MSSNY eNews: April 2, 2021 – Diversity is One of Our Strengths


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Diversity is One of Our Strengths

Colleagues:

Once again, recent events in the United States and in our own state have forced us to confront insidious racism in our society.  This week, there were two violent attacks on Asian Americans in New York City and six out of the eight victims in the Atlanta shootings were Asian women.  Anti-Asian hate incidents have skyrocketed nationwide.  In 2020, there were 28 hate crimes in New York City against Asian Americans compared to three in 2019. Those New York City acts of violence escalated after the pandemic began.

As the debate in reaction to a social media post from the Journal of the Medical Association demonstrates, physicians must also explicitly acknowledge that race and racism have impacted health care delivery and that physicians and medical societies must take the necessary steps to help improve cultural competence, so as to better understand and respond to the cultural and linguistic needs brought by patients to the health care encounter.  Equally important is to ensure that diversity in medicine and through medical training that exposes physicians-in-training to a wider range of different perspectives and cultural backgrounds among their colleagues in medical school, residency, and in practice.

Our Medical Society believes that all forms of racism, discrimination and crimes against different ethnic groups must be eradicated.  Racism and injustice should not be tolerated and must be condemned. As physicians, we believe this nation has the ability to halt the unequal treatment of institutional racism and begin the healing process.

Our diversity is one of our nation’s greatest strengths.

We must all work together to ensure that diversity is truly respected across all aspects of our society.

Bonnie Litvack, MD
MSSNY President


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Capital Update

MSSNY Weekly Podcast


State Budget Negotiations Go Into Overtime
As of this writing, the State Legislature and the Governor are still negotiating critical items of the State Budget, even though we have passed the State’s April 1 Budget deadline.  While items directly impacting physician delivery of patient care appear close to being finalized, there’s a saying in Albany “that nothing is decided until everything is decided”, so please remain alert for further requests for grassroots activity.  Our top issues include:

Excess Malpractice Insurance Program

Reports are that the Budget will include a one-year extension of the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program, restoring the proposed $51 million cut in program funding and deleting the Executive Budget proposal to impose a 50% physician cost share requirement.  Until this is finalized, physicians should continue to urge legislators to fight this ill-timed cut:  Don’t Balance the Budget on the Backs of Physicians

OPMC 

Reports are that the Budget will not include the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget including several provisions opposed by MSSNY to substantially curtail physician due process rights when a complaint has been filed against them with the OPMC.   Until this is finalized, physicians should continue to contact their legislators  urging they continue to fight to preserve due process protections for physicians: Reject Governor’s Physician Disciplinary Proposal 

Pharmacy Scope 

Reports are the Budget will not include several items opposed by MSSNY in the Executive Budget that would expand the scope of pharmacists, including proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program, pharmacist self-ordering of lab tests, and expansion of the immunizations that can be performed by pharmacists.   Until this is finalized, physicians can continue to urge legislators to reject these short-sighted proposals that undermine physician-led medical homes: Oppose Uncoordinated Siloed Care to be Provided by Pharmacists 

Addressing Cuts to MSSNY’s Committee for Physicians Health 

The Senate Budget proposal advanced two weeks ago restored the nearly $200,000 cut that had been proposed to CPH in the Executive Budget.  While the Assembly Budget proposal did not affirmatively restore the cut, Assembly staff indicate they are supporting the restoration of this cut. 

Telehealth Expansion

Reports are that the final Budget will include an expansion of site locations where telehealth services can be provided/received, but would not include items opposed by MSSNY including an enactment of an interstate compact for out of state licensed health care professionals to be authorized to provide telehealth services.  Unfortunately, it also appeared that provisions to require “parity” for the payment of telehealth services advocated for by MSSNY and several specialty societies also would not be included.

Essential Plan Enhancements

Reports are that the final Budget would contain provisions supported by MSSNY to eliminate the premium requirements for the over 800,000 New Yorkers enrolled in the State’s Essential Plan, as well as providing bonus pool funding for physicians and other care providers participating with these plans.

Protect Ability to Apply for E-Prescribing Waivers 

Reports are that the final Budget would not include the Executive Budget proposal opposed by MSSNY to eliminate the ability to apply for a year-to-year waiver of e-prescribing requirements.

Protect Medicaid “Prescriber Prevails” 

Reports are that the final Budget would not include the Executive Budget proposal opposed by MSSNY to remove the statutory protection for the prescriber’s determination (not State Medicaid’s) to prevail for a medication prescribed to a patient covered by Medicaid.

No-Fault Decredentialing

Reports are that the final Budget would not include the Executive Budget proposal MSSNY had raised concerns with to expand the power of the Superintendent of Financial Services to prohibit certain physicians from submitting claims for No-Fault services.

Ensure Collaborative Practice by Nurse Practitioners with Physicians

Reports are that the final Budget would include a provision to extend for an additional year – until June 30, 2022 – the existing law permitting certain nurse practitioners to practice without a written collaborative agreement with a physician provided they have proof of “collaborative arrangements” with physicians in the same specialty practiced by the NP.  Legislation (A.1535/S.3056) has also been introduced and strongly opposed by MSSNY that would repeal the requirements to even maintain proof of these collaborative arrangements.

We will provide a complete wrap up of all items impacting physician delivery of care to patients after the Budget passage is completed.
(DIVISION OF GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS)  


NYS DOH Revises Protocol for Healthcare Personnel
Effective April 1, 2021, the New York State has revised its return-to-work protocol for personnel in a health care setting.   The Interim Health Advisory: Revised Protocols for Personnel in Healthcare and Other Direct Care Settings to Return to Work Following COVID-19 Exposure – Including Quarantine and Furlough Requirements for Different Healthcare Settings can be found here.

The guidance indicates that asymptomatic, unvaccinated HCP in hospital settings who have been exposed to COVID-19 may return to work after completing a 10-day quarantine without testing, subject to certain other conditions. (Nursing home HCP, however, must remain out of work through the 14th day after exposure.)

Asymptomatic, exposed HCP in hospital settings who are fully vaccinated (two weeks or more after last dose of vaccine, with no outer time limit) or who have recovered from recent SARS-CoV-2 infection within the past three months (within three months after the symptom onset date of first positive diagnostic test if asymptomatic during illness) are not required to test, quarantine, or take leave from work following exposure provided certain conditions are met. (Nursing home HCP must continue to participate in diagnostic COVID-19 testing twice per week or as otherwise required by DOH, among other requirements.)

For health care personnel that travel, the recommendation is that asymptomatic HCP, arriving in New York State from other US states and territories, are not required to test or quarantine and may return to work accordingly. Quarantine following international travel consistent with Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommendations is still recommended unless the HCP is fully vaccinated or has recovered from laboratory-confirmed COVID-19 within the previous three months. CDC’s international travel requirements include showing proof of a negative diagnostic test result no more than three days before flight departure or documentation of recovery from COVID-19 prior to boarding, and

quarantine for either seven days with a test 3-5 days after travel or for 10 days with no test. (Nursing home HCP must remain out of work through the 14th day after return from international travel unless they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from laboratory-confirmed SARS-CoV-2 infection within the previous three months.)                     (CLANCY)


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New York State Legalizes Recreational Marijuana
This week, Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill into law legalizing recreational marijuana.  The bill passed by the Senate and Assembly on Wednesday will create a regulatory system to oversee the cannabis industry, allow limited home growth as well as expunging an untold number of criminal records. Here is the link to the statement by Governor Cuomo regarding the signing of this into law that contains a comprehensive summary: Governor Cuomo Signs Legislation Legalizing Adult-Use Cannabis 

The bill would among other key components:

  • Direct that 20% of the funding generated from the tax revenue be set aside for drug treatment and education. 40% of the total state tax revenue from cannabis would be set aside to assist communities historically disproportionately impacted by marijuana laws. Another 40% would go toward state education funding.
  • Create an Office of Cannabis Management at the state level and a Cannabis Control Board to promulgate regulations. Gov Cuomo would have three appointments to the board, including the chairperson, while the Legislature would have two
  • Set a 13% tax rate on retail sales of cannabis products. Of that, 9% of the 13% would go to the state, while 4% would be directed to localities, with counties to receive a quarter of that revenue, while the municipality would receive the remainder.
  • Permit possession of three ounces of the drug, and 24 grams of concentrate, outside the home. Five pounds is allowed to be kept at home but must be stored away from children.
  • Expanding the medical cannabis program to increase the number of health conditions that a prescriber could certify a patient to receive medical cannabis.

Legal sales of adult use marijuana will be permitted sometime in 2022, though prior to 2022 cities, towns and villages can pass a resolution to prohibit dispensaries and social consumption locations within their municipality.

Many groups including MSSNY, the NYSPTA, NYS Association of County Public Health officials and various law enforcement associations raised serious concerns throughout the debate over the last few years regarding legalization including the need for additional research into the impacts of marijuana use on physical and mental health and the traffic safety impact. MSSNY will continue to work closely with these organizations as well as various state agencies as this law is implemented, to ensure a proper emphasis is being placed on protecting public health.

Here is a link to an additional summary of the passed legislationNew York Set to Legalize Marijuana for Adult, Recreational Use After Cuomo, Lawmakers Strike Deal  (ALI)


Please Urge Governor to Veto legislation to Repeal Covid Legal Protections
Physicians are urged to contact Governor Cuomo requesting that he veto legislation (S.5177/A.3397) recently passed by the State Legislature that would repeal the Covid liability protections provided to physicians and other care providers enacted during the height of the pandemic last spring.  Protect Liability Protections for Care During the Pandemic

Many groups including MSSNY wrote to legislators to oppose A.3397/S.5177, noting that regardless of nursing home concerns that led many to question the continuing need for this law, it is important to maintain these legal protections for the front-line physicians and other health care workers still managing the thousands of new Covid cases in New York every day with an increasing penetration of more easily spread variants.

MSSNY has also raised concerns that despite statutory construction rules that presume legislation is to be applied prospectively in the absence of clearly defined statutory intent to the contrary, there is still a possibility S.5177/A.3397 could be interpreted by a court to retroactively repeal these essential liability protections for care provided during the height of the pandemic when there were not clear medical protocols for Covid treatment and when many non-Covid health care services were required to be postponed.

Importantly, there were comments made by several Assemblymembers during the floor debate on the legislation when it was passed by the NYS Assembly that the “effective date” language means that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively.  The point was also made by Senator Shelly Mayer during the floor debate in the Senate.  Nevertheless, the ongoing threat to our health care infrastructure posed by the pandemic necessitates that these protections be continued until the cessation of the public health emergency. (AUSTER)


NYS Continues to Expand Vaccine Eligibility to 30 Years of Age and Older
New York State continues to expand eligibility to the COVID-19 vaccine to adults over age 30 which began on March 30, and to age 16 and older starting on April 6, 2021.  The latest March 30, 2021 guidance is here.

All providers can vaccinate any New Yorker, including those with comorbidities or underlying conditions, and individuals 16+. Enrolled providers other than pharmacies may vaccinate any eligible individual. Pharmacies must prioritize K-12 school faculty and staff and childcare workers but are also authorized to vaccinate individuals aged 30 and older and individuals with comorbidities.

MSSNY has been working closely with the state to get vaccine supply to community physician offices and several physician practices around the state may receive an allocation of vaccine supply shortly. MSSNY has been informed that over 190 practices have received vaccine. Physicians who would like to become a COVID-19 immunizer will need to enroll into either the NYSIIS or CIR systems. Physicians can find information about enrolling here.

Providers in receipt of COVID-19 vaccine, irrespective as to whether such doses are via a direct State or federal allocation or a redistribution, will now be required to report to the vaccine tracker on Mondays and Thursdays by 10 am. All providers with COVID -19 vaccine doses on hand or that depleted their allocation since their last report are now required to fill out the vaccine tracker both days. This reporting will continue to be used for allocation determinations and is still required.

Physicians and patients can determine eligibility by going here.    (CLANCY)              


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MSSNY Announces Podcast Episodes 99 & 100!
MSSNY has recently published two new podcasts related to the available COVID vaccines.

  • A Discussion on COVID Vaccine for Patients is MSSNY President, Dr. Bonnie Litvack, President-elect, Dr. Joseph Sellers and Dr. William Valenti, Chair of MSSNY’s Committee on Infectious Diseases discussing vaccines currently available for COVID-19. This podcast answers many questions patients may have about the vaccines. Tell your patients to go to Podcasts to listen.
  • How to Talk to Patients About Vaccine Hesitancy includes a discussion on the history of vaccine hesitancy and offers sage advice from Dr. William Valenti to listeners on talking to vaccine hesitant patients. Listen to this podcast by clicking here.

Click here to select from all 100 of MSSNY’s podcasts:                             (HOFFMAN)


MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee: Peer to Peer Program
If you or someone you know is struggling with everyday life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to be connected with a peer supporter to help!

Email: P2P@mssny.org and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

Phone: 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337) and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

MSSNY now offers to physicians, residents and medical students a completely confidential and anonymous opportunity to talk with a peer about some of life stressors. MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee launched a Peer 2 Peer (P2P) program to assist their colleagues who are need of help in dealing with work and family stressors. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the emotional issues related to this event, may also be troubling for our colleagues. MSSNY has established a confidential helpline phone number (1-844-P2P-PEER) and an email address (p2p@mssny.org) so that physicians may be connected with a peer 24 hours a day/7 days a week. In addition to offering

a trained, empathetic ear, peer supporters may provide information on specific resources that can offer further support, provide positive coping skills, or connect physicians to professionals for more focused assistance when needed. MSSNY has nearly 50 trained peer supporters across NYS who are just a phone call away!         (LAUDER)


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As of 11 AM This morning, 31.0 Percent of New Yorkers Have Completed at Least One Vaccine Dose
Over the past 24 hours, 233,754 total doses have been administered. To date, New York administered 9,655,705 total doses with 18.5 percent of New Yorkers completing their vaccine series. See data by region and county on the State’s Vaccine Tracker: ny.gov/vaccinetracker


Fair Health Report: Telemedicine and Urgent Care Largest Growth Categories
In 2019 urgent care was the second-highest growth category for the health care industry after telemedicine, according to Fair Health’s latest report on utilization and pricing. In New York, urgent-care claims were found to be higher than the national average, speaking to its strong demand, according to exclusive data prepared for Crain’s.

As urgent care continues to grow its presence in the city, greater collaboration between such facilities, hospitals and medical offices is needed to avoid the siloing of services, experts said.

The fourth edition of Fair Health’s FH Healthcare Indicators and FH Medical Price Index was released Wednesday. It tracks utilization and pricing trends across the country, drawing from the Midtown-based nonprofit’s repository of more than 32 billion private insurance claims.

The report showed that, for outpatient visits lasting 30 to 44 minutes, New York urgent care sites that were out-of-network with an insurer charged $300 on average, compared with the national median of $239. For a provider and an insurer with prenegotiated rates, that median charge was $150 locally, compared with $143 nationally.

New York’s claims at retail clinics—typically located in a supermarket or a big-box store—were also lower than the national average. The state’s out-of-network charge rate was $139 on average, compared to $150 nationally. Prenegotiated allowed amounts for retail clinics in New York was $79, compared with $97 nationally.

The shifting role of urgent care clinics could explain New York’s trend as well. “People used to go to their primary care doctor if they had an immediate need, but these days those providers have transitioned to a system where one would need to schedule an appointment week in advance,” said Dr. Brendan Carr, chair of emergency medicine for Mount Sinai Health System. “Urgent care has since popped up to fill that void.”

Fair Health data showed that in 2019, the most claimed code from local urgent-care centers was “established patient office or other outpatient services” at 33%, compared with 24% nationally. The state’s claims growth followed national trends. Telehealth grew the most in the U.S. that year (73%), followed by urgent care (47%), retail clinics (39%) and then emergency rooms (33%).

Summit Health, with 146 CityMD urgent-care locations and 80 multispecialty care sites in New York and New Jersey, sought not just internal integration but also to collaborate externally with health systems. Mount Sinai has an extensive collaboration with CityMD, and such collaborations will become critical as urgent-care groups grow, Klein said.

[Primary care doctors] have shifted more toward chronic disease management due to financial considerations,” Carr said. “It seems
urgent care is here to stay.” (Crain’s Health Pulse, April 1).


Best Med Schools: NYU Moved Up to #2; Columbia Ties with Stanford for #4
NYU’s Grossman School of Medicine and Columbia University reached new heights in the latest U.S. News & World Report ranking of the best medical schools in the country in terms of research, released Tuesday.

NYU took the No. 2 spot in the national ranking, up from No. 4 on last year’s list. Columbia climbed two rungs to tie with Stanford University for the No. 4 spot. They were the only New York medical schools to make the top 10 for research.

The Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai tied with the University of Chicago for 17th place for research. Weill Cornell Medical College fell from the 11th spot to 19th, where it tied with the University of California-San Diego.

U.S. News put together the rankings using federal grant and contract values to calculate each school’s federal research activity in total and as an average per faculty member. The financing data came from information the schools filed with the liaison committee on medical education. Previously, the rankings based medical school research indicators only on National Institutes of Health grants, according to U.S. News chief data strategist Robert Morse.

Also informing this year’s rankings were peer and residency director quality assessments, faculty resources and student selectivity measures, such as MCAT scores. Of those 191 schools surveyed in late 2020 and early 2021, 129 responded and provided data for U.S. News to calculate overall rankings. Read more about the methodology here.


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Gov. Cuomo Launches Telehealth Training for Medical and Behavioral Providers
The state has launched a telehealth training program for its medical and behavioral health providers, Gov. Andrew Cuomo said Wednesday. The open-access program is a collaboration between Stony Brook Medicine, the Reimagine New York Commission, the Northeast Telehealth Resource Center, and the state Department of Health.


60 Minutes+ Aired Segment on Mental Health for Frontline Medical Staff
This month, 60 Minutes+, the streaming news spinoff on Paramount+, aired a segment on the mental health toll of the pandemic on frontline medical workers. It is available to stream on Paramount+, but, unfortunately, it’s behind a paywall.

We know from our survey that although 58% of physicians reported experiencing burnout, only 13% sought mental health support services related to it. Any public information about this crisis could help increase the number of physicians get the support they need!

To make this critical information available to everyone, The Physicians Foundation is asking Paramount+ to remove the segment from behind its paywall, making it free access. Join us! We have 3 simple asks that can make a world of a difference in helping make this happen.

  1. Comment on the 60 Minutes tweet on the segment.

Reply to this 60 Minutes tweet, with language such as:

Thank you @60minutes and @WesleyLowery for covering this crisis. This critical info should not be behind a paywall. @Paramountplus make this free access for the wellbeing of our #physicians!

  1. Tweet about the issue. 

Tweet about this on your own Twitter account to increase visibility of this issue. Sample language for your use:

We join @PhysFound in asking @paramountplus to make their segment about the toll of the pandemic on #physicians’ mental health FREE. The @60Minutes @WesleyLowery report covers a critical issue that everyone should be able to access.

  1. Share this ask with your colleagues.

Ask others in your network to do the same, and feel free to share this email with them for guidance.

If you have any questions, please reach out to pfmedia@jpa.com.
(Note: MSSNY is a charter member of The Physicians Foundation.)


April 24 Meeting Young Physicians, Residents/Fellows and Medical Students
A virtual joint meeting of the Young Physicians, Residents/Fellows and the Medical Students Sections is being planned for the afternoon of Saturday, April 24.  Please mark your calendars and watch E-News and your mailboxes for more details as they become available.  If you have any questions, please contact Kathy Rohrer at krohrer@mssny.org


Shipments of J&J Vaccines Halted as FDA Probes Error; Ruined 15M Doses
Shipments of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccines to the federal government will be halted while the FDA investigates an error at an Emergent BioSolutions manufacturing plant in Baltimore that ruined about 15 million vaccine doses.

Workers at the plant accidentally conflated the ingredients of Johnson & Johnson’s COVID-19 vaccine several weeks ago, ruining about 15 million doses. The mistake, which federal officials said was a human error, forced regulators to delay authorization of the plant’s production lines, according to the Times.

Emergent BioSolutions has contracted with both Johnson & Johnson and AstraZeneca to help produce their COVID-19 vaccines.

The error doesn’t affect the Johnson & Johnson vaccines now being distributed throughout the U.S., the Times reported. Those doses were made in the Netherlands.

But all future shipments of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine were supposed to come from the Emergent plant in Baltimore.

Federal officials told the Times they still expect to have enough doses of COVID-19 vaccines to fulfill President Joe Biden’s promise to vaccinate every adult by the end of May.


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COVID-19 Pushed Total US Deaths Beyond 3.3 Million Last Year
The COVID-19 pandemic pushed total U.S. deaths last year beyond 3.3 million, the nation’s highest annual death toll, the government reported Wednesday. The coronavirus caused approximately 375,000 deaths and was the third leading cause of death in 2020, after heart disease and cancer. COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. now top 550,000 since the start of the pandemic. COVID-19 displaced suicide as one of the top 10 causes of death, according to the report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (KHN)


First Year Residency Positions Declined Since 2020: IMGs Affected
The percentage of total registrants matched to first-year residency positions declined this year from the 2020 figure, as the number of registrants surged and issues caused by the pandemic emerged, according to data released by the National Resident Matching Program (NRMP). Meanwhile, the total number of positions filled and number of first-year positions filled both set records, as new programs welcomed residents via Match Day.

The NRMP data found that the percentage of registrants matched to first-year positions declined from 80.8% to 78.5%, with a record number of 48,700 registering — 8.3% higher than last year. The percentage of 4th-year U.S. allopathic medical school students matching to first-year positions declined from 93.7% to 92.8%; the percentage for U.S. osteopathic medicine degree earners declined from 90.7% to 89.1%.

International medical school graduates (IMGs) who are not U.S. citizens were especially affected — their matching rate dropped from 61.1% to 54.8%. Those submitting program preferences numbered 42,508, up 6% over last year.

Raw numbers regarding matching were also up, with some setting records. Of the 38,106 total positions available, 36,179 were filled — a 2.6% increase over last year. Of the 35,194 first-year positions available, 33,535 were filled — a 2.9% increase. The percentage of all positions filled increased by 0.3%, to 94.9%, and the percentage of first-year positions filled increased by 0.2%, to 94.8%.

Specialties that filled all available positions (with at least 30 positions) included dermatology, emergency medicine, pediatrics, neurological surgery, otolaryngology, integrated plastic surgery, and vascular surgery. Specialties that filled less than 50% of available positions with U.S. seniors included pathology (41.4%) and surgery (28%).

A record 5,915 programs participated, 88 more than last year, with the number of such programs increasing by 16.7% over the last 5 years. That surge has been “spurred in part by the completion of the transition to the single accreditation system,” with DO and MD programs merging into a single matching system, according to the NRMP.

The number of U.S. citizen international medical school graduates who submitted program lists increased 2.5%, to 5,295 — the most in 6 years — and 3,152 of them matched to first-year positions, down two spots over last year.

The number of non-U.S. citizen international medical school graduates who submitted lists increased by 15%, to 7,943; a record 4,356 of them matched to first-year positions — up 3.2%.

NRMP reported 1,927 spots unfilled this year, down 3.6% from last year; some unmatched residents will be placed in those spots via the NRMP Match Week Supplemental Offer and Acceptance Program (SOAP), with final figures to be shared publicly in May.

These data follow recent reports that applications to medical schools soared this cycle. Medical schools cannot accommodate the surging demand, sources told MedPage Today, in part because residency program spots have not been increasing at the same rate as their applications. While the rate of residency positions per active applicant has increased slightly since 2010, that figure is still down over 2003, and well below the rates of the late 1980s and early 1990s.” The AAMC [Association of American Medical Colleges] supports bipartisan legislation that would gradually add 15,000 Medicare-supported residency positions over 5 years,” the organization said in December.


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Open Payments Pre-publication Review and Dispute Now Available
Pre-publication review and dispute for the Program Year 2020 Open Payments data is available beginning today, April 1, 2021 through May 15, 2021.

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will publish the Open Payments Program Year 2020 data and updates to the previous program years’ data in June 2021.

Physician and teaching hospital review of the data is voluntary, but strongly encouraged. Please keep in mind the following reminders:

  • Disputes must be initiated by May 15, 2021 in order to be reflected in the June 2021 data publication. For more information on review and dispute timing and publication, refer to the Review and Dispute Timing and Data Publication Quick Reference Guide.
  • CMS does not meditate or facilitate disputes. Physicians and teaching hospitals should work directly with reporting entities to resolve disputes.
  • Registration in the Open Payments system is required in order to participate in review and dispute activities.

If you have never registered with Open Payments before:

Make sure you have your National Provider Identifier (NPI) number and State License Number (SLN). Initial registration is a two-step process:

  1. Register in the CMS Identity Management System (IDM);
  2. Register in the Open Payments system

For users who have previously registered: Users that have registered during previous program years do not need to re-register.

Please note: If the account has not been accessed for within the last 60 days the account will have been locked due to inactivity. To unlock an account, go to the CMS Enterprise Portal, enter your user ID, and correctly answer all challenge questions to gain access to your account. You will be prompted to create a new password.

If the account has not been accessed for 180 days or more, the account will be deactivated. To reinstate the account, call the Open Payments Help Desk at 1-855-326-8366; (TTY Line:1-844-649-2766)

For more information about the registration process, visit the physician and teaching hospital registration page on the Open Payments website.


 

Award Nominations Open

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accepting nominations for the 2020 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 2020.”

This award was endowed by the late Morris J. Bernstein in memory of his son, a physician who died in an accident while answering a hospital call in November 1940.

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
518-465-8085
mhardin@mssny.org 

Education

NGS Ed Session on Start of the Return of Accelerated Advanced Medicare Payments

Register here.

Medicare Part A

Apr 08, 2021 3:00 p.m ET – 4:00 p.m ET

                                                    Webinar                                                                  

Updates for Accelerated and Advanced Payments Program

During this session, we will review the revised repayment and recoupment process and provide the latest updates on the Accelerated and Advanced Payments program.  If your facility received an accelerated or advanced payment from Medicare due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, then attending this webinar will provide the most current information from CMS.

Medicare Part B

Apr 15, 2021 10:00 a.m ET – 11:00 a.m ET

                                                    Webinar                                                                  

COVID-19 Medicare Part B Advanced Payment, Repayment and Recoupment Process

If you requested accelerated or advanced payments from Medicare due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, this learning session is for you. CMS expanded the accelerated and advance payment program for financial hardship relief during the COVID-19 public health emergency. Accelerated or advanced payments need to be repaid to the Medicare Trust Fund. During this webinar, we will review the repayment and recoupment process and address your questions.


MSSNY Medical Matters Program on Mental Health of Children and Teens During COVID
Registration now open
Medical Matters: COVID-19 & Mental Health of Children and Teens
Date: April 21, 2021 @ 7:30am 

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the mental health of the entire population.  Learn more about how children and teens have been affected by registering for Medical Matters: COVID-19 & Mental Health of Children and Teens. This webinar will take place on Wednesday, April 21st at 7:30 am.  Linda Chokroverty, MD will serve as faculty for this program.  Click here to register for this webinar.

Educational objectives

  • Identify normal stressors impacting children and teens and those that have resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Examine what is known so far about the mental health impact of COVID-19 on children and teens
  • Describe resources to assist children and teens during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Appraise the scope of COVID-19’s long term mental health impact on children and teens

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (HOFFMAN)


Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients Webinar

Registration Now Open

Thursday, April 22nd @ 7:30 am

The Medical Society of the State of New York is hosting a Continuing Medical Education (CME) program entitled Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients live webinar on Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am.

Click HERE to register for the program! View the program flyer HERE.

When:                 April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am
Faculty:               Lt. Colonel Lance Allen Wang (Ret.) & Sharran Chambers-Murphy, Desert Storm-era Veteran

Educational Objectives:

  • Describe the unique aspects of military culture and how they impact patients who are veterans;
  • Explain the Dwyer Peer-to-Peer program as a resource to assist veteran patients re-acclimating from a group to an individual mentality; and
  • Review and identify resources to improve physician’s ability to fully treat veterans who are transitioning back to civilian life.

For more information, contact Jangmu Sherpa at jsherpa@mssny.org or call (518) 465-8085.

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (SHERPA)


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188

For the MSSNY 2021 Ad Rate Sheet, please click here. 


.Soho Rental Office
Two Offices Available for Rent in Established SoHo Primary Care Practice
Newly constructed loft space. Dedicated private waiting area available.  This space is ideal for individual psychiatry, psychology, social work, physical therapy, or acupuncture services. Potential to work with existing Primary Care Practice as a referral source. Centrally located in the heart of SoHo, close to all subways. Available 7 days/week. Contact: SpringPrimaryCare@gmail.com.

Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


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Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


NYS Jobs LogoReview Vacancy

Date Posted: 03/23/21 Applications Due: 04/06/21 Vacancy ID: 85272

Position Information 

Agency Health, Department of
Title Health Program Director 2 -TBD
Occupational Category  

Other Professional Careers

Salary Grade 665
Bargaining Unit M/C – Management / Confidential (Unrepresented)
Salary Range From $122092 to $154253 Annually
Employment Type Full-Time
Appointment Type Permanent
Jurisdictional Class Non-competitive Class
Travel Percentage 10%

Schedule 

Workweek

Hours Per Week

Mon-Fri

37.5

 Workday 

From 8:30 AM
To 4:30 PM
Flextime allowed? No
Mandatory overtime? No
Compressed workweek allowed?  

No

Telecommuting allowed?  

No

Location 

County Albany
Street Address CCH; Division of Family Health

Corning Tower, ESP

City Albany
State NY
Zip Code 12237

Job Specifics 

Minimum Qualifications Twelve years of professional level work experience, three of which must have included managerial, decision-making and/or oversight responsibilities for a major health-related program or in the direction of a major administrative function of a large health-related organization. A bachelor’s degree may be substituted for four years of the general professional experience. 

Twelve or more years of progressively responsible administrative experience in programs that improve perinatal health, child and/or adolescent health, early care, and learning, and/or sexual violence prevention, including four years of managerial, decision-making, and/or program direction. Seven years of this experience would also include fiscal management, policy making and oversight responsibilities, and statewide supervision of professional level staff. The preferred candidate would be familiar with representing departmental interests and serving as a spokesperson and liaison to Executive staff, and have experience working with other state and federal governmental programs. Experience with second-level professional supervision as well as strong oral and written communication skills is also desired. A master’s degree in an appropriate field may substitute an additional one year of the general professional experience, not to exceed a maximum of five years total allowable educational substitution. Please refer to full listing


MSSNY Ad Rates


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: March 31, 2021 – Gov. Legalizes Recreational Marijuana

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Gov. Cuomo Signs Bill to Legalize Recreational Use of Marijuana in New York
Governor Andrew Cuomo signed a bill legalizing recreational marijuana into law today. The bill passed by the Senate and Assembly yesterday will create a regulatory system to oversee the cannabis industry, allow limited home growth cannabis as well as expunging an untold number of criminal records.  Here is the link to the statement by Governor Cuomo regarding the signing of this legislation into law: Governor Cuomo Signs Legislation Legalizing Adult-Use Cannabis 

Many groups including MSSNY, the NYSPTA, NYS Association of County Public Health officials and various law enforcement associations had raised concerns about the need for additional research into legalized marijuana and the effects on physical and mental health. NY lawmakers legalize recreational marijuana. What to know. 

Legal sales of adult use marijuana will be permitted sometime in 2022, though prior to 2022 cities, towns and villages can pass a resolution to prohibit dispensaries and social consumption locations within their municipality.

Note: We will provide a more comprehensive summary in this week’s Capital Update.


Now, New Yorkers Age 30 and Older Can Get Vaccine
New York State will expand coronavirus vaccine eligibility for those age 30 years and older starting on Tuesday, Governor Cuomo announced on Monday. Vaccine eligibility will be universal by April 6, and then will then increase to those age 16 and older the following week, Cuomo said. It became one of the last U.S. states to take that step.

“Today we take a monumental step in the fight to beat COVID,” the governor said in a statement. “As we continue to expand eligibility, New York will double down on making the vaccine accessible for every community to ensure equity, particularly for communities of color who are too often left behind.”


Gov. Cuomo Today: NYS Progress During COVID-19; State Vaccination Program

  • COVID hospitalizations rose to 4,715. Of the 151,437 tests reported yesterday, 6,488, or 4.23 percent, were positive. The 7-day average positivity rate was 3.43 percent. There were 903 patients in ICU yesterday, up 13 from the previous day. Of them, 523 are intubated. Sadly, we lost 61 New Yorkers to the virus.
  • As of 11am this morning, 29.9 percent of New Yorkers have completed at least one vaccine dose. Over the past 24 hours, 172,128 total doses have been administered. To date, New York administered 9,229,098 total doses with 17.3 percent of New Yorkers completing their vaccine series. See data by region and county on the State’s Vaccine Tracker: gov/vaccinetracker.
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  • Collegiate sports can bring fans back to the stands under strict state guidelines beginning April 2. Intercollegiate sports at large-scale venues that hold more than 1,500 attendees indoors or 2,500 attendees outdoors can host up to 10 percent indoor or 20 percent outdoor capacity. All attendees must present proof of a recent negative COVID-19 test result or completed COVID-19 immunization prior to entry. Colleges and universities hosting spectators for sporting events at large-scale venues must notify and coordinate with their respective state or local health department, aligning with the state guidance for professional sports competitions with spectators.


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Become a New York State Citizen Public Health Leader
To continue the fight against COVID and prepare for the next public health emergency, the State launched a free, online Citizen Public Health Training course for New Yorkers, in partnership with Cornell University and supported by the State University of New York. This program will prepare and equip New Yorkers to become Citizen Public Health Leaders and build an informed network of community health leaders across the state. Enroll today.


Pfizer: Vaccine 100% Effective in Preventing COVID-19 in Adolescents
Pfizer said March 31 its COVID-19 vaccine was well tolerated and 100 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 in a phase 3 clinical trial involving 2,260 adolescents ages 12 to 15. Eighteen COVID-19 cases were observed in the 1,129 trial participants who received a placebo, while none were observed in the 1,131 participants who were vaccinated.

Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla said the drug maker plans to submit the new data to the FDA in the coming weeks as a proposed amendment to the vaccine’s emergency use authorization, with hopes that the age group can start getting vaccinated before the next school year begins.


Congressional Action to Extend 2% Sequester Reduction Suspension
In anticipation of possible Congressional action to extend the 2% sequester reduction suspension, we instructed the Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) to hold all claims with dates of service on or after April 1, 2021, for a short period without affecting providers’ cash flow.

This will minimize the volume of claims the MACs must reprocess if Congress extends the suspension; the MACs will automatically reprocess any claims paid with the reduction applied if necessary.


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CARECLIX Telehealth: MSSNY Member Benefit
Chronic condition management and tele-behavioral health will remain staples of telemedicine practice. Six of every ten Americans has at least one chronic condition or disease, and one in five is diagnosed with a mental disorder every year. In addition to these two fundamentals, providers who serve their patients through CareClix are already part of a new hybrid healthcare delivery model.

This new model combines the best of telemedicine and facility-based care, moving as much chronic condition and disease management as possible to home-based health. It also expands telemedicine’s patient reach to more conditions and delivery options.

Just of few of the growth opportunities for telemedicine are:

  • Managing heart conditions like chronic pulmonary diseases, congestive heart failure, and strokes.
  • Partnering with providers transitioning to hospital-at-home care for some patients with acute conditions.
  • Providing virtual urgent care with triaging capability and emergency department transfer as needed.
  • Specialized medicine applications in oncology, pediatrics, radiology, pathology, and dermatology.
  • Increased integration of deep learning artificial intelligence with patient electronic health records and other data to predictively identify patients more at risk for complications requiring hospital readmission.
  • Improved at-home medical equipment to better monitor blood glucose levels, blood pressure, heart rate, and body temperature, as well as applications that can make better use of the highly capable cameras many patients have built into their smartphones.
  • build or improve their telemedicine services ensure they will remain competitive in value-based and increasingly home-based healthcare delivery today and in the future.

Introduction to CareClix Video

To learn more about the CareClix RPM program: careclix.com/remote-patient-monitoring/
To implement telemedicine for your practice visit: careclix.com/provider-signup/
Have questions? Contact us at sales@careclix.com 


Optum Pay Improves Payment Program, But Practices Must Act Soon to Avoid Fees
In response to strong concerns from the AMA, many state medical associations and national specialty medical societies, and individual physician practices, Optum Pay modified its electronic payment program to provide downloadable remittance information and up to 13 months of payment data for UnitedHealthcare (UHC) claims at no cost through its basic service option. Previously, Optum Pay had required enrollment in its premium program, which assessed a 0.5% per payment fee, to continue access to this critical information for effective revenue cycle management.

Unfortunately, practices remain limited to only two users in the Optum system through the basic, free option; Optum Pay is evaluating this issue, and the AMA will continue to advocate that practices be allowed unlimited users at no cost.

Practices may have been enrolled in a free trial of the Optum Pay premium program. To avoid incurring a 0.5% per payment fee for UHC claims, practices should cancel their Optum Pay premium enrollment by March 31, 2021. For more information on these Optum Pay changes and for instructions on how to cancel premium enrollment, visit the UHC provider website.


WEBINARS

Please Join the NYS Department of Health
Thursday, April 1st at 1 – 2 PM
 
for a COVID-19 Update for Healthcare providers

To accommodate the large number of participants, find our webinar streaming via YouTube Live (and available for viewing immediately thereafter) on the NYSDOH COVID website for providers:

https://coronavirus.health.ny.gov/weekly-healthcare-provider-update

Audio number and code: 844-512-2950 Access code 5972742#


Registration Now Open!
Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients Webinar
Thursday, April 22nd @ 7:30 am

The Medical Society of the State of New York is hosting a Continuing Medical Education (CME) program entitled Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients live webinar on Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am. 

Click HERE to register for the program! View the program flyer HERE.

When:             April 22, 2021, at 7:30 am
Faculty:           Lt. Colonel Lance Allen Wang (Ret.) & Sharran Chambers-Murphy, Desert Storm-era Veteran

Educational Objectives:

  • Describe the unique aspects of military culture and how they impact patients who are veterans
  • Explain the Dwyer Peer-to-Peer program as a resource to assist veteran patients re-acclimating from a group to an individual mentality
  • Review and identify resources to improve physician’s ability to fully treat veterans who are transitioning back to civilian life.

For more information, contact Jangmu Sherpa at jsherpa@mssny.org or call (518) 465-8085.

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians..

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


AWARD NOMINATIONS OPEN

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accepting nominations for the 2020 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 2020.”

This award was endowed by the late Morris J. Bernstein in memory of his son, a physician who died in an accident while answering a hospital call in November 1940.

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
518-465-8085
mhardin@mssny.org 

DEADLINE FOR NOMINATIONS:   June 9, 2021


Dr. Lorna Breen MD
Health Care Provider Protection Act (S. 610/H.R. 1667)

March 25, 2021
The Honorable Tim Kaine The Honorable Todd Young
U.S. Senate U.S. Senate
231 Russell Senate Office Building 185 Dirksen Senate Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20510 Washington, D.C. 20510
The Honorable Susan Wild The Honorable David McKinley
U.S. House of Representatives U.S. House of Representatives
1027 Longworth House Office Building 2239 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, D.C. 20515 Washington, D.C. 20515

Dear Senators Kaine and Young and Representatives Wild and McKinley:

On behalf of the undersigned organizations, we would like to thank you for introducing the “Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act” (S. 610/H.R. 1667). This bipartisan, bicameral legislation will help reduce and prevent mental and behavioral health conditions, suicide, and burnout, as well as increase access to evidence-based treatment for physicians, medical students, and other health care professionals, especially those who continue to be overwhelmed by the COVID-19 pandemic.

The stigma surrounding mental illness is a well-known barrier to seeking care among the general population, but it can have an even stronger impact among health care professionals. For most physicians and other clinicians, seeking treatment for mental health sparks legitimate fear of resultant loss of licensure, loss of income, or other meaningful career setbacks as a result of ongoing stigma. Such fears have deterred them from accessing necessary mental health care, leaving many to suffer in silence, or worse. In fact, physicians have a significantly higher risk of dying by suicide than the general public.

Ensuring clinicians can freely seek mental health treatment and services without fear of professional setback means their mental health care needs can be resolved, rather than hidden away and suffered through. Furthermore, optimal clinician mental health is essential to ensuring that patients have a strong and capable health care workforce to provide the care they need and deserve.

To ensure patient access to medically necessary care can be maintained, it is vital that we work to preserve and protect the health of our medical workforce. Your legislation will help establish grants for training health profession students, residents, or health care professionals to reduce and prevent suicide, burnout, substance use disorders, and other mental health conditions; identify and disseminate best practices for reducing and preventing suicide and burnout among health care professionals; establish a national education and awareness campaign to encourage health care workers to seek support and treatment; establish grants for employee education, peer-support programming, and mental and behavioral health treatment; and commission a federal study into health care professional mental health and burnout, as well as barriers to seeking appropriate care.

Thank you again for your leadership on this important issue and for introducing this legislation. We look forward to working with you to ensure the “Dr. Lorna Breen Health Care Provider Protection Act” is signed into law.

Sincerely,

American College of Emergency Physicians
American Academy of Dermatology Association
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Neurology
American Association of Child and Adolescent Psychiatry
American Association of Clinical Urologists
American Association of Neurological Surgeons
American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons
American College of Cardiology
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
American College of Radiology
American College of Rheumatology
American College of Surgeons
American Foundation for Suicide Prevention
American Gastroenterological Association
American Medical Association
American Medical Group Association
American Nurses Association
American Osteopathic Association
American Psychiatric Association
American Society of Anesthesiologists
Association for Clinical Oncology
Association of American Medical Colleges
Congress of Neurological Surgeons
Dr. Lorna Breen Heroes’ Foundation
Emergency Nurses Association
National Alliance on Mental Illness
National Association of Spine Specialists
Physicians Advocacy Institute
Renal Physicians Association
Society for Vascular Surgery
The Society of Thoracic Surgeons
Renal Physicians Association
Society for Vascular Surgery
The Society of Thoracic Surgeons


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

NYS Jobs LogoReview Vacancy

Date Posted: 03/23/21 Applications Due: 04/06/21 Vacancy ID: 85272

Position Information 

Agency Health, Department of
Title Health Program Director 2 -TBD
Occupational Category  

Other Professional Careers

Salary Grade 665
Bargaining Unit M/C – Management / Confidential (Unrepresented)
Salary Range From $122092 to $154253 Annually
Employment Type Full-Time
Appointment Type Permanent
Jurisdictional Class Non-competitive Class
Travel Percentage 10%

Schedule 

Workweek

Hours Per Week

Mon-Fri

37.5

 Workday 

From 8:30 AM
To 4:30 PM
Flextime allowed? No
Mandatory overtime? No
Compressed workweek allowed?  

No

Telecommuting allowed?  

No

Location 

County Albany
Street Address CCH; Division of Family Health

Corning Tower, ESP

City Albany
State NY
Zip Code 12237

Job Specifics 

Minimum Qualifications Twelve years of professional level work experience, three of which must have included managerial, decision-making and/or oversight responsibilities for a major health-related program or in the direction of a major administrative function of a large health-related organization. A bachelor’s degree may be substituted for four years of the general professional experience. 

Twelve or more years of progressively responsible administrative experience in programs that improve perinatal health, child and/or adolescent health, early care, and learning, and/or sexual violence prevention, including four years of managerial, decision-making, and/or program direction. Seven years of this experience would also include fiscal management, policy making and oversight responsibilities, and statewide supervision of professional level staff. The preferred candidate would be familiar with representing departmental interests and serving as a spokesperson and liaison to Executive staff, and have experience working with other state and federal governmental programs. Experience with second-level professional supervision as well as strong oral and written communication skills is also desired. A master’s degree in an appropriate field may substitute an additional one year of the general professional experience, not to exceed a maximum of five years total allowable educational substitution. Please refer to full listing


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MSSNY eNews: March 26, 2021 – More Ups than Downs


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More Ups than Downs:

Colleagues:

This week brings significant progress on the vaccine front with the start of the long-awaited allocation of vaccine supply to physician practices. Over 1,600 physician practices have enrolled in the NYS COVID-19 Vaccination Program and 190 of these have received 100 doses each of the Moderna vaccine since Monday. We anticipate that as supply increases more physician practices will be allotted vaccine, including Johnson & Johnson, Moderna and Pfizer. This is great news for patients who can now have their vaccine in a familiar setting, close to home with their trusted physician. This bodes well for the NYS vaccine roll out as NY is rapidly expanding the eligibility categories and needs its most seasoned vaccinators contributing to the effort.

Please remember that you must submit a weekly planning vaccine request indicating the amount of vaccine that you can administer in seven days. Click here for the latest NYS DOH vaccine guidance.

There was also good public health news this week with regard to NYS vaccination requirements.  The New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department affirmed the dismissal of the challenge to the 2019 law that eliminated religious exemptions for state vaccination requirements.  The role of vaccines in combating communicable diseases has never been more apparent than in the last few years with the Measles outbreak in 2019 and now the Covid-19 pandemic.

With this in mind, the Medical Society of the State of New York, the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics, and the New York State American Academy of Pediatrics participated as amici curiae in the litigation in support of New York State and the law, and offered our conclusion that having medical exemptions only is in the best interest of public health.

On the downside, this week, the NYS legislature passed legislation repealing the Covid liability protections provided to physicians and other care providers enacted as part of last year’s State Budget. MSSNY along with other groups wrote to legislators to oppose A.3397/S.5177, noting that regardless of the nursing home data concerns, it is very important to maintain the liability protections for the duration of the public health emergency, particularly given that New York continues to have thousands of new Covid cases every day with an increasing proportion of more easily spread variants.

While NYS legislators rejected our appeals that the law should continue, during the floor debates in both the Assembly and Senate over this legislation, many did indicate that the “effective date” language in the legislation means that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively should Governor Cuomo sign this legislation. These comments were very important given traditional statutory construction rules that legislation is meant to apply prospectively unless there is clear intent to the contrary.

If you have not already done so, please text MSSNY to 52886 to sign up for text message grassroots alerts. Over the next week the NYS Budget will be finalized and this year’s budget proposal includes many provisions that may detrimentally affect you, your practice and your patients including negative OPMC changes, changes to the excess malpractice fund with partial cost shifting to physicians, expansion of pharmacist scope of practice, a cut to the Committee on Physician Health and more (click MSSNY eNews: March 24, 2021 for a more comprehensive summary). We need you to stand ready to answer to call to action Grassroots Action Center. Your voice and your email/letter to your legislator make a difference and can affect the outcome.

Bonnie Litvack, MD
MSSNY President


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Capital Update

MSSNY Weekly Podcast


State Budget Negotiation Continue – Keep Up Physician Grassroots!
After passing their respective one-House Budget proposals last week, the Assembly and the Senate are now having negotiations with the Governor’s office to complete a State Budget before next week’s April 1 deadline.   Below is a summary of the most pressing Budget issues where MSSNY has been advocating, as well as the continued need for physician grassroots efforts.

Excess Insurance

Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the $51 million cut to the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program and 50% physician cost share imposition that had been proposed in the Executive Budget. Physicians can send a letter to legislators urging that they continue to fight to prevent this cut from being included in the Budget: Don’t Balance the Budget on the Backs of Physicians

OPMC Changes

The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget including several provisions that would substantially curtail physician due process rights when a complaint has been filed against them with the OPMC. The Senate Budget proposal recommended the rejection of almost all of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions but left in components related to background checks for new licensees and expanded information on the physician profile.

Physicians can send a letter urging the Legislature to continue to fight to preserve due process protections for physicians and rejecting these seriously unfair proposed changes: Reject Governor’s Physician Disciplinary Proposal

Pharmacy Scope 

The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection in its entirety of the pharmacy scope expansion provisions from the Executive Budget proposal.  The Senate Budget proposal recommended the rejection of Executive Budget proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program and pharmacist self-ordering of lab tests, but mostly accepted the proposal to expand the immunizations that can be performed by pharmacists.

Please urge your legislators to continue to fight to reject these short-sighted proposals that would empower big box chains at the expense of community-based physician-led medical homes: Oppose Uncoordinated Siloed Care to be Provided by Pharmacists

Telehealth 

The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection of almost all of the Executive Budget telehealth Budget proposal except for a provision that expands the locations where telehealth services can be provided.  The Senate accepted the Governor’s telehealth Budget proposal, but importantly added language supported by MSSNY that would require equitable payment for telehealth services as compared to in-person services.

Please send a letter urging that equitable payment for telehealth services be included in the final Budget; and ensuring out of state telehealth service providers are not prioritized over community based New York physicians for providing telehealth services: Urge Legislators to Support Payment Parity in Telehealth. (More info below)

Committee for Physicians Health 

The Senate Budget proposal restored the nearly $200,000 cut that had been proposed to CPH in the Executive Budget.  While the Assembly Budget proposal did not affirmatively restore the cut, there have been indications that they will support the restoration of this cut.

E-Prescribing Waivers 

Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the Executive Budget proposal to eliminate the right of prescribers to apply for a year to year waiver of e-prescribing requirements.

Medicaid “Prescriber Prevails” 

Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the Executive Budget proposal to remove the statutory protection for the prescriber’s determination (not State Medicaid’s) to prevail for a medication prescribed to a patient covered by Medicaid.

Nurse Practitioner Collaborative Practice

The Assembly Budget proposal included the Governor’s proposal to extend the existing modified nurse practitioner independent practice statute for another 6 years.  The Senate Budget proposal did not include these provisions.

Medicaid Cuts

Both the Senate and the Assembly rejected the 1% Across the Board Medicaid cut.

Recreational Use Marijuana 

This was excluded from both one-House Budget proposals but there are numerous reports a separate bill will be enacted. (DIVISION OF GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS)


MSSNY Working to Secure Telehealth Expansion in FY 2022 Budget
Telehealth coverage expansion is among the items being negotiated extensively between the Assembly, Senate and Governor as they work to finalize a State Budget for FY 2022.  Physicians are urged to send a letter to their legislators here urging equitable payment for patient care services delivered via telehealth and to ensure continued coverage of telehealth services by New York community-based physicians.

Urge Legislators to Support Payment Parity in Telehealth. As shared in last week’s Capital Update, the Assembly plan rejected all of the Executive Budget’s Telehealth proposal, with the exception of a provision that expands the locations where Telehealth services can be provided. The Senate, however, accepted the Executive’s Telehealth full, but added language supported by MSSNY, that would require payment for Telehealth services that is on par with in-person visits.

MSSNY is continuing to push for expansion of Telehealth services through the budget and is working with legislative leaders to address significant concerns with the proposal advanced in the Executive Budget, including its proposal to create an interstate compact and network adequacy, which has the potential to cut out New York-based, community physicians, especially those in network. MSSNY is also continuing to strongly advocate for physician payments for telehealth services that are on par with in-office visits.

The Governor and legislature must agree on a new budget by April 1st and MSSNY will provide updates as negotiations go forward.                      (CARY)


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US Senate Passes Measure to Prevent 2% Sequester Cut; House Expected to Follow Suit in Mid-April
This week the US Senate voted 90-2 to pass an agreement reached by Leaders Schumer and McConnell to extend the 2% Medicare sequester moratorium that expires on April 1. The bipartisan legislation, offered as an amendment by Senators Shaheen and Collins, would provide a 9-month extension of the moratorium, through December 31.

Last week, the House of Representatives passed different legislation that would have both extended the moratorium through the end of the pandemic and eliminated an additional 4% Medicare sequester scheduled to take effect on January 1, which was required by so-called “PayGo” rules to offset part of the cost of passing the American Rescue Plan COVID-19/stimulus package. Consequently, the House will need to pass the Senate language when it returns to DC the week of April 12. According to the American Medical Association, the House is expected to vote favorably, and the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is expected to hold off on processing April claims until then to avoid making reduced payments.

MSSNY thanks Senator Schumer and Gillibrand for their actions, as well as the 25 of the 27 New York Congressional delegation members representing both parties whose support for preventing this cut in last week’s House vote demonstrated that there was wide bipartisan support for finding a way to prevent this cut from being implemented at a time when physicians and other care providers are still struggling with the consequences of the pandemic.

Physicians and other care providers affected by the upcoming 4% sequester scheduled for January 1 expect legislation to be considered later in the year to waive those cuts. (AUSTER)


Legislature Passed Bill to Repeal COVID Legal Protections
Legislation (S.5177) to repeal the COVID liability protections provided to physicians and other care providers enacted as part of last year’s State Budget was passed by the Senate this week.   The same-as legislation (A.3397) recently passed the Assembly.  It will be sent to the Governor for his signature, which as of this writing has not yet occurred, nor has the Governor announced whether he will sign or veto the bill.

Many groups including MSSNY wrote to legislators to oppose A.3397/S.5177, noting that regardless of nursing home concerns that led many to question this law, it was important to maintain these legal protections for the front-line physicians and other health care workers still managing the thousands of new COVID cases in New York every day with an increasing penetration of more easily spread variants.

MSSNY also raised concerns that despite statutory construction rules that presume legislation is to be applied prospectively in the absence of clearly defined statutory intent to the contrary, there was still a possibility S.5177/A.3397 could be interpreted by a court to retroactively repeal these essential liability protections for care provided during the height of the pandemic when there were not clear medical protocols for COVID treatment and when many non-COVID health care services were required to be postponed.

Importantly, there were comments made by several Assemblymembers during the floor debate on the legislation when it was passed by the NYS Assembly that the “effective date” language means that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively.  The point was also made by Senator Shelly Mayer during the floor debate in the Senate.

Please stay tuned for further updates on this issue, including potential requests for further grassroots activity. (AUSTER)


NYS Legislature Appears to Have Reached Agreement on Legalizing Recreational Marijuana
According to news reports the New York State Legislature and the Governor’s office, appears to be close to agreement on legislation that would legalize recreational marijuana use and purchase for adults at least 21 years old.  The legislation would also license dispensaries and impose special taxes on marijuana. News articles report that this legislation would include a 13% sales tax, 9% of which would go to the state and 4% to the localities.

Localities are also given the discretion to opt out of allowing a dispensary in a county. News reports also indicate that some of the resulting annual proceeds are going to low-income, mostly minority neighborhoods under a “community reinvestment” program to assist communities that have been subject to disparate enforcement of marijuana laws.  With preventing against impaired driving a significant concern for many groups, the legislation is also expected to allow police to use marijuana odor to help determine if a driver is impaired but would ban odor from being a reason to search a vehicle.  It should also be noted that there was still discussion whether driving while ability impaired by marijuana would be treated as a violation or as a misdemeanor. (CLANCY)


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NYS Continues to Expand Vaccine Eligibility to 50 Years of Age and Older
New York State continues to expand eligibility to the COVID-19 vaccine to adults over 50.   The March 23, 2021 guidance is here.

All providers can vaccinate any New Yorker, including those with comorbidities or underlying conditions, and individuals 50+. Enrolled providers other than pharmacies may vaccinate any eligible individual. Pharmacies must prioritize K-12 school faculty and staff and childcare workers but are also authorized to vaccinate individuals aged 50 and older and individuals with comorbidities.

New York State Department of Health also issued interim guidance to ensuring access to health care services and effective April 1, 2020, individuals may bring a companion with them to healthcare appointments. Companions must also wear appropriate face coverings, practice hand hygiene and respiratory etiquette, and comply with temperature checking and symptom screening.   A copy of the guidance is here.

MSSNY has been working closely with the state to get vaccine supply to community physician offices and several physician practices around the state may receive an allocation of vaccine supply shortly. MSSNY has been informed that over 190 practices have received vaccine.  Physicians who would like to become a COVID-19 immunizer, will need to enroll into either the NYSIIS or CIR systems. Physicians can find information about enrolling here.

Providers in receipt of COVID-19 vaccine, irrespective as to whether such doses are via a direct State or federal allocation or a redistribution, will now be required to report to the vaccine tracker on Mondays and Thursdays by 10am. All providers with COVID -19 vaccine doses on hand or that depleted their allocation since their last report are now required to fill out the vaccine tracker both days. This reporting will continue to be used for allocation determinations and is still required.

Physicians and patients can determine eligibility by going here. (CLANCY) 


MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee: Peer to Peer Program
If you or someone you know is struggling with everyday life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to be connected with a peer supporter to help! 

Email: P2P@mssny.org and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

Phone: 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337) and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

The Medical Society of the State of New York now offers to physicians, residents and medical students a completely confidential and anonymous opportunity to talk with a peer about some of life stressors. MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee launched a Peer 2 Peer (P2P) program to assist their colleagues who are need of help in dealing with work and family stressors. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the emotional issues related to this event, may also be troubling for our colleagues.

MSSNY has established a confidential helpline phone number (1-844-P2P-PEER) and an email address (p2p@mssny.org) so that physicians may be connected with a peer 24 hours a day/7 days a week. In addition to offering a trained, empathetic ear, peer supporters may provide information on specific resources that can offer further support, provide positive coping skills, or connect physicians to professionals for more focused assistance when needed. MSSNY has nearly 50 trained peer supporters across NYS who are just a phone call away!                                                                             (LAUDER)


MSSNY Medical Matters Program on Mental Health of Children and Teens During COVID
Registration now open
Medical Matters: COVID-19 & Mental Health of Children and Teens
Date: April 21, 2021 @ 7:30am 

The COVID-19 pandemic has affected the mental health of the entire population.  Learn more about how children and teens have been affected by registering for Medical Matters: COVID-19 & Mental Health of Children and Teens. This webinar will take place on Wednesday, April 21st at 7:30 am.  Linda Chokroverty, MD will serve as faculty for this program.  Click here to register for this webinar.

Educational objectives

  • Identify normal stressors impacting children and teens and those that have resulted from the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Examine what is known so far about the mental health impact of COVID-19 on children and teens
  • Describe resources to assist children and teens during the COVID-19 pandemic
  • Appraise the scope of COVID-19’s long term mental health impact on children and teens

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (HOFFMAN)


Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients Webinar Registration Now Open

Thursday, April 22nd @ 7:30 am

The Medical Society of the State of New York is hosting a Continuing Medical Education (CME) program entitled Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients live webinar on Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am.

Click HERE to register for the program! View the program flyer HERE.

When:                 April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am
Faculty:               Lt. Colonel Lance Allen Wang (Ret.) & Sharran Chambers-Murphy, Desert Storm-era Veteran

Educational Objectives:

  • Describe the unique aspects of military culture and how they impact patients who are veterans;
  • Explain the Dwyer Peer-to-Peer program as a resource to assist veteran patients re-acclimating from a group to an individual mentality; and
  • Review and identify resources to improve physician’s ability to fully treat veterans who are transitioning back to civilian life.

For more information, contact Jangmu Sherpa at jsherpa@mssny.org or call (518) 465-8085.

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (SHERPA)         


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NY Nursing Homes Can Now Welcome Visitors
New York nursing homes can begin welcoming visitors with limited exceptions under new state guidance released Thursday. The Department of Health and Gov. Andrew Cuomo directed nursing home operators to align their policies with federal guidance, which allows for outdoor and indoor visitation “at all times for all residents” regardless of vaccination status, except in certain cases where risk of COVID-19 transmission is high. The new policy, which took effect immediately, limits indoor visitation for: unvaccinated residents if the nursing home’s Covid-19 positivity rate exceeds 10 percent and less than 70 percent of residents are fully vaccinated; residents with confirmed Covid-19 infections; or residents in quarantine. Compassionate care visits are exempt from the restrictions.

Facilities must continue to follow infection control practices and DOH recommends that all nursing homes offer testing to visitors while Covid-19 is still present in communities across New York. Visitors unable to adhere to federal Covid-19 infection prevention principles “should not be permitted to visit or should be asked to leave” according to the new guidance.

It replaces guidance issued on Feb. 23, which required facilities to be COVID-free for 14 days before they could permit visitors.


State AGs Ask Facebook and Twitter to Remove Vaccine Misinformation
In a letter to Facebook Chief Executive Mark Zuckerberg and Twitter CEO Jack Dorsey, the Democratic Attorneys General said “anti-vaxxers” lacking medical expertise and often motivated by financial gain have used the platforms to downplay the danger of COVID-19 and exaggerate the risks of vaccination.

They called on both companies to enforce their own community guidelines by removing or flagging vaccine misinformation.

The letter said anti-vaxxers control 65% of public anti-vaccine content on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter, and have more than 59 million followers on those platforms and Google’s YouTube.

It also said some misinformation targets Blacks and other communities of color where vaccination rates are lagging.

“Given anti-vaxxers’ reliance on your platforms, you are uniquely positioned to prevent the spread of misinformation about coronavirus vaccines that poses a direct threat to the health and safety of millions of Americans in our states and that will prolong our road to recovery,” the letter said.

Facebook spokeswoman Dani Lever said the company has removed millions of pieces of COVID-19 and vaccine misinformation and tries to combat “vaccine hesitancy” by regularly directing users to reliable information from health authorities.

Twitter said it has removed more than 22,400 tweets in connection with its policy toward COVID-19 posts and prioritizes removing content that could cause “real-world” harm.

Wednesday’s letter was signed by the attorneys general of New York, Connecticut, Delaware, Iowa, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, North Carolina, Oregon, Pennsylvania, Rhode Island, and Virginia. (Becker’s Hospital, April 25).


Social Media in Medicine Wednesday, April 21, 2021 at 6 PM EST.
MSSNY Vice President, Parag H. Mehta, MD and MSSNY YPS Chair, Daniel E. Choi, M.D. present Social Media in Medicine: A Beginners Guide to Social Media for Physicians.Register now for Virtual Webinar

Register here

Topics Include:

  • Introduction to popular social media physician communities: #MedTwitter,
    Instagram, YouTube, TikTok
  • How to establish a social media presence and grow your audience
  • Common terminology e.g. Twitter handle, hashtag
  • Scheduling posts
  • How social media can be harnessed for effective patient education, practice growth, and advocacy.
  • Best ways to connect with patients and colleagues on social media
  • Pitfalls of social media as a physician
  • What not to do on Social Media

Current State of Coronavirus Variants in the U.S.
On the heels of this winter’s surge and amid an accelerating vaccine rollout, many states are lifting or scaling back virus restrictions in a bid to return to normal life. Many epidemiologists and public health experts have urged continued caution, saying that the U.K. variant B.1.1.7 spreading nationwide could cause another surge and prolong the pandemic.

“The continued relaxation of prevention measures while cases are still high, and while concerning variants are spreading rapidly throughout the United States, is a serious threat to the progress we have made as a nation,” Rochelle Walensky, MD, CDC director, said during a March 22 White House news briefing.

The CDC confirmed 7,501 cases of the B.1.1.7 variant in all 50 states and Puerto Rico as of March 23. Florida has confirmed the most B.1.1.7 cases of all states, with 1,042 infections as of March 23. Some health experts have expressed concern that spring breakers traveling to Florida may take the variant back to their home states. Michigan follows closely behind Florida with 986 B.1.1.7 cases, and California has reported the third most at 471.

Health officials are also monitoring other coronavirus variants spreading nationwide. The CDC has confirmed 219 cases of the South Africa variant, known as B.1.351, in 27 states as of March 23. Sixty-one cases of the Brazil/Japan P.1 variant have also been detected in 18 states.

“Increasingly, states are seeing a growing proportion of their COVID-19 cases attributed to variants,” Dr. Walensky said. “The newly identified variant, B1427/B1429, is estimated to account for 52 percent of cases in California, 41 percent in Nevada and 25 percent in Arizona. And the B.1.1.7 variant is estimated to be responsible for 9 percent of cases in New Jersey and8 percent in Florida.” (Becker’s Hospital Review, March 25).


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Harlem Hospital and Vaccine Hesitancy in Black Communities
Six Takeaways for Hospital Leaders
About half of eligible staff at New York City-based Harlem Hospital have received a COVID-19 vaccine, reflecting wariness in the Black community and prompting conversations about how leaders can acknowledge these fears while still encouraging vaccination, reports The New York Times.

Harlem Hospital, also branded as NYC Health + Hospitals/Harlem, is known for providing healthcare to the Black community and had the lowest staff COVID-19 vaccination rate among New York City hospitals at one point. As of mid-March, the hospital had a 51 percent staff vaccination rate, putting it in the middle of the 11 hospitals in the city’s public system.

Vaccine hesitancy at Harlem Hospital, where a majority of the staff is Black, reflects broader trends across the nation, administrators said.

Six key takeaways for hospital leaders, per the Times:

  1. At Harlem Hospital and across the U.S., confidence in COVID-19 vaccines is rising among Black Americans. Though initially more skeptical, Black Americans are now about as willing to get vaccinated as their white counterparts, and politics is emerging as a greater determinant of willingness, recent polls show.
  2. Harlem Hospital’s low vaccination rate was not surprising to leaders. A poll in late 2020 showed that only 30 percent of hospital employees were willing to be vaccinated, said Eboné Carrington, the hospital’s CEO. Black staff cited concern tied to the legacy of medical injustices and general skepticism of a vaccine developed quickly, under a presidential administration they did not trust. “The staff reflects a population of people who traditionally are reluctant to vaccinate, and not just hesitant, but rightfully fearful, at having been wronged,” Ms. Carrington said.
  3. Mitchell Katz, MD, president, and CEO of NYC Health + Hospitals, noted the lack of long-term studies about the vaccines, along with the negative experiences many Black and brown Americans have had with healthcare providers. Dr. Katz said he was going to be patient and focus on personal outreach, such as one-on-one conversations, to boost vaccination rates.
  4. “I think that the history of medical experimentation on Black people plays a role in some of the decision-making,” said Keisha Wisdom, BSN, RN, nursing chief at Harlem Hospital. “It is real, and it is something we have to talk about. And then find a way to continue that dialogue.”
  5. Some nurses said they did not feel an urgency to get the vaccine because they already had COVID-19, Ms. Wisdom said, adding that some staff felt more secure now that there were not personal protective equipment shortages.
  6. Jasmine Travers, PhD, RN, assistant professor at the Rory Meyers College of Nursing at New York University, said that empathizing with staff reluctance is good, but not enough. “We should not just chalk up a refusal to that person’s own wishes; we also need to look into ourselves and understand how we are approaching it. We can’t tiptoe around the subject,” Dr. Travers said. “It’s one thing to want to be respectful, but we have to interrogate people around how we can better support them. What is the work that needs to be done?” (Becker’s Hospital Review, April 24)

Kings County Webinar March 30: Beyond Tuskegee; Vaccine Hesitance and Equity
The Medical Society of the County of Kings, along with the Provident Clinical Society and Region 1 National Medical Association, is hosting a webinar on Tuesday, March 30 from 7:30-9:00 pm on Beyond Tuskegee: COVID-19 Vaccine Hesitancy and Equity.”  There is no charge to attend, and you are welcomed to share with colleagues and other healthcare professionals.


Study: COVID-19 Associated with Prominent Neurologic Symptom
Non-hospitalized coronavirus disease 2019 (COVID-19) “long haulers” experience prominent and persistent neurologic symptoms that affect cognition and quality of life, according to a new study published March 23, 2021 in the Annals of Clinical and Translational Neurology.

“Our study is the first to report neurologic findings in non-hospitalized COVID-19 long-haulers, including detailed neurologic exam, diagnostic testing, and validated measures of patient quality of life, as well as cognitive function test results,” said corresponding author Igor Koralnik, MD, chief of Neuro-infectious Diseases and Global Neurology, Ken & Ruth Davee Department of Neurology, Northwestern Medicine, in a press release.


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Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188

For the MSSNY 2021 Ad Rate Sheet, please click here.


Soho Rental Office
Two Offices Available for Rent in Established SoHo Primary Care Practice
Newly constructed loft space. Dedicated private waiting area available.  This space is ideal for individual psychiatry, psychology, social work, physical therapy, or acupuncture services. Potential to work with existing Primary Care Practice as a referral source. Centrally located in the heart of SoHo, close to all subways. Available 7 days/week. Contact: SpringPrimaryCare@gmail.com

Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: March 24, 2021 – State Budget Negotiations Continue – Keep Up Physician Grassroots!


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State Budget Negotiations Continue – Keep Up Physician Grassroots!
After passing their respective one-House Budget proposals, the Assembly and the Senate are now having negotiations with the Governor’s office to complete a State Budget before next week’s April 1 deadline.   Below is an initial summary of the most pressing Budget issues where MSSNY has been advocating, as well as the continued need for physician grassroots efforts

Excess Insurance
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the $51 million cut to the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program and 50% physician cost share imposition that had been proposed in the Executive Budget. Physicians can send a letter to legislators urging that they continue to fight to prevent this cut from being included in the Budget.

OPMC Changes
The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget including several provisions that would substantially curtail physician due process rights when a complaint has been filed against them with the OPMC. The Senate Budget proposal recommended the rejection of almost all of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions but left in components related to background checks for new licensees and expanded information on the physician profile.

Physicians can send a letter urging the Legislature to continue to fight to preserve due process protections for physicians and rejecting these seriously unfair proposed changes.

Pharmacy Scope
The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection in its entirety of the pharmacy scope expansion provisions from the Executive Budget proposal. The Senate Budget proposal recommended the rejection of Executive Budget proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program and pharmacist self-ordering of lab tests, but mostly accepted the proposal to expand the immunizations that can be performed by pharmacists.

Please urge your legislators to continue to fight to reject these short-sighted proposals that would empower big box chains at the expense of community-based physician medical homes.

Committee for Physicians Health
The Senate Budget proposal restored the nearly $200,000 cut that had been proposed to CPH in the Executive Budget.  While the Assembly Budget proposal did not affirmatively restore the cut, there have been indications that they will support the restoration of this cut.

E-Prescribing Waivers
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the Executive Budget proposal to eliminate the right of prescribers to apply for a year to year waiver of e-prescribing requirements.

Medicaid “Prescriber Prevails”
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals recommended the rejection of the Executive Budget proposal to remove the statutory protection for the prescriber’s determination (not State Medicaid’s) to prevail for a medication prescribed to a patient covered by Medicaid.

Telehealth
The Assembly Budget proposal recommended the rejection of almost all of the Executive Budget telehealth Budget proposals except for a provision that expands the locations where telehealth services can be provided.

The Senate accepted the Governor’s telehealth Budget proposal, but added language supported by MSSNY that would require payment parity for telehealth services as compared to in-person services.

Nurse Practitioner Collaborative Practice
The Assembly Budget proposal included the Governor’s proposal to extend the existing modified nurse practitioner independent practice statute for another 6 years.  The Senate Budget proposal did not include these provisions.

Medicaid Cuts
Both the Senate and the Assembly rejected the 1% Across the Board Medicaid cut.

Recreational Use Marijuana
This was excluded from both one-House Budget proposals but it is increasingly likely a separate bill will be enacted.


MSSNY Scope of Practice Radio Ad Campaign
With a grant from the American Medical Association Scope of Practice Partnership, MSSNY has for the last two weeks been running radio ads in media markets across the State (WINS-AM and WCBS-AM/downstate, WGY-AM in Albany, WEBEN-AM in Buffalo, WHAM-AM in Rochester, and WSYR-AM in Syracuse), urging that the Legislature reject several components of the proposed State Budget that would expand the scope of practice of pharmacists and nurse practitioners to perform various health care services without coordination with a physician. Listen to the ad here.

As the Legislature works to finalize a State Budget over the next week or so, we ask you to continue to write and tweet your state legislators to urge that these provisions be removed from the State Budget.


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Have You Lost a Colleague or Family Member to COVID-19? Please Submit Names of Physicians and Family Members Who Lost Their Lives During the Pandemic
Doctors Day is March 30. This year, to honor our physicians and family members who died of COVID-19 in 2020-2021, MSSNY is designing a poster with the names that are submitted. Please send the names to jvecchione@mssny.org


From DOH: Guidance for The New York State COVID-19 Vaccination Program
Limited amounts of COVID-19 vaccine are available for New York’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program. The amount of vaccine the state receives is based upon the allocation made to New York by the federal government. The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) then determines state allocations to providers and entities who have enrolled to administer vaccine.

Effective March 23, individuals age 50 and older are eligible to be vaccinated, in addition to all previously eligible groups. All providers must make efforts to vaccinate the most vulnerable New Yorkers, including those with comorbidities or underlying conditions, and individuals 50+. Enrolled providers other than pharmacies may vaccinate any eligible individual. Pharmacies must prioritize P-12 school faculty and staff and childcare workers, but are also authorized to vaccinate individuals age 50 and older and individuals with comorbidities and underlying conditions. Read the full guidance here.


Interim Health Advisory from DOH: Ensuring Access to Health Care Services During COVID-19
In-person healthcare services, including routine preventive care and follow-up for direct examination and/or treatment needs, including all recommended age-appropriate vaccinations, should not be postponed. Access to preventive health care services is important to decrease the risk of negative health outcomes and outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases that could overwhelm our healthcare system and endanger New Yorkers. When seeking healthcare services, individuals should take all the appropriate steps to protect themselves and others from COVID-19. Read full advisory here.


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Nassau County Med Society Virtual Event:
Women on the Frontlines: Stronger Together March 31st, 2021 from 6-7 PM

You’re invited to a conversation with:

Dr. Susan Bailey, President of the AMA • Dr. Elizabeth Fontana, Neurosurgeon and Chief Resident at New York Presbyterian Hospital • Dr. Bonnie Litvack, President of MSSNY • Dr. Carmen Rodriguez, FACOG, President of the LIJ, Medical Staff Society and Associate Chair of the Long Island Jewish Medical Center – Performance Improvement Coordinating Group • Dr. Aisha Terry, MPH, FACEP, Emergency Physician and Associate Professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Milken Institute School of Public Health and Pandemic Advisor • Dr. Haritha Veeramachaneni, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and recipient of the New York Times’ Super Doctors Rising Stars

In honor of Women’s History Month, we are celebrating women who have been leaders on the frontline during the pandemic. Please register here for our virtual event on Wednesday, March 31st, 2021. For further details or registration assistance, please email information@nassaucountymedicalsociety.org or call (516) 832-2300.


 

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Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


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MSSNY eNews: March 19, 2021 – We’ve Been Heard – Now Let’s Keep It Going

We’ve Been Heard – Now Let’s Keep It Going
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Colleagues:

The Assembly and Senate proposed their one-house budgets this week and for the most part recommended the rejection of the numerous problematic proposals that we lobbied against on Physician Advocacy Day earlier this month, at a joint NYS legislative budget hearing and for the last several months through our grassroots network.

This was a very important step forward, and is the result of our collective advocacy including extensive physician grassroots and advocacy by our government relations team.  However, there is more work to be done as the Legislature begins negotiations with the Governor’s office towards adoption of a final Budget in 12 days.  Because there is no guarantee that the recommendations of the Assembly and Senate are what will be carried through during difficult Budget negotiations, please continue your grassroots advocacy here and from the specific links below.

Here are the One-House Budget Highlights:

  • The Assembly and Senate both rejected the $51 million cut to the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program and the proposed 50% physician cost share. You can continue to send letters/tweets here.
  • The Assembly and Senate both rejected the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget that would substantially reduce physician due process rights. You can continue to send letters/tweets here.
  • The Assembly entirely rejected the pharmacy scope expansion provisions and the Senate rejected the proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program and pharmacist self-ordering of lab tests, but mostly accepted the proposal to expand the immunizations by pharmacists.
    You can continue to send letters/tweets here.
  • The Senate proposed restoring the proposed cuts to the Committee on Physician Health (CPH)
  • Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the proposal to eliminate the right of prescribers to apply for a year-to-year waiver of e-prescribing requirements.
  • Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the proposal to eliminate Medicaid Prescriber Prevails provisions.
  • The Assembly rejected almost all of the Executive Budget telehealth proposal except for a provision that expands the locations where telehealth services can be provided.  The Senate accepted the Governor’s telehealth Budget proposal, but added language requiring payment parity.
  • Only the Assembly included the Governor’s proposal to extend the existing modified nurse practitioner independent practice statute for another 6 years.
  • Both the Senate and the Assembly rejected the 1% across the board Medicaid cut.

When the House of Medicine stands together, our voice is strong, our message resonates and much is accomplished.  We need to keep up the volume until the 3-way budget negotiations with the Governor are finalized. Thank you to all that have taken the time out of your busy days and practices to contribute to the chorus. Make sure to sign up for MSSNY Grass Roots Alerts by texting MSSNY to 52886 so that you can take action quickly and easily.

Bonnie Litvack, MD
MSSNY President


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Assembly, Senate Advance One-House Budget Proposals that Would Reject Many Problematic Budget Proposals; Conference Committees Begin
This week, both the Assembly and the Senate passed their respective “one-House” Budget recommendations setting the stage for 3-way negotiations with the Governor’s office to complete a State Budget before the April 1 deadline.   Below is an initial summary of the most pressing Budget issues where MSSNY has been advocating.

While the actions of the Assembly and Senate represent significantly positive developments, it is imperative that physicians continue their extensive grassroots efforts on these issues as the State Budget is finalized over the next 2 weeks.

Excess Insurance
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals rejected the $51 million cut to the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program and 50% physician cost share imposition that had been proposed in the Executive Budget. Physicians can send a letter to legislators urging that they continue to fight to prevent this cut from being included in the Budget:  (Click Here)

OPMC Changes
The Assembly Budget proposal rejected the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget in its entirety including several provisions that would substantially curtail physician due process rights when a complaint has been filed against them with the OPMC.

The Senate Budget proposal rejected most of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions including all the proposed reductions to physician due process but left in “non-OPMC” components that would:

  • Require new applicants for licensure to undergo criminal background checks
  • Require physicians to include on their NYS Physician profile updates office hours, whether accepting new patients, and health plan participation information (which would be based upon information already publicly available at another DOH website that is based upon information provided by the health plan)

Physicians can send a letter urging the Legislature to continue to fight to preserve due process protections for physicians and rejecting these seriously unfair proposed changes: (Click Here)

Pharmacy Scope
The Assembly Budget proposal rejected in its entirety the pharmacy scope expansion provisions from the Executive Budget proposal.

The Senate Budget proposal rejected Executive Budget proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program and pharmacist ordering of lab tests for patients without coordination with a physician, but mostly accepted the proposal to expand the immunizations that can be performed by pharmacists.

Please urge your legislators to continue to fight to reject these short-sighted proposals that would empower big box chains at the expense of community-based physician medical homes: (Click Here)

Committee for Physicians Health
The Senate Budget proposal restored the nearly $200,000 cut that had been proposed to CPH in the Executive Budget.  While the Assembly Budget proposal did not affirmatively restore the cut, there have been indications that they will support the restoration of this cut.

E-Prescribing Waivers
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals rejected the Executive Budget proposal to eliminate the right of prescribers to apply for a year-to-year waiver of e-prescribing requirements.

Medicaid “Prescriber Prevails”
Both the Assembly and Senate Budget proposals rejected the Executive Budget proposal to remove the statutory protection for the prescriber’s determination (not State Medicaid’s) to prevail for a medication prescribed to a patient covered by Medicaid.

Telehealth
The Assembly Budget proposal rejected almost all of the Executive Budget telehealth Budget proposal except for a provision that expands the locations where telehealth services can be provided.

The Senate accepted the Governor’s telehealth Budget proposal, but added language supported by MSSNY that would require payment parity for telehealth services as compared to in-person services.

Nurse Practitioner Collaborative Practice
The Assembly Budget proposal included the Governor’s proposal to extend the existing modified nurse practitioner independent practice statute for another 6 years.  The Senate Budget proposal did not include these provisions.

Expanded “De-Credentialing” of Physicians/Providers Under No-Fault Insurance
Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the Governor’s Budget proposal.

Medicaid Cuts
Both the Senate and the Assembly rejected the 1% Across the Board Medicaid cut.

Recreational Use Marijuana
This was excluded from both one-House Budget proposals, but a separate bill is currently under extensive 3-way negotiation. (DIVISION OF GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS)


NYS Congressional Delegation Leads Push Urging the Biden Administration to Include Physicians in Vaccination Effort Following Meetings with MSSNY
Following meetings by MSSNY physician leadership with members of the NY Congressional Delegation, the delegation is leading an effort to urge the Biden Administration to include physicians in the COVID 19 vaccination effort.  

MSSNY advocated for the delegation to collectively urge for the inclusion of office-based physicians into the national COVID-19 vaccine administration plan in order to address demographic gaps in access to the vaccine, and to combat existing hesitancy to receiving the shots across urban, suburban, and rural areas.  MSSNY believes that community-based physicians are uniquely situated to address these concerns, are trusted by their patients and have always play a pivotal role administering the flu vaccine and other vaccines.  The announcement by New York Rep. Paul Tonko, Rep. Grace Meng, and Rep. Adriano Espaillat can be viewed at this link: Click Here

MSSNY has also been working with other state medical societies to urge federal action.  Joining in the statement were the: Connecticut State Medical Society, Massachusetts Medical Society, Medical Society of New Jersey, Pennsylvania Medical Society, and the Ohio State Medical Association. (Click Here)  This week, Maryland Governor Larry Hogan announced that ambulatory physician offices will be added to the team of groups giving the coronavirus vaccine. (Click Here)          (CLANCY, AUSTER)


NYS Continues to Expand Eligibility for COVID-19 Vaccine
On March 17, 2021 New York State expanded eligibility criteria for vaccinations to include March 17th public-facing government and public employees, not-for-profit workers who provide public-facing services to New Yorkers in need, and essential in-person public-facing building service workers and providers of essential building services.   Additionally, enrolled vaccine providers other than pharmacies, may vaccinate any eligible individual. The March 17 guidance is here: Click Here.

MSSNY has been working closely with the state to get vaccine supply to community physician offices and several physician practices around the state may receive an allocation of vaccine supply shortly.  Physician practices should also be in touch with their local health departments who are authorized to reallocate a portion of their supply to physician practices. According to the NYS Department of Health there are 1,609 medical practices enrolled in the state vaccination program and this represents 22,943 staff; 6,287,392 patients (of which 29% are 60+) and requests for approximately requests for 187,147 doses. Physicians who would like to become a COVID-19 immunizer, will need to enroll into either the NYSIIS or CIR systems. Physicians can find information about enrolling here: Click Here.

Effective immediately, providers in receipt of COVID-19 vaccine, irrespective as to whether such doses are via a direct State or federal allocation or a redistribution, will now be required to report to the vaccine tracker on Mondays and Thursdays by 10 am.  All providers with COVID -19 vaccine doses on hand or that depleted their allocation since their last report are now required to fill out the vaccine tracker both days. This reporting will continue to be used for allocation determinations and is still required. Click Here.

Physicians and patients can determine eligibility by going to Click Here.

President Biden has announced that he will be directing all states, tribes, and territories to make all adults, people 18 and over, eligible to be vaccinated no later than May 1 and has also indicated the federal government is working to increase the supply of vaccine.  Twelve states are expanding eligibility to COVID-19 vaccines earlier than planned for every adult, accelerating the biggest such campaign in the country’s history and making long strides toward President Joe Biden’s May 1 deadline for eligibility.  (CLANCY)


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NYS Supreme Court, Appellate Division Third Judicial Department Affirms Dismissal of Challenge to the NYS Law Ensuring Medical Contraindications Exemptions Only for Vaccinations
The New York State Supreme Court, Appellate Division, Third Judicial Department this week affirmed the dismissal of the challenge to the New York State Legislature’s passage of a law to eliminate religious exemptions for vaccinations.   Plaintiffs had raised a number of constitutional challenges, and the case was originally brought in 2019 to the Supreme Court who also dismissed it.

The American Medical Association, the Medical Society of the State of New York, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the New York State American Academy of Pediatrics, as amici curiae in support of New York State and the law, and offered their conclusion that eliminating religious exemptions is in the best interest of public health.  This brief is cited several times in the decision.

In 2019, the Medical Society led the fight to advocate for allowing only medical exemptions to be a reason not to be immunized.   MSSNY was joined by 46 public health and patient advocacy organizations in this effort and this dismissal is a huge victory for public health.  A copy of the decision can be found at:  Click Here.     (CLANCY)


Bill to Repeal COVID Immunity Protections Advancing – Contact Your Legislators to Oppose
Legislation (S.5177) to repeal the COVID liability protections provided to physicians and other care providers enacted as part of last year’s State Budget has advanced to the Senate floor and could be voted on at any time. Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators (Click Here)  to oppose efforts to remove these important protections.

The same-as legislation (A.3397) recently passed the Assembly. In a state notorious for its already hostile liability climate, these protections enacted by the Governor and the Legislature last year were absolutely essential for hospitals, physicians and other care providers to build the capacity necessary to treat an unending stream of Covid patients during the height of the pandemic.

Many groups including MSSNY have written to legislators to oppose this legislation and to highlight the importance of maintaining these protections for the duration of the public health emergency given that New York continues to have thousands of new Covid cases every day and an increasing penetration of more easily spread variants.

MSSNY has also raised concerns with the possibility that S.5177/A.3397 could be interpreted by a court to retroactively repeal these essential liability protections for care provided during the height of the pandemic when there were not clear medical protocols for Covid treatment and when many non-COVID health care services were required to be postponed.  At the same time, it should be noted there were comments made by several Assemblymembers during the floor debate on the legislation when it was passed by the NYS Assembly that the “effective date” language means that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively, in other words, for acts or omissions after the date the bill was signed into law, if it were to be passed by the Senate and signed by the Governor. (AUSTER)


MSSNY Working to Secure Telehealth Expansion in FY 2022 Budget While Preserving Patient Access to their Physicians
As noted above, the Assembly and Senate released their one house budget bills this week, with both including some components on Telehealth expansion. The Assembly plan rejected mostly all of the Executive Budget’s Telehealth proposal, with the exception of a provision that expands the locations where Telehealth services can be provided. The Senate, however, accepted the Executive’s Telehealth full, but added language supported by MSSNY, that would require payment for Telehealth services that is on par with in-person visits.

MSSNY is supportive of efforts to include expansion of Telehealth services through the budget and is working with legislative staff to address our significant concerns with the Telehealth proposal that was advanced in the Executive Budget, and to include strong language in the final FY 2022 budget that creates a comprehensive set of Telehealth policies that creates access to care for patients.  MSSNY has sent to the Legislature its recommendations on these various Budget proposals including its request:

  • That the Interstate Compact provisions be deleted from any Telehealth Budget language;
  • Language be added to ensure that health insurers cannot exclude coverage for telehealth services delivered by physicians that are participating in that health plan for providing in-person services; and
  • “Payment parity” be required for services delivered via telehealth, similar to the provisions set forth in S.5505 (Rivera)/A.6256 (Gottfried).

The Governor and legislature must agree on a new budget by April 1st and MSSNY will provide updates as negotiations go forward.    (CARY)


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New York Health Act Re-Introduced
Legislation to create a single payor system in New York was recently re-introduced in the New York State Assembly and NYS Senate (A.6058, Gottfried/S.5474, Rivera). The bill has 79 co-sponsors in the Assembly and 33 co-sponsors in the Senate.

Previous iterations of the bill passed the Assembly from 2015-2018.    MSSNY continues to have a long-standing policy position in support of a multi-payor system to achieve universal coverage and in opposition to a single payor system, but also recognizes that there is a wide array of physician perspectives on this issue.  Indeed, this position has been regularly debated at the MSSNY annual House of Delegates meeting.  MSSNY has repeatedly stated that it looks forward to continued open dialogue and careful evaluation of the likely “real world” impact of such a far-reaching proposal to ensure that New York moves forward in a manner that ensures that patients’ access to needed care from the physician of their choice is not impaired.

MSSNY has also noted in public statements and testimony that there have been meaningful improvements to the legislation based upon comments from physician groups, including MSSNY and the New York County Medical Society (including this statement from 2019 – Click Here).  This year’s version has been revised to require the Commissioner of Health to consider “usual and customary rates” maintained by Fair Health as part of the development of a payment schedule for this program, in response to concerns that State Budget constraints could force this system to use grossly inadequate Medicaid rates as the model for payment.  The legislation had also been amended from previous versions to limit the use of prior authorization on care delivery and to provide a fairer process to negotiate payments for patient care.

There will likely be extensive discussions on this far-reaching proposal after the State Budget is enacted, and MSSNY will continue to provide updates to its members as these discussions progress.                                                                     (AUSTER)


MSSNY Joins Patient Advocates to Examine Impact of Step Therapy Reforms
This week, MSSNY joined with several patient advocacy organizations for a meeting with staff at the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) raising concerns that some New York health plans may not be complying with the important step therapy reform law that passed the Legislature and enacted in 2016.

Step Therapy, also known as “fail first”, is a policy used by insurers to “control costs”, that requires patients to try and fail on one or more drugs prescribed by their physicians, before an insurer will provide coverage for the originally prescribed treatment. Step therapy protocols can also lead to serious health consequences and increased costs for patients. MSSNY was a key player among the many groups that worked to pass the law in 2016, which set forth a number of criteria under which a health plan must grant a step therapy override request based upon information submitted by the patient’s physician (for more info, see here: Step Therapy New Law (mssny.org))

A recent survey by the advocacy group Aimed Alliance indicated that there are situations where patients are still facing challenges of having to “fail first” on certain medications that treat serious health conditions, despite the protections under New York’s law.   If you have examples of health plans not following the law, or you know of other physicians who have had issues, please contact zcary@mssny.org to share details.

The group is planning on having future discussions a and we will provide updates as they happen.                                              (CARY)


House Passes Bill to Prevent 2% Medicare Sequester Cut; Senate Activity Uncertain
The COVID-19 pandemic has been devastating to many — physically, emotionally, and financially – and physicians are no exception. And while the number of Americans getting vaccinated is encouraging, there is still deep concern that persistently high COVID-19 rates will continue to stress the entire health care system, especially physician practices.

Congress recognized early on during the pandemic the severe financial strain facing our health care system and provided a much-needed reprieve from the 2% Medicare payment sequester through the remainder of 2020. Realizing the severity of the situation Congress again extended the sequester moratorium until March 31, 2021.  However, if Congress doesn’t act by March 31, the Medicare payment sequester will take effect, triggering a devastating cut for physician practices across the country, many of which are already strained to the breaking point.

Today, legislation was passed 246-175 by the US House of Representatives (HR 1868) that among other provisions would protect physician practices by extending the current Medicare sequester moratorium beyond the March 31 deadline.  MSSNY thanks the 25 of 27 New York’s Congressional delegation members representing both parties who voted in favor of the legislation (only Rep. Zeldin and Rep. Reed voted against the legislation). However, it is unclear what the Senate will do.  Senate Majority Leader Charles Schumer supports the legislation but several Representatives and Senators have raised objections over the cost of this legislation as it relates to the $1.9 trillion stimulus bill enacted a few weeks ago.   Please remain alert for further updates.       (AUSTER)                               


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Registration Now Open – Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients Webinar

Thursday, April 22nd @ 7:30 am

The Medical Society of the State of New York is hosting a Continuing Medical Education (CME) program entitled Veterans Matters: Military Culture: Everything Physicians Need to Know about Veterans as Patients live webinar on Thursday, April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am.

Click HERE to register for the program! View the program flyer HERE

When:                 April 22, 2021 at 7:30 am
Faculty:               Lt. Colonel Lance Allen Wang (Ret.) & Sharran Chambers-Murphy, Desert Storm-era Veteran

Educational Objectives:

  • Describe the unique aspects of military culture and how they impact patients who are veterans;
  • Explain the Dwyer Peer-to-Peer program as a resource to assist veteran patients re-acclimating from a group to an individual mentality; and
  • Review and identify resources to improve physician’s ability to fully treat veterans who are transitioning back to civilian life

For more information, contact Jangmu Sherpa at jsherpa@mssny.org or call (518) 465-8085

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™.  Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


MSSNY Medical Matters Program on the History of Coronavirus

Registration now open
Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades
Date: March 24, 2021 @ 7:30am 

Did you know that since 2003 there have been three coronavirus outbreaks?  Learn more about the epidemiology and evolution of coronaviruses by registering for Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades. This webinar will take place on Wednesday March 24th at 7:30 am.  Stephen Morse, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology at the Columbia University Medical Center and Director of the Infectious Disease Epidemiology Certificate Program at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health will serve as faculty for this program.  Click here to register for this webinar.

Educational objectives

  • Identify three different coronaviruses and the epidemiology specific to each one;
  • Discuss SARS-CoV-2 in relation to other coronaviruses; and
  • Evaluate the circumstances that contributed to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (Hoffman)


If You or Someone You Know is Struggling With Everyday Life Stressors, Reach Out to The P2P Program to Be Connected With a Peer Supporter to Help!
Email: P2P@mssny.org and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

Phone: 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337) and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

The Medical Society of the State of New York now offers to physicians, residents and medical students a completely confidential and anonymous opportunity to talk with a peer about some of life stressors. MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee launched a Peer 2 Peer (P2P) program to assist their colleagues who are in need of help in dealing with work and family stressors. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the emotional issues related to this event, may also be troubling for our colleagues.

MSSNY has established a confidential helpline phone number (1-844-P2P-PEER) and an email address (p2p@mssny.org) so that physicians may be connected with a peer 24 hours a day/7 days a week. In addition to offering a trained, empathetic ear, peer supporters may provide information on specific resources that can offer further support, provide positive coping skills, or connect physicians to professionals for more focused assistance when needed. MSSNY has nearly 50 trained peer supporters across NYS who are just a phone call away!                                               (Lauder)


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eNews

 

UHC’s Optum Pay
UHC introduced a new product called Optum Pay.  This product has two components.  Optum Pay Basic Portal Access and Optum Pay Premium Portal Access. Originally, under the Basic option, plan remittance advice notices would be available for viewing for 30 days. The Basic option is provided for free.  Under the Premium option, remittance advice notices would be available for a longer period of time, would be downloadable and would cost the practice .5% of payments made to the practice.

For more information about the original versions of Optum Pay Portal Access, please see the attached.

Due a large outcry from physicians, UHC agreed to provide enhancements to the Basic option.  Please see this link which now includes enhancements to the Basic option-

Physicians can now complete an Optum Pay Premium cancellation form and email it to Optum. This cancellation from the Premium option must be emailed to optumpay_cancel@optum.com through the end of March without penalty.  Note, the website states that the Basic plan allows access to remittance data for 13 months; but the cancellation form says users will have access for 30 days, only. Based on an additional clarification from UHC, they clarified that the form is old. Basic users will have 13 months of access to remittance data.


New York Hospital Takes $34M Hit from Nearly 2,700 Canceled Surgeries
Erie County Medical Center in Buffalo, N.Y., is working to recover revenue lost due to canceled surgeries and lower patient volumes tied to the COVID-19 pandemic.

The 573-bed hospital reported a 6 percent year-over-year decline in emergency department visits in 2020, leading to a revenue drop of $1.5 million, according to Buffalo Business First.

Canceled elective surgeries took a bigger financial toll on the hospital. The suspension of elective procedures last year led to nearly 2,700 canceled surgeries and $34 million in lost revenue, according to the report.

“It is a financial hit for us to have less visits, but the more severe financial hit was lack of surgeries, that is the heart financially of the organization,” Erie County Medical Center President CEO Thomas Quatroche Jr., Ph.D., told Buffalo Business First.


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Deloitte: Six Predictions for Hospitals, Health Systems and Medical Professionals
The national sector leader for Deloitte’s healthcare practice in the U.S. (Tina Wheeler), has written a report outlining trends she expects to emerge or accelerate in healthcare.

Six predictions:

  1. More interest in practicing medicine. During the COVID-19 pandemic, there has been a surge in medical school applications— one that admissions officers link to the example of Anthony Fauci, MD, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases. Ms. Wheeler said she expects this increased interest in medicine to continue for people who want to help others.
  2. Medical school students could be more interested in public health. Ms. Wheeler predicts more medical school students could be more interested in job opportunities with public health organizations several years from now. She cited information from the Association of American Medical Colleges showing that some medical schools have already added electives that offer students more of these types of opportunities.
  3. Physicians will likely see their reliance on virtual health grow. The COVID-19 pandemic has accelerated the use of virtual health. In fact, students at her daughter’s school learned how to interview standardized patients in hospital exam rooms before the pandemic, but they have since seen face-to-face encounters moved to an online platform in response to the public health crisis, said Ms. Wheeler. She predicts physicians will likely need this skill as more care is delivered virtually.
  4. Patients could receive more hospital-level care at home. The COVID-19 pandemic has also resulted in hospitals providing more care in people’s homes. For example, telehealth company Amwell announced its involvement on March 10 in a hospital-at-home care initiative backed by Amazon, Salt Lake City-based Intermountain and St. Louis-based Ascension. Ms. Wheeler said more hospital-level care could be delivered in the home in the future.
  5. Transparent pricing could spur newly engaged digital customers. The CMS price transparency rule requiring hospitals to post their standard charges online took effect Jan. 1. Ms. Wheeler said this could help educate and empower consumers, and newly engaged digital consumers will likely have more influence in healthcare. “The new rules are creating mandates and opportunities for greater data-sharing in the industry,” she wrote. Ms. Wheeler said health plans might specifically find opportunities for greater data-sharing to improve social, economic, and environmental factors that affect health outcomes.
  6. Interoperability will change healthcare interactions: HHS has finalized two interoperability rules issued by ONC and CMS. Ms. Wheeler predicts these rules will change healthcare interactions by meeting empowered consumer needs and supporting consumer choice. She said health plans can spend time understanding how data sharing can help them empower and guide members and improve their healthcare experience.

Open Payments National Provider Call
Thursday March 25, 2020 2:00pm – 3:00pm (ET)

REGISTER HERE

Join the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on March 25, 2020 for an informative session on the Open Payments Program and the upcoming review, dispute, and correction processes.

Reporting entities are currently submitting data to the Open Payments system on payments or transfers of value made to physicians and teaching hospitals during 2020.  Beginning in April, physicians and teaching hospitals have 45 days to review and dispute records attributed to them. CMS will publish the Open Payments Program Year 2020 data and updates to previous program years in June 2021.

During this call, learn about the Open Payments program and how to access the system to review the accuracy of the data submitted about you before it is published on the CMS website.

A question-and-answer session will follow the presentation.

Topics:

  • Overview of the Open Payments Program
  • Program Timeline
  • Program Roles
  • Registration Process

Target Audience: physicians, teaching hospitals and office staff.

CMS requests that all press inquiries related to this call and the Open Payments program are sent to the CMS press office mailbox at press@cms.hhs.gov. Please include your professional contact information, specific concerns, and your deadline. Note: The Review and Dispute period is targeted to begin on April 1, 2021 and end on May 15, 2021


Please Submit Names of Doctors and Family Members Who Lost Their Lives During COVID-19
Doctors Day is March 30. This year, to honor our physicians and family members who died of COVID-19 in 2020-2021, MSSNY is designing a poster with the names that are submitted. Please send the names to jvecchione@mssny.org



NYS DOH Informational Message: Monoclonal Antibodies
Monoclonal antibody treatments for Covid19 are no longer being distributed through a state allocation system. There is no shortage in supply of these drugs, and the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has enough on hand to meet the needs of all treatment facilities. For this reason, these therapies are now available through direct ordering only. All treatment sites meeting EUA requirements must now order Covid19 mAb therapies directly from AmerisourceBergen Corporation (ABC), the drugs’ sole distributor. The products remain free of charge to requesting sites.

HHS will continue to monitor all direct orders and retains the capacity to resume allocation of these and future therapies if needed. Treatment sites should review the direct ordering process guide and place orders directly with ABC at this site.

Please note that in addition to reporting therapeutics data in HHSProtect or the National Healthcare Safety Network, treatment sites wishing to place direct orders will be required to provide ABC with a board of pharmacy license or physician letter of authorization, attest to their designated class of trade, and ensure that product administration will be conducted according to the drugs’ EUAs.

Should you have any questions or concerns regarding the direct order process for COVID-19 monoclonal antibodies, you may contact HHS/ASPR at COVID19Therapeutics@hhs.gov or ABC at C19therapies@amerisourcebergen.com.


15 Recent Findings from COVID-19 Related Studies
A number of recent studies have focused on COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, hospitalization trends and variants.

Here are 15 findings from studies published since March 3:

  1. Pfizer said March 11that its COVID-19 vaccine prevented 94 percent of asymptomatic cases, according to an Israeli study.
  2. Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate was 96.4 percent effective in preventing COVID-19 in its phase 3 U.K. trial, the drugmaker announced March 11.
  3. Eli Lilly said on March 10 its COVID-19 antibody cocktail reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by 87 percent during a recent phase 3 study.
  4. GlaxoSmithKline and Vir Biotechnology said on March 10that their COVID-19 antibody drug was 85 percent effective at reducing virus-related hospitalizations and death in a phase 3 clinical trial.
  5. Despite few hospitalized COVID-19 patients having a bacterial infection, 52 percent of hospitalizations led to at least one antibiotic prescription, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Antibiotic Resistance Project published March 10.
  6. People who have more than five symptoms of COVID-19 during the first week of illness may be more likely to develop prolonged health issues, known as “long COVID-19,” according to a study published March 10 in Nature Medicine.
  7. Patients ages 30 and older infected with the U.K. coronavirus variant had a 64 percent higher death risk than those infected with previously circulating strains, according to a U.K. study published March 10 in The BMJ.
  8. People who received both doses of Pfizer-BioNTech’s messenger RNA vaccine and had no symptoms had an 80 percent lower risk of testing positive for COVID-19 compared to those who were unvaccinated, according to research published March 10 in Clinical Infectious Diseases. The findings suggest mRNA vaccines are effective at reducing the risk of asymptomatic infection.
  9. Among 71,491 U.S. adults who were hospitalized with COVID-19, 27.8 percent were overweight and 50.2 percent were obese, according to the CDC’s latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published March 8.
  10. Just 0.025 percent of staff from Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital experienced anaphylaxis after receiving Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, according to a study published March 8 in JAMA.
  11. The COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech was shown to be 95 percent effective in neutralizing a more contagious variant of the novel coronavirus that was discovered in Brazil, according to a study published March 8 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
  12. Both Pfizer’s and Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines were at least 10 times less effective against a virus variant first found in South Africa in a small study conducted by researchers from Columbia University, Business Insider reported March 8.
  13. In-hospital mortality for COVID-19 patients fell 15 percentage points from March to August 2020, according to a study published March 5 in JAMA Network Open.
  14. Among 152 children hospitalized with COVID-19, 18, or 12 percent, developed acute kidney injury, according to a study published March 3 in Kidney International.
  15. The SARS-CoV-2 virus may more easily bind to the airway cells of people with Type A blood, according to a study published March 3 in Blood Advances. (Becker’s Hospital Review, March 16)

Nassau County Med Society Virtual Event: Women on the Frontlines: Stronger Together March 31st, 2021 from 6-7 PM

You’re invited to a conversation with:

Dr. Susan Bailey, President of the AMA • Dr. Elizabeth Fontana, Neurosurgeon and Chief Resident at New York Presbyterian Hospital • Dr. Bonnie Litvack, President of MSSNY • Dr. Carmen Rodriguez, FACOG, President of the LIJ, Medical Staff Society and Associate Chair of the Long Island Jewish Medical Center – Performance Improvement Coordinating Group • Dr. Aisha Terry, MPH, FACEP, Emergency Physician and Associate Professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Milken Institute School of Public Health and Pandemic Advisor • Dr. Haritha Veeramachaneni, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and recipient of the New York Times’ Super Doctors Rising Stars

In honor of Women’s History Month, we are celebrating women who have been leaders on the frontline during the pandemic. Please register here for our virtual event on Wednesday, March 31st, 2021. For further details or registration assistance, please email information@nassaucountymedicalsociety.org or call (516) 832-2300.


Now Accepting Applications: Primary Care First Model Cohort 2
Today, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released the Request for Applications (RFA) for Cohort 2 of the Primary Care First (PCF) Model. Primary care practices in eligible regions are encouraged to apply. Practices that participate in PCF will have flexibility in terms of care delivery and the opportunity to increase practice revenue through performance-based model payments. The deadline for practice applications is April 30, 2021; the deadline for payer applications is May 28, 2021. The PCF Model tests whether the way Medicare pays for advanced primary care—shifting from a fee-for-service to a value-based payment approach—can positively affect the quality of care and reduce total Medicare expenditures. By tying performance-based payment adjustments to health outcomes, the PCF Model seeks to improve advanced primary care for participating practices and patients alike.

What this means for model participants:

  • You have greater independence and can tailor care delivery approaches to meet the special needs of your patients.
  • You have the opportunity to prioritize the doctor-patient relationship.
  • You are supported in offering patients increased access to care, greater engagement in the decision-making process and enhanced care coordination.

Further, participating practices that focus on patients with complex chronic needs receive higher model payments for the care of these patient populations.

PCF Cohort 2 will have five performance years and is scheduled to begin in January 2022. You can access the RFA, practice application, and more information on the PCF Model, on the CMS Primary Care First website.

Webinars for interested applicants will be held in the coming weeks, and will include opportunity for live question and answer:

Introduction to PCF

Become a Primary Care First Payer Partner


Ready, Set, Apply!


MSSNY is Accepting Nominations for the 2020 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, 2020.”

This award was endowed by the late Morris J. Bernstein in memory of his son, a physician who died in an accident while answering a hospital call in November, 1940. 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
518-465-8085

mhardin@mssny.org

DEADLINE FOR NOMINATIONS:    June 9, 2021


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Soho Rental Office
Two Offices Available for Rent in Established SoHo Primary Care Practice
Newly constructed loft space. Dedicated private waiting area available.  This space is ideal for individual psychiatry, psychology, social work, physical therapy, or acupuncture services. Potential to work with existing Primary Care Practice as a referral source. Centrally located in the heart of SoHo, close to all subways. Available 7 days/week. Contact: SpringPrimaryCare@gmail.com

Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY Enews: March 17, 2021 – Excess, OPMC and CPH Proposals


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Assembly, Senate Advance One-House Budget Proposals that Reject Many Problematic Budget Proposals
Over the weekend, both the Assembly and the Senate introduced their respective “one-House” Budget proposals to set the stage for 3-way negotiations with the Governor to complete a State Budget before the April 1 deadline.  Below is an initial summary of the most pressing Budget issues where MSSNY has been advocating.    While these certainly represent significant positive developments, it is imperative that physicians continue their extensive grassroots efforts on these issues as the State Budget is finalized over the next 2 weeks.

Please take action consistent with the grassroots requests below and please be on the lookout for additional alerts based upon how negotiations are pressing on each of these issues. 

Excess Insurance 

Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the $51 million cut to the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program and 50% physician cost share imposition that had been proposed in the Executive Budget. Physicians can send a letter to legislators urging that they continue to fight to prevent this cut from being included in the Budget:  Don’t Balance the Budget on the Backs of Physicians

OPMC Changes

The Assembly rejected the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions from the Executive Budget in its entirety including several provisions that would substantially reduce physician due process rights.

The Senate rejected most of the “OPMC Modernization Act” provisions including all the proposed changes to physician due process but left in “non-OPMC” components that would:

  • Require new applicants for licensure to undergo criminal background checks
  • Require physicians to include on their NYS Physician profile updates office hours, whether accepting new patients, and health plan participation information (which would be based upon information already publicly available at another DOH website that is based upon information provided by the health plan)

Physicians can send a letter urging the Legislature to continue to fight to preserve due process for physicians and rejecting these proposed changes: Reject Governor’s Physician Disciplinary Proposal

Pharmacy Scope 

The Assembly rejected in its entirety the pharmacy scope expansion provisions from the Executive Budget proposal.

The Senate rejected Executive Budget proposals to greatly expand the physician-pharmacy Collaborative Drug Therapy program and pharmacist self-ordering of lab tests, but mostly accepted the proposal to expand the immunizations that can be performed by pharmacists.

Please urge your legislators to continue to fight to reject these short-sighted proposals that would empower big box chains at the expense of community-based physician medical homes: Oppose Uncoordinated Siloed Care to be Provided by Pharmacists

Committee for Physicians Health 

The Senate restored the $198,000 that had been cut in the Executive Budget proposal.  While the Assembly did not appear, at first glance, to restore the cut, but there have been indications that they are supporting the restoration of this cut.

E-Prescribing Waivers 

Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the Executive Budget proposal to eliminate the right of prescribers to apply for a year to year waiver of e-prescribing requirements (which apparently was still being used by over 2,000 prescribers in New York)

Medicaid Prescriber Prevails 

Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the Executive Budget proposal to remove the statutory protection of the prescriber’s determination (not State Medicaid’s) to be final for a medication prescribed to a patient covered by Medicaid.

Telehealth 

The Assembly rejected almost all of the Executive Budget telehealth Budget proposal except for a provision that expands the locations where telehealth services can be provided.

The Senate accepted the Governor’s telehealth Budget proposal, but added language supported by MSSNY that would require payment parity for telehealth services as compared to in-person services.

Nurse Practitioner Collaborative Practice

The Assembly included the Governor’s proposal to extend the existing modified nurse practitioner independent practice statute for another 6 years.  The Senate did not include these provisions.

Expanded “De-Credentialing” of Physicians/Providers Under No-Fault Insurance 

Both the Assembly and Senate rejected the Governor’s Budget proposal.

Medicaid Cuts

Both the Senate and the Assembly reject the 1% Across the Board Medicaid cut.

Recreational Use Marijuana 

This was excluded from both one-House Budget proposals, but a separate bill is currently under extensive 3-way negotiation.


NYS DOH Guidance for the New York State COVID-19 Vaccination Program Effective March 17, 2021
Effective March 17, enrolled providers other than pharmacies, may vaccinate any eligible
individual. Pharmacies must continue to vaccinate individuals age 60 and older, and
prioritize P-12 school faculty and staff, and childcare worker per federal guidance, however
are now authorized to vaccinate individuals with comorbidities or underlying conditions. All
providers must make efforts to vaccinate the most vulnerable New Yorkers, including those
with comorbidities or underlying conditions, and individuals 60+.
Effective March 17, public-facing government and public employees, not-for-profit workers
who provide public-facing services to New Yorkers in need, and essential in-person public-facing building service workers and providers of essential building services are eligible to be vaccinated. Read the full guidance report here.

Important Update to NYS Vaccine Tracker Reporting
Effective immediately, providers in receipt of the COVID-19 vaccine, irrespective of whether such doses are via a direct State or federal allocation or a redistribution, will now be required to report to the vaccine tracker on Mondays and Thursdays by 10 am.

All providers with COVID-19 vaccine doses on hand or that depleted their allocation since their last report are required to fill out the vaccine tracker both days.

This reporting will continue to be used for allocation determinations and is still required. If you have any questions regarding this change or the vaccine tracker in general, please
email: VaccineTracker@health.ny.gov.


Please Join the NYS Department of Health Thursday, March 18th at 1 – 2 PM
for a COVID-19 update for healthcare providers To accommodate the large number of participants, find our webinar streaming via YouTube Live (and available for viewing
immediately thereafter) on the NYSDOH COVID website for providers. Audio number and code: 844-512-2950 Access code 6542067#


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Americans More Comfortable Seeking Care Amid Pandemic, Survey Suggests Americans’ comfort with visiting a hospital or physicians’ office is growing amid the COVID- 19 vaccine rollout, according to Healthgrades’ latest COVID-19 Patient Confidence Study published Feb. 18.

Healthgrades launched the study in March 2020 to assess trends in consumer behavior amid the pandemic. The report is based on a weekly survey of a random sample of 200 Americans. The most recent study represents data through Feb. 12.

Three findings:

  1. Seventy-two percent of respondents said they’d feel comfortable going to their primary care physician tomorrow, up from 40 percent in April
  2. Sixty-nine percent said they’d feel comfortable visiting a specialist tomorrow (up from 38 percent in April), and 63 percent said they’d be willing to visit urgent care (up from 32 percent in April).
  3. Fifty-four percent of respondents said they’d feel comfortable having an elective procedure at a hospital, and 64 percent said they’d undergo an in-office medical
    .
    To view the full survey, click here.

15 Recent Findings from COVID-19-Related Studies
A number of recent studies have focused on COVID-19 vaccine efficacy, hospitalization trends and variants.

Here are 15 findings from studies published since March 3:

  1. Pfizer said March 11 that its COVID-19 vaccine prevented 94 percent of asymptomatic cases, according to an Israeli
  2. Novavax’s COVID-19 vaccine candidate was 96.4 percent effective in preventing COVID- 19 in its phase 3 K. trial, the drugmaker announced March 11.
  3. Eli Lilly said March 10 its COVID-19 antibody cocktail reduced the risk of hospitalization and death by 87 percent during a recent phase 3
  4. GlaxoSmithKline and Vir Biotechnology said March 10 that their COVID-19 antibody drug was 85 percent effective at reducing virus-related hospitalizations and death in a phase 3 clinical trial.
  1. Despite few hospitalized COVID-19 patients having a bacterial infection, 52 percent of hospitalizations led to at least one antibiotic prescription, according to the Pew Charitable Trusts’ Antibiotic Resistance Project published March 10.
  1. People who have more than five symptoms of COVID-19 during the first week of illness may be more likely to develop prolonged health issues, known as “long COVID-19,” according to a study published March 10 in Nature
  2. Patients ages 30 and older infected with the K. coronavirus variant had a 64 percent higher death risk than those infected with previously circulating strains, according to a U.K. study published March 10 in The BMJ.
  1. People who received both doses of Pfizer-BioNTech’s messenger RNA vaccine and had no symptoms had an 80 percent lower risk of testing positive for COVID-19 compared to those who were unvaccinated, according to research published March 10 in Clinical Infectious The findings suggest mRNA vaccines are effective at reducing the risk of asymptomatic infection.
  2. Among 71,491 S. adults who were hospitalized with COVID-19, 27.8 percent were overweight and 50.2 percent were obese, according to the CDC’s latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published March 8.
  3. Just 0.025 percent of staff from Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital experienced anaphylaxis after receiving Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, according to a study published March 8 in JAMA.
  4. The COVID-19 vaccine developed by Pfizer and BioNTech was shown to be 95 percent effective in neutralizing a more contagious variant of the novel coronavirus that was discovered in Brazil, according to a study published March 8 in the New England Journal of Medicine.
  5. Both Pfizer’s and Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccines were at least 10 times less effective against a virus variant first found in South Africa in a small study conducted by researchers from Columbia University, Business Insider reported March 8.
  1. In-hospital mortality for COVID-19 patients fell 15 percentage points from March to August 2020, according to a study published March 5 in JAMA Network Open.
  2. Among 152 children hospitalized with COVID-19, 18, or 12 percent, developed acute kidney injury, according to a study published March 3 in Kidney International.
  3. The SARS-CoV-2 virus may more easily bind to the airway cells of people with Type A blood, according to a study published March 3 in Blood Advances.

NYC DOH MH Hosts Overdose Data to Action (OD2A)
Overdose death in the United States continues to climb during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic. Recent provisional data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) show that over 81,000 drug overdose deaths occurred across the country in the 12 months ending in May 2020—higher than any previously recorded 12-month period. The CDC recommends that clinicians co-prescribe naloxone to patients with high morphine milligram equivalents and those receiving opioids and benzodiazepines. Prescribers such as physicians, nurse practitioners, and physician assistants can help by optimizing how we use prescription drug monitoring programs (PDMPs) in clinical care.

Starting Tuesday, March 30, the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene, in partnership with Montefiore Medical Center and NYC Health + Hospitals, will host a series of webinars with practical and current guidance for health care providers to optimize use of PDMP data in clinical care. The presentations were developed by a team of experts and include case-based discussions highlighting common and challenging case scenarios. Topics for the eight CDC Overdose Data to Action (OD2A)-funded webinars will cover: a history, overview, and importance of using PDMPs; prescribing opioids for inherited patients; equity and racial bias in opioid prescribing; prescribing for patients with complex medical histories; and more. Continuing Medical Education (CME) credits (or equivalent) will be offered with each webinar.

Key points and recommendations:

  1. Clinical practice guidelines encourage use of the PDMP prior to prescribing Schedule II-IV controlled substances, including opioids, benzodiazepines, other sedative-hypnotics (e.g. zolpidem), and pregabalin.
  2. PDMP data can help prescribers to: verify prescription fills (e.g., dates and quantity), review trends in prescription fills, identify patients at high risk for substance use disorder or overdose, guide collaboration with other prescribers and patients, and identify activity suggesting diversion or fraud.
  3. Incorporating PDMP data into clinical decision-making should be guided by several principles;
  4. PDMP data provide objective data that must be interpreted in context
    1. Decisions about whether and how to prescribe should consider the broader risks and benefits to the individual
    2. Avoid abrupt discontinuation or dose reduction of controlled substances that would result in severe withdrawal symptoms. These could lead to illicit use, overdose, seeking emergency care, dysphoric mood, and suicide risk. For some medications including benzodiazepines, it could result in seizures or
    3. Assess patients taking controlled substances for substance use
    4. Substance use disorders, including opioid use disorder, are chronic illnesses that require long-term All patients with substance use disorder should be provided or referred for evidence-based treatment. Treatment for opioid use disorder is effective, safe, and available throughout the country.
    5. Communication with patients about pain and substance use can take place in a way that preserves and improves the therapeutic relationship with This includes using active listening, validating, using non-stigmatizing language, and using shared decision-making.

These principles and others will be addressed in the webinar series (see accompanying information), along with practical tips for implementing them in patient care. We hope you can join us for one or more of the webinars.

Click here to register for the first webinar in the Optimizing Provider Use of Prescription Monitoring Programs series.


CDC: Most People Return for Second COVID-19 Vaccine Dose
Most people who received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine from either Pfizer or Moderna have gotten their second dose on time, according to research published by the CDC March 15, The Hill reported.

During the first two months of the U.S. vaccination campaign, 95 percent of people completed their two-dose vaccinations within the FDA-recommended time period, the CDC said.

But the agency noted that most people prioritized for the vaccine at that time were healthcare workers and long-term care facility residents, who likely had better access to their second doses because they’re more likely to have been vaccinated at work or their residence, The Hill reported.

“As priority groups broaden, adherence to the recommended dosing interval might decrease,” the CDC said.

The FDA authorized Pfizer’s vaccine to be given in two doses 21 days apart and Moderna’s vaccine to be given in two doses 28 days apart. But the CDC has said there can be up to 42 days between doses in emergency situations.

The CDC recommended that public health officials work to understand the causes of missed second doses, The Hill reported.

Read the full article here.


 

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The State of COVID-19 in the US Today: 6 Stats & Why They Matter
Amid the ever-changing pandemic, it can be difficult to draw conclusions from constantly changing data, which is why Becker’s has compiled six recent statistics and provided the context for each number.

Six statistics regarding the state of the pandemic in the U.S.:

Total U.S. COVID-19 cases: 29,496,142

Context: The figure, reported at 8:30 p.m. CDT March 16 from Baltimore-based Johns Hopkins’ coronavirus dashboard, totals out to about 1 in 670 Americans having had COVID-19 at some point. As of March 16, COVID-19 cases in the U.S. account for nearly a quarter of all cases worldwide, or 24.5 percent.

Total U.S. COVID-19 deaths: 535,657

Context: A third of Americans know someone who has died from COVID-19, reports The New York Times. As of March 16, COVID-19 deaths in the U.S. account for more than a fifth of global virus deaths, or 20.1 percent.

U.S. COVID-19 case rate: 57,083 new cases reported March 15, per The New York Times.

Context: As of March 13, The number of new reported cases per day remains nearly as high as the summer record, reports The New York Times. However, daily cases are on the decline, and the average number of new cases per day has dropped more than 75 percent since the Jan. 8 peak.

U.S. COVID-19 death rate: Almost 1,500 Americans are dying from COVID-19 every day as of March 13, reports The New York Times.

Context: That number still exceeds the summer peak, though daily deaths are lower than the initial surge last spring.

Percent of U.S. population fully vaccinated: 11.5 percent

Context: As of March 15, 38,335,432 Americans have received all necessary COVID-19 vaccine doses, per the CDC. Overall, 71,054,445 Americans (21.4 percent) have received at least one COVID-19 vaccine dose. The proportion of the population that must be vaccinated against COVID-19 to reach herd immunity is still not known, according to The World Health Organization and CDC.

Vaccine Eligibility: Alaska and Mississippi are currently the only states with eligibility open to all adult residents, with everyone 16 or older eligible in Alaska and residents 18 or older in Mississippi. For a list of each state’s eligibility, click here.


CDC Considering Three Feet as Safe Distance in Classrooms
A new Harvard study suggests that sitting kids closer in the classroom doesn’t spread COVID-19 any faster.

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention is considering reducing the distance in classrooms from 6 feet to 3 feet following the findings from the study. Students and staff members in the study wore masks.

“We are taking all of those data carefully and revisiting our guidances in that context,” says CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky. Dr. Frederick Davis, of Northwell Health, says schools should wait until more adults are vaccinated before making the change. Davis says kids usually don’t get as severe a disease and sometimes are asymptomatic, but they can still bring it home and spread it to family members.

The CDC has not given a date for a possible decision, but the World Health Organization has already recommended three feet as a safe distance.


Please Submit Names of Doctors and Family Members Who Lost Their Lives During COVID-19
Doctors Day is March 30. This year, to honor our physicians and family members who died of COVID-19 in 2020-2021, MSSNY is designing a poster with the names that are submitted. Please send the names to jvecchione@mssny.org


Administration Increases Medicare Payment for Life-Saving COVID-19 Vaccine
the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is increasing the Medicare payment amount for administering the COVID-19 vaccine. This new and higher payment rate will support important actions taken by providers that are designed to increase the number of vaccines they can furnish each day, including establishing new or growing existing vaccination sites, conducting patient outreach and education, and hiring additional staff. At a time when vaccine supply is growing, CMS is supporting provider efforts to expand capacity and ensure that all Americans can be vaccinated against COVID-19 as soon as possible.

Effective for COVID-19 vaccines administered on or after March 15, 2021, the national average payment rate for physicians, hospitals, pharmacies and many other immunizers will be $40 to administer each dose of a COVID-19 vaccine. This represents an increase from approximately $28 to $40 for the administration of single-dose vaccines, and an increase from approximately $45 to $80 for the administration of COVID-19 vaccines requiring two doses. The exact payment rate for administration of each dose of a COVID-19 vaccine will depend on the type of entity that furnishes the service and will be geographically adjusted based on where the service is furnished.

These updates to the Medicare payment rate for COVID-19 vaccine administration reflect new information about the costs involved in administering the vaccine for different types of providers and suppliers, and the additional resources necessary to ensure the vaccine is administered safely and appropriately.

CMS is updating the set of toolkits for providers, states and insurers to help the health care system swiftly administer the vaccine with these new Medicare payment rates. These resources are designed to increase the number of providers that can administer the vaccine, ensure adequate payment for administering the vaccine to Medicare beneficiaries, and make it clear that no beneficiary, whether covered by private insurance, Medicare or Medicaid, should pay cost-sharing for the administration of the COVID-19 vaccine.


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Nassau County Med Society Virtual Event: Women on the Frontlines: Stronger Together March 31st, 2021 from 6-7 PM
You’re invited to a conversation with:
Dr. Susan Bailey, President of the AMA • Dr. Elizabeth Fontana, Neurosurgeon and Chief Resident at New York Presbyterian Hospital • Dr. Bonnie Litvack, President of MSSNY • Dr. Carmen Rodriguez, FACOG, President of the LIJ, Medical Staff Society and Associate Chair of the Long Island Jewish Medical Center – Performance Improvement Coordinating Group • Dr. Aisha Terry, MPH, FACEP, Emergency Physician and Associate Professor at the George Washington University School of Medicine and Milken Institute School of Public

Health and Pandemic Advisor • Dr. Haritha Veeramachaneni, Board Certified Plastic Surgeon and recipient of the New York Times’ Super Doctors Rising Stars

In honor of Women’s History Month, we are celebrating women who have been leaders on the frontline during the pandemic. Please register here for our virtual event on Wednesday, March 31st, 2021. For further details or registration assistance, please email information@nassaucountymedicalsociety.org or call (516) 832-2300.


  1. Meeting with Maria Oparal, Health Legislative Associate (LA) for Representative Joe Morelle.
  2.  Meeting with Matt Fuentes, Health Legislative Associate for Senator Chuck Schumer.
  3. Meeting with Mike Demakos, Health LA for Representative Kathleen Rice

Zoom Participants 1  Zoom Participants 2

Zoom Conference


Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: March 12, 2021 – A Year of Agony: A Week of Progress


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Colleagues:

March 11th marked the one-year anniversary of the World Health Organization’s declaration of the COVID-19 global pandemic. While we are not entirely out of the woods, we have made considerable progress.  This week we add to those gains with a stimulus package, expansion of vaccine coverage, a new webinar and a new member benefit. 

Stimulus Package Passes Congress–Still awaiting Medicare Sequester Reprieve 

This week Congress passed a $1.9 trillion stimulus package with many important health care related provisions including increasing the Affordable Care Act premium subsidies for two years, providing 100% coverage of a consumer’s COBRA costs through September, extending Medicaid coverage for one year for women after childbirth where eligibility was based upon the pregnancy, $12.5 billion in aid to the New York State government and $ 4 billion to support/enhance vaccine delivery and Covid testing in New York State.

However, absent from this package was a provision to postpone the Medicare sequester payment cuts that are scheduled to go into effect on April 1, 2021. To make matters worse, the Congressional Budget Office, estimates that the final passage of the American Rescue Plan Act will set in motion further statutorily required cuts in Medicare spending of 4% next year. Having Déjà vu? Remember the SGR?

Congress did recently introduce bipartisan legislation, H.R. 315 the “Medicare Sequester COVID Moratorium Act” which would continue the current Medicare sequester moratorium for the duration of the current public health emergency.  Please click here to contact your congressional representatives and urge them to sign on to the “Medicare Sequester COVID Moratorium Act”.

Vaccine updates

Vaccine rollout expansion continues, this week adding those older than age 60 to the list of eligible New Yorkers.  Click here for the most recent guidance Your MSSNY has been working closely with the Governor’s office to get vaccine to supply to community physician offices and several physician practices around the state may receive an allocation of vaccine supply next week. Physician practices should also be in touch with their local health departments who are authorized to allocate a portion of their supply to physician practices.  

Physician Wellness

The Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS) has invited MSSNY to present at their Recovery and Preparedness Webinar Series.  Dr. Charles Rothberg, Chair of the MSSNY Physician Wellness and Resilience Committee, Dr. Frank Dowling, MSSNY Secretary and myself will be speaking on “Physician Wellness and Peer to Peer Program”.  Please click here to join us on 3/17/2021 at 3pm.

New Member Benefit: Virtual Volunteer Homework Assistance Program   

Our Women Physicians Committee met recently and recognized the considerable additional responsibility that has fallen on our physician families with school age children due to the Covid-19 pandemic.  To help ease the burden MSSNY is launching a Virtual Volunteer Homework Assistance Program.   If you have children in high school or college who would be interested in helping other members’ children with K-12 homework, this is a great community service opportunity. If you have school age children (K – 12) who could use a helping hand with homework, let us know. Contact sbennett@mssny.org. and tell us if your child will be a tutor or a tutee and include their email address.

On this anniversary let us all take time to reflect on a year like no other. Let us keep the memory of those we lost close at hand, cherish our hero colleagues, and count our many blessings as we look toward herd Immunity and the end of the pandemic.

Bonnie Litvack, MD
MSSNY President


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Capital Update

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In Case You Missed MSSNY’s Physician Advocacy Day on March 2nd
For those physicians who missed our Physicians’ Advocacy Day program – you can now view the entire program by visiting MSSNY’s CME website here.

Please note that you will need to create an account there if you haven’t already. (ALI)


NYS Expands Eligibility Criteria for COVID-19 Vaccine
This week New York State has expanded eligibility criteria for vaccinations to include those who are 60 years and older and on March 17th public-facing government and public employees, not-for-profit workers who provide public-facing services to New Yorkers in need, and essential in-person public-facing building service workers and providers of essential building services.  A copy of the guidance is here.

Beginning March 17th, enrolled vaccine providers other than pharmacies, may vaccinate any eligible individual. MSSNY has been working closely with the state to get vaccines to supply to community physician offices and several physician practices around the state may receive an allocation of vaccine supply next week. Physician practices should also be in touch with their local health departments who are authorized to reallocate a portion of their supply to physician practices.   Physicians who are enrolled providers in the NYSIIS or CIR system are also reminded that they should be filling out their pre-booking of vaccines every Monday, by 5 p.m.

Physicians and patients can determine eligibility by going here.

New York State has also released interim travel guidance for healthcare workers.

President Biden has also announced that he will be directing all states, tribes, and territories to make all adults, people 18 and over, eligible to be vaccinated no later than May 1 and has also indicated the federal government is working to increase the supply of vaccine.  The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has also released interim guidance for fully vaccinated individuals.                  (CLANCY)


MSSNY Peer to Peer Program to be Presented as Part of HANYS Recovery and Preparedness Webinar Series
Stress and burnout among physicians have been well documented for years. The COVID-19 pandemic is exacerbating the public health problem of physician burnout in New York state. Throughout the pandemic, physicians and other health professionals have faced concerns about safety, overworking and feelings of loss.

Without an intervention, it is possible that a high number of physicians over the next few years may develop chronic stress reactions, anger, clinical depression, substance abuse, post-traumatic stress disorder and suicidality.

Join us Wednesday, March 17, at 3 p.m. for a webinar with the Medical Society of the State of New York to better understand physician burnout and gain tools and resources to encourage physician resiliency and wellness. The objectives of this presentation are to provide an understanding of why physician wellness is important for the organization, recognize and promote the concept that it’s okay to not be okay, and provide the tools and resources to encourage resiliency and wellness within the physician and physician community.  Learn more and register online.   (LAUDER)


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Assembly and Senate Budget Proposals Set the State for 3-Way Budget Negotiations – Contact Your Legislators Today
Next week, both the New York State Assembly and Senate will advance their respective “one-House” Budget proposals for Fiscal Year 2021-22, setting the stage for 3-way negotiations with the Governor’s office towards finalizing a state Budget by the State’s April 1 deadline.  Among the key issues where physicians need to continue to advocate:

Protecting against huge new costs for Excess Insurance CoveragePlease continue to urge your legislators to reject an extraordinarily ill-timed Budget proposal that would foist thousands to tens of thousands of dollars of new costs on the nearly 17,000 physicians enrolled in the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance.   You can send a letter and/or tweet them from here: Click Here 

This proposal would require enrolled physicians to bear an extraordinary 50% of the cost of these policies, which could translate to thousands to tens of thousands of dollars of new costs on physicians receiving this coverage at a time when patient visits and practice revenue are way down compared to previous years.  A recent AMA survey reported that during the pandemic the average number of in-person visits to physician offices dropped nearly in half.   The bottom line is that the new costs this proposal would impose are simply not assumable by physicians, meaning that many physicians will face no choice but to forgo receiving this additional coverage.

NEW COSTS TO BE IMPOSED ON PHYSICIANS FOR EXCESS COVERAGE BASED UPON GOVERNOR’S 50% COST BUDGET PROPOSAL

SPECIALTY Long Island Bronx, Staten Island Brooklyn, Queens Westchester, Orange, Rockland, and Manhattan
Emergency Medicine $5,653 $6,561 $6,118 $4,500
Cardiac Surgery $4,482 $5,202 $4,862 $3,567
OB-GYN $20,881 $24,235 $22,648 $16,617
Neurosurgery $35,222 $40,879 $38,202 $28,030

Protecting Physician Due ProcessPlease contact your legislators to urge them to reject an Executive Budget proposal that that would greatly curtail due process protections for physicians when a complaint has been filed with the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC), including making information public about a complaint even if no professional misconduct is found and greatly lessening the burden for imposing an interim suspension prior to the conclusion of the statutory hearing process.   You can send a letter and/or tweet to your local legislators from here: Click Here

New York’s physicians share the goal of assuring the State has ample power to protect the public when the conduct of a particular health care provider places patients at risk.  However, the Commissioner already has authority to take summary action prior to the conclusion of a disciplinary hearing in the absence of a finding of misconduct.  MSSNY together with several specialty societies have raised concerns his proposal is greatly over-reaching given that most complaints never result in findings of misconducts or even formal charges being filed. Of greatest concern is that information released to the public, even if there is no action ultimately taken, can remain available through “Google searches” forever, with the potential to eviscerate a physician’s professional reputation.

  • Preventing Uncoordinated Siloed Care to be Provided by Pharmacists Please contact your legislators to urge that they reject proposals that would greatly expand the scope of services provided to patients by pharmacists without coordination with patient care physicians.  You can send a letter from here: Click Here.  Please let them know these proposals would greatly enhance the power of big box giants to control various aspects of patient care delivery not in coordination with but to the exclusion of community-based primary care and specialty care physicians that typically manage the care of their patients.

Specifically, these Budget proposals would 1) permit pharmacists to order various lab tests without any physician oversight and without any requirement to coordinate with the patient’s physician for follow-up care; 2) greatly expand the physician-pharmacist Collaborative Drug Therapy Program to enable pharmacists to adjust the medications provided to entire classes of patients rather than individual patients and 3) permit pharmacists the power to administer any vaccination approved by the federal Advisory Commission on Immunization Practices (ACIP), including those which may be added in the future.

All of these programs together could incentivize the development of health care silos at the expense of the patient centered medical home model we have worked so hard to develop in New York.   It would also marginalize community based primary care and specialty care physicians’ ability to continue to be able to manage their patients’ ongoing care needs.    Please urge your legislators to reject these measures as they finalize the State Budget for 2021-22.        (AUSTER)


Legislation to Require Consolidated Hospital/Physician Billing Moving in the Assembly – Please Urge Amendments!
Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators to urge them to amend the Patient Medical Debt Reduction Act, A.3470-A/S.2521-A, to ensure non-employed hospital-based physicians continue to have the ability to bill distinct from hospitals. You can send a letter from here: Send Letter Now. 

This week the Assembly Codes Committee reported the bill to Ways & Means Committee by a 16-6 vote, with Assemblymembers Giglio, Lavine, Mikulin, Morinello and Tannousis voting against the bill.

The legislation has laudable goals to protect patients during this difficult time.  However, there is one seriously problematic provision contained within this comprehensive legislation that would prohibit a physician or other provider with any financial or contractual relationship with a hospital from separately billing a patient, instead, requiring a single combined hospital and physician bill.  Because of the reimbursement structures of Medicare and commercial insurance, physicians are required to bill patients directly for cost-sharing amounts that insurance will not cover. This provision will seriously adversely impact community-based independently practicing physicians who would thereafter be forced to rely on hospitals to collect and transmit all monies owed to them for services rendered. The new dependent relationship that would be created were this bill to be passed as is, would essentially end independent practice for many, requiring all patient billing to be filtered through the hospital’s billing system.

Please let your legislators know you appreciate the intent of the legislation to minimize the financial burden on our patients but that this “single bill” component will most heavily adversely impact community physicians, and ultimately result in the loss of patient choice and exacerbate health care monopolies in our health care system. Click here to contact your legislators today!   (AUSTER) 


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MSSNY Supported Legislation Would Provide Payment Parity to Physicians for Telehealth Services
Legislation (S.5505, Rivera) is before the Senate Health Committee next week that will ensure insurer payments to physicians for delivering telehealth services are on par with those received for in-office appointments. MSSNY supports this legislation.  The same-as bill (A.6256, Woerner) has been referred to the Assembly Insurance Committee.

The social distancing requirements of the COVID19 crisis caused patients and physicians to embrace new ways to ensure patients received needed care. While some New York physicians had already integrated Telemedicine into their practices, prior to the onset of the pandemic, the COVID19 crisis pushed thousands of physicians to quickly increase their capacity to provide care to their patients remotely. From the start, though, payments to physicians from insurers for care delivered by telehealth were woefully inadequate to what they were receiving for in-office visits, creating a barrier to care for many patients.

A May 2020 MSSNY survey bolstered the urgency for payment parity, showing that 83% of the physician respondents had incorporated telemedicine into their practice, with nearly half the respondents noting that they were treating at least 25% of their patients virtually. Moreover, a spring 2020 Fair Health study showed that for the northeastern part of the country, use of Telehealth went from 0.08% of claim submissions in May 2019, to 12.5% in the span of a month.  Showing that this was not just a temporary bump, telehealth claims also increased 2,938 percent nationally from November 2019 to November 2020, rising from 0.20 percent of medical claim lines in November 2019 to 6.01 percent in November 2020, according to new data announced recently from FAIR Health.

MSSNY has argued for some time that rates at which physicians are paid by insurers have not kept pace with those paid for in-office visits and the withering financial situation for physician practices during COVID exacerbated the disparity. To better understand the impact of inadequate payment on physician practices, surveys conducted by key MSSNY partners, of their memberships, revealed the following:

  • Participants of a survey by one of our partner organizations, the New York Medical Group Management Association (NY MGMA), revealed that only 23% of all health plans pay equal to what they received for in-office visits.
  • 25% said that most plans pay significantly less for in-office visits.
  • More specifically, surveys conducted by MSSNY partner organizations found that while Telehealth visits conducted by video were reimbursed at higher rates than audio-only, physicians were compensated as little as 30% the rate of in-person appointments, depending on the health plan.
  • Audio-only visits were the least compensated, with most payers reimbursing 80% less than for in-office visits.

It is possible that provisions of this legislation could come up as part of the ongoing budget negotiations.               (CARY)


Legalization of Marijuana Negotiations Underway at State Capitol
Negotiations between the Legislature and the Governor’s Office have begun on the marijuana legalization issue, and the Medical Society of the State of New York and other public health groups are weighing in against it.  The NYS Parent Teacher Association released a letter to the NYS Legislature.

The letter has been signed by MSSNY, NYSPTA, Rural Schools Association of New York State NYS Association of Chiefs of Police New York State Sheriffs’ Association New York State Association of County Health Officials (NYSACHO) and Smart Approaches to Marijuana (SAM).  MSSNY also participated last week in a SAM press conference opposing this measure.   Physicians are urged to send a letter to the governor and the NYS Legislature urging that this issue be removed from Budget consideration, and can do this by logging onto the MSSNY Grassroots Action Center here.         (CLANCY/AUSTER)  


Congress Completes Passage of $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Package
President Biden has signed into law the $1.9 Trillion stimulus package that was passed by the US House of Representatives this past Wednesday and passed by the US Senate last weekend.  Among the many important health care related provisions of this package include:

  • increasing the Affordable Care Act premium subsidies for two years for those making up to 400% of the federal poverty level. The bill also adjusts subsidies for people who make more than 400% of the poverty level to ensure that out of pocket premium costs do not exceed 8.5% of their income for coverage.
  • Providing 100% coverage of a consumer’s COBRA coverage costs through September
  • Extending from 60 days to 1 year Medicaid coverage for a woman after the birth of a child where eligibility was based upon the pregnancy.
  • $12.5 billion in direct aid to the New York State government to help potentially offset steep Budget cuts and program revisions that had been proposed in the January Executive Budget
  • $4 billion to support/enhance vaccine delivery and Covid testing in New York State

Please remain alert for further comprehensive updates regarding this far-reaching legislation.                                  (AUSTER)


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Please Urge Our Senators and Representatives to Stop Impending Medicare Cuts
One issue left unaddressed in the stimulus package just approved by Congress is preventing an upcoming 2% cut in Medicare payments scheduled to go into effect April 1.   Recognizing the enormous challenges associated with the pandemic, Congress last year on multiple occasions halted the otherwise applicable 2% Medicare sequester cut, including as part of comprehensive legislation in December that further postponed the cut until March 31, 2021.

Please urge Senator Schumer and Gillibrand and your Respective Representative to take action to prevent this upcoming cut by sending a letter from the AMA’s Grassroots Action platform: Stop physician Medicare payment cuts NOW!

Legislation (H.R. 315 the “Medicare Sequester COVID Moratorium Act”) was recently introduced in Congress that would continue the current Medicare sequester moratorium for the duration of this public health emergency.  Among the co-sponsors of this legislation is Rep.. Tom Suozzi (D-Long Island).

If Congress doesn’t act by March 31, the Medicare payment sequester will take effect, triggering a devastating financial impact on physician practices across the country, many of which are already strained to the breaking point.

New York’s and America’s physicians need relief!  Please take action today: Stop physician Medicare payment cuts NOW!         (AUSTER)


Bill to Repeal COVID Immunity Protections Advancing – Contact Your Legislators to Oppose
Next week the New York State Senate Health Committee will be considering concerning legislation (S.5177) that would repeal the Covid liability immunity provisions provided to physicians and other care providers enacted as part of last year’s State Budget.  The same-as legislation (A.3397) recently passed the Assembly.  In a state notorious for its already hostile liability climate, these protections enacted by the Governor and the Legislature last year were absolutely essential for hospitals, physicians and other care providers to build the capacity necessary to treat an unending stream of Covid patients during the height of the pandemic.

Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators to oppose efforts to remove these important liability protections.  MSSNY and many other groups have written to legislators to highlight the importance of these protections.  They have also raised concerns with the possibility that S.5177/A.3397 could be interpreted by a court to retroactively repeal these essential liability protections for care provided during the height of the pandemic when there were not clear medical protocols for Covid treatment and when many non-Covid health care services were required to be postponed.

However, it should be noted there were several comments made by Assemblymembers during the floor debate on the legislation when it was passed by the NYS Assembly that the “effective date” language means that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively, in other words, for acts or omissions after the date the bill was signed into law, if it were to be subsequently passed by the Senate and signed by the Governor.  (AUSTER)


NYS DOH to Hold Virtual Training on Organizational Resilience and Making Meaning: During COVID-19 and Beyond
The New York State Department of Health, in collaboration with the New York State Office of Mental Health and the SUNY New Paltz Institute for Disaster Mental Health, will hold a virtual training on March 18, 2021 from 1-2:30 p.m. on Organizational Resilience and Making Meaning During COVID 19 and Beyond.  Speakers: Rachel Kaul and Kayla Siviy from the Department of Health and Human Service’s Office of the Assistant Secretary for Preparedness and Response.

This virtual yet interactive workshop will examine current impacts of stressors within organizations and provide participants with concrete leadership and organizational activities and evidence-informed strategies that promote well-being and enhance workforce performance. Stressors explored through an organization approach will include burnout, compassion fatigue and complex grief. Participants will be provided tools and re-sources to reflect on their experiences, meet the current challenges, and make meaning as we move forward.

Registration

To enroll in the training, please go to www.NYLearnsPH.com and either register or login to the LMS. Search Course Catalog for:

Course Description or go to: Training-Announcement.pdf (CLANCY)


MSSNY Medical Matters Program on the History of Coronavirus
Registration now open
Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades
Date: March 24, 2021 @ 7:30am

Did you know that since 2003 there have been three coronavirus outbreaks?  Learn more about the epidemiology and evolution of coronaviruses by registering for Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades. This webinar will take place on Wednesday March 24th at 7:30am.

Stephen Morse, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology at the Columbia University Medical Center and Director of the Infectious Disease Epidemiology Certificate Program at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health will serve as faculty for this program.  Click here to register for this webinar.

Educational objectives

  • Identify three different coronaviruses and the epidemiology specific to each one
  • Discuss SARS-CoV-2 in relation to other coronaviruses
  • Evaluate the circumstances that contributed to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.     (HOFFMAN)


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Stressed Physicians, Residents and Students: Peer Support is Here for You!
If you or someone you know is struggling with everyday life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to be connected with a peer supporter to help!

  • Email: P2P@mssny.org and request that you be connected with a peer supporter
  • Phone: 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337) and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

The Medical Society of the State of New York now offers to physicians, residents, and medical students a completely confidential and anonymous opportunity to talk with a peer about some of life stressors. MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee launched a Peer 2 Peer (P2P) program to assist their colleagues who are need of help in dealing with work and family stressors. With the advent of the COVID-19 pandemic, some of the emotional issues related to this event, may also be troubling for our colleagues.

MSSNY has established a confidential helpline phone number (1-844-P2P-PEER) and an email address (p2p@mssny.org) so that physicians may be connected with a peer 24 hours a day/7 days a week. In addition to offering a trained, empathetic ear, peer supporters may provide information on specific resources that can offer further support, provide positive coping skills, or connect physicians to professionals for more focused assistance when needed. MSSNY has nearly 50 trained peer supporters across NYS who are just a phone call away!


MSSNY MEMBER BENEFIT
CareClix Remote Patient Monitoring Provides Better Access &Higher Quality Care to Patients

CareClix incorporates Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) into its system to realize key benefits for providers, including, but not limited to:

  • Preventing Readmissions
  • Shortened Patient Stays
  • Increasing Treatment Adherence
  • Improving Post-discharge Planning

Remote Patient Monitoring (RPM) is an essential tool that supports post-discharge planning and helps patients adhere to treatment after they leave a hospital. Through the use of wearable medical devices that transmit data in real-time, patients are able to maintain constant contact with their providers.

The types of devices today vary in scope of technology. There are a number of devices for managing blood pressure, glucose levels for diabetes, spirometers for asthmatics, pulse oximeters, and weight scales. Each device has a different application for patients depending on the disease, condition, or other parameters being monitored. Chronic disease management, post-acute care management, and safety monitoring are key applications of RPM technologies for the older adult population.

While chronic care management and post-acute care are more obvious uses for RPM technologies, there are several applications, such as patient care safety, that people often overlook. Many RPM technologies are now focusing on detecting and preventing falls and wandering, particularly in dementia patients. Fall detection, fall prevention, and location tracking technologies allow caregivers to track patients through continuous surveillance.

All in all, RPM technology will continue to expand, particularly as the aging population grows, as it can help slow the progression of chronic disease, ensure a steady recovery post-discharge, and alert caregivers when a vulnerable patient is at risk. There is ample opportunity in the remote monitoring space, and CareClix offerings support hundreds of RPM devices to provide the best benefits to patients and providers.

To learn more about CareClix RPM program: careclix.com/remote-patient-monitoring/

To implement telemedicine for your practice visit: careclix.com/provider-signup/

Have questions contact us at:  sales@careclix.com


NYS: This Week We Received Limited Supply of J&J Vaccine
New York State and other jurisdictions received a very limited initial supply of Janssen (Johnson & Johnson) vaccine this week. DOH has instructed hospitals to use Janssen for vaccinating only the following populations: Individuals being discharged from inpatient care, prioritizing those 65 years of age or older first, followed by those ages 18-64 with one or more of the currently eligible comorbidities or underlying conditions. Then non-hospital patients who are 65 years of age or older New York State DOH updated the COVID-19 vaccination guidance to include the newly authorized single-dose Janssen vaccine for individuals 18 years of age and older.


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Very Few Severe Allergic Reactions Tied to Vaccines, Research Shows
Just 0.025 percent of staff from Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital experienced anaphylaxis after receiving Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccines, according to a study published March 8 in JAMA. Researchers from Massachusetts General Hospital and Brigham and Women’s Hospital, both based in Boston, sent survey links to 64,900 of the hospitals’ employees who received either a Pfizer or Moderna COVID-19 vaccine from Dec. 16 to Feb. 12. Both Pfizer and Moderna’s vaccines use mRNA, which means they mimic infection in the body by carrying the genetic instructions for cells to produce antigens that fight COVID-19.

Acute allergic reactions, which were defined on the survey as itching, rash, hives, swelling, and/or respiratory symptoms, occurred in 2.10 percent of respondents, but anaphylaxis occurred in only 0.025 percent. Anaphylaxis occurred in 16 employees who received Moderna’s vaccine and seven employees who received Pfizer’s vaccine. Among these 23 people, the mean age was 41. All recovered without experiencing shock or requiring endotracheal intubation.

The mean time from vaccination to anaphylaxis onset was 17 minutes. One patient required intensive care, and 56 percent received intramuscular epinephrine to steady their breathing. Ninety-seven percent of the employees who experienced anaphylaxis were women, 63 percent had an allergy history and 31 percent previously had anaphylaxis.


New York Surgeon to Pay $783K to Resolve Fraudulent Billing Case
A New York vascular surgeon and his medical practice agreed to pay $783,200 to resolve a civil case alleging fraudulent billing, the U.S. Justice Department said March 8.

According to prosecutors, Feng Qin, MD, and Qin Medical PC fraudulently billed Medicare for vascular surgery procedures performed on end-stage renal disease patients that were not covered under Medicare rules or were not medically reasonable or necessary.

In addition to the payment, Dr. Qin agreed to enter a Voluntary Exclusion Agreement with HHS, prohibiting him from participating in Medicare and other federal healthcare programs for four years.

As part of the settlement, Dr. Qin also admitted to routinely scheduling and treating end-stage renal disease patients every three months regardless of medical need, treating those patients with fistulagrams and angioplasties even though there was insufficient evidence to justify the treatments and filing false claims to Medicare, knowing that Medicare would not pay for the fistulagrams and angioplasties without required clinical justification.

Dr. Qin was criminally charged for the scheme in December 2018, and the U.S. filed a civil complaint against him later that same month.

The government agreed to defer Dr. Qin’s criminal prosecution for one year. If he abides by the terms of his deferred prosecution agreement, the U.S. will seek to dismiss the criminal charges. In addition to the $783,200 settlement announced March 8, the state of New York is expected to enter into an additional settlement with Dr. Qin and the medical practice in the amount of $16,800. (Becker’s Hospital Review, March 8)


Medicare Fee-for-Service (FFS) Utilization Decreased During the Pandemic

  • During the first three months of the pandemic, outpatient health care services plunged 51% and overall services decreased by 42% in April.
  • The largest utilization decreases were observed among Asian beneficiaries, who account for 2% of the overall Medicare FFS population.
  • Click here to view the full report.

Telehealth’s Impact: Physician Survey Analysis
The experience of physician practices engaging in an unprecedented number of telehealth visits in 2020 is captured in this report from a survey of 1,600 physicians, issued by the COVID-19 Healthcare Coalition.

  • 75% of physicians reported that telemedicine enabled them to provide quality care in the areas of COVID-19-related care, acute care, chronic disease management, hospital/ED follow-up, care coordination, preventative care, and mental/behavioral health.
  • 60% reported that telehealth improved the health of their patients. 55% reported that telehealth improved their work satisfaction.
  • 73% reported that no or low reimbursement will be a major challenge postCOVID.
  • 64% said that technology challenges, such as lack of access to broadband and technological illiteracy, are a barrier to sustained use of telehealth, pointing to the need for policies that support audio-only services where needed.

AMA Candidate Workshop is Going Virtual
Due to the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic the AMPAC Candidate Workshop will be conducted virtually this year. Full details including dates and how to register below.

Ever wonder how Doctors get elected to Congress or your state legislature? Considering a run for office for yourself? The AMPAC Candidate Workshop will teach you how to run a winning political campaign, just like we taught many of your AMA colleagues over the years.

The Candidate Workshop is designed to help you make the leap from the exam room to the campaign trail and give you the skills and strategic approach you will need to make a run for public office. 

To provide the same high-quality content of the in-person program, the Virtual Candidate Workshop will be conducted over the course of two consecutive weekends: May 1-2 and 8-9. Both weekends are part of the full program and must be attended by participants. Each of the four virtual sessions will start at 11:00am EST and run approximately four hours.

At the Candidate Workshop, political veterans from both sides of the aisle will give you expert advice about politics and the sacrifices needed to mount a competitive campaign. You will learn how and when to make the decision to run; the importance of a disciplined campaign plan and message; the secrets of effective fundraising; what kinds of media advertising are right for your campaign; how to handle the inevitable crises that emerge for every campaign; and the role your spouse and your family will play.

Note: Registration fee is $250 for AMA Member/$1000 for non-AMA members. This fee is waived for AMA residents and students; however, space is limited and the AMPAC Board will review and select four participants from the pool of qualified resident and student applicants.

Registration for the Virtual Candidate Workshop is now OPEN. Space is limited and the deadline to register is April 9.

For more information please contact: Politicaleducation@ama-assn.org

Your run for office begins today!


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: March 10, 2021 – Taking Toll on Physician Practices


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NYC Kids Who Attended School Did Not Have Higher Infection Rates—But Teachers Did
Students attending New York City public schools last year did not experience a higher prevalence or incidence of Covid-19 infection compared with the general community, according to a new study published Tuesday in the journal Pediatrics, although school staff had an elevated risk of infection relative to other NYC adults.


Congress Completes Passage of $1.9 Trillion Stimulus Package
Today, the US House of Representatives completed passage of the $1.9 billion stimulus package that had been passed by the US Senate this weekend.  Among the many important health care related provisions of this package include:

  • increasing the Affordable Care Act premium subsidies for two years for low- and middle-income Americans, or those making up to 400 % of the federal poverty level. The bill also adjusts subsidies for people who make more than 400% of the poverty level to make sure that nobody pays more than 8.5% of their income for coverage.
  • Providing 100% coverage of a consumer’s COBRA coverage costs through September
  • Extending from 60 days to 1 year Medicaid coverage for a woman after the birth of a child where eligibility was based upon the pregnancy.
  • $12.5 billion in direct aid to the New York State government to help potentially offset steep Budget cuts and program revisions that had been proposed in the January Executive Budget
  • $ 4 billion to support/enhance vaccine delivery and Covid testing in New York State.

Please remain alert for further comprehensive updates regarding this far-reaching legislation.


Guidance for Facilities Receiving Vaccine Been Posted to MSSNY Website


COVID-19 Taking Toll on Physician Practices
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to grip the country, America’s physicians remain entrenched on the front lines, fighting to save their patients. After nearly a year of combating the deadly virus, there is a growing evidence of the toll it is taking on physician practices.

The continued negative fiscal impact of the COVID-19 pandemic on physician practices is undeniable. A recent AMA report analyzed Medicare claims data exclusive to physician services and found spending dropped as much as 57% below expected pre-pandemic levels in April 2020. During the first half of 2020, the cumulative estimated reduction in Medicare physician spending associated with the pandemic was $9.4 billion (19%).

Stop physician Medicare payment cuts NOW!

Recognizing that the challenges associated with the pandemic continue, Congress included provisions in the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2021, signed into law last December, that further postponed the Medicare sequester until March 31, 2021. Yet, it is clear that the COVID-19 pandemic will extend well beyond the first quarter of this year and, absent additional Congressional intervention, these harmful payment cuts will be re-imposed on April 1, 2021.

Now to make matters worse, as Congress prepares to pass an economic stimulus plan, physician practices confront an even greater threat of Medicare cuts in 2022. According to the Congressional Budget Office, final passage of the American Rescue Plan Act would set in motion PAYGO statute reductions in Medicare spending of 4% next year, totaling $36 billion.

This needs to stop!

Thankfully, H.R. 315 the “Medicare Sequester COVID Moratorium Act” has been recently introduced in Congress. This bipartisan legislation would continue the current Medicare sequester moratorium for the duration of this public health emergency.

Please contact your member of Congress and Senators today and urge them to support the “Medicare Sequester COVID Moratorium Act” today!!

If Congress does not act by March 31, the Medicare payment sequester will take effect, triggering a devastating financial impact on physician practices across the country, many of which are already strained to the breaking point.

America’s physicians need relief!

Attached is the letter the AMA sent to Congressional leaders urging action to stop the re-implementation of the upcoming Medicare sequester cuts.


78% of COVID-19 Patients Hospitalized in the US Overweight or Obese
Among 71,491 U.S. adults who were hospitalized with COVID-19, 27.8 percent were overweight and 50.2 were obese, according to the CDC’s latest Morbidity and Mortality Weekly Report published March 8. 

The analysis included 148,494 patients who received a COVID-19 diagnosis at emergency departments or inpatient visits between April 1 and Dec. 31 across 238 hospitals. Of those, 71,491 were hospitalized.

Those who were overweight or obese were more likely to require invasive mechanical ventilation, findings showed. Obesity was also linked to increased risk for hospitalization and death, especially among those under age 65. As BMI rose, so did the risk, the CDC found.

The risks for hospitalization, ICU admission and death were lowest among those with BMIs under 25. The “healthy weight” BMI range is between 18.5 and 24.9.

The report notes that obesity is a recognized risk factor for severe COVID-19, which is possibly due to chronic inflammation that disrupts the body’s immune response and impairs lung function.

“These findings highlight the clinical and public health implications of higher BMIs, including the need for intensive COVID-19 illness management as obesity severity increases, promotion of COVID-19 prevention strategies including continued vaccine prioritization and masking, and policies to ensure community access to nutrition and physical activities that promote and support a healthy BMI,” the agency said.

To view the full report, click here.


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CDC Reports Drop in HIV Testing During Pandemic
HIV screenings and prescriptions for preexposure prophylaxis have declined during the pandemic, according to CDC research presented at the 2021 Conference on Retroviruses and Opportunistic Infections.

The agency is slated to present nearly 30 abstracts at the virtual conference March 6-10.

In one study, researchers found a large commercial lab reported nearly 700,000 fewer HIV screening tests and nearly 5,000 fewer diagnoses between March 13 and Sept. 13, 2020, compared to the same period in 2019.

A separate study analyzed data on PrEP prescriptions from January 2017 through September 2020. Researchers found a 21 percent drop in prescriptions from March 15 to Sept. 30, 2020, compared to modeling estimates of prescription volumes if the pandemic had not occurred. They also identified a 28 percent decrease in new PrEP users over the same period.

“Strategies that deliver HIV testing and care in innovative, community-tailored ways will be critical to reversing these declines, including the use or expansion of telemedicine and telehealth, rapid HIV self-tests, mail-in self-tests and the deployment of higher numbers of community health workers,” the CDC said in a news release.


REMINDER: The MIPS 2020 Data Submission Period is Open
MIPS Eligible Clinicians Can Submit Data for 2020 through March 31

The data submission period for Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) eligible clinicians who participated in the 2020 performance year of the Quality Payment Program (QPP) ends at 8:00 p.m. EDT on March 31, 2021.

How to Submit Your 2020 MIPS Data

Clinicians will follow the steps outlined below to submit their data:

  1. Go to the Quality Payment Program webpage.
  2. Sign in using your QPP access credentials (see below for directions).
  3. Submit your MIPS data for the 2020 performance year or review the data reported on your behalf by a third party. 

How to Sign into the Quality Payment Program Data Submission System

To sign in and submit data, 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 QPP Access User Guide.

Note: Clinicians who are not sure if they are eligible to participate in the Quality Payment Program can check their final eligibility status using the QPP Participation Status Tool. 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 do not want to participate in MIPS.)

Small, Underserved, and Rural Practice Support

Clinicians in small practices (including those in rural locations), health professional shortage areas, and medically underserved areas may request technical assistance from organizations that can provide no-cost support. To learn more about this support, or to connect with your local technical assistance organization, we encourage you to visit our Small, Underserved, and Rural Practices page on the Quality Payment Program website.

For More Information

To learn more about how to submit data, please review the resources available in the QPP Resource Library, including the 2020 MIPS Data Submission FAQs and the 2020 QPP Data Submission User Guide. Watch our series of data submission demo videos:

Questions?

Contact the Quality Payment Program at 1-866-288-8292 or by e-mail at: QPP@cms.hhs.gov. To receive assistance more quickly, consider calling during non-peak hours—before 10 a.m. and after 2 p.m. ET. We also encourage you to contact us earlier in the year, as response times often increase with heavier demand as the March 31 data submission deadline approaches.


 

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How to Sign into the Quality Payment Program Data Submission System
To sign in and submit data, 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 QPP Access User Guide.

Note: Clinicians who are not sure if they are eligible to participate in the Quality Payment Program can check their final eligibility status using the QPP Participation Status Tool. 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 do not want to participate in MIPS.)

Small, Underserved, and Rural Practice Support

Clinicians in small practices (including those in rural locations), health professional shortage areas, and medically underserved areas may request technical assistance from organizations that can provide no-cost support. To learn more about this support, or to connect with your local technical assistance organization, we encourage you to visit our Small, Underserved, and Rural Practices page on the Quality Payment Program website.

For More Information

To learn more about how to submit data, please review the resources available in the QPP Resource Library, including the 2020 MIPS Data Submission FAQs and the 2020 QPP Data Submission User Guide. Watch our series of data submission demo videos:

Questions?

Contact the Quality Payment Program at 1-866-288-8292 or by e-mail at: QPP@cms.hhs.gov. To receive assistance more quickly, consider calling during non-peak hours—before 10 a.m. and after 2 p.m. ET. We also encourage you to contact us earlier in the year, as response times often increase with heavier demand as the March 31 data submission deadline approaches.


Brits Watching US Meghan/Harry Interview Shocked by Number of Pharma Ads
Many U.K. residents took to social media this week to express shock at the pharmaceutical ads that ran during Oprah Winfrey’s March 7 interview with Harry and Meghan, the Duke and Duchess of Sussex. Rather than waiting a day for the British broadcast of the interview, some British viewers tuned in early on March 8 to catch the American broadcast by using VPN connections and other tech workarounds. This gave U.K. viewers a glimpse into the content of and frequency of pharmaceutical ads than run during U.S. television broadcasts.

In the U.K. and other European countries, pharma companies are banned from advertising directly to consumers on the basis that physicians should be making independent decisions about what drugs to prescribe patients instead of managing requests based on ads patients have seen on TV and are eager to try, according to the report.

Dartmouth College researchers found that pharma companies nearly doubled the amount they spend on marketing between 1997 and 2016, and sales of prescription drugs almost tripled during that same time period, according to the report. In the U.K., the socialized National Health Service and government regulations has helped to keep most prescriptions at around a $12 cost for patients, the Post reports. (Becker’s Hospital Review, March 9)


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Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: March 5, 2021 – The Cliff Notes Guide to the Week at MSSNY

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The Cliff Notes Guide to the Week at MSSNY

Colleagues:

This was an eventful week at MSSNY.  We started the week welcoming our new MSSNY Executive Vice President, Mr. Troy Oechsner, JD who officially joined team MSSNY on 3/1/2021.

The MSSNY Board of Trustees and the MSSNY Council both met this week.  New policies were adopted (click here to view MSSNY policy), discussions ensued about our MSSNY House of delegates scheduled for 9/18/2021 (click here to view the most recent speaker’s letter) and committee and commission reports were discussed.

Our Annual MSSNY Physician Advocacy Day was held on 3/2/2021.  This year it was held virtually, making it even easier for our members to attend.  Close to 400 attendees registered for this event.  The agenda was robust thanks to MSSNY’s very dedicated Government Relations staff.  We heard from our MSSNY leadership, had an update from our legislative staff led by Mr. Moe Auster, Senior Vice President and Chief Legislative Counsel, and heard from NYS Assembly and Senate Leadership including a panel with the Assembly and Senate Health and Insurance Chairs.  We thank all the legislators for making time in their busy schedules to speak with us and answer our questions.

In the afternoon physicians met with their local representatives and MSSNY leadership met directly with many of our NYS legislative leaders.  We discussed numerous issues with provisions in the executive budget and in particular stressed our deep concerns with the proposed restructuring of the state’s Excess Medical Malpractice Program; the new huge cost imposition on the 17,000 physicians enrolled in the program; the unreasonable bypassing of due process for physicians through the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC); the very large and mistimed cut in the funding for MSSNY’s Committee for Physicians’ Health (CPH); and the inappropriate expansion of pharmacy scope of practice that would significantly undermine our patient-centered medical home concept.

Last week, we met with our NYS congressional delegation and advocated for federal allocation of vaccine supply to community physicians.  This week we expanded those discussions to include our NYS legislature and the Governor’s office.   We discussed that supply is increasing nationally with the emergency use authorization (EUA) of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine and that there is now more flexibility in the storage of the Pfizer vaccine.

All agreed that we must employ all resources available to vaccinate NYS residents as quickly as possible and were receptive to the role that our community-based physicians can play in quickly identifying the most vulnerable and in reaching large numbers of patients who suffer from significant co-morbidities in urban, rural and suburban settings. After discussions this week, we believe that community-based physicians will shortly start receiving vaccine supply.  Please make sure that you are fully registered with the state and that you have submitted your weekly planning request.

Bonnie Litvack, MD
MSSNY President


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Virtual Physician Advocacy Day a Great Success!
Thank you to the several hundred physicians, and county medical and specialty society leaders for taking the time to participate in MSSNY’s first virtual Physician Advocacy Day earlier this week, as well for participating in advocacy meetings with their State Assemblymembers and Senators on the litany of challenging State Budget issues New York’s physicians face.  We also thank Senate Majority Leader Andrea Stewart Cousins, Senate Deputy Majority Leader Michael Gianaris, Assembly Majority Leader Crystal People-Stokes, Assembly Minority Leader Will Barclay, Senate Minority Leader Rob Ortt, Senate Health Committee Chair Gustavo Rivera, Senate Insurance Committee Chair Neil Breslin, Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried and Assembly Insurance Committee Chair Kevin Cahill for participating with this great event and answering questions from the (Zoom-) assembled physicians.   (DIVISION OF GOVERNMENTAL AFFAIRS)


NYS DOH Reminds Physicians and Other Providers of Pre-Booking Process for Ordering COVID 19 Vaccine
New York State Department of Health is reminding physicians and other health providers that they need to submit a weekly planning requests (“prebook requests”) for COVID-19 vaccine for the provider location enrolled in the NYSDOH COVID-19 Vaccine Program to include Janssen (Johnson and Johnson) vaccine. The requests are always due by 5 pm each Monday and must be data entered in NYSIIS on Monday (and not in advance).  If your facility location is closed on all or any Mondays, please ensure that a designated staff person is identified to perform the data entry each Monday.

The system is accessible remotely from any computer. This is necessary due to the timing of when NYSDOH must make allocation decisions and place orders.  Beginning March 1, 2021, in addition to Pfizer and Moderna vaccines, you will be able to submit a planning request for Janssen vaccine (Johnson and Johnson).  Janssen vaccine is a single-dose vaccine that will be transported and stored at refrigerated temperatures (36 to 46 degrees Fahrenheit or 2 to 8 degrees Celsius).  More information on this process can be found here.

MSSNY continues in its sustained advocacy campaign to work with the Governor’s office as well as the federal government to ensure patients are able to receive the vaccine from their physicians. (CLANCY)


New York Assembly Passes Bill to Repeal Covid Immunity Protections – Assembly Debate Expresses that Changes Would Apply Prospectively
Among the bills passed this week by the New York State Assembly as part of its nursing home reform package was concerning legislation (A.3397) that would repeal the Covid liability immunity provisions provided to physicians and other care providers enacted as part of last year’s State Budget.

MSSNY and many other groups wrote in opposition to the legislation noting the importance of these protections, and raising concerns with the possibility that A.3397 could be interpreted by a court to retroactively repeal absolutely essential liability protections in effect for health care services provided from March through August 2020.  However, there were several comments made by Assemblymembers during the floor debate on the legislation that the repeal provisions would only apply prospectively, in other words, for acts or omissions after the date the bill was signed into law, if it were to be subsequently passed by the Senate and signed by the Governor.  Identical legislation (S.5177) has been introduced in the Senate, and is referred to the Senate Health Committee.

Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators (Protect Liability Protections for Care During the Pandemic (p2a.co)) to oppose efforts to remove these important liability protections.  In a state notorious for its already hostile liability climate, these protections enacted by the Governor and the Legislature last year were absolutely essential for hospitals, physicians and other care providers to build the capacity necessary to treat an unending stream of Covid patients during the height of the pandemic.  These protections also recognized the extraordinary circumstances that many physicians found themselves, with the lack of defined medical protocols for treating this deadly diseases, and the fact that physicians were unable to provide their patients with needed care for many months last spring due to the New York State prohibition on elective medical procedures. (AUSTER)


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Please Urge Your Legislators to Reject Huge New Costs Placed on Community Physicians for Excess Coverage
Please continue to urge your legislators to reject an extraordinarily ill-timed Budget proposal that would foist thousands to tens of thousands of dollars of new costs on the nearly 17,000 physicians enrolled in the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance.   You can send a letter and/or tweet them from here: Click Here.

This proposal, which would require enrolled physicians to bear an extraordinary 50% of the cost of these policies, would thrust over $50 million of new costs on the backs of our community-based physicians who served on the front lines of responding to the pandemic.  This new cost imposition would hit these practices at a time when many of these practices are already facing huge losses resulting from the substantial reduction in the number of patients receiving care during the pandemic. 

NEW COSTS TO BE IMPOSED ON PHYSICIANS FOR EXCESS COVERAGE BASED UPON GOVERNOR’S 50% COST BUDGET PROPOSAL 

SPECIALTY Long Island Bronx, Staten Island Brooklyn, Queens Westchester, Orange, Rockland, and Manhattan
Emergency Medicine $5,653 $6,561 $6,118 $4,500
Cardiac Surgery $4,482 $5,202 $4,862 $3,567
OB-GYN $20,881 $24,235 $22,648 $16,617
Neurosurgery $35,222 $40,879 $38,202 $28,030

MSSNY has joined with nearly 20 other specialty medical societies in a letter to the entire State Legislature that expresses our strong objection to this proposal.  Among the key points in the letter is that a recent AMA survey reported that during the pandemic the average number of in-person visits to physician offices dropped nearly in half.   The bottom line is that the new costs this proposal would impose are simply not assumable by physicians, meaning that many physicians will face no choice but to forgo receiving this additional coverage.

MSSNY thanks the many legislators who expressed their strong opposition to this proposal in physician meetings with legislators this past week.  (AUSTER)


Urge Your Legislators to Reject Overbroad Proposal to Severely Curtail Physician Due Process
Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators to reject an Executive Budget proposal that that would greatly curtail due process protections for physicians when a complaint has been filed with the Office of Professional Medical Conduct (OPMC), including making information public about a complaint even if no professional misconduct is found and greatly lessening the burden for imposing an interim suspension prior to the conclusion of the statutory hearing process.   You can send a letter and/or tweet to your local legislators from here: Click Here.

While New York’s physicians share the goal of assuring the State has ample power to protect the public when the conduct of a particular health care provider places patients at risk, the Commissioner already has authority to take summary action prior to the conclusion of a disciplinary hearing in the absence of a finding of misconduct.  MSSNY together with several specialty societies have raised concerns his proposal is greatly over-reaching given that most complaints never result in findings of misconducts or even formal charges being filed. Of greatest concern is that information released to the public, even if there is no action ultimately taken, can remain available through “Google searches” forever, with the potential to eviscerate a physician’s professional reputation.    (AUSTER)


Please Oppose Proposals That Facilitate Uncoordinated Siloed Care to be Provided by Pharmacists
Please contact your legislators to urge that they oppose several components of the Executive Budget that could upend the patient-centered medical home model and threaten patient safety by greatly expanding the scope of services provided to patients by pharmacists without coordination with patient care physicians.  You can send a letter from here: Click Here.  Please let them know these proposals would greatly enhance the power of big box giants to control various aspects of patient care delivery not in coordination with but to the exclusion of community-based primary care and specialty care physicians that typically manage the care of their patients.

Specifically, these Budget proposals would 1) permit pharmacists to order various lab tests without any physician oversight and without any requirement to coordinate with the patient’s physician for follow-up care; 2) greatly expand the physician-pharmacist Collaborative Drug Therapy Program to enable pharmacists to adjust the medications provided to entire classes of patients rather than individual patients and 3) permit pharmacists the power to administer any vaccination approved by the federal Advisory Commission on Immunization Practices (ACIP), including those which may be added in the future, thereby removing the discretion of the State Legislature to make these decisions.  Some of these proposals have been rejected by the Legislature in previous Budget cycles.

All of these programs together could incentivize the development of health care silos at the expense of the patient centered medical home model we have worked so hard to develop in New York.   It would also marginalize community based primary care and specialty care physicians’ ability to continue to be able to manage their patients’ ongoing care needs.  Please urge your legislators to reject these measures as they finalize the State Budget for 2021-22. (AUSTER)


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MSSNY Extends Deadline for Members to Participate in Survey to Compare Payments to Physicians for Care Provided via Telehealth Services vs. In-Office Visits
To support its continued advocacy efforts to expand coverage for Telehealth services, MSSNY is conducting a new survey of its members to update data originally collected last spring, comparing generally how physicians are reimbursed for care delivered virtually, as compared to in-person appointments.

To take the new survey, please fill out the following Survey Monkey questionnaire: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/MSSNY_Telehealth_Survey. Please also share this link with your networks to participate, as well. The deadline to take the survey has been extended to close-of-business next Friday, March 12th(CARY)


MSSNY Continues to Urge Revisions to Telehealth Proposal in FY 2022 Executive Budget
MSSNY continues to raise serious concerns with the Telehealth expansion proposals included in the proposed FY 2022 Executive budget. In addition to not including a requirement sought by MSSNY to ensure payment parity for care delivered virtually that is on par with in-office visits, MSSNY has raised concerns that if passed, certain other proposed policies may be used by the insurance industry to actually reverse Telehealth gains made over the past year. Specifically, linking coverage of Telehealth services to insurers having a “so-called” adequate network, together with the proposal to permit Telehealth delivery services by out-of-state physicians, could essentially empower insurers to limit who it will pay for Telehealth services once it asserts it has an “adequate” network.

It is not hard to imagine a scenario where a health plan asserts it has an adequate network through a national Telehealth service provider (such as Teladoc or MDLive), and then exclude coverage of Telehealth services by all or some of its in-network community-based physicians. That is completely at odds with the expansive approach to Telehealth coverage taken over the past year as a result of policies set by the New York State DFS and DOH.

MSSNY is continuing to work with a range of other patient and provider partner organizations to urge the Legislature to address these concerns and will update members as discussion on this issue further unfolds.                                            (CARY)


Legislation to Allow Pharmacists to Conduct Lab Tests During Public Health Emergency on Senate Health Agenda
Legislation that would authorize pharmacist to order and administer tests suspected of having an infectious disease in a public health emergency.   This measure, Senate Bill 1742, is sponsored by Senator James Skoufis and is on the Senate Health Committee next week.  MSSNY is opposed to this measure as provisions already exist in the statute to allow the governor to suspend some laws or regulations through executive orders.  In addition, the New York State Legislature has the ability to provide additional powers to the governor during a public health emergency.

There has already been a suspension of various scopes of practice that authorized testing of individuals throughout all settings, including pharmacies.  There is also the ability under federal law to suspend similar law.  Moreover, it is open-ended as to which infectious diseases a pharmacist could test during a PHE.  Therefore, MSSNY believes that this legislation is not needed and urges physicians are urged to contact legislators of the Senate Health Committee:  Senators Gustavo Rivera, Patrick Gallivan, Brian Benjamin, Alessandra Biaggi, Phil Boyle, Samra Brouk, Brad Hoylman, Todd Kaminsky, Rachel May, Peter Oberacker, Edward Rath, Sean Ryan, Julia Salazar, Daniel Stec, Kevin Thomas.  Physicians can call the NYS Senate at 518-455-2800.                (CLANCY)


 

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If You or Someone You Know is Struggling with Everyday Life Stressors, Reach Out to the P2P Program to be Connected with a Peer Supporter to Help!

Email: P2P@mssny.org and request that you be connected with a peer supporter

Phone: 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337) and request that you be connected with a peer supporter.

MSSNY now offers to physicians, residents and medical students a completely confidential and anonymous opportunity to talk with a peer about some of their life stressors. MSSNY’s Physician Wellness and Resiliency Committee launched a Peer 2 Peer (P2P) program to assist their colleagues who are need of help in dealing with work and family stressors. With the myriad of challenges we are all facing related to the pandemic, some physicians may need the support of their colleagues to help manage these stressors.

MSSNY has established a confidential helpline phone number (1-844-P2P-PEER) and an email address (p2p@mssny.org) so that physicians may be connected with a peer 24 hours a day/7 days a week. In addition to offering a trained, empathetic ear, peer supporters may provide information on specific resources that can offer further support, provide positive coping skills, or connect physicians to professionals for more focused assistance when needed.

MSSNY has nearly 50 trained peer supporters across NYS who are just a phone call away!  (LAUDER)


Registration now open – Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades
Date: March 24, 2021 @ 7:30am 

Register now to learn more about the evolution of coronaviruses over the past three decades.  Medical Matters: Three Coronaviruses in Three Decades webinar will take place on Wednesday March 24th at 7:30am.  Stephen Morse, PhD, Professor of Epidemiology at the Columbia University Medical Center and Director of the Infectious Disease Epidemiology Certificate Program at Columbia University Mailman School of Public Health will serve as faculty for this program.  Click here to register for this webinar.

Educational objectives

  • Identify three different coronaviruses and the epidemiology specific to each one
  • Discuss SARS-CoV-2 in relation to other coronaviruses
  • Evaluate the circumstances that contributed to the SARS-CoV-2 pandemic

The Medical Society of the State of New York is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME) to provide continuing medical education for physicians.

The Medical Society of the State of New York designates this live activity for a maximum of 1.0 AMA PRA Category 1 credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity. (HOFFMAN)


eNews

Council Notes: March 1, 2021
Council passed the following:

  • Ensuring Correct Drug Dispensing
    MSSNY will request that the New York State Education Department work with the pharmaceutical and pharmacy industries to facilitate the ability of pharmacies to ensure that when a prescription is dispensed, a color photo of the prescribed medication and its dosage is attached to the receipt to ensure that the drug dispensed is that which has been prescribed. MSSNY will forward this resolution to the AMA.
    .
  • Scientific Studies to Support Legislative Agendas
    MSSNY will continue to work with allied groups and health care policy influencers such as think tanks to help generate support for MSSNY’s key advocacy goals and will continue to work with entities that can produce high quality scientific evidence data to help generate support for MSSNY’s key advocacy goals. The MSSNY delegation to the AMA will introduce a resolution at the next AMA House of Delegates meeting urging the AMA to expand its efforts to work with allied groups, health care policy influencers such as think tanks and entities that can produce high quality scientific evidence.
    .
  • Separation of Clinical Portions of EHRs from Administrative and Financial Uses
    MSSNY will continue to work with the AMA and specialty societies to advocate for legislation, regulation or other appropriate mechanisms to ensure that electronic health record (EHR) systems are developed and implemented in such a way as to facilitate the compiling and sharing of clinical information, as appropriate, in a manner that is consistent with how physicians regularly deliver care.

NY CMS Office Invites You to a March 18 Listening Session
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services New York Office invites you to a listening session on current topics in the Medicare Program.  The topics being considered for discussion are: COVID-19 vaccines and antibody treatment, telehealth, MIPS measures and reporting, EM coding and documentation, 2021 pricing levels, CMS oversight of Medicare Advantage plans and care management. The format of the session will consist of short presentations followed by discussion periods. Please register for the session here.

A final agenda for the meeting will be sent to registrants on March 15th.


Moderna Vaccine Causing Delayed Rash in Some Recipients, Small Study Says
Some recipients of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine experience delayed rashes that can take about six days to heal, according to a small study published March 3 in the New England Journal of Medicine.

Researchers from Boston-based Massachusetts General Hospital examined 12 patients who developed a rash at the injection site eight or more days after receiving their first dose of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine. Their symptom onset ranged from four days after receiving their first dose to up to 11 after receiving their first dose. The patients’ rashes varied in size and severity. Ice and antihistamines treated most patients’ rashes, but some required corticosteroids and one erroneous case was treated with antibiotics, according to the study. Half of the patients experienced a rash after receiving their second dose around 48 hours after getting the shot, but none of them experienced a reaction that was more severe than their first dose reaction.

“Whether you’ve experienced a rash at the injection site right away or this delayed skin reaction, neither condition should prevent you from getting the second dose of the vaccine,” Kimberly Blumenthal, MD, the study’s lead author and co-director of Massachusetts General Hospital’s clinical epidemiology program, said in a news release. “Our immediate goal is to make physicians and other care providers aware of this possible delayed reaction, so they are not alarmed, but instead well-informed and equipped to advise their patients accordingly. (Becker’s Hospital Review March 3)


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Please Submit Names of Doctors and Family Members Who Lost Their Lives During COVID-19
Doctors Day is March 30. This year, to honor our physicians and family members who died of COVID-19 in 2020-2021, MSSNY is designing a poster with the names that are submitted. Please send the names to jvecchione@mssny.org.


Volunteer Opportunity for Children of MSSNY Members
During this ongoing pandemic, considerable additional responsibility has fallen on women, especially those who have had to become more involved in their children’s education due to remote schooling and limitations on childcare.

As a solution to this problem, the MSSNY Women Physicians Committee is launching a Virtual Volunteer Homework Assistance Program.  

Do you have high school or college students who would be interested in helping other members’ children with K-12 homework? This is a great volunteering and community service opportunity.

Do you have school age children (K – 12) who could use a helping hand with homework?  

If so, please contact sbennett@mssny.org. Tell us if your child will be a tutor or a tutee and include their email address.

  1. For tutors, state the subjects with which they would like to work (e.g., elementary math, middle school English, high school biology, etc.).
  2. For tutees, tell us the subjects with which they are most in need of support. We will match up pairs as best we can. Tutors and tutees can then make the arrangements that work best for them. Sessions can be half an hour to an hour per week, depending on subject and participant choice, and can be held on the same day and time.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Rose Berkun, MD and Maria Basile, MD
Co-Chairs, MSSNY Women Physicians Committee


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Behavioral Health Integration Research Study Looking for Participants
The Behavioral Health Integration (BHI) Collaborative, a partnership between the AMA and seven other leading physician organizations, is launching a research study in 2021 to gather feedback and experiences from primary care and physician practices that are interested in integrating behavioral health care for their patients.

The study will run through early April, and participation includes a 45-minute interview and completion of a series of online activities. Participation will allow practice representatives to share valuable feedback on resources that will ultimately help make integrating behavioral health care a feasible, standard practice in primary care, rather than an exception.

Learn more and respond to a series of screening questions to see if your practice qualifies.


New Analysis Shows Medicare Spending Patterns Upended by COVID-19 Pandemic
The new report “Changes in Medicare Physician Spending During the COVID-19 Pandemic” analyzed Medicare claims data exclusive to physician services and found spending dropped as much as 57% below expected pre-pandemic levels in April of 2020. Medicare spending on physician services partially recovered from the April low but was still 12% less than expected by the end of June 2020. During the first half of 2020, the cumulative estimated reduction in Medicare physician spending associated with the pandemic was $9.4 billion (19%). The report also provides estimates by state and specialty.

When compared to expected 2020 Medicare spending on physician services, the AMA report found that actual Medicare spending on physician services for the first six months of 2020 declined regardless of service type, setting or specialty, and state or region. The severity of the impacts varied substantially. Telehealth spending increased dramatically during the study period but was concentrated in a handful of service categories.

Spending by service type

  • Evaluation and management (E/M) spending fell nearly 50 percent by late March before levelling off.
  • Spending for imaging, procedures and tests continued to drop until mid-April, falling as much as roughly 65% to 70% below expected 2020 spending.
  • By the end of June spending was down 10% for E/M and imaging, but only slightly more for procedures and tests.

Spending by setting or specialty

  • Spending lows reached in April by all major settings ranged from a 25% decline for skilled nursing facilities to a 90% decline for ambulatory surgical centers.
  • All major settings recovered from these spending lows but remained 9 to 19% below expected 2020 spending at the end of June.
  • Reductions in cumulative spending over the first half of 2020 varied among specialties, ranging from a 6% decline for nephrology to a 29% decline for ophthalmology and a 34% decline for physical therapists.
  • Primary care specialties fared slightly better than average with cumulative spending for internal medicine and family medicine down 14% and 16%, respectively.

Spending by state or region

  • Reductions in cumulative spending ranged from a 13% decline for Oklahoma to a 27% decline for New York.
  • There was a strong regional pattern to the impacts, with the biggest reductions concentrated in the Northeast and Upper Midwest and the smallest impacts in the South and Southwest.

Telehealth spending

  • Telehealth increased from less than 0.1% of total Medicare spending on physician services prior to the pandemic to more than 16% in April 2020 but was concentrated in a handful of service categories.
  • Established patient office visits accounted for one-half of Medicare telehealth spending on physician services after the start of the pandemic through the end of June 2020.

Classifieds

Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale.
Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring.
Waiting room
Secretarial area for 3
1 Consult room
2 exam Rooms
2 Toilets
Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email drklein@att.net


For Rent Medical Office 800 2nd Ave, 806
FOR RENT 800 2nd Avenue, 806 – Fully built out Medical office ready for use – reception area; 2 office/ consultation rooms; 4 examination rooms with plumbing; 1 sterilization room or pantry; 1 file/ nurse room, Total 8 rooms. All examination rooms are set up with plumbing and cabinetry.  24/7 doorman/ Elevators. Central location, Grand Central Station, buses Subways. Rent: $65 per Rentable Sq Ft; Sq Ft: 1,482 Rentable; Gross Lease. Showings or video contact Maya – Broker – maya@mallannyhomes.com or mobile 646-258-4460 listing information http://www.mallannyhomes.com/properties/detail/800-second-avenue-806/

800 2nd Ave Lobby800 2nd Ave Hallway


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix 85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com


Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


 

 

 

 

 

 

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MSSNY eNews: March 3, 2021 – Can I Order Vaccine?


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Please Submit Names of Doctors and Family Members Who Lost Their Lives During COVID-19
Doctors Day is March 30. This year, to honor our physicians and family members who died of COVID-19 in 2020-2021, MSSNY is designing a poster with the names that are submitted. Please send the names to jvecchione@mssny.org


Open Payments National Provider Call
Thursday March 25, 2020 2:00pm – 3:00pm (ET)

REGISTER HERE

Join the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on March 25, 2020 for an informative session on the Open Payments Program and the upcoming review, dispute, and correction processes.

Reporting entities are currently submitting data to the Open Payments system on payments or transfers of value made to physicians and teaching hospitals during 2020.  Beginning in April, physicians and teaching hospitals have 45 days to review and dispute records attributed to them. CMS will publish the Open Payments Program Year 2020 data and updates to previous program years in June 2021.

During this call, learn about the Open Payments program and how to access the system to review the accuracy of the data submitted about you before it is published on the CMS website.

A question-and-answer session will follow the presentation.

Topics:

  • Overview of the Open Payments Program
  • Program Timeline
  • Program Roles
  • Registration Process

Target Audience: physicians, teaching hospitals and office staff.

CMS requests that all press inquiries related to this call and the Open Payments program are sent to the CMS press office mailbox at press@cms.hhs.gov. Please include your professional contact information, specific concerns, and your deadline.

Note: The Review and Dispute period is targeted to begin on April 1, 2021 and end on May 15, 2021


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Volunteer Opportunity for MSSNY Members’ Children
During this ongoing pandemic, considerable additional responsibility has fallen on women, especially those who have had to become more involved in their children’s education due to remote schooling and limitations on childcare.

As a solution to this problem, the MSSNY Women Physicians Committee is launching a Virtual Volunteer Homework Assistance Program.  

Do you have high school or college students who would be interested in helping other members’ children with K-12 homework? This is a great volunteering and community service opportunity.

Do you have school age children (K – 12) who could use a helping hand with homework?

If so, please contact sbennett@mssny.org. Tell us if your child will be a tutor or a tutee, and include their email address.

  1. For tutors, state the subjects with which they would like to work (e.g., elementary math, middle school English, high school biology, etc.).
  2. For tutees, tell us the subjects with which they are most in need of support.

We will match up pairs as best we can. Tutors and tutees can then make the arrangements that work best for them. Sessions can be half an hour to an hour per week, depending on subject and participant choice, and can be held on the same day and time.

We look forward to hearing from you!

Rose Berkun, MD and Maria Basile, MD
Co-Chairs, MSSNY Women Physicians Committee


Have You Used the MTG Lookup Tool Yet?
This is a reminder of the availability of a recently released tool that is available in the Medical Portal related to the Workers’ Compensation Board’s New York Medical Treatment Guidelines (MTGs).

The MTG Lookup Tool allows users to quickly determine whether a particular condition or treatment/test combination is “Recommended,” “Not Recommended” or “Conditional,” according to the MTGs. When a treatment/test name is selected, the relevant section of the full MTGs for that condition will display. This online tool will help speed treatment decisions and ultimately provide more effective and efficient care for injured workers.

The MTG Lookup Tool also has a feature for use by providers that produces a Verification Summary document (PDF) that confirms a lookup was completed, provides treatment recommendations for that condition, and displays patient-specific case information. This document can be kept by the health care provider or attached to any request for service or medical bill being sent to an insurer as verification that the treatment adheres to the recommendations set forth in the MTGs.

To support the timely delivery of medical care consistent with the MTGs, the Board has made the MTG Lookup Tool available to all Board-authorized providers. For other stakeholders interested in utilizing the Lookup Tool, after logging into the Board’s Medical Portal and selecting “MTG Lookup Tool” on the Treatment card, you will be given contact information for ReedGroup to purchase a license for the tool. If you are an insurer that has previously licensed the ReedGroup Medical Treatment Guidelines in other states, you may be able to access the NYS MTGs via the Lookup Tool at no additional charge.

The MTG Lookup Tool is available for the following MTGs:

  • Elbow Injuries
  • Foot and Ankle Injuries
  • Hip and Groin Injuries
  • Hand, Wrist and Forearm Injuries (including Carpal Tunnel Syndrome)
  • Occupational Interstitial Lung Disease
  • Occupational/Work-Related Asthma
  • Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
  • Major Depressive Disorder

The full MTGs are available on the Board’s website and accessible via the Medical Portal.

To access the Medical Portal and these resources, visit the Board’s website at wcb.ny.gov and select “Medical Portal” from the Online Services menu at the top of the homepage.


Allergic Reactions to Pfizer, Moderna Vaccines Can Get J&J Shot as Dose, CDC
Patients who had an allergic reaction to their first dose of either Moderna’s or Pfizer’s COVID-19 vaccine could get Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine as their second dose, a CDC scientist said March 1, CNBC reported. 

Jessica MacNeil, an epidemiologist at the CDC’s National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases, said those who had an allergic reaction to vaccines from Moderna or Pfizer should wait at least 28 days before getting a second dose of Johnson & Johnson’s vaccine. Ms. MacNeil said patients should only mix vaccine types in “exceptional situations,” and should be monitored by healthcare workers for at least 30 minutes after getting the second dose, CNBC reported.

The official CDC recommendations say patients who experienced severe allergic reactions to Moderna’s, or Pfizer’s vaccines shouldn’t get a second dose.

There have been 4.7 cases of anaphylaxis for every million doses of Pfizer’s vaccine administered and 2.5 for every million doses of Moderna’s as of Jan. 18, according to CNBC.

Ms. MacNeil also noted the efficacy of taking one shot of Pfizer’s or Moderna’s vaccine and one shot of Johnson & Johnson’s has not been tested in clinical trials. Read the full article here.


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WHO Advises Against Hydroxychloroquine to Prevent COVID-19?
The World Health Organization published a new recommendation March 2 stating that hydroxychloroquine should not be used to prevent COVID-19. The recommendation, published in The BMJ, states that multiple clinical trials of more than 6,000 people have shown that hydroxychloroquine has no meaningful effect on death or hospital admissions in people with no prior exposure to COVID-19. The trials also showed a “moderate certainty” that hydroxychloroquine increases the risk of adverse effects. “The panel considers that this drug is no longer a research priority and that resources should rather be oriented to evaluate other more promising drugs to prevent COVID-19,” the WHO said.

Hydroxychloroquine is FDA approved to treat malaria, lupus, and rheumatoid arthritis.


Join NYSDOH Tomorrow at 1PM for COVID-19 DOH Update
Please join the NYS Department of Health, Thursday, March 4th at 1:00 PM – 2:00 PM for a COVID-19 update for healthcare providers.  To accommodate the large number of participants, find our webinar streaming via YouTube Live (and available for viewing immediately thereafter) on the NYSDOH COVID website for providers.

Audio number and code: 844-512-2950 Access code 7413229#

Recipients:
All Prescribers
Clinical Labs
Diagnostic and Treatment Centers
Healthcare Associations
Hospitals
Nursing Homes
Schools, Daycares and Colleges
BCDC 09 – LHD’s, Regions, NYSDOH-LHD’s, Regions, NYSDOH CCH
BCDC 13 – Internal Distribution-All who should be notified including exec staff, regions, and division
BCDC 17 – EPI-List of staff who should receive epi related informational messages
BCDC 18 – Immunization-List of BI staff to be included for weekly flu report distribution

Roles:
For questions: Please send an e-mail to bcdc@health.ny.gov, as notify01 is a non-monitored mailbox.
Click here when you are ready to confirm receipt of the email.
If you cannot click the above link, use the following URL by copying into your browser.
https://apps.health.ny.gov/doh2/applinks/pubforms/ihans/rest/AlertAcknowledge2?AID=c5a64f4d-ab99-4ebd-961e-339472af6a33


CDC Director to States: Don’t Roll Back COVID-19 Safety Measures
As COVID-19 cases improve, the head of the CDC said she is “really worried” about states rolling back public health measures, according to a March 1 article published in CNBC.

CDC Director Rochelle Walensky, MD, said in a March 1 news briefing that the U.S. has declined to about 70,000 new COVID-19 cases each day.

“With these statistics, I am really worried about more states rolling back the exact public health measures we have recommended to protect people from COVID-19,” Dr. Walensky said.

She said emerging COVID-19 variants can disrupt the downward trajectory in infection cases.

“Seventy thousand cases a day seems good compared to where we were just a few months ago,” she said. “Please hear me clearly: At this level of cases with variants spreading, we stand to completely lose the hard-earned ground we have gained.”


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Trending’ Clinicians’ Notes in EHRs May Help Predict Real-Time COVID-19 Surges
Tracking “trending phrases” in EHR notes may help hospitals forecast surges in infectious disease outbreaks, according to a Feb. 24 report in Nature Digital Medicine. The study analyzed keywords in EHRs to produce real-time maps of trending symptoms. Researchers monitored symptoms like “pneumonia” and “dry cough.”

The spikes resembled positive COVID-19 test result spikes reported by their respective hospital, indicating that tracking keywords could provide up to four days’ notice for hospitals to prepare for surges in COVID-19 admissions. Researchers said that tracking trending words is easy and cost-effective. While this study operated at the single-hospital level, the study says it can be scaled at the local and national levels.

Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

Physicians’ search services • allied medical placements • locum tenens • practice valuation • practice brokerage • practice consulting • real estate

For help, information or to place your ad, call Christina Southard 516-488-6100 x355 • fax 516-488-2188


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1290 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Allergy Practice For Sale, Forest Hills, NY
Founded in 1988, this well-established Single Practitioner Allergy Practice has over 3500 active patients, with very positive patient reviews. The office is only one of a few in the area, but patients are seen from throughout the NYC Metropolitan Area, as well as Long Island. Potential for growth. Centrally located next to major public transportation.  Retirement planned. Lease is assignable. Well-trained, extremely personable staff of three, including a Registered Nurse. Payer mix85% private, 10% Medicare 5% other. Email any questions to: allergydoctorbn@gmail.com

Two (2) Prime Commercial Spaces
Two (2) affordable office spaces available for immediate occupancy.  Located in Sheepshead Bay Brooklyn,  surrounded by multiple co-ops and private homes.  Space can be viewed at your convenience. Price negotiable. Call: Avi 212-736-3680 ext. 15


Physician & Other Healthcare Jobs. P/T & F/T
Check us out @….bit.ly/38xkgDv


Unique Rheumatology Practice Opportunity – Great Neck, NY
Partnership opportunity available at an established rheumatology practice in Great Neck, NY. Looking for a dedicated physician to join our practice or merge practices. Contact 516-972-2986 / susanrita1@msn.com for more info.


 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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