MSSNYeNews: IT’S TRUE: Bonding with Patients=Longevity

Thomas J. Madejski, MD MSSNY President

Thomas J. Madejski, MD
MSSNY President

July 13, 2018
Volume 20  Number 25


Dear Colleagues:

MSSNY advocates tirelessly for the sanctity of the patient physician relationship.  We fight against disruption of the care of our patients because we know in our hearts and minds that disruption of care by insurers, pharmaceutical benefit managers, and other third party entities leads to fragmentation of care and poorer outcomes. We have known for some time that continuity of care in primary care is associated with greater patient satisfaction,9 improved health promotion,10 increased adherence to medication, reduced hospital use, and lower hospital mortality.

Health policy researchers recently concluded that continuity of care is truly a matter of life and death in a meta-analysis published in the June 28 issue of BMJ Open. Their analysis was not limited to primary care continuity.  The same is true for specialties—particularly surgeons and psychiatrists.

The research involved 22 studies from nine countries with different cultures and healthcare systems. Overall, 82 percent of the studies showed that patients who stayed with the same physician had a lower chance of dying as compared to patients who engaged different doctors. Similarly, patients who see the same doctor are more likely to listen to our advice and they have a higher rate of following recommendations for preventing illness.

Conversely, 21 percent of Americans do not have a personal physician. Dr. Denis Pereira Gray, the lead researcher of the study, said, “ Patients talk more freely to doctors they know and doctors can then understand them better and tailor advice and treatment better.”

As the study conclusion states, “For 200 years, medical advances have been mainly technical and impersonal which has reduced attention to the human side of medicine. This systematic review reveals that despite numerous technical advances, continuity of care is an important feature of medical practice, and potentially a matter of life and death.”

Opposing Regulations that Reduces Time with Patients

A few years back, I came up with The Madejski Rule: MSSNY will vigorously oppose any legislation or regulation that reduces the quality or amount of time spent with our patients.  This principle should continue to inspire and guide us in our advocacy against unwarranted deselection by insurers, narrow networks, midyear formulary changes, government directed data collection, and retail clinics which prevent or disrupt the ability of patients to have a longitudinal relationship with a physician of their choice.

You need to be part of the solution.  Join me in Albany for our State Legislative advocacy day, Wednesday, March 6. Make sure you are a member of MSSNYPAC. Become more active in your County Medical society to create new policy which improves the care of our patients.


Please send your thoughts to

Thomas J. Madejski, MD 
MSSNY President

MLMIC Insurance


DOH Now Allowing Medical Marijuana for Patients Who Are Prescribed Opioids
New York State is now allowing anyone who is prescribed an opioid the option to request medical marijuana instead. State Health Commissioner Howard Zucker MD announced details of the new policy Thursday. He said medical marijuana has been shown to be an effective pain treatment that doesn’t carry the risk of addiction that comes with opioids. Dr. Zucker said that giving people an alternative to opioids is a critical step in the fight against the opioid epidemic.

That means people suffering from severe pain, opioid dependency or other maladies will now qualify to receive medical cannabis.

“Medical marijuana has been shown to be an effective treatment for pain that may also reduce the chance of opioid dependence…Adding opioid replacement as a qualifying condition for medical marijuana offers providers another treatment option, which is a critical step in combatting the deadly opioid epidemic affecting people across the state.”

Adding severe pain and opioid dependency to the list means that 13 health conditions now qualify patients for medical marijuana in New York. Currently, more than 62,000 patients and about 1,700 practitioners are registered under the state’s medical cannabis program, according to the DOH release.

New York’s Department of Health first announced its plans to add severe pain and opioid dependency to the list of qualifying conditions last month, and is now releasing the emergency regulations to implement the decision.

Dr. Zucker said last month that “the pros outweigh the cons” when it comes to ending cannabis prohibition in the state.

Join MSSNY’s Member Perks Program and Enjoy $4,500 in Savings!
MSSNY is pleased to announce our newest member benefit!  Our new Abenity App provides members with exclusive perks and over $4,500 in savings on everything from pizza, the zoo, movie tickets, theme parks, hotels, and car rentals!

Popular Features Include:

  • Nearby Offers: Use our show and save mobile coupons to quickly access savings on the go.
  • eTickets On Demand: Save up to 40% with no hidden fees.
  • Showtimes: Find movies, watch trailers, and save up to 40% at a theater near you.
  • Monthly Giveaways: Win cash, movie tickets, electronics and more with our monthly contests.

And, with over 302,000 available discounts across 10,000 cities in the United States and Canada, you’ll never be far from savings!


Click on the following link: and then create a unique user name and password. 


  1. Mobile Apps: For quick access to savings on the go and to receive proactive Perk Alerts of nearby offers, download our app for iPhone, Android, and Windows phones here.
  2. Quick Tour: Slide through our top features here.
  3. Monthly Emails: Subscribe to our newsletters and be the first to know about new discounts and giveaways here.
  4. Connect: Register for free giveaways, get the inside scoop, and share your savings stories on Facebook, Twitter, or Instagram using #LifeHasPerks

Download our perks flyer and email it to other MSSNY members. 

MSSNY Counsel Offers Employment Contract Review for MSSNY Members
For MSSNY members only, MSSNY Counsel Garfunkel Wild is offering a special rate for employment contract review and negotiation. Their review will focus on key provisions, including:

Compensation Models Termination Provisions; Restrictive Covenants; Professional Liability Insurance; Indemnification; Duties and Obligations; Benefits; Post-Terminations Rights; Dispute Resolution; and Outside Activities.

Do you have 90 seconds to take a brief survey? MSSNY is exploring the possibility of developing a cost-effective health plan for our members, their dependents, and their employees (not an association health plan [AHP]). Our ability to move forward will be based on the number of members that express an interest in participating with this new group.

NYS County Contacts in Your County for Workers Compensation Applications
In June 2017, the NYS WCB asked MSSNY for clarity about where physicians should be referred where seeking to be authorized for treating WC injured workers and/or being authorized to provide Independent Medical Examinations (IMEs) for WC.  Attached please find the information for the NYS County Medical Society contacts for these WC applications.  If you have any additional questions, please call Regina McNally at 516-488-6100, ext. 332 or email or contact your county executive from the this list.

MSSNY’s Infection Control Course Includes Newly Required Section on Sepsis
New York State law requires that all licensed health care providers—including physicians, physician assistants, nurses, nurse practitioners and dentists—receive training on infection control and barrier precautions every four years. The Medical Society of the State of New York is approved by the New York State Department of Health and the state Education Department to provide Infection Control and Barrier Precautions to all healthcare professionals.

MSSNY recently updated its course to include the newly required content on Sepsis. If your medical license is up for renewal any time after July 1, 2018, you are required to take this updated course. Every New York state physician must be in compliance by July 1, 2022. Click here to take the up-to-date Infection Control course. New participants to the MSSNY CME site must first create an account.

NY Organ Collection Agency, Nation’s Second-Largest, Threatened With Closure
In a letter last month to Live­OnNY, which recovers organs in the New York City area, the CMS said it “will not renew its agreement with LiveOnNY” when the contract is set to expire Jan. 31. The CMS rejected LiveOnNY’s request for reconsideration this past Monday.

It said the organization failed to meet two of the standards used to measure success at collecting organs. The June 4 letter, which the CMS revised on June 7 to correct the expiration date of LiveOnNY’s contract, was written during a time of upheaval in the transplant industry, which faces a perennial shortage of donor organs.

Nearly 115,000 people are on waiting lists for kidneys, livers, hearts, lungs and other organs. Many of them linger for years; about 22 die each day. More than 33,400 organs from deceased donors, a record, were transplanted in 2017. Surgeons also are using increasing numbers of kidneys and livers from live donors to fill the demand for those organs. Since 2012, the agency has required LiveOnNY to submit at least three “corrective action plans.”

LiveOnNY said it has begun an appeal process that could take as long as seven months, according to the CMS. Ultimately, LiveOnNY could go to court if the appeal is denied.

For at least the last eight years, LiveOnNY has consistently registered one of the poorest performances in the nation, records show. It ranked as the country’s second-worst OPO, according to the last full year of data.

Helen Irving, chief executive and president of LiveOnNY, said in a statement that the organization “is deeply disappointed by CMS’s decision, a decision that is informed by inherently flawed metrics that CMS uses to evaluate organ procurement organization performance. Those metrics unfairly impact New York.”

MSSNY, AAP Raise Concerns with New Standardized Student Health Form
This week, representatives of MSSNY and the NYS American Academy of Pediatrics met with the NYS Education Department to raise concerns with the recently adopted New York State standardized student health assessment form that will be required to use starting July 1.  The physicians on the call, Dr. Gail Schoenfeld and Dr. Michael Terranova, raised concerns that the form is not easily compatible with physician EHR systems, creating unnecessary administrative burdens by forcing pediatricians and their staffs to manually input data into the new form.

In response, representatives from SED noted school districts have flexibility to use alternative forms in the short term, indicating that the school districts have been notified that, “to assist with the transition, during the 2018-2019 school year schools may accept any health examination form provided”.  SED staff also indicated their interest in continuing the dialogue to find ways to reduce the administrative burden for physicians and their staff to complete the form.

The new student health assessment form is available here, and a FAQ is available here.

One-Quarter of Doctors Say They’ve Been Sexually Harassed By Patients

One in four doctors say they’ve been sexually harassed by a patient in the past three years, according to a new survey of physicians nationwide from Medscape and WebMD. Dermatologists, emergency medicine doctors, and plastic surgeons were most often harassed, though physicians in every field reported being sexually harassed by patients. More often than not, doctors told a patient to stop or made sure they were no longer left alone with that patient. But in some cases, physicians dismissed patients who had sexually harassed them from their practices.

Document Errors Common When Speech Recognition Software Used
Speech recognition software, used increasingly to document clinical encounters in electronic health records, yields errors in 7% of dictated words, suggests a study in JAMA Network Open.

The analysis included roughly 220 documents (e.g., office notes) that were dictated using one speech recognition system at two U.S. healthcare organizations. Researchers transcribed each original recording to use as the reference standard, and then examined errors in the notes at three stages:

  • the note created by the speech recognition software;
  • the speech-recognition note after it had been edited by a medical transcriptionist;
  • the transcriptionist-revised note after it had been signed by the physician.

The error rate was 7 per 100 words in the notes created by the speech recognition software, falling to below 1 per 100 after transcriptionist review and physician sign-off. In terms of clinically significant errors, 64% of the speech-recognition notes had such errors, which fell to 8% after review and sign-off.

The researchers conclude that their study “highlights the crucial role of manual editing and review” when using speech recognition software. JAMA Network Open article


Deadline Extended to August 31 for Albion O. Bernstein, MD Award Nominations
The Medical Society of the State of New York is accepting nominations for the 2017 Albion O. Bernstein, MD Award. This prestigious award is given to: “…the physician, surgeon or scientist who shall have made the most widely beneficial discovery or developed the most useful method in medicine, surgery or in the prevention of disease in the twelve months prior to December, 2017.”

The $2,000 award will be presented to the recipient during a MSSNY Council Meeting. Nominations must be submitted on an official application form and must include the nominator’s narrative description of the significance of the candidate’s achievements as well as the candidate’s curriculum vitae, including a list of publications or other contributions.To request an application, please contact: Committee on Continuing Medical Education, Miriam Hardin, PhD, Manager, Continuing Medical Education, Medical Society of the State of New York, 99 Washington Avenue, Suite 408, Albany, NY 12210 or call 518-465-8085 or email

Doctors without Borders Information Session on July 25 in Queens
On Wednesday, July 25th, 2018 at 7:30-8:30 PM you are invited to join Doctors Without Borders/Médecins Sans Frontières (MSF) for a recruitment information session in Queens. This is your opportunity to meet our recruitment team and learn about how you can join our pool of dedicated aid workers. We’re currently recruiting for a variety of medical and non-medical positions. Recruitment Info Session will be held at Sunnyside Community Services Seminar Room, 43-31 39th St., Sunnyside, NY 11104 7:00 – 8:30 pm Register here.


Submitters of MIPS through QPP Website Can Access Performance Feedback
If you submitted 2017 Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) data through the Quality Payment Program website, you can now view your performance feedback and MIPS final score. You can access your performance feedback and final score by going to the Quality Payment Program website.

Log in using your Enterprise Identity Management (EIDM) credentials; these are the same EIDM credentials that allowed you to submit your MIPS data.

If you don’t have an EIDM account, refer to this guide and start the process now
In the coming weeks, we’ll provide additional guidance to help walk through how to review your feedback and to assist in answering your questions.

Please note: The final performance year for the Value-Based Modifier and Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) programs was 2016; therefore, CMS will no longer provide PQRS Feedback Reports or Quality and Resource Use Reports (QRURs). The final reports under these programs were provided in September 2017 and remain available for download through the end of this year.  



Are You Trying to Lease Your Medical Office or Sell Your Medical Practice? Trying to Sell New or Used Medical Equipment?
Clineeds, the new online platform designed for medical providers. With Clineeds you can lease your medical officeshared your office spacebuy and sell used medical equipment, or post healthcare job opportunities. LISTING IS FREE! Why wait? Click here to sign-up:

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Ground floor just completed built out 4 exam rooms with sinks and wall cabinets
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Street and private entrances, two bathrooms and storage/lab/staff room.
One block to bus and two blocks to Presbyterian Medical Center and subway.
$1900-$7900/ month for one to 4 exam rooms. or 917.8618273


Paging Primary Care Doctors Who Love Technology
98point6 is a healthcare technology startup that needs your input.  We’re seeking practicing physicians to join our Primary Care Council to help shape the future of primary care.  If the fusion of healthcare and technology inspires you, please join us and apply today. Visit:

Chief of Medical Services
MINIMUM QUALIFICATIONS: Possession of a license and current registration to practice medicine in New York State, plus six years of experience in the practice of medicine, two years of which must be in an administrative or supervisory capacity. Appointee must be eligible for and maintain eligibility for full and unconditional participation in Medicaid and Medicare programs. Appropriate certification by an American Medical Specialty Board and one year of post certification experience in that specialty can be substituted for four years of general experience.
PREFERRED QUALIFICATIONS: Board certification in Geriatric Medicine and/or Certification as a Medical Director (AMDA), and experience in a long-term care facility.
RESPONSIBILITIES: Serve as Medical Director of a 242-bed skilled nursing facility for veterans and their dependents. Provide medical leadership and oversight ensuring the delivery of quality health care services while also ensuring compliance with clinical, statutory and regulatory standards.Send resume to:  NYS Veterans Home, Attn: Human Resources, 4207 State Highway 220, Oxford, NY 13830

The New York State Veterans Home at Oxford is a 242-bed skilled nursing facility operated by the NYS Department of Health located in Chenango County. It is an Affirmative Action/Equal Opportunity Employer.