MSSNY eNews: May 13, 2022

Message from MSSNY President Dr Joseph Sellers:
Looking Forward to Our In-Person HOD Meeting Next Week

Colleagues:
Next week’s House of Delegates meeting—our first in-person meeting since the beginning of the pandemic—will mark the end of my term as MSSNY President. I have thoroughly enjoyed my term and am proud of the work that we have collectively done to improve the lives of both our members and the patients in our care.

I attended my first HOD in 1990 as the delegate chosen to represent the newly formed young physician section. I quickly learned that this gathering of physicians and medical students from across the state and from the full breadth of medical specialties offers us an opportunity to develop the policies and priorities that will shape our medical society for the coming year. Our profession and our patients will once again benefit from the hard work of our dedicated delegates as we meet in Westchester next Saturday.

I am delighted to be turning over the president’s gavel and medallion next week to Dr. Parag Mehta. Dr. Mehta brings wisdom, experience, and energy to the presidency. I pledge to him my support for the coming year in any way that he needs.

In addition to Dr. Mehta, our Officers, our Counselors, and our Trustees are all ready and able to carry forward the work of MSSNY as directed by the delegates at our annual meeting. We have much to accomplish but have the team in place to achieve our goals.

One of the privileges of being MSSNY president has been the ability to work with our outstanding EVP, Troy Oechsner, our division leaders and our staff. Their enthusiasm and knowledge are unmatched among professional organizations in our state. The success of MSSNY in supporting our physicians and our patients is a result of having these dedicated allies.

In closing, I wish to extend special thanks to Julie Vecchione, MSSNY’s Vice President of Communications, who has helped me express my thoughts in the eNews introduction each Friday this past year. I hope that our readers have found our words informative.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President


MSSNY Members Invited to Participate in “Stories from Physicians on the Front Line”
MSSNY members are invited to participate in an initiative by The Physicians Foundation: America’s Health: Stories from Physicians on The Frontline. America’s Health is a platform that allows physicians to share personal stories on the front lines of medicine in the form of short videos. The goal for this initiative is to help inspire other physicians to share their experiences and create an open dialogue within the physician community.

Any physicians are welcome to share their experiences and/or perspectives on issues that are facing physicians, such as reducing health disparities, improving physician wellbeing, the future of the practice post COVID-19 and more!

If you’re interested in participating, share a video to be featured as part of the America’s Health initiative. While we try to keep the videos to approximately 90 seconds long, please film as much or as little as you like. The Physicians Foundation can edit the content into snippets for multiple uses, if applicable.

This document outlines best practices for filming your video, with some tips on how to get the best quality video.



Deadline Extended to Complete Provider Relief Fund Late Reporting for Period 2 – May 18, 2022
The deadline for providers to request to submit a late Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Reporting Period 2 (RP2) has been extended to May 18th at 11:59 pm ET.

Physicians who received more than $10,000 in provider relief funds and did not submit their Period 2 report must act immediately by submitting a late Reporting Period 2 report request by Wednesday, May 18, 2022 at 11:59 pm ET. Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Period 2 spanned from July 1, 2020, thru December 31, 2020, and included physicians who see patients with Medicaid and CHIP coverage. Attached is an overview of the information needed to request to report late. If a provider did not submit a Period 2 report and does not hear from HRSA, click here to learn more about the late reporting request form or call (866) 569-3522.

When completing the late reporting request, a provider must choose an extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented compliance with the original reporting deadline. HRSA has released the following as allowable extenuating circumstances:

  • Severe illness or death– a severe medical condition or death of a provider or key staff member responsible for reporting hindered the organization’s ability to complete the report during the Reporting Period.
  • Impacted by natural disaster – a natural disaster occurred during or in close proximity of the end of the Reporting Period damaging the organization’s records or information technology.
  • Lack of receipt of reporting communications – an incorrect email or mailing address on file with HRSA prevented the organization from receiving instructions prior to the Reporting Period deadline.
  • Failure to click “submit”– the organization registered and prepared a report in the PRF Reporting Portal but failed to take the final step to click “submit” prior to deadline.
  • Internal miscommunication or error – Internal miscommunication or error regarding the individual who was authorized and expected to submit the report on behalf of the organization and/or the registered point of contact in the PRF Reporting Portal.
  • Incomplete Targeted Distribution payments – the organization’s parent entity completed all General Distribution payments, but a Targeted Distribution(s) was not reported on by the subsidiary.

While attesting to an extenuating circumstance is required, no supporting document or proof is required. More information and a step-by-step guide from the AMA are available here.

If HRSA approves the extenuated circumstances form, the provider will receive a notification to proceed with completing the Reporting Period 2 report shortly thereafter. The AMA will continue to advocate for greater flexibility and more information to ensure physician practices have an adequate opportunity to come into compliance. 


Podcast: Upcoming CME Opportunities for Physicians on May 20th and How You Can Help to Defeat Numerous Adverse Bills in Albany
Listen to MSSNY’s May 13th podcast as Senior Vice-President & Chief Legislative Counsel Moe Auster discusses Upcoming CME Opportunities for Physicians on May 20th and How You Can Help to Defeat Numerous Adverse Bills in Albany.



MSSNY Continuing Push for Passage of Copay Accumulator Legislation by End of Legislative Session
MSSNY continues to work with several patient and physician advocacy groups to push for passage of legislation (A.1741, Gottfried/S.5299, Rivera) that would prohibit health insurers from preventing patients from using copay cards or coupons to help meet their insurer-imposed deductibles. Read our joint press release here.

These coupons are tremendously important for helping patients, particularly those on long term medication therapies, meet their out-of-pocket health care costs.  Please take a minute to visit our Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to take action and let your legislators know you support for this important patient-protection legislation.

The bill is on the floor of both Houses awaiting a vote.  Last week, MSSNY President Dr. Joseph Sellers, MD, joined the bill sponsors and various patient advocacy groups urging action on this legislation before session ends on June 2nd.


Urge Your Legislators to Reject Untenable Measure to Drive Up Physician Liability Premiums by Over 40%
Physicians are urged to contact their legislators to request that they reject legislation (S.74-A/A.6770) that is strongly opposed by MSSNY, hospital associations, and numerous other groups. This legislation would create untenable increases in New York’s already excessive medical liability costs by greatly expanding the types of damages awardable in all wrongful death actions, including lawsuits against physicians. Please visit our Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to take action and let your legislators know oppose this legislation. A letter and/or tweet can be sent from here: Don’t Chase Physicians out of NY! (p2a.co).

The bill has advanced to the Assembly floor and to the Senate Finance Committee.

One recent actuarial estimate indicated that passage of this legislation could require a liability premium increase of over 40%, which translates to tens of thousands of dollars in new costs for physicians, many of whom already pay tens or hundreds of thousands of dollars per year in their insurance costs. This could make it impossible for many physicians to stay in practice in New York.  Under ordinary circumstances, these kinds of increases would be unsustainable and could have huge negative consequences on patient access to care at community hospitals and physician offices.  However, with so many physician practices only beginning to recover from the huge drop in patient visits and revenue during the pandemic, legislation to impose such premium increases would be unconscionable.  It could prompt significant disruptions in patient access to care.

While some advocates have claimed that New York’s existing wrongful death law is an outlier compared to other states, what they do not mention is that most of these other states also have comprehensive provisions to contain excessive medical liability insurance costs, including limits on damages.  New York has no such law, which is why our medical liability insurance and payout costs far exceed every other state in the country, making New York regularly ranked as one of the worst states in the country to be a physician. Best & Worst States for Doctors (wallethub.com)

Please let your legislators know that comprehensive legislation is needed to bring down New York’s excessively high medical liability premiums, which far exceed every other state in the country, instead of stand-alone bills that would drive up these costs.


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Numerous Physician Mandate Bills Under Consideration in the Final Weeks of Session
As we head into the final 3 weeks of the legislative session, physicians are urged to contact their legislators (Oppose Mandates on Physicians (p2a.co)) to request that they reject the numerous bills under active consideration in the Senate and Assembly that would impose requirements on physicians (and other providers) delivering care to their patients.

MSSNY has been working together with numerous affected specialty societies (Letter) to highlight their collective concerns that, while each of these proposals may have good intentions, in totality they are creating significant new documentation requirements that place the physician’s licensure in jeopardy if there is an instance where they fail to document that they completed a task.  This could have a significant impact on decisions made by physicians, including whether or not to practice in New York. Some of these bills include:

  • 213/A.1615 – Requires physicians to obtain the school attended by their pediatric patients.
  • 2103-B/A.5841-B – Requires physicians to obtain a detailed patient/family member consent for a nursing home resident prior to the receipt of a psychotropic medication, or detailed documentation of the need to provide such medication without consent.
  • 2521-C/A.3470-C – Requires employed health care providers to disclose if their employer health system is charging a facility fee.
  • 2736/A.217 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to pregnant patients regarding the risks of a caesarean section to patients scheduled to have a C-section.
  • 4640/A.273 – Requires physicians and other care providers to document that they considered and discussed numerous alternatives to opioid treatment prior to writing an opioid prescription for a patient.
  • 6287-B/A.7560-A – Requires OB-GYNs to provide information to their pregnant patients regarding the risks of cytomegalovirus (CMV).
  • 7865/A.5976-A – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers providing pre- and post-natal care or pediatric care to invite the mother to fill out a questionnaire to detect maternal depression.
  • 8455/A.9380 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to patients about the potential consequences of an episiotomy.

Please remain alert for further updates on these issues.


Bills Under Consideration to Protect Physicians Providing Legal Reproductive Services
With uncertainty regarding the legality of providing reproductive health care services in several states across the country, the New York State Legislature is advancing legislation that would protect physicians and other healthcare providers that provide these health services. S.9709/A. 9687, sponsored by Senator Anna Kaplan and Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal, would prohibit disciplinary actions against licensed medical professions for providing abortion and reproductive health services for patients who reside in states where those services are illegal.  This measure is currently in the Higher Education committee in both houses.  S.9080/A. 9718, sponsored by Senator Michele Hinchey and Assemblywoman Linda Rosenthal, would prohibit medical malpractice insurance companies from taking any adverse action against a health care provider who provides reproductive health care.  This measure is in the Insurance Committee in both Houses.   MSSNY is supportive of both these concepts and is in regular communication with many legislators about these, and other measures, to protect access to reproductive healthcare.

Earlier this week, MSSNY President Dr. Joseph Sellers, MD, issued a statement on MSSNY supporting reproductive health care for all individuals:

“The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) recognizes the fact of legalized abortion and supports the right of all women to safe and legal abortion and direct access to obstetric and gynecologic services. MSSNY believes that reproductive choice, as any medical decision, is one of an informed consent between the patient and his/her physician. Abortion is a medical procedure and should be performed only by a duly licensed physician in conformance with standards of good medical practice.  MSSNY opposes legislative proposals that use federal or state health care funding mechanisms to deny established and accepted medical care to any segment of the population and opposes any legislation that criminalizes the exercise of clinical judgment in the delivery of medical care.”


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MSSNY Urging Assembly Insurance Committee to Take Action on Important Legislation to Curb Use Prior Authorization by Insurance Companies
Physicians continue to urge key members of the Assembly to take action on two critically important prior authorization reform bills before the end of the 2022 legislative session.  Please take a minute to visit MSSNY’s Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to take action and urge your state Senator and Assembly member to support passage of both bills.

Both bills have advanced to the Senate floor but remain stuck in the Assembly Insurance Committee.

The first bill, A.9908-A, McDonald/S.8299 Breslin, establishes a “Gold Card” program in which insurers exempt physicians, and other care providers, from Prior Authorization (PA) requirements if they receive at least 90% approval for PAs for specific health care treatments. The legislation is similar to a law enacted last year in Texas, which was designed to prevent unnecessary roadblocks to patient care and reward the following of evidence-based treatment guidelines.

The second bill, A.7129-A, Gottfried/S.6435-A, Breslin, also addresses the crushing burden of the prior authorization process by requiring health plan utilization review criteria be evidence-based and peer reviewed, reducing the insurer timeframe for reviewing prior authorization requests, and limiting when an insurer can withdraw or repeat a previously granted prior authorization. The standards within this bill are based on recommendations made by several respected health care advocacy organizations to improve patient care.

Excessive Prior Authorization hassles continue to be a major impediment to patient care.  The American Medical Association (AMA) recently released an updated survey which showed that more than 9 in 10 physicians (93%) reported care delays while waiting for health insurers to authorize necessary care, and 82% said patients abandon treatment due to authorization struggles with health insurers. Moreover, more than half (51%) of physicians reported that prior authorization had interfered with a patient’s job responsibilities, and more than one-third (34%) of physicians reported that prior authorization led to a serious adverse event such as hospitalization, disability, or even death, for a patient in their care.


Legislature Passes Bill to Limit Liens/Garnishments for Medical Debt Judgments
Both the New York State Senate and Assembly have passed legislation (S.6522-A/A.7363-A) that would prohibit a hospital or health care provider from placing a lien against a person’s primary residence in an action arising from medical debt judgments, as well as prohibiting wage garnishment for medical debt judgments.  It was reported in Crains Health Pulse this week that an analysis from the Community Service Society of NY stated that, between 2015 and 2019, 139 hospitals across the state filed nearly 31,000 lawsuits against patients for outstanding payments owed to the hospital.  The bill has not yet been delivered to the Governor for her consideration.


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NYS Department of Financial Services Issues New Guidance for Pharmacy Benefit Managers
The NYS Department of Financial Services (DFS) recently issued guidance for Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). The purpose of this guidance is to provide information regarding the implementation of legislation enacted last year, supported by MSSNY, which requires PBMs to register with the NYS DFS and file annual reports. Governor Hochul also issued a press release noting that, with the passage of the enacted 2023 State Budget, there was a $5 million appropriation for DFS to fund and staff a new Pharmacy Benefits Bureau.

According to the new guidance, the deadline for PBMs to obtain registration with DFS is June 1, 2022. As long as the PBM submits an application on or before this date, including payment of the registration application fee, the PBM will hold a temporary registration valid from June 1, 2022, and expiring seven days after the NYS DFS Pharmacy Benefits Bureau makes a determination on the application.

Every PBM operating in the state is required to file a registration application with NYS DFS. Under Insurance Law §§ 2902-2904, a PBM is defined as “any entity that performs pharmacy benefit management services for a health plan.” Since the law only applies to entities acting “for a health plan,” registration requirements do not apply to individual employees of a PBM or employees of a health plan which perform PBM services for that health plan.

The PBM regulation defines their services as “the management or administration of prescription drug benefits for a health plan, directly or through another entity.” For a full list of functions which constitute PBM services, click here.  They include claims processing or payment of claims to pharmacies for dispensing prescription drugs; clinical or other formulary or preferred drug list development or management; and drug utilization review or prior authorization for drug benefits.

MSSNY will continue to monitor the implementation of this important new law with the goal of ensuring that patients are protected from arbitrary and cumbersome limitations on access to necessary prescription medications that are recommended by their physicians.


Virtual CME at MSSNY 2022 House of Delegates-Registration Now Open
MSSNY is offering four CME webinars during the 2022 House of Delegates on Friday May 20th from 7:30am-12:00pm.  View the flyer for these programs here.

7:30-8:30am
Medical Matters: What’s Your Diagnosis? Infectious Diseases
Faculty: William Valenti, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify the modes of transmission of infectious agents.
  • Discuss presumptive treatment of infectious diseases in advance of diagnostic testing results.
  • Describe two scenarios and review questions and answers.
    (This program is supported in whole by a DHHS grant entitled New York State Hospital Preparedness Program)

8:40-9:40am
Women in Medicine 2022: Up the Down Staircase
Faculty: Carol Ann Bernstein, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify significant stressors contributing to burnout as they specifically impact women physicians in the era of Covid.
  • Increase knowledge of potential strategies that can be used to support women physicians, especially when working in dynamically changing and stressful clinical environments.
  • Identify potential systemic solutions, as well as practical techniques, that promote growth and resilience in women physicians.

9:50 – 10:50am
The Health of Sexual and Gender Minorities
Faculty: Carl Streed, MD, MPH, FACP
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify disparities in health care access among SGM persons.
  • Identify disparities in health care outcomes among SGM persons.
  • Examine minority stress as a contributor to health disparities.
  • Identify opportunities to meet the health care needs of SGM persons.

11:00am-12:00pm
Veterans Matters: COVID-19 and its Impact on Veterans
Faculty: Frank Dowling, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify the wide ranging medical and mental health impact of COVID on veterans.
  • Discuss of veterans who have experienced COVID related post-traumatic stress
  • Recognize the role of physicians in assessing the impact of the pandemic in veteran patients.
    (This program is supported in whole by a grant from the New York State Office of Mental Health.)

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 each 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.


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Mental Health Awareness Month: Peer to Peer (P2P) Program
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.

Mental Health Awareness Month is a great reminder to prioritize an environment of support and wellness within your organization. Reviewing EAP policies to minimize barriers to care-seeking, identifying risk factors and warning signs for suicide, and forming a crisis response team and plan of action before a suicide occurs are just a few of the steps your practice can take to help prevent physician suicide and improve professional well-being.

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!

If someone you know is struggling with life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to connect them to a peer supporter!

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


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom. MUST SEE! Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.



Rendr – Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Board Certified Cardiologist Position
Exceptional private practice cardiology employment opportunity. Manhattan Cardiology is a state-of-the-art cardiology practice located in the heart of Midtown Manhattan. The position is 100% outpatient cardiology with minimal call and excellent compensation structure and benefits. The practice is looking to add an enthusiastic and hardworking cardiologist to join our team.

Board certification is preferred in general cardiology, echocardiography, and ideally RPVI.

Job Type: Full Time with a very competitive salary and excellent benefits awaits the qualified candidate.

Please send resumes to nikkoh@manhattancardiology.com.


Board Certified Internal or Family Medicine Physician
Be a part of our care team and join our mission to provide the highest standard of healthcare to each one of our patients. Medical Offices of Manhattan is looking for a full time enthusiastic, hard-working and responsible Board-Certified Internal or Family Medicine Physician.

Responsibilities include caring for, diagnosing and managing patients. Board certification is a must. The position is 100% outpatient with minimal call and an excellent salary with benefits.

Please send resumes to nikko@momnyc.com.


Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner
A growing multispecialty practice in Manhattan, Medical Offices of Manhattan and Manhattan Cardiology is seeking for an enthusiastic, hardworking Board Certified Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner.

Responsibilities include caring for, diagnosing, and managing patients in both the primary care and cardiology setting. The Physician Assistant or Nurse Practitioner will collaborate with the team in diagnosing and creating plans for each patient.

The position is 100% outpatient with minimal call and excellent salary with benefits.

Please send resumes to nikkoh@manhattancardiology.com.


GI Physician Assistant/Nurse Practitioner
Medical Offices of Manhattan, a multi-specialty medical office is seeking for immediate hiring for an experienced and hardworking GI Physician Assistant.

Responsibilities includes managing Adult Gastroenterology patients with varying disease processes, including but not limited to GERD, IBD, bowel pattern changes, abdominal pain, and diseases related to the liver, pancreas, GI tract, and gallbladder; develops, implements, and manages therapeutic treatment regimens in collaboration with the Gastroenterologists and must possess excellent communication skills, with a focus on a team approach to patient-centered care

The position is 100% outpatient with minimal call and excellent salary with benefits.

Please send resumes to nikko@momnyc.com


Psychiatric Nurse Practitioner
Medical Offices of Manhattan, a multi-specialty medical office is seeking our newest team member, a Psychiatric Mental Health Nurse Practitioner to join our fast-growing team of mental health professionals.

Responsibilities includes managing both complex psychiatric and common medical problems, assess and diagnose illness states and initiate psychotropic medication (as needed) and other therapeutic interventions and collaborate with the team in diagnosing and creating plans for each patient.

The position is 100% outpatient with minimal call and excellent salary with benefits.

Please send resumes to nikko@momnyc.com


In Network Registered Dietician
A growing multispecialty practice in Manhattan, Medical Offices of Manhattan is seeking an In Network Registered Dietician to join our care team for immediate need.

Responsibilities includes but not limited to conducting nutritional assessment, developing and implementing patient specific care plans and recommending nutrition care plans to patients as well as recommending therapeutic diet modifications and /or supplemental feedings to patients. Must have a degree in Nutrition or Dietetics, should be RD license, Registration by the Commission on Registration (CDR) as a Registered Dietitian (RD) in New York State plus specialized certifications as needed.

The position is 100% outpatient with excellent salary with benefits.

Please send resumes to nikko@momnyc.com


 

 

MSSNY eNews: May 6, 2022

Message from MSSNY President Dr Joseph Sellers:
Word to the Wise When Considering Malpractice Insurance Options

Colleagues:
As renewal season approaches, please allow me to provide a few words of advice regarding our trusted and exclusive partner at MLMIC. Formed under the auspices of the Medical Society of the State of New York in 1975 when all commercial carriers left the State because of declining profits, MLMIC, now a Berkshire Hathaway Company, has remained incomparably committed to New York.

Here are some things that I suggest you consider when choosing your malpractice coverage:

  • What is the company’s familiarity with the state of New York?
  • What is the company’s New York track record in defending their clients against claims?
  • Does the company have decades of commitment to New York for your peace of mind knowing that the company won’t fold up and leave the state like so many companies have through the years?

There is a reason that MSSNY continues to proudly to exclusively endorse MLMIC Insurance Company. To this day, MLMIC has successfully defended more New York physicians than any other New York insurer. For over 45 years, MLMIC has been a strong, tireless advocate for New York physicians and has effectively lobbied for legislative reform to address those issues that continue to plague healthcare professionals in the state of New York. Also, MLMIC has made the most consistent and significant contributions of any malpractice insurer to MSSNY’s Physician’s Wellness Program and the Committee for Physicians Health which provide confidential assistance for medical professionals suffering from substance abuse and other psychiatric disorders while protecting public safety.

Now, MLMIC is also a Berkshire Hathaway company with an A+ financial rating by A.M. Best, giving me peace of mind knowing that MLMIC will remain in the state of New York supporting our healthcare heroes – as they have for more than 45 years. We strongly encourage you to contact MLMIC (800-ASK-MLMIC or LHertz@mlmic.com) and gain the details regarding their Preferred Savings Programs and other MLMIC discounts which can save qualifying physicians up to 30% in Medical Professional Liability.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President


Why I Am a MSSNY Member



Provider Relief Fund Late Reporting for Period 2 Due by May 13
Physicians who received more than $10,000 in provider relief funds and did not submit their Period 2 report must act immediately by submitting a late Reporting Period 2 report request by Friday, May 13, 2022 at 11:59 pm ET. Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Period 2 spanned from July 1, 2020, thru December 31, 2020, and included physicians who see patients with Medicaid and CHIP coverage. Attached is an overview of the information needed to request to report late. If a provider did not submit a Period 2 report and does not hear from HRSA, click here to learn more about the late reporting request form or call (866) 569-3522.

When completing the late reporting request, a provider must choose an extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented compliance with the original reporting deadline. HRSA has released the following as allowable extenuating circumstances:

  • Severe illness or death – a severe medical condition or death of a provider or key staff member responsible for reporting hindered the organization’s ability to complete the report during the Reporting Period.
  • Impacted by natural disaster – a natural disaster occurred during or in close proximity of the end of the Reporting Period damaging the organization’s records or information technology.
  • Lack of receipt of reporting communications – an incorrect email or mailing address on file with HRSA prevented the organization from receiving instructions prior to the Reporting Period deadline.
  • Failure to click “submit” – the organization registered and prepared a report in the PRF Reporting Portal but failed to take the final step to click “submit” prior to deadline.
  • Internal miscommunication or error – Internal miscommunication or error regarding the individual who was authorized and expected to submit the report on behalf of the organization and/or the registered point of contact in the PRF Reporting Portal.
  •  Incomplete Targeted Distribution payments – the organization’s parent entity completed all General Distribution payments, but a Targeted Distribution(s) was not reported on by the subsidiary.

While attesting to an extenuating circumstance is required, no supporting document or proof is required. More information and a step-by-step guide from the AMA are available here.

If HRSA approves the extenuated circumstances form, the provider will receive a notification to proceed with completing the Reporting Period 2 report shortly thereafter. The AMA will continue to advocate for greater flexibility and more information to ensure physician practices have an adequate opportunity to come into compliance.


Altfest Launches YouTube Channel “Wealth Matters for Physicians” to Promote Physician Financial Wellness
Altfest Personal Wealth Management, selected 14 times as one of Barron’s Top 100 Financial Advisors, is pleased to announce the launch of its financial wellness YouTube channel dedicated to educating and empowering physicians to optimize their financial lives.

Wealth Matters for Physicians features timely and actionable investment and personal financial planning videos. The topics, chosen by their relevancy and interest to physicians, will cover the full spectrum of investment and personal financial planning subjects – including market outlooks and which investment areas are currently appealing, leading tax reduction strategies, business succession and retirement planning, estate planning, student debt management, and many more.



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Podcast: Areas of Focus for Remainder of Legislative Season
Listen to MSSNY’s May 6th podcast as Senior Vice-President & Chief Legislative Counsel Moe Auster discusses areas of focus for the remainder of legislative session.


MSSNY Partners with Specialty Societies and Groups in Support of Prior Authorization Reform and Other Key Issues
Physicians are urged to continue to contact their legislators to express their support for multiple legislative initiatives to address prior authorization hassles.  You can send a letter here: Prior Authorizations hassles must be fixed!  (p2a.co).

On May 3rd, MSSNY participated in an advocacy day with the New York State Radiological Society (NYSRS). Key issues included the “Gold Card” bill (S.8299, Breslin/A.9908-A, McDonald) to exempt physicians from health insurer prior authorization requirements if the physician receives at least 90% approval by that insurer for pre-authorizations for a particular health care treatment, and legislation (A7129-A Gottfried/S6435-B Breslin) to prohibit repeat prior authorization requirements and require that health review criteria be peer reviewed and evidence-based.

On May 4 and May 5, MSSNY joined the New York Cancer & Blood Specialists for several advocacy meetings with key legislators in support of the two prior authorization bills above.  For all of these meetings, physician leaders and MSSNY staff emphasized the extraordinary number of treatments now subject to prior authorizations, and the hassles associated with obtaining these authorizations, that are interfering with patients obtaining the care they need.


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MSSNY President Joins Patient and Other Physicians Organizations at News Conference to Push for Passage of Copay Accumulator Legislation
This week, MSSNY President Dr. Joseph Sellers joined several legislators, as well as patient and physician organizations, for a news conference in the State Capitol to urge passage of Copay Accumulator legislation (A.1741, Gottfried/S.5299, Rivera) as soon as possible. The Senate Insurance Committee voted to advance the bill to the full Senate at its last meeting on Monday, April 25.  The identical Assembly bill is on the Assembly floor.

This important bill would prohibit health insurers from preventing patients from using a copay card or coupon to count towards their out-of-pocket deductibles.  Many patients, particularly those on long-term therapies, rely on financial assistance programs, such as a copay coupons or cards, to reduce the cost of their medication. However, insurers are employing this new tactic to undermine these financial assistance programs by preventing their application towards meeting the enormous deductibles patients face. MSSNY strongly supports policy to ensure that third party financial support will help patients to meet the cost of their medications.

Please visit MSSNY’s Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to take action and let your legislators know that you support passage of this important legislation!


Urge Your Legislators to Reject Legislation That Would Drive Huge New Increases in Medical Liability Insurance
Physicians are urged to contact their legislators to request that they reject legislation (S.74-A/A.6770) strongly opposed by MSSNY, hospital associations, and numerous other groups. This legislation would create untenable increases in New York’s already excessive medical liability costs by greatly expanding the types of damages awardable in wrongful death actions. A letter and/or tweet can be sent from here: Don’t Chase Physicians out of NY! (p2a.co). This week, the Assembly Codes Committee advanced this legislation to the full Assembly, and next week the Senate Judiciary Committee is considering the legislation.

One recent actuarial estimate indicated that passage of legislation such as this could require a liability premium increase of over 40%, which translates to tens of thousands of dollars in new costs for physicians who already pay thousands of dollars per year in their insurance costs. This could make it impossible for many physicians to stay in practice in New York.  Under ordinary circumstances, these kinds of increases would be unsustainable and could have hugely negative consequences on patient access to care at community hospitals and physician offices.  However, with so many physician practices only beginning to recover from the huge drop in patient visits and revenue during the pandemic, legislation to impose such premium increases would be unconscionable.

While some advocates have claimed that New York’s existing wrongful death law is an outlier compared to other states’ laws, what they do not mention is that most of these other states also have comprehensive provisions to contain excessive medical liability insurance costs, including limits on damages.  New York has no such law, which is why our medical liability insurance and payout costs far exceed every other state in the country, making New York regularly ranked as one of the worst states in the country to be a physician. Best & Worst States for Doctors (wallethub.com)

Please let your legislators know that comprehensive legislation is needed to bring down New York’s excessively high medical liability premiums, which far exceed every other state in the country, instead of stand-alone bills that would drive up these costs.


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MSSNY Participates in Lobby Day on Immunizations
The Medical Society of the State of New York participated in virtual meetings with lawmakers from across the state as a member of the Let’s Get Immunized NY (LGINY) campaign.  These meetings reinforced the importance of immunizations and urged legislators not to roll back New York State’s strong vaccine policy and access. MSSNY and LGINY also called for passage of S75A, Hoylman/A279A, Gottfried which would establish a more robust vaccination registry for New York adults aged 19 and older across the state.  Individuals will have the ability to opt out of the registry if they so choose. Physicians are encouraged to read MSSNY’s memo on S. 75A/A279a and to communicate support of this measure.


Numerous Physician Mandate Bills Under Consideration in the Final Weeks of Session
As we head into the final 4 weeks of the legislative session, there are numerous bills under active consideration in the Senate and Assembly that would impose requirements on physicians (and other providers) delivering care to their patients, as well as countless other mandates on medical practice in New York.  MSSNY has been working together with affected specialty societies to highlights its concerns that, while each of these proposals may have good intentions, in totality they are creating significant new documentation requirements that place the physician’s licensure in jeopardy if there is an instance where they fail to document that they completed a task.  This could have a significant impact on decisions made by physicians, including whether or not to practice in New York. Some of these bills include:

  • 67/A.3298 – Would require physicians treating a patient for epilepsy to provide information regarding the risk of Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy.
  • 213/A.1615 – Requires physicians to obtain the school attended by their pediatric patients.
  • 2103-B/A.5841-B – Requires physicians to obtain a detailed patient/family member consent for a nursing home resident prior to the receipt of a psychotropic medication, or detailed documentation of the need to provide such medication without consent.
  • 2521-C/A.3470-C – Requires employed health care providers to disclose if their employer health system is charging a facility fee.
  • 2736/A.217 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to pregnant patients regarding the risks of a caesarean section to patients scheduled to have a C-section.
  • 4640/A.273 – Requires physicians and other care providers to document that they considered and discussed numerous alternatives to opioid treatment prior to writing an opioid prescription for a patient.
  • 6287-B/A.7560-A – Requires OB-GYNs to provide information to their pregnant patients regarding the risks of cytomegalovirus (CMV)
  • 7865/A.5976-A – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers providing pre- and post-natal care or pediatric care to invite the mother to fill out a questionnaire to detect maternal depression.
  • 8455/A.9380 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to patients about the potential consequences of an episiotomy.

Please remain alert for further updates on these issues.


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Virtual CME at MSSNY 2022 House of Delegates-Registration Now Open
MSSNY is offering four CME webinars during the 2022 House of Delegates on Friday May 20th from 7:30am-12:00pm.  View the flyer for these programs here.

7:30-8:30am
Medical Matters: What’s Your Diagnosis? Infectious Diseases
Faculty: William Valenti, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify the modes of transmission of infectious agents
  • Discuss presumptive treatment of infectious diseases in advance of diagnostic testing results
  • Describe two scenarios and review questions and answers
    (This program is supported in whole by a DHHS grant entitled New York State Hospital Preparedness Program)

8:40-9:40am
Women in Medicine 2022: Up the Down Staircase
Faculty: Carol Ann Bernstein, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify significant stressors contributing to burnout as they specifically impact women physicians in the era of COVID-19.
  • Increase knowledge of potential strategies that can be used to support women physicians, especially when working in dynamically changing and stressful clinical environments.
  • Identify potential systemic solutions as well as practical techniques that promote growth and resilience in women physicians.

9:50 – 10:50am
The Health of Sexual and Gender Minorities
Faculty: Carl Streed, MD, MPH, FACP
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify disparities in health care access among SGM persons
  • Identify disparities in health care outcomes among SGM persons
  • Examine minority stress as a contributor to health disparities
  • Identify opportunities to meet the health care needs of SGM persons

11:00am-12:00pm
Veterans Matters: COVID-19 and its Impact on Veterans
Faculty: Frank Dowling, MD
Educational Objectives:

  • Identify the wide ranging medical and mental health impact of COVID-19 on veterans
  • Discuss growing number of veterans who have experienced COVID-19 related post-traumatic stress
  • Recognize the role of physicians in assessing the impact of the pandemic in veteran patients
    (This program is supported in whole by a grant from the New York State Office of Mental Health.)

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 each 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.


Physician Suicide:  Reconceptualizing “Do No Harm”
Upstate University Hospital will host a virtual Healthcare Transformation Grand Rounds presentation entitled “Physician Suicide:  Reconceptualizing “Do No Harm” on Wednesday, May 11, from noon – 1:30 pm.  All professions and specialties are invited to attend.

The presentation will include a showing of the film “Do No Harm” followed by a panel discussion featuring:

  • Jarrod Bagatell, MD – Director, Employee/Student Health
  • Leslie Kohman, MD, FACS – Chief Wellness Officer
  • Seethalakshmi Ramanathan, MD, MPA – Associate Professor of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences
  • Kaushal Nanavati, MD – Assistant Dean for Wellness
  • Thomas Schwartz, MD – Chair, Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences

In the United States, the rate of death by suicide among physicians is higher than the general population.  It is estimated that 300-400 physicians die by suicide every year.  Despite the high prevalence of suicide, mental illness and suicide among physicians and healthcare workers remain under-recognized.

At the conclusion of this presentation, participants will be able to:

  • Recognize the prevalence of suicide risk among current and future physicians
  • Describe risk factors for suicidal crises among physicians
  • Discuss mitigation strategies and local resources that are available for physicians experiencing mental health problems.

CME credits are being offered.  Advance registration is required.


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


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On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom. MUST SEE! Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.



Rendr – Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr – Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine Physician, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job Position: Internal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr – Transforming HealthcareLeadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

MSSNY eNews: April 29, 2022

Message from MSSNY President Dr Joseph Sellers:
Measles Cases on the Rise Worldwide

Colleagues:
This week, UNICEF and WHO warned of a “perfect storm” of conditions for measles outbreaks in children. As physicians, we know—and as I told Fox News in an interview—the concern is that when measles cases rise, we worry not only about measles outbreaks. I explained to the reporter that physicians worry that the children who are not vaccinated against measles are likely not vaccinated against other childhood illnesses as well. Measles—which is so contagious—is the first sign of an under-vaccinated population.

The UNICEF and WHO report is concerning indeed. Worldwide measles cases increased by 79 percent in the first two months of 2022, compared to the same period in 2021. Almost 17,338 measles cases were reported worldwide in January and February 2022, compared to 9,665 during the first two months of 2021.

There are so many contributing factors to this situation, including pandemic-related disruptions and increasing inequalities in access to vaccines. In addition, conflicts and crises around the world that cause disruptions in immunizations and lack of clean water and sanitation increase the risk of vaccine-preventable disease outbreaks.

MSSNY has been a leader in immunization campaigns and is a strong proponent of individual vaccinations in both children and adults. Vaccination has been—and continues to be—the most important public health measure of our lifetime.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President


Hassles with Insurance Companies? MSSNY’s Director of Physician Practice and Payment Can Help!
Following is a note we received recently from a member:
Twice over the past few months I have asked MSSNY’s Director of Physician Payment and Practice Heather Lopez for help resolving issues that my staff and I were unable to resolve on our own.  The first was regarding my need to get clarification of an ambiguous general billing policy of an insurance company, which she was able to get the answer for me rather quickly.  The second problem she solved for me was a miracle.  For over a year now, my staff and I have been fighting an insurance company, which denied payment for a rendered service for a reason that was completely unfair, but despite all our arguments and pleas, we could not get the insurance company to reverse their non-payment decision.  I contacted Ms. Lopez about this case and she went to work on it promptly and got the insurance company to reverse their decision and make payment to me—all within a month. 

If you have questions about this or any other insurance concern, contact MSSNY’s Director of Physician Payment and Practice, Heather Lopez, at 518.465.8085 X332 | hlopez@mssny.org



Do You Have Unanswered Questions for CMS? Join Open Forum
On the second Tuesday of each month, CMS holds a monthly call for physicians—an opportunity to bring your questions to an open forum. The next call is Tuesday, May 10 at 6 pm.

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MSSNY Member’s Letter to the Editor Published in Wall Street Journal
Ms. Finley’s op-ed (California’s Medical ‘Misinformation’ Crusade Could Cost Lives)  understates the danger of California’s legislation. Every innovation in medicine goes against existing standards of care. Today’s standard becomes substandard as new treatments develop. Medicine progresses when doctors have the freedom to practice their profession without interference from political agendas.

In my field of ophthalmology, millions of patients undergo the implantation of an intraocular lens. These surgeries often result in better vision than patients had before developing their cataracts. Yet until the mid-1970s, inserting a foreign body inside the human eye was considered well outside the standard of care. Without innovative surgeons willing to go against accepted thinking, patients would not have benefited from these lenses.

Any proposed law against innovation will end progress. California’s law must be defeated.

Michael T. Goldstein, M.D.


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Senate Insurance Committee Advances Three Bills to Increase Patient Access
At its most recent committee meeting on Monday, April 25th, the Senate Insurance Committee reported to the Senate floor three bills strongly supported by MSSNY that will remove barriers and increase patient access to the most appropriate treatment.

The first, S.8299 (Breslin)/A.9908-A (McDonald), establishes a “Gold Card” program in which physicians, and other care providers will be exempted from Prior Authorization requirements from a health insurer for a specific health care treatment if they receive at least 90% approval for their prior authorizations for that treatment. The legislation is similar to a law enacted last year in Texas, which was designed to prevent unnecessary roadblocks to patient care and reward the following of evidence-based treatment guidelines.  Physicians are urged to a letter in support here: Take Action (p2a.co)

The second bill S.5299 (Rivera)/A.1741 (Gottfried) prohibits insurers from preventing patients from using a copay card or coupon to cover count towards their out-of-pocket deductibles.  Many patients rely on financial assistance programs, such as a copay coupon or card, to reduce the cost of their medication. However, insurers are employing this new tactic to undermine these financial assistance programs by preventing their application towards meeting the enormous deductibles patients face. Physicians can send a letter in support here: Take action!

The third bill, S.5909 (Kaminsky)/A.3276 (Gunther), would exempt mental health medications from health insurer step therapy requirements.


Physician Associations Team Together to  Advocate that Medical Residents and Fellows Are Eligible for Bonuses
MSSNY is working together with several specialty societies and medical residents to urge the Commissioner of Health to exercise her discretionary authority to ensure that physician residents and fellows are deemed eligible for the frontline health care worker bonuses established as part of the recently enacted State Budget.  A letter and tweet in support can be sent from the MSSNY Grassroots Action Site here: Allow Residents and Fellows to be Eligible for Frontline Healthcare Worker Bonuses (p2a.co)

The issue arises from the fact that the State Budget included a provision that funds one-time bonus payments of up to $3,000 for front line health care workers employed by hospitals and certain other Medicaid enrolled health care providers, who have a base salary of less than $125,000, and have worked for 6 months straight for one employer during the “vesting” period.  It included several types of health care job titles, but importantly also gave discretion to the Commissioner to add additional job titles.

As a result, several thousand medical residents across the State of New York joined in a communication to Governor Hochul asking for their inclusion in the bonus pool.

MSSNY also joined together with several specialty societies in submitting a letter to Commissioner of Health Dr. Mary Bassett stating that the lack of express inclusion of residents and fellows in the bonus pool is inconsistent with the stated goal of the bonuses.  In urging the Commissioner to include residents and follows, the letter notes the Legislature’s intent that the bonuses apply generally to all members of the health care workforce who “…have seen us through a once–in–a–century public health crisis and turned our state into a model for battling and beating COVID–19.  To attract talented people into the profession at a time of such significant strain while also retaining those who have been working so tirelessly these past two years, we must recognize the efforts of our health care and mental hygiene workforce and reward them financially for their service…”

Please remain alert for further updates on this important issue.


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Several Categories of Physician Medicaid Fees Being Increased Starting July 1
Physician Medicaid fees for Evaluation & Management and Medicine CPT codes will be increased to 70% of Medicare, for services July 1, 2022, and after, as announced by the NYS Department of Health during a webinar this week detailing changes enacted in the. While this is low when compared to the growth in the costs of delivering patient care, many of these patient services provided by physicians are currently paid at below 50% of Medicare.

As part of the webinar, the DOH also announced that the enacted Budget  removed the requirement for physicians and other care providers to request DOH to increase beneficiary benefit limits.  DOH indicated the reason for the change was to reduce some of the administrative burdens that physicians and other care providers have with the Medicaid program.

The DOH webinar also discussed several other important changes arising from the recently enacted State Budget, including expanded eligibility for the State Essential Plan and increasing eligibility for no-cost Child Health Insurance Plus coverage.


Numerous Physician Mandate Bills Under Consideration in the Final Weeks of Session
As we head into the final 5 weeks of the legislative session, there are numerous bills under active consideration in the Senate and Assembly that would impose requirements on physicians (and other providers) delivering care to their patients, in addition to the other countless mandates on medical practice in New York.  MSSNY has been working together with the affected specialty societies to highlights its concerns to the Legislature that, while each of these proposals may have good intentions, in totality they are creating significant new documentation requirements that place the physician’s licensure in jeopardy if there is an instance where they fail to document that they completed a task.  This could have a significant impact on decisions made by physicians including whether or not to practice in New York. Some of these bills include:

  • 67/A.3298 – Would require physicians treating a patient for epilepsy to provide information regarding the risk of Sudden Unexpected Death in Epilepsy.
  • 213/A.1615 – Would require physicians to obtain the school attended by their pediatric patients.
  • 2521-C/A.3470-C – Would require employed health care providers to disclose if their employer health system is charging a facility fee.
  • 2736/A.217 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to pregnant patients with information regarding the risks of a caesarean section to patients scheduled to have a C-section.
  • 4640/A.273 – Would require physicians and other care providers to document that they considered and discussed numerous alternatives to opioid treatment prior to writing an opioid prescription for a patient.
  • 6287-B/A.7560-A – Would require O-GYNs to provide information to their pregnant patients regarding the risks of cytomegalovirus (CMV).
  • 7865/A.5976-A – Would require physicians and other maternal care providers providing pre- and post-natal care or pediatric care to invite the mother to fill out a questionnaire to detect maternal depression.
  • 8455/A.9380 – Requires physicians and other maternal care providers to provide information to patients about the potential consequences of an episiotomy.

Please remain alert for further updates on these issues.


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MSSNY, Family Physicians Raise Concerns with Legislation to Permit PAs to Directly Bill Medicaid Managed Care
MSSNY, the  NYS Academy of Family Physicians, and the NY Chapter of the American College of Physicians have written to the NYS Assembly to raise strong objections with legislation that would permit physician assistants (PAs) to be designated as a primary care practitioner under Medicaid Managed Care.  While the bill does not in and of itself change statutory supervision requirements for PAs, it would potentially give them the ability to directly bill insurers for patient health care services, despite the fact that PAs typically practice as an employee in a hospital or in a physician practice.  Since PAs do not practice independently, they should not be allowed to bill an insurance company independently from their employer.

The bill advanced from the Assembly Ways & Means Committee to the Assembly floor this week.  The legislation passed the State Senate earlier this session.  Physicians can send a letter to their
Assembly members Preserve Physician-led, Team-based Healthcare (p2a.co) to express concerns with legislation (A.6056/S.5956).

While they are essential components of the health care team, including in the delivery of primary care, PAs are not authorized under law to practice without physician supervision. Current executive orders have provided for a temporary waiver of some supervision requirements (which MSSNY has strongly opposed).  However, the goal of these EO provisions was to provide greater flexibility in hospitals for the management of excess patient load due to COVID-19, not to provide independent practice on a permanent basis.

In its memo, MSSNY raised concerns that this legislation was creating a potential pathway for PAs to practice independently without physician oversight, which has been rejected in numerous states because of the need to protect physician-led team-based care for patients.  Furthermore, numerous studies have shown that advanced care practitioners provide more costly care, including.


MSSNY Raises Concerns with Legislation to Require Health Care Employee Disclosure of Health System Facility Fees
Last year, legislation which would have required hospitals and hospital-based physicians to submit consolidated bills was significantly revised to delete this very concerning provision.  This was a significant development, as MSSNY together with several other specialty societies, had raised significant concerns to the Senate and Assembly that this joint billing requirement would have put non-employed physicians at the mercy of the hospitals since the legislation does not specify how payments to hospitals from this “single bill” would then be distributed to these physicians.

This week, the pared-down legislation (S.2521-C/A.3470-C) was reported from the Senate Health Committee to the Senate floor.  This version would require a health care provider who enters into “a business relationship with a hospital or health system that will result in the provider’s patients being subject to facility fees”, to notify its patients of the change and that facility fees will now be applicable to services received from the health care provider. MSSNY, together with several specialty societies, submitted a letter raising concerns with this revised legislation, urging that this disclosure requirement should be placed on the health system charging the facility fee, instead of the physician providing the service.  The letter notes the concern is that these types of charges imposed by a health system are often not known by the physician employee delivering patient care.  


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NYS Department of Health Updates County Health Indicators by Race and Ethnicity
The NYS Department of Health has announced updates to  three major dashboard applications, as well as the County Health Indicators by Race and Ethnicity and the County Perinatal Data Profiles. These resources present data at the state, county, and sub-county level where available. They  mark the completion of updates for county-level dashboards and resources intended to assist in planning and use for the current round of County Health Assessments.

The County Health Indicators by Race/Ethnicity (CHIRE):
These tables use the most recent data from NYS Vital Statistics, SPARCS and the Cancer Registry, and from the US Census, to present 46 indicators about general population description, birth, death, hospitalization, and cancer, by race/ethnicity, for New York State, New York City, and for each county. Each region and county have their own set of tables.

The Leading Causes of Death Dashboard: 
NYS vital statistics data was used to produce ten-year trends of deaths and death rates for leading causes of death and leading causes of premature death, in New York State, New York City, and in counties. For the state, data is  available by gender, age and race/ethnicity. For the regions, data is  available by gender and age. For the counties, data is available by gender. The dashboard also includes ten-year trends in life expectancy, for the state by gender.

The Maternal and Child Health dashboard:
Federal and statewide data systems were analyzed to update maternal, infant, child, and

adolescent health at the state and county-level, on the Maternal and Child Health dashboard. This dashboard is an interactive visual presentation of indicators tracking maternal, infant, and child health data at state and county levels. The state dashboard homepage displays a quick view of the most current data for 41 indicators and compares them with data from previous time periods to assess progress. State level historical (trend) data can be easily accessed, and data for many state level indicators is  also available by socio-economic status. County data (maps, tables and bar and trend charts) is  also available for 13 indicators.

The Asthma Control Program Data Dashboard:
The state asthma dashboard homepage displays a quick view of the most currently available data as compared to the previous year for the 40 tracking indicators. It provides users with easily accessible historical (trend) data, drill-down data to county and sub-county (ZIP code) levels, and visualizations for major socio-demographic factors (e.g., age group, race/ethnicity, sex, region, income, education). Each of the 62 counties have

their own dashboard with data for 31 indicators, including sub-county (ZIP code) level data for 8 indicators.

An export tab has been added to easily output data at the state, county, and subcounty levels, and by demographic group.

The County/ZIP Code Perinatal Data Profiles:
Vital statistics data from a three-year period is  used to produce ZIP Code based tables of commonly requested perinatal data, such as total births, premature births, low birth weight births, births to unmarried parents, infant deaths, teen birth, and pregnancy rates. The tables are available for the state, regions, county, and ZIP Codes within each county. NYSDOH has worked diligently to update and improve these applications and resources, which make data easily accessible to program partners, practitioners, health officials, and the public. Please direct questions and requests for additional information to phiginfo@health.ny.gov.


NYS Arthritis Program to Host Webinar on Improving Arthritis Management
The NYS Department of Health Arthritis Program will conduct a webinar, “Prescribing Physical Activity to Improve Arthritis Management” on Monday, May 9, 2022 from 9-10 a.m. The webinar can be viewed at https://livestream.com/wmht/phl0509. Handouts and the link for the evaluation and post-test for continuing education credits are located at the School of Public Health website.  Email coned@albany.edu or call 518-402-0330 if assistance is needed.


Join MSSNY in Kicking Off Wellness
MSSNY will be hosting a series of physician wellness webinars covering various topics within the realm of wellness over the next few months.
Women in Medicine 2022: Up the Down Staircase: May 20, 8:40-9:40am
Carol Bernstein, MD will serve as faculty. Register now!

Educational objectives:

  • Identify significant stressors contributing to burnout as they specifically impact women physicians in the era of Covid.
  • Increase knowledge of potential strategies that can be used to support women physicians, especially when working in dynamically changing and stressful clinical environments.
  • Identify potential systemic solutions as well as practical techniques that promote growth and resilience in women physicians.

Additional information or assistance with registration may be obtained by contacting Cayla Lauder at clauder@mssny.org.

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.


Peer to Peer (P2P) Program
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 peer24/7 . 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!

A training session to become a peer supporter will be scheduled for the coming month. If you wish to become a trained peer supporter, please reach out to Cayla Lauder, MPH, Public Health Associate, at clauder@mssny.org.

If someone you know is struggling with life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to connect them to a peer supporter!

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


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom. MUST SEE! Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.



Rendr – Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr – Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine Physician, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job Position: Internal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr – Transforming HealthcareLeadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

MSSNY eNews: April 27, 2022

Are Physicians Prohibited from Responding to Online Patient Reviews?
Numerous websites provide information about clinicians and organizations from which patients seek health care. Some of these sites provide user-submitted reviews about practices and clinicians from patients or members of the public. Unfortunately, patient reviews are not always positive, and can sometimes be negative, inflammatory, or false. Negative or false reviews can adversely, and sometimes seriously, affect a physician, their practice, reputation, and their career. To avoid these potential consequences, physicians may feel compelled to respond to reviews to address concerns or rectify problems but are fearful they will run afoul of the law and patient privacy protections if they do.

Debunking the Myth

There are no federal laws or regulations prohibiting physicians or practices from responding to online patient reviews; however, unlike other businesses that may respond to online reviews in any way they deem appropriate, physicians are limited in what and how they can communicate with a patient reviewer in a public forum.

Acknowledgement of a patient’s relationship with the provider might risk violating patient privacy protected by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act (HIPAA) and applicable state laws. It is important to note that HIPAA does not explicitly prohibit physicians from responding to online reviews; physicians are free to respond and contribute to an online review forum, but they must maintain the privacy of the patient’s protected health information (PHI), even if the patient has already revealed personal information. While a patient is free to share any information about their experience in an online forum, physicians are prohibited from disclosing any patient-specific information.

Most, if not all, online review sites have openly published community review guidelines or standards. Physicians and practices do have the option to contact the review sites directly to dispute false or inflammatory reviews, especially if they believe the reviews violate the site’s community standards.

Physicians are encouraged to consider these suggestions when deciding whether and how to respond to online reviews…Read more


Several Categories of Physician Medicaid Fees Increase July 1
Physician Medicaid fees for Evaluation & Management and Medicine CPT codes will be increased to 70% of Medicare, for services July 1, 2022 and after, as announced by the New York State Department of Health during a webinar this week detailing significant changes enacted in the recently enacted 2022-23 State Budget.  2022-23 Executive Budget Briefing and Questions & Answers (ny.gov) Many of these patient services provided by physicians are currently paid at below 50% of Medicaid.

As part of the webinar, the DOH also announced that the enacted Budget also removed the requirement for physicians and other care providers to request DOH to increase beneficiary benefit limits.  DOH indicated the reason for the change was to reduce some of the administrative burdens that physicians and other care providers have with the Medicaid program.

The DOH webinar also discussed several other important changes arising from the recently enacted State Budget, including expanded eligibility for the State Essential Plan and increasing eligibility for no-cost Child Health Insurance Plus coverage.


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MSSNY’s Dr. Bonnie Litvack Elected American College of Radiology State Government Relations Chair
Congratulations to MSSNY Immediate Past President Dr. Bonnie Litvack, the incoming chair of State Government Relations Committee for the American College of Radiology (ACR). The ACR’s primary purpose is to advance the science of radiology, improve radiologic services to patients, study the socioeconomic aspects of radiology, and encourage continuing education for radiologists. This week, Dr. Litvack moderated a lively session at ACR 2022 Annual Meeting that included ACR Radiology Advocacy Network incoming committee chair Dr. Amy Patel, Kristin Brackemyre Director, PAC and Government Relations at the Public Affairs Council, and Dr. Tilden Childs, the Howard Fleishon Radiology Advocacy Network Advocate of the year and Texas Radiological Society Gold medalist.  MSSNY wishes Dr. Litvack success in her newest endeavor.

MSSNY Immediate Past President Dr. Bonnie Litvack


Questions about Virtual Credit Cards (VCC) & Electronic Funds Transfer (EFT)?
Many insurance companies are turning to paying via EFT or VCC. There has been a lot of confusion when it comes to this and what the CMS regulations are. The AMA has set up a tool kit that provides all the information you need to know.

If you have questions about this or any other insurance concern, contact MSSNY’s Director of Physician Payment and Practice, Heather Lopez, at 518.465.8085 X332 | hlopez@mssny.org



MSSNYPAC at the HOD
MSSNYPAC Chairs Dr. Thomas Lee and Dr. Rose Berkun invite local physicians, medical students, delegates and guests who will be attending the MSSNY House of Delegates or will be in the Tarrytown area on Friday, May 20 from 5pm-6pm to attend the MSSNYPAC membership meeting at the Tarrytown Marriot. We will discuss the recent legislative accomplishments, legislative priorities for the remainder of the 2022 Legislative Session and the essential role MSSNYPAC plays in supporting physician relationships with candidates seeking election or re-election to the NYS Senate, NYS Assembly and statewide offices. Contact Jennifer Wilks at mssnypac@mssny.org or call/text 914-933-7722 for further information or to RSVP. Donate online today at www.mssnypac.org.


Helping Private Practices Navigate Non-Essential Care During COVID-19
The American Medical Association has released updated guidance for private practice physicians navigating the provision of care during the COVID-19 pandemic. The resource emphasizes ways physicians and practices should protect their employees, patients, and visitors while also operating within the constraints of a national healthcare staffing crisis. The guide includes recommendations to review COVID-19 federal and state guidelines to ensure patient and staff safety and to assist in adjusting workflows to support both staff and patients.


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Federation Health Equity Exchange May 5
The AMA Federation Health Equity Exchange will be held on May 5 at 3 pm ET. Register Here. In addition to a presentation from Bill Jordan, MD, AMA Health Equity Policy Director, Carla Brathwaite of the American College of Radiology will share their experience with forming the Radiology Health Equity Coalition. There will be time for questions and discussion as well. The intent of these calls is for Federation and AMA staff to share information, learn from each other and foster discussion.


OnBoard: Limited Release – Phase Three Starting Next Week!
The final phase of OnBoard: Limited Release will be available Monday, May 2 and will include Treatment/Testing prior authorization requests.

For more information, visit the OnBoard webpage. There you’ll find stakeholder-specific training and resources for health care providers, medical suppliers, payers and attorneys.

Phase Three Q&A webinars will be announced soon—so stay tuned!

If you have any general OnBoard questions, email OnBoard@wcb.ny.gov.


Val Renewal Banner


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent  (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom.  MUST SEE!  Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects.  Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.



Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine PhysicianBilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job PositionInternal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine

under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice  medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

MSSNY eNews: April 22, 2022

Message from MSSNY President Dr Joseph Sellers:
Have Prior Auth Hassles Hindered Care for Your Patients?

Colleagues:
With the New York State Budget now behind us, it’s time to refocus our efforts on the six remaining weeks in the legislative session.

The “Gold Card” legislation, which was introduced in the Assembly by Assemblymember John McDonald (D-Albany) and in the Senate by Senator Neil Breslin (D-Albany), would establish a program in which insurers will exempt physicians from a health insurer’s Prior Authorization (PA) requirements for a specific treatment if they receive at least 90% approval for PAs for that specific health care treatment.  With the Senate Insurance Committee to consider the legislation next week, all physicians are urged to contact their Senators to express support: Take Action!

As physicians, we are all too familiar with how excessive prior authorization hassles can impede patient care. In fact, a recent AMA survey showed that more than 9 in 10 physicians (93%) reported care delays while waiting for health insurers to authorize necessary care, and 82% said patients abandon treatment due to authorization struggles with health insurers. More than half (51%) of physicians reported that prior authorizations had interfered with a patient’s job responsibilities, and more than one-third (34%) of physicians reported that prior authorization led to a serious adverse event such as hospitalization, disability, or even death, for a patient in their care.

The bill is a new and important part of MSSNY’s ongoing advocacy efforts to confront excessive prior authorization requirements that interfere with patient care delivery and access to the most effective treatments.

It’s time for us to take action. Please share any examples you have of prior authorization hassles that have hindered necessary patient care so that we can bring your anecdotes to the legislators and to regulators with authority to stem the abusive practices of health insurers.

Again, please take a minute to visit MSSNY’s Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to urge your state Senator and Assemblymember to sign on in support of A.9908-A, McDonald/S.8299, Breslin: Take Action!

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President


Urgent Reminder: Provider Relief Fund Requests for Late Reporting Due AT MIDNIGHT
Physicians who received more than $10,000 in provider relief funds and did not submit their Period 1 report must act immediately by submitting a late Reporting Period 1 report request by Friday, April 22, 2022 at 11:59 pm ET. HRSA has informed the AMA that there are approximately 16,000 providers in this situation, accounting for about 2% of Provider Relief Funds disbursed in Period 1. While physician practices should have received information about how to submit a request directly from HRSA via email and US postal mail, we are aware many providers have not been contacted. The emails were sent from UHG_HRSA@ProviderEmail.uhc.com. If a provider did not submit a Period 1 report and does not hear from HRSA, click here to learn more about the late reporting request form or call (866) 569-3522.

When completing the late reporting request, a provider must choose an extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented compliance with the original reporting deadline. HRSA has released the following as allowable extenuating circumstances:

  • Severe illness or death – a severe medical condition or death of a provider or key staff member responsible for reporting hindered the organization’s ability to complete the report during the Reporting Period.
  • Impacted by natural disaster – a natural disaster occurred during or in close proximity of the end of the Reporting Period damaging the organization’s records or information technology.
  • Lack of receipt of reporting communications – an incorrect email or mailing address on file with HRSA prevented the organization from receiving instructions prior to the Reporting Period deadline.
  • Failure to click “submit” – the organization registered and prepared a report in the PRF Reporting Portal but failed to take the final step to click “submit” prior to deadline.
  • Internal miscommunication or error – Internal miscommunication or error regarding the individual who was authorized and expected to submit the report on behalf of the organization and/or the registered point of contact in the PRF Reporting Portal.
  • Incomplete Targeted Distribution payments – the organization’s parent entity completed all General Distribution payments, but a Targeted Distribution(s) was not reported on by the subsidiary.

While attesting to an extenuating circumstance is required, no supporting document or proof is required. More information and a step-by-step guide from the AMA are available here.

If HRSA approves the extenuated circumstances form, the provider will receive a notification to proceed with completing the Reporting Period 1 report shortly thereafter. Providers will have 10 days from the notification receipt date to submit the late Period 1 report in the PRF Reporting Portal. The AMA will continue to advocate for greater flexibility and more information to ensure physician practices have an adequate opportunity to come into compliance.


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10 Most Diverse Medical Schools: US News & World Report
As part of its annual best graduate schools lists, U.S. News & World Report worked with the Robert Graham Center, a division of the American Academy of Family Physicians, to rank the most diverse medical schools.

The rankings, released March 29, are based on fall 2021 medical and osteopathic school-level race and ethnicity enrollment information reported to U.S. News in fall 2021 and early 2022 by the schools. The rankings include 126 medical and osteopathic schools and consider the percentage of each medical school’s fall 2021 total enrollment who are underrepresented minority students and how that percentage compares with state and national race-ethnic-group proportions. Access more information about the methodology here.

Note: The list includes ties.

  1. Howard University College of Medicine (Washington, D.C.)
  2. Herbert Wertheim College of Medicine at Florida International University (Miami)
  3. The UC Davis School of Medicine (Sacramento, Calif.)
  4. The Robert Larner College of Medicine at the University of Vermont (Burlington)
  5. University of New Mexico School of Medicine (Albuquerque)
  6. Kaiser Permanente Bernard J. Tyson School of Medicine (Pasadena, Calif.)
  7. Lewis Katz School of Medicine at Temple University (Philadelphia)
  8. University of Miami Leonard M. Miller School of Medicine (Miami)
  9. Brody School of Medicine at East Carolina University (Greenville, N.C.)
  10. Pritzker School of Medicine at University of Chicago

–Gooch, Becker’s Hospital Review


MSSNY Supporting Copay Accumulator Legislation
The Senate Insurance Committee will vote on legislation at its next meeting on Monday, April 25th to  prohibit insurers from preventing patients from using a copay card or coupon to count towards their insurance deductibles through a relatively new insurance benefit design known as “Copay Accumulators”.

Many patients rely on financial assistance programs, such as a copay coupon or card, to reduce the cost of their medication. But insurers are employing a new tactic — called a copay accumulator adjustment — to undermine these financial assistance programs. Copay Accumulators prevent patients from using a copay card or coupon to cover their out-of-pocket expenses. Under this practice, when a patient uses a copay coupon or card, the health plan receives the payment from the card or coupon, yet the amount of the support provided by the coupon/card does not count towards the patient’s maximum out-of-pocket limit. This legislation would ensure these payments benefit the patient rather than insurers.

Despite New York State’s strong record in providing affordable access to health insurance, many New Yorkers still struggle to pay for their prescription drugs and for those battling chronic illnesses like cancer, diabetes, multiple sclerosis, and others, the burden is often overwhelming.

Patients taking medications to help recover from illness or to manage life-threatening and chronic medical conditions often face significant out-of-pocket cost-sharing requirements such as high deductibles, health insurer-imposed Copay Accumulators have a significant adverse affect upon patients living with chronic conditions like cancer, diabetes, Multiple Sclerosis, and a host of others.

MSSNY strongly supports policy to ensure that third party financial support will help patients to meet the cost of their medications. Please take a minute to visit our Grassroots Action Center (GAC) to take action let your legislators know that you support passage of this important legislation!


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Biosimilars Awareness and Patient Access Assessment
Patients living with chronic or complex diseases have benefited in recent years from innovative biological medicines, which are manufactured from living cells and highly effective for many patients. Today, there are even more options on the market with so-called Biosimilars, which are biological medicines approved by the Food & Drug Administration (FDA) as “highly similar” to an original biologic therapy.

Like many states, New York enacted a law that permits a pharmacist to substitute an FDA-approved biosimilar for an original biologic therapy, provided there is notice to the prescribing physician within 5 days of the substitution. With that law expiring in 2022, and the State Legislature likely to consider an extension or changes to that law, there is a great need for MSSNY to learn about physicians’ experiences with the application of this law, as well as their experiences regarding health insurers’ similar or disparate coverage of innovator and biosimilar therapies.

To help us better understand this growing area of medicine from your perspective as physicians, we need your help and less than 5 minutes of your time by taking this very brief survey today.


MSSNYPAC at the HOD
MSSNYPAC Chairs Dr. Thomas Lee and Dr. Rose Berkun invite local physicians, medical students, delegates, and guests who will be attending the MSSNY House of Delegates or in the Tarrytown area on Friday, May 20 to attend the MSSNYPAC membership meeting at the Tarrytown Marriot.  We will discuss the recent legislative accomplishments, legislative priorities for the remainder of the 2022 Legislative Session and the essential role MSSNYPAC plays in supporting physician relationships with candidates seeking election or re-election the NYS Senate, NYS Assembly and statewide offices. Contact Jennifer Wilks at mssnypac@mssny.org or call/text 914-933-7722 for further information or to RSVP.  Donate online today at www.mssnypac.org.


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Join Healthcare Appreciation Week at Yankee Stadium
Baseball season is off and running! Healthcare Appreciation Day at Yankee Stadium will be held the week of May 6th– May 11th. Healthcare workers and their families may take advantage of a special offer for these nights that includes 20-45% discounted tickets, a commemorative scrub top, as well as a complimentary hot dog and drink. Purchase tickets.


CDC Issues Health Advisory About Cluster of Children with Hepatitis
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) has issued a Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Advisory notifying clinicians about a recently identified cluster of children with hepatitis and adenovirus infection.


Garfunkel Banner Ad


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom. MUST SEE! Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.


HOD Banner



Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine Physician, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job Position: Internal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming HealthcareLeadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

MSSNY eNews: April 20, 2022

Majority of U.S. Physicians Employed by Health Systems or Corporate Entities
Nearly three quarters of U.S. physicians (74%) are employed by hospitals, health systems or corporate entities as of January 1, 2022, according to new data from Avalere, in a study sponsored by the Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) that examined physician practice trends over the three-year period between 2019 and 2021. This is an increase from 69% of U.S. physicians being employed just last year.

Health systems and corporate entities have been steadily acquiring physician practices for years, but Avalere researchers found the trend has accelerated drastically since the onset of COVID-19. More than one hundred thousand (108,700) physicians became employees since January 2019. Of those, 83,000 (76%) became employees since the pandemic began.

Corporate entities such as private equity firms and health insurers are driving the spike in these trends. Corporate purchases of practices increased by 86% during the study period, and corporate employment of physicians increased by 43%. In 2021, corporate entities acquired 13,600 additional physician practices.

In comparison, hospital, and health system purchases of practices (9%) and employment of physicians (11%) continued at steadier rates.

Methodology
Avalere used the IQVIA OneKey database that contains physician and practice location information on hospital/health system ownership. These data include solo and single-location small practices as well as large, multi-specialty, multi-location group practices. These data include biannual physician and practice information. Researchers studied the three-year period from January 1, 2019 to January 1, 2022. Full methodology is available in the analysis.

Read more on the PAI website.


CMS Announces Opening of Surprise Bill Resolution Portal
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced the opening of the Independent Dispute Resolution (IDR) portal Home (cms.gov) which allows physicians to initiate the IDR process under the No Surprises Act for claims that cannot be brought to the State IDR process (for example, if the patient is covered through a self-insured employer health plan).  According to a notice from the AMA, for those claims for which the open negotiations period expired prior to the portal opening, physicians have until May 6th to initiate the IDR process.  For claims currently in the open negotiations period, the standard timelines will apply (i.e. the IDR process must be initiated within 4 business days of the open negotiations period ending).  The IDR portal can be accessed here.


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MSSNY’s Tip of the Week: Understanding Medicaid Billing
What can be done regarding Medicaid billing and private pay? MSSNY’s Heather Lopez is often asked this question, so she created a document for MSSNY members that provides all the information in one place. Click on this link to get the most up-to-date information regarding billing Medicaid and what to do if you do not accept Medicaid but your patient still wants to receive your services.

If you have questions about this or any other insurance concern, contact MSSNY’s Director of Physician Payment and Practice, Heather Lopez, at 518.465.8085 X332 | hlopez@mssny.org


Racial and Health Equity: Five Concrete Steps for Health Systems
Dr. Rishi Manchanda, President and CEO of HealthBegins, walks listeners through the 5 steps health care leaders can take to start translating their commitment to racial and health equity into action. Listen on Apple Podcasts or Spotify.



Helping Private Practices Navigate Non-Essential Care During COVID-19
The American Medical Association has released updated guidance for private practice physicians navigating the provision of care during the COVID-19 pandemic. The resource emphasizes ways physicians and practices should protect their employees, patients, and visitors while also operating within the constraints of a national healthcare staffing crisis. The guide includes recommendations to review COVID-19 federal and state guidelines to ensure patient and staff safety and to assist in adjusting workflows to support both staff and patients.


Prior Authorization Requests Must Now be Submitted through Workers’ Comp Portal
Effective May 2, 2022, the New York State Insurance Fund will no longer accept Prior Authorization Requests (PAR) directly from providers. All PARs must be submitted through the Workers’ Compensation Board’s OnBoard portal, which will automatically route the request to the appropriate claim administrator for review. Paper forms can no longer be faxed, emailed, or mailed.

Please visit the Board’s website for information on how to register for the WCB portal.


Garfunkel Banner Ad


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent  (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom.  MUST SEE!  Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects.  Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


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Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine PhysicianBilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job PositionInternal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine

under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice  medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


 

 

MSSNY eNews: April 13, 2022

MSSNY Recoups $8,400 for Member in Insurance Take-Back
A MSSNY member recently received a take-back letter from a third-party reviewer regarding four insurance claims totaling $8,400 and contacted MSSNY’s Physician Payment and Practice Director Heather Lopez for assistance. Upon her review, Heather determined that the documentation that the physician provided to the third-party reviewer indeed included the medical record that the reviewer said was not included on the claim.

The third-party reviewer continued to say that they would be taking back the $8,400.

Heather called the third-party reviewer to discuss further and advised that what they were asking for was provided to them and that they had neglected to review. She further advised there was absolutely no reason why this should be taken back, and all appropriate information was accurately displayed in the medical record per scope of practice.

In a subsequent email to Heather, the insurer informed her that the review on the claims had been cancelled and there will be no take back of the $8,400 claims.

If you have questions about this or any other insurance concern, contact MSSNY’s Director of Physician Payment and Practice, Heather Lopez, at 518.465.8085 X332 |hlopez@mssny.org


Did You Volunteer for MSSNY this Past Year? We Want to Feature You During National Volunteer Week!
Did you volunteer for MSSNY this past year? If the answer is yes, please send us a quote on the importance of volunteering your time to MSSNY no later than this Saturday, April 16th. Send your quote to MemberResources@mssny.org and you might see yourself featured in our communications vehicles!


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Budget Passed by Legislature Contains Several Meaningful New Initiatives
This past weekend, the New York State Legislature and Governor Hochul completed enactment of a $220 Billion State Budget for Fiscal Year 2022-23. Of importance to physicians, it includes:

  • Telehealth Payment Parity. A law strongly advocated for by MSSNY (together with several specialty societies) requiring health insurers to pay equal for telehealth services that they would pay for comparable in-person services. The law will have to be extended in 2 years.
  • Increasing Physician Loan Repayment. A 75% increase in funding (to nearly $16 million) for the Doctors Across New York student loan repayment program, where physicians can receive up to $120,000 in student loan relief for providing care (for at least 3 years) in an underserved area.
  • Medicaid Payment Increases. A restoration of the 2020 1.5% cut to Medicaid payments and a further across the Board 1% payment increase.  Moreover, effective April 1, E&M and Medicine codes in Medicaid fee for service are being increased to 70% of Medicare (currently at only 45% or 58% of Medicare).
  • Med Mal Excess Restored.  A straight one-year extension of the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program. MSSNY worked with specialty societies to fight back against an Executive Budget proposal that would have required physicians to pay upfront for this very expensive coverage and then be reimbursed.
  • Insurance Reforms. Targeted health insurance reforms including requiring all New York state regulated health insurers to complete credentialing review within 60 days of the physician’s network participation application, as well as another measure to ensure all health insurers follow rules that limit excessive medical record requests.
  • Insurance Coverage Expansion. Increasing New Yorkers’ eligibility for the Essential Plan with those with incomes up to 250% FPL; elimination of premiums for CHIP coverage for families up to 223% FPL; and one-year post-partum Medicaid coverage.

Importantly, as well, the final Health Budget bill also deleted Executive Budget proposals for which MSSNY had raised concerns, including:

  • No Rx Prior Authorization. Imposing new prior authorization requirements for prescriptions written for patients covered by Medicaid and Medicaid Managed Care
  • No Interstate Compact. Permitting New York to join the Interstate Medical Licensure compact

However, despite strong MSSNY opposition and other groups, the following proposals were included in the agreed upon Health Budget.

  • Nurse Practitioners. Extending in statute for 2 years the current Executive Order provision that exempts Nurse Practitioners with more than 3,600 hours experience from having to maintain proof of collaborative relationships with physicians practicing in the same specialty.
  • Additional Criteria for IDR. As part of a comprehensive proposal to update New York’s surprise bill law to incorporate mandatory elements of the federal No Surprises Act, while the provisions importantly eliminated the requirement for a patient to execute an Assignment of Benefits, it also included median in-network payment data as one of the express criteria to be considered by the Independent Dispute resolution entity in addition to the usual and customary charge of the physician and the particular expertise of that physician.

Also of note, the Budget allocates a pool of funds within the Department of Health to provide bonuses for health care employees who make less than $125,000 per year. Employers required to participate in the program include health care entities subject to a Certificate of Need process, or which have at least 20% of their patients covered under Medicaid. The bonuses range from $500 for a part-time worker to $3,000 for a full-time worker, over a 6-month period.

MSSNY staff is continuing its review of the many Budget provisions and will provide further updates.


Reminder: Provider Relief Fund Requests for Late Reporting Due by April 22/HRSA Identifies Extenuating Circumstances
The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has decided to reopen the reporting time for recipients of Period 1 Provider Relief Funds. Physicians who received more than $10,000 in provider relief funds and failed to submit their Period 1 report should act immediately. Between Monday, April 11 and Friday, April 22, 2022, at 11:59 pm ET, providers who have not submitted their Period 1 report may submit a late Reporting Period 1 report request. Physician practices should receive information about how to submit a request directly from HRSA via email. If a provider did not submit a Period 1 report and does not hear from HRSA, the provider may initiate communication by calling (866) 569-3522.

During this reopening period, a provider must choose an extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented compliance with the original reporting deadline. HRSA has just released the following as allowable extenuating circumstances:

  • Severe illness or death – a severe medical condition or death of a provider or key staff member responsible for reporting hindered the organization’s ability to complete the report during the Reporting Period.
  • Impacted by natural disaster – a natural disaster occurred during or in close proximity of the end of the Reporting Period damaging the organization’s records or information technology.
  • Lack of receipt of reporting communications – an incorrect email or mailing address on file with HRSA prevented the organization from receiving instructions prior to the Reporting Period deadline.
  • Failure to click “submit” – the organization registered and prepared a report in the PRF Reporting Portal, but failed to take the final step to click “submit” prior to deadline.
  • Internal miscommunication or error – Internal miscommunication or error regarding the individual who was authorized and expected to submit the report on behalf of the organization and/or the registered point of contact in the PRF Reporting Portal.
  •  Incomplete Targeted Distribution payments – the organization’s parent entity completed all General Distribution payments, but a Targeted Distribution(s) was not reported on by the subsidiary.

While attesting to an extenuating circumstance is required, no supporting document or proof is required. If HRSA approves the extenuated circumstances form, the provider will receive a notification to proceed with completing the Reporting Period 1 report shortly thereafter. Providers will have 10 days from the notification receipt date to submit the late Period 1 report in the PRF Reporting Portal. More information is available here. The AMA will continue to advocate for greater flexibility and more information to ensure physician practices have an adequate opportunity to come into compliance.



Two HHS Events to Honor Black Maternal Health Week
In observation and honor of Black Maternal Health Week, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) invites you to two conversations on April 14th. HHS is taking unprecedented action to close disparities and strengthen Black maternal health by expanding coverage, implementing new policies, and providing funding to ensure safer pregnancies and postpartum services for new parents and their babies. They will continue to advance the Biden-Harris Administration’s commitment to ensuring equitable access to health care before, during, and after pregnancy for all mothers in our country.

HHS Secretary Xavier Becerra and State Leaders Discuss Black Maternal Health Week

Thursday, April 14th at 3:00 PM ET

Register here

This conversation will focus on what States and the Federal government are doing to address inequities in Black maternal health. The discussion will focus on current challenges and opportunities for improvement in maternal health outcomes for Black women at both the State and Federal levels.

The Conversation will include remarks from key leaders including:

  • Moderator: Jess Marcella, Deputy Assistant Secretary, Office of Population Affairs in the Office of the Assistant Secretary for Health at HHS
  • Xavier Becerra, Secretary of HHS
  • Tammy Snyder Murphy, First Lady, New Jersey
  • Trudi Inslee, First Spouse, Washington

Honoring Black Maternal Health Week: A Discussion of Challenges and Opportunities to Improve Black Maternal Health

Thursday, April 14th at 1:00 PM ET
(no registration is required)

Our goal is to bring awareness to the maternal health crisis through an authentic conversation amongst each well-known participants and HHS moderators about their maternal health experiences. The discussion will highlight that all Black women are more adversely affected by maternal health morbidities and the need for action.

The Conversation will include remarks from key leaders including:

  • Moderator: Loyce Pace, Assistant Secretary for Global Affairs at HHS
  • Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS)
  • Dr. Dara Kass, Regional Director for HHS Region 2
  • Hannah Bronfman, Activist, Author & Wellness Entrepreneur
  • Latham Thomas, MamaGlow Founder and CEO
  • Jazmyn Simon, Actress and Author
  • Codie Elaine Oliver, Producer and Director


Medical Matters CME Webinar: Stresses & Distresses in the Time of COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has caused innumerable mental health struggles that will likely be present for years to come.  Register now for Stresses & Distresses in the Time of COVID-19 on Wednesday April 20, 2022, at 7:30 a.m. to learn more about the stress the COVID pandemic has caused.  Craig Katz, MD, vice-chair of MSSNY’s Emergency Preparedness and Disaster/Terrorism Response Committee, will serve as faculty for this program. Register now.

Educational objectives are:

  • Illustrate the many sources of stress that society has endured in recent years
  • Identify the many different ways the resulting distress can be experienced
  • Discuss what clinical approaches are available to help

Additional information or assistance with registration may be obtained by contacting Melissa Hoffman at mhoffman@mssny.org.

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.


Garfunkel Banner Ad


Join MSSNY In Kicking Off Wellness
MSSNY will be hosting a series of physician wellness webinars covering various topics within the realm of wellness over the next few months.

Registration for Improving Well-Being and Reducing Burnout Among Health Care Workers Now Open – April 26, 2022 @ 7:30am

Michael Privitera, MD and Arthur Hengerer, MD will serve as faculty. Register now!

Educational objectives are:

  • Define and give examples of extraneous cognitive load
  • Explain rationale of why reducing extraneous cognitive load burden may be more impactful in improving patient safety than education alone
  • Give two examples of application of cognitive ergonomics that can reduce the risk of clinician burnout and latent medical error

Registration for Women in Medicine 2022: Up the Down Staircase Now Open – May 21, 2022 @ 8:40-9:40am

Carol Bernstein, MD will serve as faculty. Register now!

Educational objectives are:

  • Identify significant stressors contributing to burnout as they specifically impact women physicians in the era of Covid.
  • Increase knowledge of potential strategies that can be used to support women physicians, especially when working in dynamically changing and stressful clinical environments.
  • Identify potential systemic solutions as well as practical techniques that promote growth and resilience in women physicians.

Additional information or assistance with registration may be obtained by contacting Cayla Lauder at clauder@mssny.org.

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.


Peer to Peer (P2P) Program
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.

Watch here to see Frank Dowling, MD and Charles Rothberg, MD give an interview on MSSNY’s P2P program.

If someone you know is struggling with life stressors, reach out to the P2P program to connect them to a peer supporter: P2P@mssny.org  or 1-844-P2P-PEER (1-844-727-7337).

If you wish to become a trained peer supporter, reach out to Cayla Lauder, MPH, Program Coordinator, at clauder@mssny.org.


Premier Banner Ad


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent  (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom.  MUST SEE!  Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.



Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects.  Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.



Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine PhysicianBilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job PositionInternal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine

under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice  medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

BUDGET PASSED BY LEGISLATURE CONTAINS SEVERAL MEANINGFUL NEW INITIATIVES

This past weekend, the New York State Legislature and Governor Hochul completed enactment of a $220 Billion State Budget for Fiscal Year 2022-23.  Of importance to physicians, it includes:

  • Telehealth Payment Parity.  A law strongly advocated for by MSSNY (together with several specialty societies) requiring health insurers to pay equal for telehealth services that they would pay for comparable in-person services.  The law will have to be extended in 2 years.
  • Increasing Physician Loan Repayment. A 75% increase in funding (to nearly $16 million) for the Doctors Across New York student loan repayment program, where physicians can receive up to $120,000 in student loan relief for providing care (for at least 3 years) in an underserved area.
  • Medicaid Payment Increases. A restoration of the 2020 1.5% cut to Medicaid payments and a further across the Board 1% payment increase.  Moreover, effective April 1, E&M and Medicine codes in Medicaid fee for service are being increased to 70% of Medicare (currently at only 45% or 58% of Medicare).
  • Med Mal Excess Restored.  A straight one-year extension of the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program. MSSNY worked with specialty societies to fight back against an Executive Budget proposal that would have required physicians to pay upfront for this very expensive coverage and then be reimbursed.
  • Insurance Reforms. Targeted health insurance reforms including requiring all New York state regulated health insurers to complete credentialing review within 60 days of the physician’s network participation application, as well as another measure to ensure all health insurers follow rules that limit excessive medical record requests.
  • Insurance Coverage Expansion.  Increasing New Yorkers’ eligibility for the Essential Plan with those with incomes up to 250% FPL; elimination of premiums for CHIP coverage for families up to 223% FPL; and one-year post-partum Medicaid coverage.

Importantly, as well, the final Health Budget bill also deleted Executive Budget proposals for which MSSNY had raised concerns, including:

  • No Rx Prior Authorization. Imposing new prior authorization requirements for prescriptions written for patients covered by Medicaid and Medicaid Managed Care
  • No Interstate Compact. Permitting New York to join the Interstate Medical Licensure compact

However, despite strong MSSNY opposition and other groups, the following proposals were included in the agreed upon Health Budget.

  • Nurse Practitioners. Extending in statute for 2 years the current Executive Order provision that exempts Nurse Practitioners with more than 3,600 hours experience from having to maintain proof of collaborative relationships with physicians practicing in the same specialty;
  • Additional Criteria for IDR. As part of a comprehensive proposal to update New York’s surprise bill law to incorporate mandatory elements of the federal No Surprises Act, while the provisions importantly eliminated the requirement for a patient to execute an Assignment of Benefits, it also included median in-network payment data as one of the express criteria to be considered by the Independent Dispute resolution entity in addition to the usual and customary charge of the physician and the particular expertise of that physician.

Also of note, the Budget allocates a pool of funds within the Department of Health to provide bonuses for health care employees who make less than $125,000 per year.  Employers required to participate in the program include health care entities subject to a Certificate of Need process, or which have at least 20% of their patients covered under Medicaid.  The bonuses range from $500 for a part-time worker to $3,000 for a full-time worker, over a 6-month period.

MSSNY staff is continuing its review of the many Budget provisions and will provide further updates.

MSSNY eNews: April 8, 2022

Message from MSSNY President Dr Joseph Sellers:
Physicians Are Worthy of the Same Compassion We Give Our Patients

Colleagues:
Last week, I was moved by an essay in the New York Times by Dr. Seema Jilani entitled Why So Many Doctors Treat Their Mental Health in Secret, and submitted a Letter to the Editor. Although the Times did not print the letter, I want to share it with all of you here:

Thank you for addressing the critical issue of physician mental health with this eloquent, poignant, and brave essay. Dr. Jilani’s words evoke strong emotion in those of us who are proud to serve as physicians.  We endure years of education and training because we have a calling to heal. But the COVID-19 pandemic has taken a toll on what has always been a stressful profession—and so many struggle in silence.

The Committee for Physician Health, a division of The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY), provides non-disciplinary, confidential assistance to physicians, residents, and medical students with stress, difficult adjustment, substance abuse and other psychiatric disorders.

And in July 2020, just as the pandemic was heating up, MSSNY launched a program to provide physicians, residents, and medical students the opportunity to speak with a peer about life stressors.  The Peer-to-Peer program offers a confidential discussion with a physician peer supporter—an individual trained to share experiences, listen without judgment, and validate feelings.

As Dr. Jilani so aptly states, “physicians are worthy of the same compassion we give our patients.”

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President


Legislature Closes in on Passing Budget
After being a week overdue, the State Legislature was giving final passage to a $220 billion Budget package today.  At press time, while some bills remain to be printed and staff is continuing to pore through the thousands of pages of publicly available Budget bills, of importance to physicians, it includes:

  • Telehealth Payment Parity.  A law strongly advocated for by MSSNY (together with several specialty societies) requiring health insurers to pay equal for telehealth services that they would pay for comparable in-person services.  The law will have to be extended in 2 years (see related article).
  • Increasing Physician Loan Repayment. A 75% increase in funding (to nearly $16 million) for the Doctors Across New York student loan repayment program, where physicians can receive up to $120,000 in student loan relief for providing care (for at least 3 years) in an underserved area.
  • Medicaid Payment Increases. A restoration of the 2020 1.5% cut to Medicaid payments and a further across the Board 1% payment increase.
  • Med Mal Excess Restored.  A straight one-year extension of the Excess Medical Malpractice Insurance program. MSSNY worked with specialty societies to fight back against an Executive Budget proposal that would have required physicians to pay upfront for this very expensive coverage and then be reimbursed.
  • Insurance Reforms. Targeted health insurance reforms including requiring all New York state regulated health insurers to complete credentialing review within 60 days of the physician’s network participation application, as well as another measure to ensure all health insurers follow rules that limit excessive medical record requests.
  • Insurance Coverage Expansion.  Increasing New Yorkers’ eligibility for the Essential Plan with those with incomes up to 250% FPL; elimination of premiums for CHIP coverage for families up to 223% FPL; and one-year post-partum Medicaid coverage.

Importantly, as well, the final Health Budget bill also deleted Executive Budget proposals for which MSSNY had raised concerns, including:

  • No Rx Prior Authorization. Imposing new prior authorization requirements for prescriptions written for patients covered by Medicaid and Medicaid Managed Care
  • No Interstate Compact. Permitting New York to join the Interstate Medical Licensure compact

However, despite strong MSSNY opposition and other groups, the following proposals were included in the agreed upon Health Budget.

  • Nurse Practitioners. Extending in statute for 2 years the current Executive Order provision that exempts Nurse Practitioners with more than 3,600 hours experience from having to maintain proof of collaborative relationships with physicians practicing in the same specialty;
  • Additional Criteria for IDR. As part of a comprehensive proposal to update New York’s surprise bill law to incorporate mandatory elements of the federal No Surprises Act, while the provisions importantly eliminated the requirement for a patient to execute an Assignment of Benefits, it also included median in-network payment data as one of the express criteria to be considered by the Independent Dispute resolution entity in addition to the usual and customary charge of the physician and the particular expertise of that physician.

Also of note, the Budget allocates a pool of funds within the Department of Health to provide bonuses for health care employees who make less than $125,000 per year.  Employers required to participate in the program include health care entities subject to a Certificate of Need process, or which have at least 20% of their patients covered under Medicaid.  The bonuses range from $500 for a part-time worker to $3,000 for a full-time worker, over a 6-month period.

MSSNY staff will continue its review of the many Budget provisions and will provide a further comprehensive update next week.


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Telehealth Payment Parity Included in FY2022-23 Budget
After many months of strongly advocating for payment parity for Telehealth services, included in the final Budget is a provision that will require health insurers to pay physicians on par with what they’re paid for an in-person visit when providing the same care using Telehealth services. The policy covers all modalities of Telehealth. With the provisions scheduled to sunset in 2 years, the Budget bill also calls for a study by DFS and DOH to study the impact of payment parity using utilization data from health insurers.

While we will need to again advocate for this important physician and patient protection in 2 years, it is a very significant first step.  MSSNY thanks Governor Kathy Hochul, Senators Gustavo Rivera and Peter Harckham, and Assemblymembers Richard Gottfried and Carrie Woerner for their leadership on this issue. MSSNY also worked closely with the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the New York State Psychiatric Association (NYSPA), the New York Chapter American College of Physicians (NYACP), New York State Academy of Family Physicians (NYSAFP), and a range of other specialty societies representing physicians across New York State, as well as the Healthcare Association of New York State (HANYS).


Physicians May Request Extra Time to Report Provider Relief Funds, HRSA Says
Due largely to AMA and specialty society advocacy, the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) has decided to reopen the reporting time for recipients of Period 1 Provider Relief Funds. In the AMA’s March 31, letter to HRSA, the AMA and 31 national medical specialty societies noted small and rural practices appeared to be particularly impacted by the potential recoupment, and that physician practices were unaware of the deadline.

Those physicians who received more than $10,000 in provider relief funds and failed to submit their period 1 report should act immediately. Between Monday, April 11 and Friday, April 22, 2022, at 11:59 pm ET, providers who have not submitted their Period 1 report may submit a late Reporting Period 1 report request. Physician practices should receive information about how to submit a request directly from HRSA via email. If a provider did not submit a Period 1 report and does not hear from HRSA, the provider may initiate communication by calling (866) 569-3522. During this reopening period, a provider must choose an extenuating circumstance(s) that prevented compliance with the original reporting deadline. While attesting to an extenuating circumstance is required, no supporting document or proof is required.

If HRSA approves the extenuated circumstances form, the provider will receive a notification to proceed with completing the Reporting Period 1 report shortly thereafter. Providers will have 10 days from the notification receipt date to submit the late Period 1 report in the PRF Reporting Portal. The AMA will continue to advocate for greater flexibility and more information to ensure physician practices have an adequate opportunity to come into compliance.


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MSSNY Supports Legislation to Ban Use of Step Therapy Protocols for Mental Health
Legislation (A.3276, Aileen M. Gunther- D, Monticello) passed the Assembly this week that will prohibit the use of step therapy protocols for coverage for the diagnosis and treatment of mental health conditions including prescription drug coverage. Identical legislation (S.5909, Todd Kaminsky- D, Rockville Centre) is before the Senate Insurance Committee.

Step Therapy, also known as “Fail First” policies, force patients to try treatment deemed less costly by the insurer in place of the therapy originally prescribed by their physician, and to “fail first” before the insurer will cover the original treatment. Too often, this requires patients to take medications that they have previously tried without success, wait months for approval to switch to another option after failing with a given drug, and frequently to suffer adverse effects from taking an inferior medication. In 2016, MSSNY successfully advocated with a number of patient advocacy groups in strong support of a far-reaching law that established defined criteria to facilitate the ability of a physician to override a health insurer’s step therapy protocol.

Studies on the impact of step therapy policies have found they can actually increase total health care costs in the long run through increased emergency room visits and hospitalization as a result of taking the wrong medication. These policies are particularly dangerous for patients with mental health conditions, where they’re associated with a higher risk of patients abandoning their treatment, often with dire consequences like homelessness and incarceration.

MSSNY will continue to advocate for this bill in the Senate.


Physician Judges Needed: MSSNY’s Resident/Fellow and Medical Students Poster Symposium

The Resident and Fellow Section is seeking volunteers to serve as in-person judges for its Poster Symposium.  Judging will take place at MSSNY’s House of Delegates in Tarrytown on Friday, May 20 from 1:00 PM – 4:00 PM in the Tarrytown Ballroom.  If you are interested in serving as an in-person judge please contact Kathy Rohrer at krohrer@mssny.org


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Join MSSNY In Kicking Off Wellness
MSSNY will be hosting a series of physician wellness webinars covering various topics within the realm of wellness over the next few months.

Improving Well-Being and Reducing Burnout Among Health Care Workers: April 26 @ 7:30am

Michael Privitera, MD and Arthur Hengerer, MD will serve as faculty. Register now!

Educational objectives:

  • Define and give examples of extraneous cognitive load
  • Explain rationale of why reducing extraneous cognitive load burden may be more impactful in improving patient safety than education alone
  • Give two examples of application of cognitive ergonomics that can reduce the risk of clinician burnout and latent medical error

Women in Medicine 2022: Up the Down Staircase: May 21, 8:40-9:40am

Carol Bernstein, MD will serve as faculty. Register now!

Educational objectives:

  • Identify significant stressors contributing to burnout as they specifically impact women physicians in the era of Covid.
  • Increase knowledge of potential strategies that can be used to support women physicians, especially when working in dynamically changing and stressful clinical environments.
  • Identify potential systemic solutions as well as practical techniques that promote growth and resilience in women physicians.

Additional information or assistance with registration may be obtained by contacting Cayla Lauder at clauder@mssny.org.

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.


Stresses & Distresses in the Time of COVID-19: Medical Matters CME Webinar

The COVID-19 pandemic has caused innumerable mental health sequelae that will likely be present for years to come.  To learn more, register for Stresses & Distresses in the Time of COVID-19 on Wednesday April 20, 2022, at 7:30 a.m. Craig Katz, MD, vice-chair of MSSNY’s Emergency Preparedness and Disaster/Terrorism Response Committee will serve as faculty for this program. Register now. 

Educational objectives:

  • Illustrate the many sources of stress that society is enduring in recent years
  • Identify the many ways different ways the resulting distress can be experienced
  • Discuss what clinical approaches are available for helping

Additional information or assistance with registration may be obtained by contacting Melissa Hoffman at mhoffman@mssny.org.

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.


Garfunkel Banner Ad


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 Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100
ext. 302

For the MSSNY 2022 Ad RateSheet, please click here.


Medical Office Suite for Rent (Downtown, New York City) – Ready to Move In!
On Canal Street, NYC : near Mulberry and Mott Street. Busy area near Subways. In a professional 7day/week concierge building . Office Suite 1002+ sq ft, beautiful & bright w/ five office consult-exam rooms, Spacious waiting and receptionist area, utility room & private restroom. MUST SEE! Please Call for showing at: 917-378-2699 or email: cnyc2828@gmail.com. Ask for Sammie.


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Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Leadership Opportunity: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred Job Position: Associate Chief Medical Office, SVP of Population Health in this role, you will lead and provide a wide range of support through population health, quality measures, practice transformation, Rendr360 department, House Calls, and other projects. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicineunder the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming Healthcare – Primary Care Opportunity: Internal or Family Medicine Physician, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese)
Job Position: Internal Family Medicine Physician please send resumes to: careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering employment opportunities to Internal or Family Medicine Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.


Rendr- Transforming HealthcareLeadership Opportunity:Clinical Operations Medical Director, Bilingual English and Chinese (Mandarin or Cantonese) preferred
Job Position: Clinical Operations Medical Director in this role, you will provide clinical oversight and help lead our team of providers to assure high standards of care for our patients. The ideal candidate will be dedicated to improving the health of the communities we serve and will be a practicing physician as well as an established medical leader with proven experience improving clinical operations and building strong teams. Please send resumes careers@rendrcare.com. We are offering leadership opportunities to Physicians who are interested in providing high-quality clinical care to our patients in the diverse communities that we serve. As a rapidly growing network, we provide a supportive environment for our physicians to practice medicine under the guidance of dedicated medical leadership. www.rendrcare.com.

 

 

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