MSSNY STATEMENT IN RESPONSE TO PRESIDENT’S EXECUTIVE ORDER ON MEDICARE


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
October 8, 2019 

MSSNY STATEMENT IN RESPONSE TO PRESIDENT’S EXECUTIVE ORDER ON MEDICARE

Statement attributable to:
Art Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York 

“We appreciate the goal of the President’s Executive Order (EO) to protect and strengthen the Medicare program for the tens of millions of seniors enrolled in the program who depend upon its coverage to meet their health care needs.  We certainly support aspects of this initiative to reduce the administrative burdens associated with facilitating needed care for our patients.  However, we are very concerned with a number of the policy directions this Executive Order appears to advance.

In particular, we are concerned with the apparent goal to expand the Medicare Managed Care program, which likely could include efforts to disincentivize continued or new enrollment in the Medicare fee for service program.  This is especially problematic in light of multiple instances in recent years where Medicare managed care plans dropped huge numbers of physicians from their MA networks.   This in turn significantly reduces care options for our patients.

We are quite troubled by proposals that seek to expand already cumbersome Medicare value based payment programs.  Many smaller physician practices have reported significant challenges associated with participating and succeeding in the current Medicare Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS).  The significant reporting requirements associated with the current MIPS program and other value programs are increasing “burnout” among physicians who must spend more time checking boxes on their HIT systems rather than treating patients to meet well intended but often overreaching value programs.   A recent Annals of Family Medicine study reported that, during a typical 11 hour workday, primary care physicians spent more than half their time (nearly 6 hours) on data entry and other HIT system tasks, instead of with patients.   There must be a comprehensive review of the fairness of the existing MIPS program before advancing measures that would expand it.

We are also very concerned with proposals that appear to seek to expand the scope of certain health care practitioners.  There are many different types of health care professionals, each of which provide essential care for patients.  However, patients benefit most from the combined care of a team headed by a physician whose education and training enables them to oversee the actions of the rest of the team, in order to provide the patient with optimal medical treatment.  While the EO appears to recognize the applicability of state laws that govern the limitation of the scope of practice of certain health care practitioners, we are very concerned with the perpetuation of a false narrative that promotes equivalency of non-physicians despite the lack of similar education and training.  Such scope expansions could lead to an increase in the “siloing” of care delivery rather than care received through an integrated team-based approach.

We look forward to working with medical associations across the country to work with the Administration towards preserving and strengthening the Medicare program so that our seniors continue to have timely access to the quality care they need and deserve.”

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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NORTHEASTERN MEDICAL SOCIETIES URGE CONGRESS TO ENACT FAIR SURPRISE BILLING REFORM LEGISLATION


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
October 1, 2019

NORTHEASTERN MEDICAL SOCIETIES URGE CONGRESS TO ENACT FAIR SURPRISE BILLING REFORM LEGISLATION

October 1, 2019, Westbury, NY— Our respective associations representing tens of thousands of physicians across the northeastern United States applaud the many members of the US Congress who are seeking to take action to protect patients from “surprise” medical bills.   However, what is needed is a balanced, comprehensive solution to this problem, not a one-sided gift to America’s health insurance companies, some of the richest corporations in the United States. That approach will create shortages in our emergency departments and an acceleration of health care consolidation.

Proposals that have begun to advance in the US House and Senate appropriately prevent patients from facing surprise bills from out of network practitioners.  However, they give unilateral control to the insurance industry to determine what should be the cost of care in these instances.  No negotiation.  No compromise.  No recognition of special circumstances surrounding the care delivery.   If Congress gives insurers this extraordinary new power, why would an insurer ever fairly negotiate with a physician to be in their patient care networks?  In fact, in California, when insurers were given this discretion, what followed was a 48% increase in patient access to care complaints including delays in obtaining care or securing physician appointments, inadequate selection of providers, and problems accessing facilities.

The comprehensive laws in New York and Connecticut addressing this issue have been widely acclaimed because of the delicate balance it struck among health insurers, physicians, and hospitals to protect patients from surprise medical bills, while also ensuring the ability of hospital emergency departments to have available needed on-call specialty physician care to provide patient care when time is of the essence.  In New York, when an insurer and physician cannot agree, the solution is decided through a low cost, simplified dispute resolution system. The arbitrator chooses the side that is more reasonable based upon a number of factors.

The New York and Connecticut laws rely upon benchmarks developed by an independent, non-profit entity that is free from insurer or physician control.  This is particularly important given the insurance industry’s own notorious history in establishing benchmarks for out of network payment.  In 2009, then New York AG Andrew Cuomo launched an investigation into United Healthcare’s ownership of the Ingenix database.  The insurance industry agreed to stop using this conflicted database and agreed to contribute towards the creation of an independent data collection entity, Fair Health, which has become the reference database used by New York.

From the statistics, it is clear that New York’s law is working as it was intended.  A just released report from the New York Department of Financial Services showed consumers have saved over $400 million since the law’s enactment.  It also reduced out of network billing by nearly 35%.  Furthermore, the relatively low number of claims decided since the law was implemented suggests that New York’s system is having the effect of pushing health insurers and physicians to resolve their differences without state intervention.

As stated by NY DFS Superintendent Linda Lacewell, “New York’s law has been a true success in bringing stakeholders together to solve the problem of excessive charges for emergency services and surprise bills.”

Given the success of New York’s law, we are concerned with proposals that will clearly deviate from this carefully crafted approach to the problem.  Instead, we urge Congress to look to legislation, such as that sponsored by Congress members Ruiz and Roe (HR 3502), that would emulate New York’s successful approach. 

CONNECTICUT STATE MEDICAL SOCIETY
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF DELAWARE
MAINE MEDICAL ASSOCIATION
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF NEW JERSEY
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
PENNSYLVANIA MEDICAL SOCIETY

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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MSSNY Supports Call to Ban Menthol-Flavored E-Cigarettes

For Immediate Release

September 26, 2019

 

MSSNY Supports Call to Ban Menthol-Flavored E-Cigarettes


Statement attributable to:

Art Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

“The physician community in New York applauds Governor Andrew Cuomo for taking steps to add menthol-flavored vape products to the emergency ban in New York, which took effect last week. We are hopeful that the regulations will be formally expanded when Health Commissioner Howard Zucker, MD, JD convenes another emergency meeting of the Public Health and Health Planning Council, possibly as early as next week.

While flavored vaping products like “Cotton Candy” and “Captain Crunch” are obviously targeted to entice teens to vape, menthol-flavored vape products are equally alluring and should not be available to our youth.

As we attempt to stop this growing public health crisis in New York, we fully support the ban on all flavored e-cigarettes. The health of our children is at stake.”

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Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal nonprofit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.


Media Contact:
Roseann Raia

Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York 11590
516-488-6100 ext.  302

 

 

MSSNY Applauds Governor Cuomo for Pursuing Emergency Regulations to Ban the Sale of Flavored E-Cigarettes 


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
September 16, 2019

MSSNY Applauds Governor Cuomo for Pursuing Emergency Regulations
to Ban the Sale of Flavored E-Cigarettes
 

Statement attributable to:
Arthur Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

“The physician community in New York thanks Governor Cuomo for his efforts to issue emergency regulations this week to quickly ban the sale of flavored e-cigarettes. The governor’s announcement came as health officials across the country investigate a rash of pulmonary illnesses and several deaths associated with vaping.

As the Governor pointed out in his announcement yesterday, the use of e-cigarettes among high schoolers more than doubled between 2014-2018 with 27% of high school students vaping. Flavored vaping products like “Cotton Candy” and “Captain Crunch” are obviously targeted to entice teens to vape.

The health of our children is at stake. It’s time to address this head on before it affects an entire generation.”

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.


MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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Medical Society Supports Creation of Maternal Mortality Review Board 


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
August 2, 2019

Medical Society Supports Creation of Maternal Mortality Review Board 

Statement attributable to:
Arthur Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

“The Medical Society of the State of New York thanks Governor Andrew Cuomo and the Legislature for passing and signing into law the creation of a Maternal Mortality Review Board. The creation of a maternal mortality review board will assist the state in developing and creating new strategies to improve maternal health and lessen the impact of maternal mortality and morbidity.  The law embraces national best practices on maternal health and ensures accountability and sustainability of a maternal review board.  Maternal mortality is an important public health issue that must be addressed and the creation of this board is the first step.” Arthur Fougner, MD, MSSNY President.

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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Statement of MSSNY President Dr. Art Fougner Urging US House Committee to Fix Unfair Surprise Bill Proposal


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
July 10, 2019 

Statement of MSSNY President Dr. Art Fougner Urging US House Committee to Fix Unfair Surprise Bill Proposal

“New York’s physicians are extremely concerned about the impact to patient care of a bill before the US House Energy& Commerce Committee Health Subcommittee, tomorrow July 11, that would further enable abusive health insurer practices by establishing an insurer determined “default rate” for surprise medical bills (HR 3630).  New York’s physicians very much agree with the goal of the legislation to protect patients from facing these bills, but disagree strongly with the solution being offered by Rep. Frank Pallone and Rep. Greg Walden, Chair and Ranking Member of the E&C Committee.  Their proposal would greatly limit the ability of physicians to negotiate patient care terms fairly with already market dominant insurance companies.  It would also make it much harder for hospitals to ensure needed on-call specialty care in their emergency departments. Moreover, it could have a particularly significant adverse impact on rural and smaller hospitals.  We strongly urge Representative Eliot Engel (a member of the Health Subcommittee) to urge that this harmful legislation be replaced with HR 3502 (Ruiz/Roe/Morelle) that would protect patients from surprise medical bills based on the nationally acclaimed model adopted in New York which has proven to be an effective and balanced approach”

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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Doctors May Soon Be Able to Prescribe Part of a Prescription and “Refilled” if Patients Need More Relief


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
June 19, 2019 

Doctors May Soon Be Able to Prescribe Part of a Prescription and “Refilled” if Patients Need More Relief

Statement attributable to:
Arthur Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

A bill has passed the New York State Legislature today that allow physicians to prescribe a controlled substance on a partially filled basis. This measure would allow physicians/prescribers to prescribe up to a 30-day supply of controlled substance with a notation to the pharmacist that he/she should only dispense the agreed to amount. The measure will go now to the Governor for his consideration. The total quantity dispensed in all partial fillings would not exceed the total quantity prescribed.  The Medical Society of the State of New York also believes that this measure will now allow prescribers to help patients balance the need to relieve pain with an adequate supply of medication by only filling part of the prescription. Should they need additional pain relief, patients will be able to return to the pharmacy to fill the remaining portion of their prescription.

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

 

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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Medical Society Supports SAM, NYSACHO and NYS PTA in Opposition to Legalized Recreational Marijuana


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
June 4, 2019 

Medical Society Supports SAM, NYSACHO and NYS PTA in Opposition to Legalized Recreational Marijuana

Statement attributable to:
Arthur Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

“The Medical Society of the State of New York remains firm in its opposition to the legalization of recreational marijuana and applauds Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM), New York State Association of County Health Officials (NYSACHO), and the NYS PTA for their joint efforts in stopping the bill from moving forward.

“One of our chief concerns is that sufficient research and clinical study necessary for both legislators and voters to make an informed decision are sorely lacking. A major contributing factor is that marijuana continues to have a schedule I classification by the federal government, which significantly limits the comprehensive research that can be performed so that physicians and consumers can make informed decisions. We would therefore support reclassification of cannabis as Schedule II first to facilitate urgently needed further study.”

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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Medical Society Supports March of Dimes Vaccination Efforts


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release
June 4, 2019 

Medical Society Supports March of Dimes Vaccination Efforts 

Statement attributable to:
Arthur Fougner, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

“More than 60 years ago, the March of Dimes pioneered the vaccine research leading to the eradication of polio. The organization has been a leader in the fight for the health and well-being of mothers and children and has stood firm in their efforts to encourage every individual to be vaccinated.

“The Medical Society of the State of New York is pleased to support the March of Dimes’ efforts to ensure that medical exemptions are the only exemptions that exist in New York State. The health of our patients depends on proper vaccinations. Vaccines are, in fact, the very cornerstone of public health. We must preserve community immunity in order to protect society—especially our most vulnerable: newborn babies, pregnant women, the immune-compromised and those with cancer.

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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State Medical Societies Demand Legislators “Say No” to Recreational Marijuana Legalization


MSSNY Seal
MEDICAL SOCIETY OF THE STATE OF NEW YORK
865 Merrick Avenue, Westbury, New York 11590-9007
www.mssny.org
Communications Division
Telephone: (516) 488-6100

 

For Immediate Release

State Medical Societies Demand Legislators “Say No” to Recreational
Marijuana Legalization

Group comprises seven State Medical Associations with more than 180,000 physician and student members

May 31, 2019, Westbury, NY— With pressure mounting on state legislatures across the country to legalize recreational marijuana, a group of seven state Medical Societies is calling for cooler heads to prevail.“

This is a public health issue, not a tax issue,” said Thomas Madejski, MD, immediate past president of the Medical Society of the State of New York. “It’s ludicrous to prioritize increased state revenue against increased hospital visits. The health of our citizens is at stake here.

”Indeed, data from states that have legalized recreational marijuana shows an increase in car accidents and an increase in teen use.

The American Medical Association (AMA) stands with the states in expressing concern about legalization of cannabis for recreational use. James Madara, MD, executive vice president and CEO of the AMA recently sent a letter to New York State Assembly Speaker Carl Heastie and New York State Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart-Cousins urging them to “delay initiating the legalization of cannabis for recreational (non-medicinal) use until further research is completed on the public health, medical, economic and social consequences of its use.”

The group is urging Congress to re-classify marijuana from Schedule I to Schedule II so that necessary research can be performed to better inform states considering these proposals. As a Schedule II drug, government funding can be sought for necessary research that clearly defines the positive and negative elements of marijuana use.

“One of our chief concerns is the lack of sufficient research and clinical study upon which legislators and voters are approaching this issue,” said Dr. Madejski. “A major contributing factor is that marijuana continues to have a schedule I classification by the federal government, which significantly limits the comprehensive research that can be performed to inform physician and consumer decision-making.”

A final concern involves the worsening of the current mental health and substance abuse crisis enveloping the country.

“We have seen a relentless push by wealthy Wall Street Venture Capitalists to create a new addiction industry to extract profits from all our communities but especially those already experiencing socioeconomic challenges,” said Dr. Madejski. “They are particularly devious in hiding their true intentions with legitimate arguments to redress inequities in social justice and health care disparities. Redressing these inequities does not require expanding use of a substance with well documented harms to our vulnerable populations, particularly with regards to accidental deaths, substance abuse disorders and severe mental health issues.”

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About the Medical Society of the State of New York
Founded in 1807, the Medical Society of the State of New York is the state’s principal non-profit professional organization for physicians, residents and medical students of all specialties. Its mission is to represent the interests of patients and physicians to assure quality healthcare services for all.

The state medical societies in the group are New York, New Jersey, Connecticut, Delaware, New Hampshire, Pennsylvania and Ohio.

 

MSSNY Contact:
Roseann Raia
Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Ave.
Westbury, New York
516-488-6100 ext 302
rraia@mssny.org

 

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