Education</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA revise existing policy to encourage all medical schools in the state to recognize prior indebtedness as legitimate financial aid need in medical school budgets. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=be05a12b-9c16-4406-baa0-c1422c32f07d">B-6 - Increasing Equity and Justice in the Care and Outcomes of Washingtonians with Cancer</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA acknowledge the existence of racial disparities in cancer care, commit to partnering with others to facilitate comprehensive public health solutions, and support investments in screening and patient navigation with the goal of empowering disadvantaged patients. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=69106cd9-8637-40bb-a181-fabc35a22b6c">B-7 - Support for Cybersecurity Techniques Against the Threat of Medical Misinformation</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA acknowledge the public health threat of medical misinformation and encourage adoption of proper cybersecurity techniques in line with the NIST Cybersecurity Framework of identify, protect, detect, respond, and recover against medical misinformation. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=1af0035e-be14-4167-89b5-b739c3237855">B-8 - Eliminating Minimal Risk of Patient Harm as a Criterion for Unprofessional Conduct</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support removing minimal risk of patient harm as a criterion related to WAC 246-16-810 - Practice below standard of care. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=fbe79eaa-d946-4040-89dd-cfe61f44497f">B-9 - Importance of Peer Review in Medical Commission Proceedings</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA adopt policy that professional standards of care as determined by the Washington Medical Commission should require peer review. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=5b6fdb6c-d015-4328-8bb4-de74abadd638">B-10 - Limiting Documentation as a Factor in Determining Professional Care When Outcomes are Favorable</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA adopt the position that elements of medical record documentation should not be considered in a WMC investigation as determinants of quality of professional care, except in cases when significant patient harm occurred as a result of documentation inadequacies. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=19dd0c6a-9c1f-4d88-9f80-b5c5c0460e11">B-11 - Patient Access to Cost-Effective Medical Care</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA adopt a policy statement that licensed primary care providers should be professionally obliged to ensure timely provision of medical services demonstrated to significantly limit morbidity or mortality with certain exceptions. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=02f399f2-587f-48b3-9c8f-7c79ddfbae36">B-12 - Health Care Gown Waste Reduction in Washington State</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support the development of alternative reusable technologies to reduce health care waste, including supporting the use of reusable gowns and further research into the benefits of reusable isolation gowns. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=094de906-3bbe-4754-86b6-056d78f774be">B-13 - Requirement for Helmets When Using e-Scooters</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA encourage helmet use by e-scooter riders, including encouraging the state to disallow e-scooter use without helmets, and would encourage e-scooter companies to attach helmets and liners to scooters to be restocked and inspected nightly. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=a320a096-4a8b-4172-8b74-1619a4aa5aff">B-14 - Low Carbon Fuel Standard for Washington State</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA endorse a Low Carbon Fuel Standard for the state and support other efforts to reduce pollution from transportation. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=cd29382f-822b-4f8e-af05-507926c12f1c">B-15 - Tracking Physician Suicide</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA explore options for tracking Washington state physician suicides with a report back to the House of Delegates in 2020. </p> <p> <a href="https://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=741c9c8f-13eb-4ce3-98ad-9c73e5c0e5af">B-16 - Transparency in the Handling of Specialist Consults</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA work to develop and share standards designed to give referring clinicians information about the qualifications of the clinician who will be providing specialized care to the referred patient. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=f26de634-7c5e-4ffe-9ae3-9ff7f84a9e1d">C-1 - Coercion of Physicians/Surgeons by Internet or Telephonic Threats</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA oppose coercion of doctors in order to force the doctor to prescribe medications or supplies. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=145d9a0b-2956-48fd-b604-5289c7495912">C-2 - Universal Access for Essential Public Health Services</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate for a single public health system in Washington state and advocate for statewide outcomes measures re the availability and outcomes associated with essential public health interventions. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=356ace5a-f85b-4fb8-a9aa-02017100056c">C-3 - Time-Based Physicians Payments</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA acknowledge that physician compensation should be primarily based on total face-to-face time with patients. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=051ff1d9-63a7-424b-ab34-a6118a050258">C-4 - Primary Care Investment</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA work with partners to support legislation seeking an increase in primary care spending as well as support the creation of a collaborative to assist the state in developing best practices to support health care innovation and improvement in primary care access and delivery. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=0b77b4bd-9fec-401c-9740-91206bc6610a">C-5 - Payment for Time Spent with Patients</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA adopt a policy statement that when third party payers question whether time spent with a patient is worthy of payment, the burden of proof is on the third party payer subject to state laws. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=8bfade3b-8405-4553-b5a4-9844c641367a">C-6 - Healthcare Reform in Medication-Assisted Addiction Treatment in the Emergency Department</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support policies allowing for emergency department-based administration of buprenorphine, methadone, and naltrexone at a patient's usual dose for established patients of medication-assisted drug treatment programs. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=27e42fa8-7229-4a99-aca7-b00a6a9fb808">C-7 - Healthcare Reform in the Criminal Justice System</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support a range of policies geared toward the improvement of health care in the criminal justice system, while opposing policies advocating cutting funds directed to health care staffing in prisons. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=31b12c14-dde2-44e2-a0c5-becc93089c17">C-8 - Increasing Gender Equity in Medicine Through Speaker Invitation and Selection at Medical Conferences</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA acknowledge the existence of gender inequity in medicine and further acknowledge that promoting greater inclusion of female speakers at academic medical conferences can influence gender equity. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=ae041074-924b-4e61-a579-d9f7cbce66ed">C-9 - Evidence-Based Sex Education in Washington State Schools</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support accurate, comprehensive, and evidence-based sexual education in Washington state middle and high schools including contraception options, condom use demonstrations, LGBTQ+ sexual health education, STI education, and discussions of consent in all Washington state sex education courses. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=48fdd2ff-0e5b-4f9a-8091-8b4159701dfd">C-10 - Opt-In Vaccinations for Mature Minors in Washington State</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support the revision of the Mature Minor Doctrine to include immunizations as an eligible non-emergent service and allow mature minors to receive evidence-based best practices in health categories that influence larger public health outcomes, specifically immunizations, without parental consent. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=586bc50a-7a3a-4fb7-8f1d-9f5556d76ee9">C-11 - Medicaid on Reentry from Incarceration</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA request the AMA advocate for legislation to grant states flexibility to continue benefits for Medicaid-eligible incarcerated individuals or restart benefits prior to release. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=0c0ce5a3-45d1-45d2-9f17-162e91530325">C-12 - WSMA Supports Payment for Health Care Data Collection</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA oppose unpaid heath care data collection/mining and lobby to seek payment for the work cost of providing health care data unless the provider chooses to provide it free and without coercion. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=996ae157-229a-49e3-a12c-3c20efeb186d">C-13 - Necessary Medical Care for Inmates</a> This resolution would have the WSMA support a requirement for defendants found guilty of a felony during any period of subsequent incarceration to receive the standard of medical care based on current ICD or DSM 5 diagnosis that likely contributed to the felony conviction. </p> <p> <a href="https://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=4f0fdec2-e96f-4f16-b7f8-0fbe3342b223">C-14 - Amendment to the B&O Tax</a> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate to amend state law to exempt all physicians from the state Business & Occupation tax surcharge included in 2019 House Bill 2158. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=0c718a52-c482-482c-b217-5cbefa604c6b">C-15 - Eliminating the Buprenorphine Waiver</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA request the AMA advocate for elimination of the requirement that practitioners apply for a separate waiver through the DEA to prescribe buprenorphine for substance use disorder treatment and would educate practitioners about the change in law and encourage them to integrate substance use treatment into their practices. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=039bea48-e1a9-46c5-8642-3dac2f9e9b1f">C-16 - Improving Input and Access to Washington State Immunization Information System (WSIIS)</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support several policies aimed at increasing the reporting of immunizations, including health care worker immunization data, to the WSIIS and support a state budget appropriation to leverage federal funding to enhance vaccine data reporting. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=4c4f76d8-7fc8-4480-a292-93d1a914b3bc">C-17 - Pharmacy Vaccination Records</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support public policy requiring pharmacies giving a vaccine to provide notification to that patient's primary care provider if that information is available. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=666cee1b-0592-43db-8704-8c1d5458cb04">C-18 - Promotion of Health Equity Through Graduate Medical Education in Critical Race Theory for Washington Physicians</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support a professional education program for its members on critical race theory in medicine with special attention to five key areas. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=3079cc3a-d447-4ba7-a192-b26beb1de57f">C-19 - Medication Prior Authorization</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support electronic approval of prescriptions and would have the WSMA request the OIC take steps to reduce denials of prescribed medications and requirements for prior authorizations. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=e952d959-6083-4824-8a21-4b8928e87ccc">C-20 - Scope of Practice</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA oppose efforts for non-physician practitioners to expand their scope of practice to include additional service currently performed by physicians without commensurate education and supervision requirements or compelling societal need. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=4ccd8774-3dcb-4119-a301-d0ded1b6f023">C-21 - Development of a Firearm Safety Bureau</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate for creation of a Washington State Bureau for Firearm Safety and encourage the WSBFS to lead a campaign to reduce firearm injuries and deaths. </p> <p> <a href="https://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=0d59a550-e2ef-4380-9e4e-24153b91515c">C-22 - Advancing Gender Equity in Medicine</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA advocate for several measures toward increasing gender equity in medicine including holding educational programs and developing guidance for other organizations. </p> <p> <a href="http://www.wsma.org/iCore/Communities/TopicDefault.aspx?iUniformKey=ec978135-8164-4fbd-9db2-13c8ae46cee0">C-23 - Reducing Firearm-Related Injury and Death, 2019 Updates</a><br /> This resolution would have the WSMA support and/or reaffirm several policies aimed at reducing deaths and injuries related to firearms. </p> <p> Remember, you have until midnight on Wednesday, Oct 9 to leave your testimony in our virtual reference committees. If you'd like to provide testimony in person, reference committees meetings are scheduled for Saturday, Oct. 12 at the 2019 WSMA Annual Meeting in Seattle. The WSMA Annual Meeting is free for members—<a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f">learn more about the event and register today</a>. </p> <p> And for a primer on WSMA's patient-focused, physician-driven policysetting structure, read <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Latest_News/2018/August/weekly_rounds_2018_08_27_you_the_people_guide_wsma_policy">my column from last year</a>. </p> <p> Remember, public opinion is only public if you publish it or speak up! </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:48:14 PM9/3/2019 12:33:06 PM9/3/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_august_19_2019_five_things_to_know_while_sending_your_kids_back_to_schoolWeekly Rounds: August 19, 2019 - Five Things to Know While Sending Your Kids Back to SchoolWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_august_19_2019_five_things_to_know_while_sending_your_kids_back_to_school<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>August 19, 2019</h5> <h2>Five Things to Know While Sending Your Kids Back to School</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> How can it already be back-to-school time? At least this year, dropping my son off for his second year of college was a bit easier, mostly because I know he has found his peeps. Isn't life better when you find your community? As comedian Amy Poehler said to Harvard's graduates earlier this year: "Find a group of people who challenge and inspire you, spend a lot of time with them, and it will change your life." </p> <p> That's great advice that I find to be true in my daily work leading the WSMA. Over the summer, as I traveled to various physician retreats, seeing the dedication and compassion of physicians reminded me why I'm proud - and motivated - to do this work. I'm inspired every day by what compassionate healers you are and the way you ease the suffering and improve the health of your patients. </p> <p> In my mind, what you do for your patients is what the WSMA strives to do for you. We champion your professional and personal well-being. We amplify your voice where it needs to be heard. We are your safety net, protecting your professional interests as well as the collective interest of your patients. We do all that so you can focus on your calling—providing great care in our communities. </p> <p> Just as your work is never done, neither is ours. Working to protect you and your profession is our specialty! </p> <p> Here are a few toplines you need to know while hustling your kids off to school and staying cool this summer. </p> <h3>Drafting policy</h3> <p> As a membership organization, members drive our work and our policy. Nothing highlights that more clearly than our policymaking process through the WSMA House of Delegates. Be sure to visit our online members-only reference committee forums to share your views on proposed resolutions to be discussed at this year's annual meeting on Oct. 12-13. </p> <h3>Licensing delays</h3> <p> We've heard from several members who contacted us about state licensing delays. Rest assured, we are on top of that issue. If you or your colleagues are experiencing licensing delays, letting us know about it helps us help you. Write the WSMA policy team with any details at <a href="mailto:policy@wsma.org">policy@wsma.org</a>. Unnecessary licensing delays are a roadblock to providing the best care in the state and attracting the best docs to provide that care. </p> <h3>Transforming practices</h3> <p> Work on practice transformation and improving wellness is progressing as eight organizational physician leaders and team partners work to identify systemic interventions that have the potential to improve physician wellness, reduce burnout rates, and increase satisfaction. The cohort identified several challenges relating to process flow, such as pre-visit planning, pre-visit labs, and synchronized prescription renewal. We always appreciate having more input, so if you have workflow challenges you can share, write us at <a href="mailto:policy@wsma.org">policy@wsma.org</a>. </p> <h3>High fives</h3> <p> Here's a shout out to Rep. Suzan Delbene (D-WA) who helped introduce legislation that would help protect patients from unnecessary delays in care by standardizing prior authorization under the Medicare Advantage program. If passed, it would address several pain points experienced by physicians participating in the program and could be used as a model by other plans. Read more in last week's Membership Memo. </p> <h3>Hitting the road</h3> <p> I know I mentioned this recently, but I'm highlighting it again because I really hope I'll see you. If you're in Spokane, Vancouver, or Bellingham, please be sure to join us when our WSMA Road Trip comes to town. We've heard from you that you want more face time with us to share what's on your mind, so this is your chance. Click these links (<a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-spokane-registration-64261748620?utm_term=eventname_text">Spokane</a>, <a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-vancouver-registration-64379109650">Vancouver</a>, <a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-bellingham-registration-64988291730?utm_term=eventname_text">Bellingham</a>) and confirm that you're coming! </p> <p> Thanks for reading and for your support of the WSMA. We're stronger together! </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:48:40 PM8/19/2019 9:01:24 AM8/19/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_august_6_2019_five_things_to_know_while_beating_the_heatWeekly Rounds: August 6, 2019 - Five Things to Know While Beating the HeatWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_august_6_2019_five_things_to_know_while_beating_the_heat<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly-Rounds-Article-Graphic-645x425px.jpg" /></div> <h5>August 6, 2019</h5> <h2>Five Things to Know While Beating the Heat</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Here's hoping you're managing to stay cool during these hot summer months. Just over a week ago, your WSMA executive committee got a jump on the hot days, gathering together in Walla Walla (temperatures in the 90s!) to chart a strategic plan for 2020 and beyond. You'll be hearing more about those discussions via our communications channels soon, but in the meantime, I thought I'd give you a heads up about five things coming your way in the weeks ahead. </p> <h3>Time to meet with your congressional representatives</h3> <p> With Congress breaking for its August recess, it's the perfect time for you to schedule an in-district meeting with them. Not sure what to discuss? Balance billing is a hot topic at the federal level. Dr. James Burkman and our Director of Legislative and Political Affairs Sean Graham recently traveled to the other Washington to provide the WSMA's perspective on this issue with Sen. Patty Murray (<a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20190626/balance_billing_debate_and_wsma_advocacy_shifts_to_dc">read more about that visit</a>). </p> <p> Now, the House has released HR 3630, also known as the "No Surprises Act." Similar to legislation under consideration in the Senate, HR 3630 would reimburse physicians at an insurer's median contracted rate for care delivered under the bill, and, importantly, would not allow physicians to negotiate with insurers when a payment is insufficient. Members of Congress need to hear your concerns about this. </p> <p> The AMA has an August recess "<a href="http://physiciansgrassrootsnetwork.org/sites/default/files/surprise-billing-action-kit.pdf" target="_blank">action kit</a>" on surprise billing which you can use. Or simply <a href="https://physiciansgrassrootsnetwork.org/be-heard?vvsrc=%2fcampaigns%2f67405%2frespond%3futm_source%3dAction%2520Alert%26utm_medium%3dPGN%26utm_campaign%3dSurprise%2520Billing%26utm_content%3dSurprise%2520Billing">send an email to your members of Congress</a>. When communicating with them, be sure to reference Washington's balance billing legislation, <a href="https://app.leg.wa.gov/billsummary?BillNumber=1065&Year=2019&Initiative=false">House Bill 1065</a>, as a model fair to physicians and patients. <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_apr_15_2019_taking_action_makes_a_difference">Learn more about that bill here</a>. </p> <h3>CMS seeks admin relief with proposed changes to physician fee schedule and QPP</h3> <p> The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services recently proposed major policy changes to ensure clinicians can spend more time providing high-value care for patients instead of filing cumbersome paperwork. As part of CMS's annual changes to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule and Quality Payment Program, the agency's proposals are aimed at reducing burden, recognizing clinicians for the time they spend with patients, removing unnecessary measures and making it easier for them to be on the path towards value-based care. This proposed rule builds on the Trump Administration's efforts to establish a patient-driven health care system that focuses on better health outcomes and is projected to save 2.3 million hours per year in burden reduction. For a fact sheet on the 2020 Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule, click <a href="https://www.cms.gov/newsroom/fact-sheets/proposed-policy-payment-and-quality-provisions-changes-medicare-physician-fee-schedule-calendar-year-2">here</a>. To view the CY 2020 Physician Fee Schedule and Quality Payment Program proposed rule, click <a href="https://www.federalregister.gov/documents/2019/08/14/2019-16041/medicare-program-cy-2020-revisions-to-payment-policies-under-the-physician-fee-schedule-and-other">here</a>. </p> <h3>New leadership at Physicians Insurance</h3> <p> The summer issue of the Physicians Insurance Report is out and inside you'll see a beautiful tribute to the company's president and CEO, Mary-Lou Misrahy. Earlier this year Mary-Lou announced her retirement after 15 years with the company. In a message to the WSMA board of trustees announcing her successor, Mary-Lou shared this: </p> <p> <em>"I've spent more than 15 years at this amazing company, whose future will continue long after my role in it comes to a close. I will stay on in a different capacity through the end of the calendar year to finish a few projects, as well as continue as the MPL Association Board Chair through May 2020.</em> </p> <p> <em>"Physicians Insurance is financially strong and stable with a very capable executive and leadership team. We are also well underway in a multi-year strategic plan that takes us through 2020, and have an incredible board of directors that will ensure continuity and focus. Thank you in advance for being part of the ongoing success of this amazing member-driven company."</em> </p> <p> William (Bill) Cotter will begin his term as the new president and CEO of Physicians Insurance effective Aug. 5, 2019. Bill comes from Allied World Assurance Company where he's spent the last 11 years, most recently serving as executive vice president, chief underwriting officer, Professional Liability – North America. While at Allied, he was responsible for underwriting strategy and execution, pricing discipline and product development for health care liability, directors and officers, errors and omissions, cyber, M&A transactional insurance, and political risk and trade credit profit centers. Bill has a broad insurance background working in domestic and international markets for nearly 30 years, for companies like American International Group, CIGNA, and Allied World Assurance Company. He obtained his MBA from Columbia University, and an MBA from London University. He has a B.A. from Boston College. </p> <p> Mary-Lou has been a strong steward of PI and a huge advocate for physicians and their practices in Washington state. Please join me in wishing Mary-Lou the best in her retirement and offering Bill a big welcome as he transitions into his leadership role. </p> <h3>WSMA's new awards program: Call for nominations!</h3> <p> It's probably no surprise that we think our members are amazing! You are our heroes, and we want to celebrate and honor you. That's why we are implementing some new awards to recognize your service to the profession. We need your help on this! I hope you'll take a moment to nominate deserving colleagues and peers for one or more of the following awards (click on the link for the nomination form): </p> <ul> <li><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/unsung-hero-president">President's Unsung Hero Award</a> (WSMA member going above and beyond to serve the house of medicine).</li> <li><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/unsung-hero-community">Community Unsung Hero Award</a> (for non-physicians who go above and beyond to improve the house of medicine).</li> <li><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/early-career-member-of-the-year">Early Career Member of the Year Award</a> (WSMA member providing service and mentorship to early career members).</li> <li><a href="https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/grassroots-advocate">Grassroots Advocate Awards</a> (WSMA members who take action on advocacy).</li> </ul> <h3>We're hitting the road</h3> <p> As a member-driven organization, when you speak up, we listen. You told us that you'd appreciate more face-to-face time with WSMA leadership. To that end, we are taking WSMA on the road so we can do just that. <a href="https://vimeo.com/351430388">We're headed to Spokane (Aug. 22), Vancouver (Aug. 29) and Bellingham (Sept. 5)</a>. We'll give you an update on WSMA's advocacy and policy work and would like to hear from you about how we can amplify our work in representing the profession or improving patient care throughout the state of Washington. We've also invited local legislators to join us in the discussion. Take a moment to <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Road_Trip_Washington/WSMA/Events/wsma_road_trip_washington.aspx?hkey=ab6effd3-1a20-4f09-8c80-5a268ec9f167">RSVP right now</a> to let us know you're coming and invite your colleagues: both members and non-members are welcome to these free events. </p> <p> I hope I'll see you soon, either at our road trips, or at the <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/Annual_Meeting.aspx?hkey=fea49254-3815-4dc9-8710-53ff2e3a100f">Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates</a> this October. If you can't make either event but would like me to come and speak to your medical staff or group, shoot me an email. I'm happy to come and provide an update on our work. </p> <p> In the meantime, stay cool and enjoy the rest of the summer. </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:47:31 PM8/6/2019 9:49:26 AM8/6/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_july_15_2019_wsma_is_growing_and_on_the_moveWeekly Rounds: July 15, 2019 - WSMA Is Growing and on the MoveWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_july_15_2019_wsma_is_growing_and_on_the_move<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>July 15, 2019</h5> <h2>WSMA Is Growing and on the Move</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> <strong>New vistas and another record-breaking membership year</strong> </p> <p> While I spend most of my time focused on representing the physician community in our state, just a couple weeks ago, I was in Spain and saw the Organización Médica Colegial de España. It reminded me that physicians everywhere need representation and a voice. </p> <p> Medical associations around the globe have a strong and lengthy heritage, with forward-thinking physicians seeking to better the profession and build its future. As we stand on the shoulders of those who've gone before, protecting the profession remains our specialty, even if the societies of today look quite different than they did in the past. </p> <p> WSMA's membership is more diverse than ever before in terms of age, gender, specialty, and practice setting. And our strategies, structure, and brand are changing as well, to better reflect who we are today and who we want to be tomorrow. Perhaps you've even noticed that this email has an updated design that ties in with our new logo and branding. </p> <p> Even better, I'm proud to note that the WSMA has had another record-breaking membership year. With membership reaching nearly 11,300 members, we've grown more than 2 percent over last year and achieved a 16 percent increase since 2015. </p> <p> Some of that recent growth is thanks to the investment decisions Washington Permanente Medical Group and Rockwood MultiCare made to fund physician and physician assistant memberships in the WSMA. These organizations join many other groups who value their medical teams and recognize the importance of direct physician involvement in advocacy and leading change. </p> <p> With this growth, our membership is trending younger, as we strive to cultivate a new generation of engaged members. In fact, the early career segment of our membership (students, residents, fellows, and physicians under 40 or in the first 10 years of practice) has grown 214 percent over the past five years. </p> <p> There truly is strength in numbers, which enables the WSMA to have a powerful collective voice when speaking up for what matters to physicians. I'm grateful to all the groups and individuals who invest in WSMA membership. By doing so, you're making a direct investment in professional fulfillment and leadership development that, ultimately, is an investment in quality care and better patient outcomes. </p> <p> At the heart of all of this work is you, our members. As a member-driven organization, it's critical that we hear from you. I'm ever mindful of how busy you are. I know that WSMA news about what we're working on and how that work impacts you, your patients, and your practice may get overlooked. </p> <p> That's why we use every communication channel available to keep you filled in on the good work we're doing on your behalf. We reach out to you in print with our flagship—and newly redesigned—publication, we have several digital channels (website, email, Twitter, Facebook, LinkedIn, webinars, videos) and events (annual meeting, leadership conference and courses, legislative summit, advocacy council, large-group meetings). </p> <p> But in addition to all of that, we are taking WSMA on the road this summer, visiting three cities in Washington state—Spokane, Vancouver, and Bellingham—so that we can meet face to face with our members in those communities. </p> <p> If you're in or near any of those cities, we hope you will join us at these free events scheduled on Thursday evenings from 6-8 p.m. In addition to fun, food, and frosty beverages, we'll offer brief WSMA updates; but, more importantly, we'll listen to you about your concerns in daily life as a medical professional. Your input ensures that we are working on what matters most to you and helps us shape a meaningful strategy for the future. </p> <p> This will be a great chance to meet and mingle with WSMA and your colleagues. Let us know that you plan to join us by registering today to reserve your spot at these free events. The WSMA Road Trip visits Spokane on Thursday, Aug. 22 (<a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-spokane-registration-64261748620?utm_term=eventname_text">register online</a>); Vancouver on Thursday, Aug. 29 (<a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-vancouver-registration-64379109650">register online</a>); and Bellingham on Thursday, Sept. 5 (<a href="https://www.eventbrite.com/e/wsma-road-trip-to-bellingham-registration-64988291730?utm_campaign=new_event_email&utm_medium=email&utm_source=eb_email&utm_term=viewmyevent_button">register online</a>). We'll see you there! </p> <p> Another way to inform us about issues of concern to you is to engage with us via our members-only virtual reference committees and general discussion forum in advance of the WSMA Annual Meeting. It's easy to post your ideas or comment on the ideas of others. Simply <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Membership/Discussion_Forums/Reference_Committees_and_General_Forum.aspx">click here</a> to get started. </p> <p> All of this to say…as a membership-driven organization your viewpoints and opinions matter, regardless of your specialty, your geography, and/or whether you are working within a large integrated group or small private practice. You matter. Let us hear from you, and I hope to personally greet you in Spokane, Vancouver, or Bellingham this summer. </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:48:10 PM7/15/2019 9:40:11 AM7/15/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_june_17_2019_hard_won_change_is_worth_the_effortWeekly Rounds: June 17, 2019 - Hard-won Change Is Worth the EffortWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_june_17_2019_hard_won_change_is_worth_the_effort<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>June 17, 2019</h5> <h2>Hard-won Change Is Worth the Effort</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Last week, I was in Chicago attending the AMA annual meeting. After all these years it's still a thrill to witness the incoming president's swearing in, but this year's oath of office felt like the most momentous one ever. In fact, it was an historic moment as the organization's first female African-American president put her hand on Bibles belonging to her great-grandfather and aunt and repeated the time-honored words of the oath. </p> <p> As Patrice Harris, MD, stepped up to that podium (<a href="https://www.facebook.com/AmericanMedicalAssociation/videos/853283701704193/?notif_id=1559682244507710&notif_t=live_video_schedule_broadcaster">view it here</a> at timestamp 48:45), she did so as only the fifth female president in the organization's 174 years. Notably, as she gave her presidential address, she did so 100 years after the first female physician was seated in the AMA House of Delegates. Also? Dr. Harris was preceded by another female president, Dr. Barbara McAneny, and she will be followed by Dr. Susan Bailey, who was elected AMA president-elect. </p> <p> Seeing these brilliant women leading in medicine today was a powerful reminder to me that change takes time—sometimes longer than we wish, but progress comes nonetheless. And as the AMA House of Delegates debated numerous issues—including health system reform, hospital consolidation, and gender inequity in medicine—we saw that democratic progress in action. </p> <p> The House narrowly voted to continue its opposition to a single-payer health system, adopting new policy instead to push for universal coverage by supporting improvements to the Affordable Care Act, including: </p> <ul> <li>Eliminating the subsidy "cliff," thereby expanding eligibility for premium tax credits beyond 40 percent of the federal poverty level.</li> <li>Increasing the generosity of premium tax credits.</li> <li>Expanding eligibility of cost-sharing reductions.</li> </ul> <p> Of particular interest to Washington state (in light of the WSMA's recent work to eliminate the personal and philosophical exemption to the MMR vaccine), the House passed a resolution to support state policies that would allow minors to override their parents' objections to vaccinations. In a separate resolution, the delegates directed the AMA to develop model legislation for mature minor consent to vaccinations. </p> <p> Your WSMA delegates took several issues to the AMA including: </p> <ul> <li>The concept of offering state employee health plans to every state resident and making the federal employee health benefits program health insurance plans available to everyone (referred for further study).</li> <li>Alignment of federal privacy law and regulations with HIPAA for the purposes of treatment, payment, and health operations, while ensuring protections are in place against the use of "Part 2" substance use disorder records in criminal proceedings (amended to reference applicable state laws).</li> <li>Universal access for essential public health services (alternative language adopted).</li> <li>An AMA study and report on the conditions under which our country could successfully eliminate the manufacture, distribution, and sale of combustible cigarettes and other combustible tobacco products (referred for decision).</li> </ul> <p> Here's a shout-out and special thanks to WSMA delegates and alternates to the AMA, for their passion and concern for the future of the profession. The delegation includes: </p> <ul> <li>Rod Trytko, MD, MBA, MPH, chair of the delegation</li> <li>Matthew Grierson, MD, vice chair</li> <li>Peter Dunbar, MD</li> <li>Nariman Heshmati, MD</li> <li>Erin Harnish, MD</li> <li>Shane Macaulay, MD</li> <li>Beth Peterson, MD</li> <li>Sheila Rege, MD</li> </ul> <p> Policy-making matters not only to the profession, but to patients. And as Dr. Harris noted in her keynote address, "There is strength in our collective voice." I couldn't agree more. If you're interested in proposing policy or serving as a delegate at the 2019 Annual Meeting of the WSMA House of Delegates meeting (Oct. 12-13 at the Hilton Seattle Airport & Conference Center), here's some helpful information you'll need to know. </p> <p> Resolutions, one of the key policy drivers for the association, are considered by the House of Delegates at their annual meeting each fall. Learn more about <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/How_to_Write_a_Resolution/WSMA/Events/Annual_Meeting/How_to_Write_a_Resolution/How_to_Write_a_Resolution.aspx?hkey=a22cd977-aaed-4445-9ee2-6fc4716a7136">how to write a resolution</a> and take note of these dates: </p> <ul> <li>Aug. 16: Deadline to submit your resolution for publication in the delegate handbook, the compilation of resolutions and other business to be considered by the House of Delegates. </li> <li>Aug. 30: Delegate handbook will be available for download from the WSMA website. </li> <li>Sept. 13: Final deadline to submit resolutions. To be considered, resolutions received after this date require consent of two-thirds of the House at the opening session.</li> </ul> <p> You can also circulate your ideas and engage in conversation before the meeting by posting your thoughts on WSMA's password-protected, members-only <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Membership/Discussion_Forums/Reference_Committees_and_General_Discussion/WSMA/Membership/Discussion_Forums/Reference_Committees_and_General_Forum.aspx?hkey=d674a5ae-4fb5-48d6-b969-16aab9b63647">online discussion forum</a>. </p> <p> The House of Delegates is composed of WSMA members who represent, and are designated by, their respective county or state specialty society, as well as representatives of WSMA's special sections and board of trustees. If you would like to serve as a delegate at the 2019 WSMA Annual Meeting, contact your local county or state specialty society. </p> <p> Getting involved at this level means bringing influence and insight to the policy-making process of your state medical association. It means being a leader in your profession and making a difference in the lives and health of your patients. As Dr. Harris said: "We don't run away from problems ... physicians run towards them!" </p> <p> Won't you join me in running toward the problems, and help me affect change for the better in our profession in Washington? </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:48:06 PM6/17/2019 10:22:15 AM6/17/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_may_27_2019_brand_new_brand_newsWeekly Rounds: May 27, 2019 - Brand New Brand NewsWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_may_27_2019_brand_new_brand_news<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>May 27, 2019</h5> <h2>Brand New Brand News</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Think about a couple of your favorite brands, and then think about how they make you feel. For me that means Starbucks (consistent, caffeinated), Apple (easy to use, good quality), and Alaska Airlines (convenient, reliable, and homegrown). </p> <p> A brand is more than just a logo. It is the set of emotions and recognition of values people have when they interact with an organization. A strong brand elicits not only thoughts and feelings from its audience, but also loyalty, passion, and motivation for action—all of which happen for me with the brands noted above. </p> <p> Many of you know that I've been with the WSMA for many years, and for the last six as CEO. So last week at our incredibly diverse WSMA Leadership Development Conference when a member told me that they had "always thought of the WSMA as an old, white, male club," I was dismayed. Are we still up against that stereotype? </p> <p> Thankfully, we've already been working on transforming the WSMA organization and brand to more appropriately represent our diverse membership of today! </p> <p> In the way of organizational change, we reorganized our association according to the express needs of our members, sharpening our focus on <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/News_Publications/Newsletters/WSMA_Advocacy_Report.aspx">advocacy</a> and <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative___Regulatory/WSMA/Advocacy/Legislative_Regulatory/Legislative_Regulatory.aspx?hkey=c0dc6e7c-4385-497a-99db-4a6b6f4e56bd">policy development</a>. We are tackling administrative burden and wellness through our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Resources/Administrative_Simplification/Healthy_Doctors__Healthier_Patients/WSMA/Resources/Administrative_Simplification/Healthy_Doctors__Healthier_Patients/Healthy_Doctors__Healthier_Patients.aspx?hkey=886d7bb3-8e52-4b07-9f38-541f3ca3e080">Healthy Doctors, Healthier Patients initiative</a>, and our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/About_Us/WSMA_Foundation/WSMA/About/WSMA_Foundation/WSMA_Foundation.aspx?hkey=5695f210-6aa1-4eaf-94f0-ddea2e6c6261">foundation</a> is focusing its work on bringing joy back to medicine and striving to improve physician wellness. Further, we developed <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Resources/Physician_Leadership/WSMA/Resources/Physician_Leadership/Physician_Leadership.aspx?hkey=de41060f-7888-4692-92da-9acc972257d3">courses</a> and <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Resources/Physician_Leadership/Medical_Officer_Collaborative/Medical_Officer_Collaborative.aspx">networking opportunities</a> to engage and equip physician leaders, supporting them at every stage of their professional careers. </p> <p> But we didn't stop with structural change, we also looked at our brand. We started with our flagship publication, <em>WSMA Reports</em>. I hope you've noticed the huge change since the March/April issue. We wanted our flagship publication's visual aesthetic to reflect the dynamic membership of our association, to represent our members more fully within its pages, and to implement an engaging and interactive editorial approach. </p> <p> This magazine is a must-read for any physician, physician assistant, or health care leader in Washington state, and it is available for free to WSMA members. Recent issues have reported in depth on the silent suffering of burnout and how artificial intelligence can serve doctors, not replace them. Up next, with our July/August edition we'll feature in-depth reporting on how climate change is impacting the health of Washingtonians and what's being done about it. </p> <p> Through this publication and all of our communications channels, we're reporting on issues that impact Washington state physicians and their patients. We publish news that is tailored specifically for—and only available to—WSMA members. </p> <p> Beyond all that, we are in the midst of launching a new look and feel to our entire brand. While our brand is no substitute for the work we do or the interactions we have, it does help broaden our reach, strengthen our purpose, create connections across our programs, and reinforce a powerful sense of our mission and vision. Implementation of these new visuals is in progress and will be an evolution, but I'm sure you'll notice aspects of our new logo and brand in the weeks ahead. </p> <p> As always, thanks for your interest in, and support of, the WSMA. I'm all in on the WSMA brand and I hope you are too. And now, I think a Starbucks venti Americano is calling my name… </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:46:47 PM5/28/2019 9:43:28 AM5/27/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_may_13_2019_members_speak_we_listenWeekly Rounds: May 13, 2019 - Members Speak, We ListenWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_may_13_2019_members_speak_we_listen<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>May 13, 2019</h5> <h2>Members Speak, We Listen</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> I recently heard from a member who is frustrated and disappointed with the recent <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20190508/state_budget_includes_mental_health_investments_b_and_o_increase_passes">20 percent business and occupation (B&O) tax increase</a> passed by the state Legislature, as well as the <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Membership_Memo/20190508/the_good_and_bad_of_new_opioid_legislative_policy">new IT requirements mandated as part of the omnibus opioid prescribing bill</a>. Here at the WSMA, we share his distress. These are not the results we had hoped for this legislative session. But with Democrats sweeping into control of the Legislature after several years of tight partisan splits, we knew that pocketbook/professional issues would face an uphill climb in the 2019 session. </p> <p> This member, who operates in an independent practice of five physicians and two nurse practitioners, will be particularly hard hit. That was a point I articulated <a href="https://www.seattletimes.com/opinion/public-health-wins-but-physician-practices-lose-in-2019-legislative-session/">in my recent editorial in The Seattle Times</a>. He put an even finer point it, saying, "This may be a game changer for our clinic trying to stay independent." </p> <p> His is the voice legislators need to hear. Yours are the stories we need to tell. These are the connections we need to make. If we—all of us—don't loudly, clearly, and aggressively make legislators understand the impact they have on patient care and patient choice in their communities, then the deck will continue to be stacked against us. </p> <p> I am grateful that this physician reached out to me to share his frustration, because through our exchange, I invited him to let us help connect him with his legislators so he can share his story directly. I'm delighted that he agreed. We are working now to connect him to his local legislators at his practice, where they can see firsthand how decisions they make directly impact patients, who are also their constituents. This is the value of each of you being engaged in your professional society. </p> <p> Friends, our work is far from done; this is a long game. The WSMA will use our influence during the interim (the time between legislative sessions) to prepare for next year's session where we'll fight to roll back the B&O tax and advance better payment for physicians. We won't give up, and I implore you not to either. You need to stand with us to help advocate on behalf of the profession and our patients. This work is never done. </p> <p> Right now, we are actively working to connect members with their local legislators so that they can invite them in and share their stories. If you'd like to be part of this effort, email me at <a href="mailto:jen@wsma.org">jen@wsma.org</a>. In addition, the board of directors of WSMA's political action committee, WAMPAC, will be meeting next week to develop our giving strategy as it relates to legislators and candidates who support our professional agenda. Stay tuned for more on this effort. </p> <p> In the meantime, let's not overlook that we had some good wins this session! WSMA's Olympia team will be debriefing members on these wins and other session results during a free lunchtime webinar on May 15—<a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Events/WSMA_Legislative_Wrap_Up_Webinar/WSMA/Events/wsma_legislative_wrap_up_webinar.aspx?hkey=9e9d7843-853f-47d0-bae4-7d2595f5c86b">register for the event online</a>. </p> <p> In addition, we are also working on our annual WSMA legislative wrap-up report, which provides an in-depth look at legislative session outcomes and new policies impacting medical practices, and features a "report card" on how your local legislators voted on WSMA's priority issues. Look for this in your mailbox later this summer. </p> <p> Keep the comments and suggestions coming. You can email me at <a href="mailto:jen@wsma.org">jen@wsma.org</a>. I'm happy to come and meet with you individually or as a group, and our other WSMA leaders are as well. </p> <p> And also of note, later this summer we will launch a WSMA "road tour," traveling to Spokane, Bellingham, and Vancouver to hear from you directly. I hope you and your colleagues will join us at these events. We are a member-driven organization, and your involvement drives our agenda as we strive to achieve our mission of providing strong leadership and advocacy that shapes the future of medicine and provides access to care for all Washingtonians. </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:47:22 PM5/13/2019 9:26:00 AM5/13/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_apr_29_2019_your_service_matters_become_a_leader_at_the_wsmaWeekly Rounds: Apr. 29, 2019 - Your Service Matters: Become a Leader at the WSMAWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_apr_29_2019_your_service_matters_become_a_leader_at_the_wsma<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>April 29, 2019</h5> <h2>Your Service Matters: Become a Leader at the WSMA </h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> Leadership is one of WSMA's strategic priorities; perhaps an obvious choice as we strive to influence and shape the future of the medical profession. And we've heard, loud and clear, from our members that leadership development is one aspect of our work that they value highly. That's another reason why we work so hard to bring top-ranked educational opportunities to the medical community, through our <a href="https://wsma.org/WSMA/Resources/Physician_Leadership/Physician_Leadership.aspx?WebsiteKey=c182ff6d-1438-4899-abc5-614681b54927&hkey=de41060f-7888-4692-92da-9acc972257d3">leadership courses and conference</a>. </p> <p> I spend a fair amount of time thinking about leadership and what it takes to be a leader. I'm inspired by this quote from <a href="https://www.psychologytoday.com/us/blog/artificial-maturity/201402/is-everyone-leader">Tim Elmore</a>, president of Growing Leaders, an international nonprofit that works to develop emerging leaders: </p> <p> <em>"Leadership is a calling on every one of us, to some degree. It's about becoming the person we were meant to be. It is less about position and more about disposition. It is not so much about superiority but about service in the area of our strengths. It has less to do with a set of behaviors and more to do with a perspective with which we view life."</em> </p> <p> What resonates with me in that quote is the emphasis on service. It reminds me of the Rotarian motto, "service above self." In my experience working with physicians, I've seen how they embody service and leadership in everything they do, from providing care to contributing expertise, experience, knowledge, vision, and wisdom to their patients, teams, and communities. </p> <p> Now, more than ever, we need strong physician leadership across all aspects of the profession. With challenges in the house of medicine, the shifting landscape of health care, the unpredictable direction of federal legislation, and the need to emphasize the quadruple aim in medicine, physicians must be directly involved in leadership in order to navigate a better way forward for the profession and patients. </p> <p> The WSMA depends upon strong physician leadership to represent the voice of physicians and patients as we seek to shape the future of health care in Washington state. We need your voice, your leadership, your service. </p> <p> I'm personally inviting you to consider being part of that leadership by nominating yourself or a colleague for consideration for a position on the WSMA board of trustees or executive committee. I'm highlighting this today because we have just extended the deadline for nominations to May 10. As a leader in the profession, your voice and service within the WSMA matters. </p> <p> I urge you to take a moment just now to consider this. More information about the desired qualifications, a roster of current board members, a nomination form, conflict of interest disclosure statement, and <a href="https://wsma.org/Shared_Content/News/Advocacy_Report/2019/Nominations_for_WSMA_Leadership_Due_April_30">candidate information sheet are available here</a>. </p> <p> Further, here are a few things to note about the nomination process: </p> <ul> <li>The WSMA nominating committee meets in early June to prepare a slate of nominees.</li> <li>The slate is presented to the House of Delegates at its 2019 Annual Meeting, scheduled for Oct. 12-13 at the Hilton Seattle Airport and Conference Center. </li> <li>The deadline for nominations is Friday, May 10, although additional nominations may be made from the floor of the House of Delegates.</li> <li>In considering yourself or colleagues for nominations, consider whether you or they are: <ul> <li>Well-informed</li> <li>Forward thinking</li> <li>Committed to the future of the profession</li> <li>Committed to service and the profession above oneself </li> <li>Experienced, enthusiastic, credible, and open-minded</li> <li>Able to put the WSMA above personal desires or agenda</li> <li>Capable of serving as a future president of our state medical association</li> </ul> </li> </ul> <p> It takes bold leadership and a strong sense of service to tackle the challenges facing the profession, your patients, and our communities. If you believe in our mission to provide strong physician leadership and advocacy to shape the future of medicine and advance quality of care for all Washingtonians, I hope you will consider this opportunity. </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:47:31 PM4/29/2019 9:33:38 AM4/29/2019 12:00:00 AM
weekly_rounds_apr_15_2019_taking_action_makes_a_differenceWeekly Rounds: Apr. 15, 2019 - Taking Action Makes a DifferenceWeekly_RoundsShared_Content/News/Weekly_Rounds/2019/weekly_rounds_apr_15_2019_taking_action_makes_a_difference<div class="col-md-12"> <div class="col-md-5 pull-right" style="text-align: center;"><img alt="Weekly Rounds logo" class="pull-right" src="/images/Logos/Weekly_Rounds_Article_Image_645x425.jpg" /></div> <h5>April 15, 2019</h5> <h2>Taking Action Makes a Difference</h2> <p> Jennifer Hanscom, Executive Director/CEO </p> <p> As I write today's Weekly Rounds, I am on a plane headed to San Francisco to represent the WSMA and all of you at a Physicians Foundation board meeting. Even as I write, things are heating up in Olympia as we draw near to the scheduled end of session (April 28). The WSMA team there is working nonstop to protect the interests of our members, their patients, and the profession. </p> <p> In short, there's a lot going on! I'll highlight just five things here for now: </p> <p> First, as you've likely seen, we've sent several urgent calls to action on multiple topics recently: wrongful death expansion, business and occupation (B&O) tax increase, and the public option bill. Thank you for taking the time to contact your legislators on these important matters. Your emails and calls do make a difference and we need you to continue to be engaged. April 17 is the cutoff for bills to be voted out of the opposite chamber (i.e. for <a href="https://vimeo.com/album/5835487">House bills to pass the Senate</a>). Our team in Olympia is working hard to salvage our priority bills and shut down attempts to move bad policy bills forward. </p> <p> Next, after many years of negotiation, the WSMA has reached an agreement on balance billing legislation that protects patients from unexpected bills and is fair for the physician community. The bill, which has passed both the House and the Senate and will soon be headed to the governor for his signature, includes: </p> <ul> <li>No statutory reimbursement rate or mechanism for out-of-network payment subject to the bill, requiring carriers to reimburse out-of-network physicians at a commercially reasonable rate.</li> <li>Physician-friendly dispute resolution process with no reference to Medicare rates as an arbitration criterion, and claims bundling allowed over a two-month timeframe.</li> <li>Addressing the ERISA problem with an ability for self-insured health plans to opt in to complying with the law, and a mechanism for physicians to verify the nature of a health plan (i.e. whether it complies with the law and/or whether a patient can be balance billed). </li> <li>Direct payment from carriers to physicians (prohibiting carriers from routing payment through patients).</li> <li>Strengthened network adequacy requirements for carriers.</li> <li>Workable requirements for physician groups pertaining to transparency and enforcement of the law.</li> </ul> <p> I want to acknowledge the good work of Sean Graham, WSMA's director of legislative and political affairs, and all the physicians who worked with him to find a path forward for addressing this difficult issue. We know this law—however physician-friendly—poses challenges for the physician community. We're committed to helping practices implement the law and will continue to advocate during the rulemaking process to make the law as fair to physicians as possible. </p> <p> Third, last week's WSMA e-newsletter, Membership Memo, featured updates on what's happening in Olympia, including news that Gov. Jay Inslee signed one of WSMA's priority pieces of legislation: raising the age of sale for tobacco and vapor products in Washington state from 18 to 21. This is a major victory for public health and for physician advocacy in our state. As WSMA President Tom Schaaf, MD, noted in our press release, "This is the fifth legislative session where Washington's physicians have fought for policy to raise the tobacco and vaping purchasing age. In this instance, the fifth time's the charm. It's a reminder to all of us that the health and well-being of our patients, families, and loved ones is worth fighting for, no matter how long and hard the fight." The new law takes effect on Jan. 1, 2020. </p> <p> Next, the WSMA Foundation received a year-long grant from the Physicians Foundation to pilot a practice transformation initiative at several sites throughout Washington state. Congratulations to Allegro Pediatrics, EvergreenHealth Medical Group, Family Care Network, Kaiser Permanente, MultiCare Health System, The Everett Clinic, UW Valley Medical Center, and Virginia Mason for being chosen to participate with the WSMA, the AMA, and the Physicians Foundation on this journey to advance research and promote evidence-based solutions that improve patient care by enhancing professional fulfillment and reducing clinician burnout. </p> <p> Finally, more than 10 years ago, the WSMA recognized the unique needs of physician medical executives in the hospital setting. We partnered with the Washington State Hospital Association to create a joint chief medical officers workgroup. Since that time, the group has evolved to include medical officers at large independent clinics. Our <a href="http://medicalofficercollaborative.org/home/">Medical Officer Safe Table Learning Collaborative</a> offers a forum for medical officers to engage with and learn from each other on topics such as patient safety and quality; wellness, burnout, and impairment; leadership development; policy; culture change; and other shared challenges all CMOs face. The group meets three times a year and all medical officers are encouraged to attend. For more information, contact Jessica Martinson at <a href="mailto:jessica@wsma.org">jessica@wsma.org</a>. </p> <p> This quick rundown barely scratches the surface of all we're doing just now, but you're busy and my plane is about to land, so I'll wrap this up. Thanks for your engagement with the WSMA, and for taking time to read about our work. </p> </div>9/16/2019 3:47:32 PM4/15/2019 9:32:47 AM4/15/2019 12:00:00 AM
 

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