MSSNY eNews: July 14, 2021 – CMS Releases Proposed Rule for 2022 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

 


CMS Releases Proposed Rule for 2022 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule
Yesterday, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released the proposed rule for the 2022 Medicare physician fee schedule. The American Medical Association (AMA) staff is in the process of analyzing and developing a summary of the 1,700+ page proposal but in the meantime, there is a key issue of which physicians need to be aware. Notably, the 2022 Medicare conversion factor would be reduced by approximately 3.89% from $34.8931 to $33.5848.

This is largely a result of the expiration of a 3.75% increase to the conversion factor at the end of calendar year 2021, as averted for 2021 by Congressional action. The AMA will strongly advocate that Congress avert this significant cut and extend the 3.75% increase for 2022. Please note that the impact table in the proposed rule does not seem to include the 3.75% reduction in the conversion factor.

The text of the proposed rule can be accessed here, and several other links are below:


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Medicare Increases Payment for Cognitive Care
Alzheimer’s dementia affects one in nine people age 65 and older and kills more than breast and prostate cancer combined.  The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services has taken steps to address this public health crisis by increasing payment for and expanding access to cognitive assessment and care plan services.

Effective January 1, 2021, Medicare increased payment for these services to $282 (may be geographically adjusted) when provided in an office setting, added these services to the definition of primary care services in the Medicare Shared Savings Program, and permanently covered these services via telehealth.

4 Things to Know About the Cognitive Assessment & Care Plan Services

  1. If your patient shows signs of cognitive impairment at an Annual Wellness Visit (AWV) or other routine visit, you may perform a more detailed cognitive assessment and develop a care plan
  2. The Cognitive Assessment & Care Plan Services (CPT code 99483) typically start with a 50-minute face-to-face visit that includes a detailed history and patient exam, resulting in a written care plan
  3. If you report evaluation and management (E/M) services, you can offer this service, including: physicians (MD and DO), nurse practitioners, clinical nurse specialists, and physician assistants.
  4. Use CPT code 99483 to bill for this service. Part B coinsurance and deductible apply. You may bill this code separately from the AWV.

For More Information
Please review more detail on Medicare coverage requirements and billing standards at www.cms.gov/cognitive.
For more information on assessing cognitive impairment, please refer to the Alzheimer’s and Dementia Resources for Professionals webpage here.


More on New York State Employer Safety Plans Required by August 5
As reported last week, the New York State Department of Labor put forth model forms for all New York employers to follow in adopting required airborne infectious disease exposure prevention standards in response to legislation enacted into law (the New York Health and Essential Rights Act – NY HERO Act) earlier this year. The law requires all employers regardless of size to have extensive new workplace health and safety protections in response to the COVID-19 pandemic. The statute requires that employers adopt a safety plan within 30 days of the Department of Labor posting the model forms (August 5). After adopting a plan, the employer is required to share the safety plan with employees within 30 days.

As a follow up to the article, MSSNY has been advised by the New York State Department of Labor that “the standard published by the Department provides that it does not apply to ‘Any employee within the coverage of a temporary or permanent standard adopted by the Occupational Safety and Health Administration setting forth applicable standards regarding COVID-19 and/or airborne infectious agents and diseases.’ As such, employers within the coverage of the current OSHA ETS (which is currently limited to healthcare) are not currently required to take action or adopt a plan pursuant to the NY HERO Act.”

Therefore, whether a physician’s office is required to follow the federal OSHA ETS or the NY DOL standard may be on a case-by-case basis. As noted in the recent alert by MSSNY’s General Counsel, the Garfunkel Wild law firm, OSHA Issues Emergency Rules for Healthcare Employers and Updated Guidance for All Employers | Garfunkel Wild, exempted from compliance with the OSHA ETS are “employers performing healthcare services on an outpatient basis in a non-hospital setting, if non-employees are screened prior to entry and people with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 are not permitted to enter.”

Physicians should consult with their legal counsel for how best to ensure their offices comply with these state and/or federal requirements.



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New York County Medical Society Honors Leaders at June 23, 2021 Annual Meeting

Arthur Cooper, MD and Keith LaScalea, MD

Arthur Cooper, MD and Keith LaScalea, MD

During its June 23rd Annual Meeting, the New York County Medical Society (NYCMS) honored outgoing president Arthur Cooper, MD and welcomed incoming president Keith LaScalea, MD. Dr. LaScalea graduated from SUNY –  Binghamton and the University of Chicago Pritzker School of Medicine, completed his residency in Internal Medicine at New York Presbyterian Hospital, and is on the faculty in the Division of Internal Medicine at Weill Cornell Medicine.

In addition to his clinical practice as a primary care physician he is involved in teaching, curriculum development, and holds multiple roles in the College administration. On July 12, 2021, Doctor LaScalea was listed as one of Crain’s New York Business “Notables in Health Care.”

NYCMS also welcomed officers Erick Eiting, MD, President–Elect; Thomas Sterry, MD, Vice President; Jessica J. Krant, MD, MPH, Secretary; and Jill R. Baron, MD, Treasurer.  Loren Wissner Greene, MD and Stuart Gitlow, MD serve as Assistant Secretary and Assistant Treasurer respectively.


Milton Haynes, MD

Milton Haynes, MD

Milton Haynes, MD Receives Nicholas Romayne, MD Lifetime Achievement Award
During the NYCMS annual meeting, incoming president Dr. LaScalea presented Milton Haynes, MD with the Nicholas Romayne, MD Lifetime Achievement Award—which is named for the Society’s first president and recognizes exceptional contribution to the Society.

Dr. Haynes, who served as president of the Society in 2000 – 2001, is a graduate of Howard University College of Medicine, is board certified by the American Board of Obstetrics and Gynecology, and is a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists.  Prior to his retirement, Dr. Haynes was in private practice, a Senior Attending at Lenox Hill Hospital, and Attending at North General Hospital. He was Clinical Associate Professor of Obstetrics and Gynecology, New York University Medical Center.

Dr. Haynes served as Chair of MSSNY’s Committee on Healthcare Disparities, and as a member of the AMA Commission to Eliminate Racial and Ethnic Healthcare Disparities.

In honoring the many contributions of Dr. Haynes to the medical profession, Dr. LaScalea called him a “creative disrupter” who “brought the concepts of diversity, equity, and inclusion light years ahead of their time.”


NYC Seeing Rise in COVID-19 Cases as Delta Variant Spreads Further
Bloomberg (7/12, Querolo) reports COVID-19 cases “in New York City are climbing for the first time in months as the delta variant gains traction and vaccination rates in some boroughs remain stubbornly low.” New York City’s “seven-day average rate of positive tests has risen slowly throughout July, and had roughly doubled in two weeks to 1.27% as of Saturday.” On average, “there were 328 new confirmed and probable cases daily over the past week, up from 208 as of June 28.” The New York Post (7/12, Marsh, Raskin) reports “Staten Island is experiencing an uptick in COVID-19 cases at least partly because of the recent spread of the highly contagious Delta variant among unvaccinated New Yorkers.”



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COVID-19 Vaccination Enrolled Providers: Please Update Contact Information for Excelsior Pass Applications
Excelsior Pass mobile application is New York State’s voluntary and secure way to retrieve and present digital proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative COVID-19 test results. In order for users to retrieve the vaccination pass, their vaccination data within NYSIIS/CIR must be correct and up-to-date. Providers are responsible for entering all vaccination data and remediating any data errors for users who report difficulty in retrieving their pass. For more information on what to look for and how to fix data errors, please review this factsheet.

Some vaccinated individuals have been reporting difficulty obtaining their Excelsior Pass.  Beginning this week, an e-mail will be sent to these individuals directing them to review their vaccination record with their provider.  The e-mail will direct individuals to their vaccination provider by giving them the provider’s primary and secondary points of contact and contact information as it was submitted on the provider’s COVID-19 Vaccination Program enrollment form, unless updated information has been submitted by the provider entity.  If the contact information is outdated or there is a better point of contact who can assist vaccinated individuals with review and correction of their vaccination record, please submit updated information here.

Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com. Contact leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.

Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: July 9, 2021 – Membership Doesn’t Cost, It PAYS

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Membership Doesn’t Cost, It PAYS

Colleagues:

My membership in MSSNY began when I was a young physician, and my involvement with—and devotion to—the organization has grown exponentially over the years. Since many of my colleagues are aware of my dedication to MSSNY, I am often asked “What has MSSNY done for me lately?”

My initial answer is very simple: “MSSNY membership doesn’t cost, it PAYS.”

Here are but a few of the many ways your membership in MSSNY pays for itself: 

  • Saved you from a 25% to 47% increase in malpractice premiums by defeating the wrongful death expansion proposal in the just-completed legislative session.
  • Saved you from a 2% across the board Medicare cut. For a practice with $500,000 in anticipated Medicare revenue for this year, MSSNY prevented a $10,000 cut.
  • Saved you from an across the board 1% Medicaid cut. Your savings are based on the amount of Medicaid revenue you take in each year.
  • Saved physicians enrolled in the Excess program from paying for half the cost of an Excess Insurance policy, saving up to $40,000 for some physicians.
  • Saves you money daily through significant discounts from our medical supplies group purchasing organization, telemedicine platform, disability and other insurance plans, legal assistance, and more.
  • Saves you money and time through our Physician Payment and Practice program that assists physicians with payment and other care approval hassles from commercial and public insurers.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President.


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Burnout Hits Female Physicians Harder Than Men
Female physicians experience burnout more frequently than men, report spending more time doing administrative duties and spend more time working off the clock, according to a June 15 report by EHR vendor Athenahealth.

The study collected data from 799 physicians who use a variety of EHR vendors. Data was collected between Oct. 13 and Dec. 23.

Six study findings:

  1. Twenty-eight percent of physicians reported feeling burned out at least once per week, and physicians spend an average of 13.5 hours per week on tasks other than patient care.
  2. More than a quarter of physicians (29 percent) agreed or strongly agreed that their practice is set up to minimize administrative burden. Sixty-one percent of physicians said their organization has not taken steps in the last 12 months to curb physician burnout.
  3. More than half of women (51 percent) reported feeling burned out a few times a month, compared to 43 percent of men. Women were also less likely to feel their workload is manageable and less likely to believe they would be with their organization in the next three years.
  4. Women reported that administrative tasks accounted for 29 percent of their working time, compared with 25 percent for men.
  5. Women spent more time working at home, with 19 percent of work time conducted at home, compared to 14 percent for men.
  6. Physicians aged 65 and older reported feeling burnout less frequently than younger physicians (35 percent and 48 percent, respectively). Older physicians were more likely to report they have enough time to spend with each patient and their workload is manageable.

Mitchell, Becker’s Hospital Review


Do You Know an Outstanding Physician?
The Medical Society of the State of New York is accepting nominations for the 2020 Albion O. Bernstein, MD Award. This prestigious award is given to:

“…the physician, surgeon or scientist who shall have made the most widely beneficial discovery or developed the most useful method in medicine, surgery or in the prevention of disease in the twelve months prior to December, 2020.”

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

The $2,000 award will be presented to the recipient during a MSSNY Council Meeting.

Nominations must be submitted on an official application form and must include the nominator’s narrative description of the significance of the candidate’s achievements as well as the candidate’s curriculum vitae, including a list of publications or other contributions.

To request an application, please contact:
Committee on Continuing Medical Education
Miriam Hardin, Ph.D., Manager, Continuing Medical Education
Medical Society of the State of New York
99 Washington Avenue, Suite 408
Albany, NY 12210
518-465-8085 mhardin@mssny.org
DEADLINE FOR NOMINATIONS EXTENDED: September 7, 2021


New York State Employer Safety Plans for Employees Required by August 5
As reported earlier this week, the New York State Department of Labor put forth model forms for all New York employers to follow in adopting required airborne infectious disease exposure prevention standards in response to legislation enacted into law (the New York Health and Essential Rights Act – NY HERO Act) earlier this year. The law requires all employers regardless of size to have extensive new workplace health and safety protections in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The statute requires that employers adopt a safety plan within 30 days of the Department of Labor posting the model forms (August 5).  After adopting a plan, the employer is required to share the safety plan with employees within 30 days.

The airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plans must be activated by the employer when an airborne infectious disease is designated by the New York State Commissioner of Health as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health.  However, the DOL announcement notes that, while employers must adopt plans as required by the law, “as of the date of this writing no designation is currently being made and therefore, plans are not required to be in effect.”

There were also recent federal rules adopted by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) imposed on certain healthcare employers to help prevent transmission of Covid-19 to employees, as noted in the recent alert by MSSNY’s General Counsel, the Garfunkel Wild law firm.  Physicians should consult with their legal counsel for how best to ensure their offices comply with these new state and federal requirements.



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New Help for Physicians to Start—Or Sustain—Life in Private Practice
Starting and maintaining a private practice isn’t easy. Coding, billing, documentation and state regulations can be complicated, but being accurate is essential, according to Kathleen Blake, MD, MPH, the AMA’s vice president of health care quality and a cardiologist who worked in private practice for many years.

In addition to considerable clinical skills and acumen, physicians in private practice also need management and marketing know-how to build successful and sustainable practices, she said.

“These aren’t skills they teach you in most medical schools,” she said, “but they are essential for anyone in private practice or even considering starting a private practice. According to AMA research, about 44% of physicians are in private practice, and they have needs that are not just associated with delivering medical care.

“You hear this all the time. The best referral is an existing patient asking, ‘Would you see my family members?’” she said, but private practice physicians need more than just referrals to build their patient panels. They also need to create an efficient management structure, establish a positive patient experience, and build a personal online brand, she added.

Help in Pursuing Private Practice Medicine

Working with the new AMA Private Practice Physicians Section (AMA-PPPS), Dr. Blake and her colleagues helped aggregate resources for physicians at all stages of private practice: from those completing their training who are exploring practice options to mid-career doctors managing an established practice.

“We felt it was important to identify and understand the various challenges physicians face in private practice and publish in one place what I like to call news you can use to help them have a sustainable practice and enduring, positive relationships with their patients, families and communities,” she said.

The result was a collection of AMA private practice sustainability resources. The resources cover vital issues such as how to get started in private practice, managing business operations, and developing a positive patient experience. Content includes curated webinars, research and recent AMA news articles on private practice, including profiles of physicians who are succeeding in this vibrant practice mode.

Read the full AMA article here.


NYS Department of Financial Services (DFS) Again Extends Audio-Only Telehealth Coverage
The latest emergency regulation from DFS, released on Wednesday, July 7th, continues coverage for Telehealth services delivered via audio-only until at least October 1st. However, it is unclear if DFS will renew come October, making clarifying legislation potentially necessary.

Please note that last year a statute was enacted that requires Medicaid to cover audio-only Telehealth. The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recently issued a guidance document for how Medicaid will continue to cover Telehealth services, including audio-only services.

To view the latest extending regulation, click here.


Save Money with Premier Group Purchasing: Call MSSNY’s Dedicated Rep!
MSSNY has a group purchasing partnership with Premier Group Purchasing to provide lower operating costs and improved access to supplies and products for members who sign on to purchase through Premier negotiated agreements.

Sign up today or contact MSSNY’s dedicated representative, Samantha Garrett, at Samantha_Garrett@premierinc.com /212-901-1209.

Click the links below to access specifics on the program:
Continuum of Care Overview: High level overview of the Premier program and the value it provides GPO FAQ: Questions and answers to further introduce Premier and explain the program

Physician Practices information sheet: Provides value proposition of the Premier program, followed by specific suppliers and contracts members will be able to access, broken down by category

What to Expect: Step by step onboarding guide for members.



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Telehealth’s Impact: Physician Survey Analysis
COVID-19 Healthcare Coalition | November 2020

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

75% of physicians reported that telemedicine enabled them to provide quality care in the areas of COVID-19-related care, acute care, chronic disease management, hospital/ED follow-up, care coordination, preventative care, and mental/behavioral health.

60% reported that telehealth improved the health of their patients.

55% reported that telehealth improved their work satisfaction.

73% reported that no or low reimbursement will be a major challenge post-COVID.

64% said that technology challenges, such as lack of access to broadband and technological illiteracy, are a barrier to sustained use of telehealth, pointing to the need for policies that support audio-only services where needed.

Click here to view the full report.


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Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com. Contact leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


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


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: July 7, 2021 – NYS Extends Audio-Only Telehealth Coverage


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NYS Department of Financial Services (DFS) Once Again Extends Audio-Only Telehealth Coverage
The latest emergency regulation from DFS, released on Wednesday, July 7th, continues coverage for Telehealth services delivered via audio-only until at least October 1st. However, it is unclear if DFS will renew come October, making clarifying legislation potentially necessary.

Please note that last year a statute was enacted that requires Medicaid to cover audio-only Telehealth. The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recently issued a guidance document for how Medicaid will continue to cover Telehealth services, including audio-only services.

To view the latest extending regulation, click here.


Department of Labor Adopts Model Forms for Employers for Required Airborne Infection Prevention Plans
Today, the New York State Department of Labor put forth model forms for all New York employers to follow in adopting required airborne infectious disease exposure prevention standards in response to legislation enacted into law (the New York Health and Essential Rights Act – NY HERO Act) earlier this year. The law requires all employers regardless of size to have extensive new workplace health safety protections in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.  The statute requires that employers adopt a safety plan within 30 days of the Department of Labor posting the model forms, and to share the safety plan with employees within 60 days of the posting of the model forms.

The airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plans must be activated by the employer when an airborne infectious disease is designated by the New York State Commissioner of Health as a highly contagious communicable disease that presents a serious risk of harm to the public health. The DOL website notes that, while employers must adopt plans as required by the law, “as of the date of this writing no designation is currently being made and therefore, plans are not required to be in effect.” 

The standard and model plans are available in English and will be available in Spanish in the coming days. Employers are required to provide a copy of the adopted airborne infectious disease exposure prevention plan and post the same in a visible and prominent location within each worksite. 

There were also recent federal rules adopted for healthcare employers for preventing transmission of COVID-19 to employees, as noted in the recent alert by MSSNY’s General Counsel, the Garfunkel Wild law firm [see article below]. Physicians should consult with their legal counsel for how best to comply with these new state and federal requirements.


OSHA Issues Emergency Rules for Healthcare Employers and Updated Guidance for All Employers
On June 10, 2021, OSHA issued an Emergency Temporary Standard (the “Standard”) specific to COVID-19, including health screening mandates and COVID-specific protocols, and paid leave requirements for certain healthcare providers.  The Standard generally enforces CDC protocols that have been recommended during the pandemic.  On the same day, OSHA also issued “Guidance on Mitigating and Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace” for all other employers (the “Guidance”).

The Guidance focuses on protections for unvaccinated or otherwise “at-risk” workers, who are described as those that “cannot be protected through vaccination, cannot get vaccinated, or cannot use face coverings.”  The Guidance notes that, unless otherwise required, most employers no longer need to take steps to protect fully vaccinated workers who are not otherwise at-risk from exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace, or well-defined portions of the workplace, where all employees are fully vaccinated.

In addition to the Standard and Guidance, it is important to confirm with state and local requirements as well.

Read guidance in its entirety here.

If you have questions regarding the above, please contact the Garfunkel Wild attorney with whom you regularly work, or contact Garfunkel Wild at info@garfunkelwild.com.


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$790 in Annual Savings for MSSNY Members: CareClix Telemedicine Platform
MSSNY members receive the discounted rate of $50 per month for the license fee with no start-up costs—for a total of $790 in savings.

The CareClix user-friendly HIPPA compliant platform enables physicians to conduct routine virtual visits with patients in any location. With CareClix you can:

  • Add Value to Your Practice
  • Maximize Billing
  • Eligibility Checks
  • Promote Patient Satisfaction
  • Reduce Cancellations and No-Shows
  • Integrated EHR

For clinical practices lacking the capacity to manage their own CCM programs, CareClix also provides a white-labeled, turn-key CCM service. This enables even the smallest community hospitals to provide CCM services for their seniors. Caring for the patients most-at-need requires vigilance and improved access.

CareClix believes that implementing and managing a CCM program requires much more than just a traditional telemedicine platform with videoconferencing. Our platform includes a comprehensive Chronic Care Management module. This includes out-of-the-box integration for 200+ devices, covering all major key vital signs used in CCM. Our platform easily integrates with our partners’ EMR systems, and we have a team that includes practicing physicians and experienced implementation experts.

To learn more about CareClix: careclix.com/for-providers/
To implement telemedicine for your practice visit: careclix.com/provider-signup/
Have questions? Contact sales@careclix.com


Physicians Worked Fewer Hours in 2020, Survey Finds
Compared to January 2019, U.S. physicians worked fewer hours per week on average when the COVID-19 pandemic hit, according to research published June 23 in JAMA Network Open. 

Researchers from the Association of American Medical Colleges used national survey data to assess how weekly hours worked among physicians changed from January 2019 to December 2020. The study involved 2,563 physicians and 8,853 observations. At the start of the study period, the average number of hours worked per week was 50.8.

Five findings:

  1. In March 2020, physicians’ mean weekly hours worked fell to 49.
  2. The decrease hit a low in May 2020, when the average number of hours worked was 47.5.
  3. In the summer months, weekly hours worked began to climb before hitting another low in November.
  4. Physicians’ average number of weekly hours worked was 47.8 in December — a 6 percent decrease from January 2019.
  5. Overall, the number of physicians working full time fell from 84.1 percent before COVID-19 to 80.7 percent during the pandemic.

“This study found that physicians’ work hours have significantly decreased since the start of the COVID-19 pandemic in the U.S., accelerating an existing, gradual decline,” researchers said. “These observed changes may reflect the decrease in healthcare utilization and the increased flexibilities instigated by COVID-19-driven regulations.”

Carbajal, Becker’s Hospital Review


Reporter Looking for NY Patients to Interview for National Story
A reporter with USA Today is looking to set up interviews with long-haul COVID patients in New York. The story will focus on patients who have had financial struggles, including but not limited to challenges returning to work, filing disability claims, or health insurance coverage struggles. The national story will appear in USA Today and outlets across the country.

If you have patient(s) willing to share their stories, please send contact information to Roseann Raia at MSSNY.


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Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com. Contact leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.

Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com


 

 

 

 

MSSNY Enews: June 30, 2021 – Hospitals and Corporations Own Nearly Half of U.S. Physician Practices

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Hospitals and Corporations Own Nearly Half of U.S. Physician Practices
COVID-19 Accelerated Ownership Trend, New Analysis Finds

Nearly 70% of U.S. physicians are now employed by hospital systems and corporate entities like private equity firms and health insurers according to new data by Avalere for the Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) examining the period between January 1, 2019 and January 1, 2021.

The research found that the COVID-19 pandemic accelerated a long-term national trend of hospitals and corporate entities acquiring physician practices and employing physicians. During the two-year period, these entities acquired 20,900 additional physician practices. Forty-eight thousand additional physicians left independent practice for employment by hospital systems or other corporate entities.

“COVID-19 exacerbated financial vulnerabilities of physician practices and forced them to make difficult decisions,” said Kelly Kenney, chief executive officer of PAI. “The practice acquisition trend has potentially serious implications for competition and health care costs, which have been shown to increase with this type of marketplace consolidation.”

Every U.S. region experienced these national trends of steady growth in employment and acquisitions, with an uptick in the last half of 2020. The cumulative findings by Avalere researchers during the two-year period revealed:

• Hospitals, health systems, and corporate entities now own nearly half of the nation’s medical practices.

• The sharpest increase in physician practice acquisitions and employment was among corporate entities such as private equity firms and health insurers (32%).

• Across regions, hospital ownership of practices grew between 6 percent and 11 percent and corporate ownership grew between 44 percent and 59 percent.

PAI believes that physicians should be in the driver’s seat when it comes to managing their patients’ medical care. “Regardless of the practice setting, physicians must retain autonomy to make clinical decisions, free from interference by corporate entities motivated primarily by profits,” said Kenney.

PAI will continue to work with Congress and state policymakers to champion policies that enable physician-led organizations and independent physician practices to compete with larger corporate entities to deliver health care services to patients.

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As State Ends Emergency Declaration, What Does that Mean for Telehealth Coverage?
When Governor Cuomo announced last week an end to the state’s “emergency” declaration and an end to the many Executive Orders waiving portions of New York laws and regulations, it prompted several questions from physicians and their staff as to what coverage will continue to exist for telehealth services for their patients.

The following is a brief update on the range of issues regarding access to telehealth services that MSSNY will continue to address over the summer and fall, as well as during the 2022 legislative session.

Coverage Parity Continues Existing state law requires New York regulated health insurance companies to provide coverage for Telehealth services for care that is covered on an in-person basis. NY state law also requires Telehealth coverage by Medicaid. These policies do not address payment levels for physicians and are not affected by suspension of the public health emergency, so “coverage parity” for Telehealth services will continue. These policies do not apply to ERISA regulated plans.

Waiving of Cost-Sharing Ends DFS recently ended its emergency regulation that required insurers to waive cost-sharing requirements on patients for services delivered via Telehealth. MSSNY raised concerns with regulators, but it may be harder to justify given the very significant drop in COVID cases over the last two months.

Audio-Only Coverage The latest emergency regulation from DFS continues coverage for Telehealth services delivered via audio-only until July 5, but it is unclear if DFS will renew, making clarifying legislation potentially necessary. Please note that last year a statute was enacted that requires Medicaid to cover audio-only Telehealth. The New York State Department of Health recently issued a guidance document for how Medicaid will continue to cover telehealth services, including through audio-only COVID-19-Telephonic-and-Telehealth-06-25-21.pdf (hca-nys.org).

Telehealth thru FaceTime? At this time, it is unclear whether DFS guidance from last March (Coronavirus (COVID-19) information: Information for Insurers and Providers on Coverage for Telehealth Services | Department of Financial Services (ny.gov) regarding the approved use of simplified modalities for delivering Telehealth services will be continued. MSSNY is seeking clarification.

However, the DOH notice referenced above does suggest that approved use of simplified technologies will continue as they note that: “during the COVID-19 federally declared public health emergency, the Department of Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (OCR) has issued a Notification of Enforcement Discretion for telehealth remote communications. OCR will exercise its enforcement discretion and will not impose penalties for noncompliance with the regulatory requirements under the HIPAA Rules against covered health care providers in connection with the good faith provision of telehealth during the emergency”.

Continued Push for Payment Parity Some health insurers made the decision to increase telehealth payments to match in-person payments. However, many insurers did not follow the same path. MSSNY will continue to work with other patient and physician groups in support of legislation such as A.6256/S.5055 that would require health insurers to ensure payment for Telehealth services are equal to similar services provided in-person.

We understand that the pandemic significantly transformed the use of telehealth services, creating new options for patients to receive care and their physicians to deliver care. To that end, MSSNY will continue to advocate for measures that remove barriers to patients receiving Telehealth services from their physicians, including ensuring fair payments for these services.


Do You Have Long-Haul COVID Patients in Your Practice? USA Today Reporter Looking for NY Patients to Interview for National Story
A reporter with USA Today is looking to set up interviews with long-haul COVID patients in New York. The story will focus on patients who have had financial struggles, including but not limited to challenges returning to work, filing disability claims, or health insurance coverage struggles. The national story will appear in USA Today and outlets across the country.

If you have patient(s) willing to share their stories, please send contact information to Roseann Raia at MSSNY.


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Physicians Still Top Choice for Patients According to National Tracking Poll
Conducted between April 29-May 2, 2021, the Morning Consult’s National Tracking Poll sampled 2,200 adults on healthcare usage and trust. The interviews were conducted online and the data was weighted to approximate a target sample of adults based on gender, educational attainment, age, race, and region. In general, the study found that adults were more likely to say they would select a physician’s office over a retail health clinic or an urgent care center for a variety of healthcare services, though there were significant differences by the age of the respondent.

  • 59% of adults said they trust their primary care doctor a lot, while 24% said they trust the healthcare industry, and only 15% said they place a lot of trust in retail health clinics.
  • 70% of adults would select a physician’s office for wellness checkups, and 67% for blood work, while 62% would select a physician’s office for diagnosing and treating common illnesses and 56% for vaccinations.
  • 84% of adults said cost of services is somewhat or very important when it comes to retail health clinics.
  • There was a significant difference by age of almost 30% between adults under 35 and those 65 or older when it came to their preference for getting a wellness visit, treating a common illness, and getting blood work done at a physician’s office. Almost half of adults under 35 said they would go to a physician’s office for this care, while more than 4 in 5 adults 65 or older would go to a physician’s office.

–Morning Consult National Tracking Poll | April – May 2021 Click here to view the full report.


American Conference on Physician Health Sponsored by AMA, Mayo Clinic, and Stanford University
The 2021 American Conference on Physician Health (ACPH) joint scientific conference promotes scientific research and discourse on health system infrastructure, and the actionable steps organizations like yours can take to improve physician well-being.

Sponsored jointly by the Mayo Clinic, Stanford University and the American Medical Association, this year’s conference theme is, “Achieving the quadruple aim: Resilient systems in times of crisis.” Participate in topical and relevant sessions with presenters and attendees from around the globe, while gaining valuable knowledge and information about best practices and tools to improve professional satisfaction in your medical practice.

Conference registration and hotel reservations 

  • Registration rates: Available through Thursday, Sept. 23.
  • To register for the conference and view agenda, visit the ACPH 2021 homepage.
  • Hotel room rates: Special pricing for ACPH attendees available until Sept. 13 ($299 USD/night).
  • Check out the ACPH conference website for all your planning needs—including the agenda, speaker bios, travel information, registration inclusions and more!

2021 American Conference on Physician Health
Thursday, Oct. 7 through Saturday, Oct. 9
Hyatt Regency Scottsdale Resort & Spa at Gainey Ranch
Scottsdale, Ariz.


Deadline Approaching to Comment on the ABMS Draft Standards for Continuing Certification
The deadline to comment on the American Board of Medical Specialties (ABMS) “Draft Standards for Continuing Certification – Call for Comments” is approaching. Opened on Tuesday, April 20, the 80-day period to obtain input and feedback from all stakeholders who possess, use, or rely upon board certification will close on Thursday, July 8, 2021 at 11:59 p.m. CT. Feedback received during the open Call for Comments will guide and inform the development of the final Draft Standards for Continuing Certification (“Draft Standards”), which will be considered by the ABMS Board of Directors in October 2021.

The new Draft Standards reflect foundational changes to the manner in which ABMS and its Member Boards deliver on their mission, bringing value to both the profession and the public at large. They were developed after a year of deliberation with key stakeholders in response to the recommendations of the Continuing Board Certification: Vision for the Future Commission as well as of the wider stakeholder community.

Structured to support and provide diplomates with the tools they need to stay current in medical knowledge; the Draft Standards prepare them to address emerging medical and public health issues; and help them identify and address opportunities for practice improvement within the systems in which they work, in a way that enhances relevance and reduces burden. The Draft Standards also address the needs of patients, families, and communities by assuring that board certified diplomates maintain the knowledge and skills necessary to deliver the quality specialty care upon which they rely.

To review and comment on the Draft Standards, visit the Draft Standards for Continuing Certification section on the ABMS Website by 11:59 p.m. CT on Thursday, July 8, 2021. Please feel free to share the “Draft Standards for Continuing Certification – Call for Comments” with your colleagues and others who may have an interest in them and encourage them to share their feedback to ensure that all stakeholder perspectives are considered in the finalization of the standards that will guide the specialty care practice of the future. 


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Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com.Contact leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.

Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


Medical Office and Medical Practice (Upper East Side)
79th St near Lexington / Park. 750 sq Ft beautiful, street entrance, medical office for sale with a 25 + yr internal medical practice for sale. Office is in move in condition. Physician retiring. Waiting room. Secretarial area for 3. 1 Consult room. 2 exam Rooms 2 Toilets. Please contact: 917-770-8700 / email leslie.swartz@ma1mediclaimsllc.com


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: June 25, 2021 – MSSNY’s Strong Voice at the AMA Special Meeting

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MSSNY’s Strong Voice at the AMA Special Meeting

Colleagues:

Last week, MSSNY’s American Medical Association (AMA) delegates—under the formidable leadership of our Delegation Chair, Dr. Charles Rothberg—participated in the AMA’s five-day House of Delegates Special Meeting. As one of the four largest state delegations to the AMA, MSSNY plays an important role in the proceedings of the House. In fact, although the HOD was greatly limited due to time constraints—MSSNY still had two resolutions considered at the special meeting.

The first MSSNY resolution, Discrimination Against Physicians in Treatment with Medication for Opioid Use Disorders (MOUD)—which was adopted—affirms “that no physician or medical student should be presumed impaired” solely because of a decision, in collaboration with their treating physician, to receive medication for opioid use disorder.” The author of the resolution, MSSNY delegate Dr. Frank Dowling, explained during the virtual reference committee meeting on Sunday that half of the rehabilitation facilities in the country do not allow medication for opioid use disorder or else “frown against” it. Likewise, physician assistance programs too often refer participants to programs where such medications aren’t available, he said.

The second MSSNY resolution, Addressing Inflammatory and Untruthful Online Ratings, was referred for study.  The AMA will take action to urge online review organizations to create internal mechanisms ensuring due process to physicians before the publication of negative reviews.

In addition to MSSNY’s two resolutions, we had good news on the election front. MSSNY’s Dr. Pratistha Koirala was elected to the AMA Board of Trustees (BOT). Dr. Koirala joins two other MSSNY members, Dr. Thomas Madejski and Dr. Willie Underwood, on the BOT. In addition, Dr. Robert Goldberg was re-elected to the AMA Council on Medical Education.

Other important adopted resolutions include seeking greater efforts to diversify the physician workforce; help Resident physicians with financial burdens; protecting public assistance that helps sustain health; and stemming the rising tide of youth suicide. For a summary of all the important work that was accomplished at the meeting, read the AMA’s Highlights from the June 2021 AMA Special Meeting.

I am proud to serve as Vice-Chair of MSSNY’s AMA delegation and proud of the hard work and dedication of our delegates. When the House of Medicine works together, we achieve great things for our patients and our beloved profession.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President.


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End of NYS Emergency Declaration Also Means Reinstatement of Physician Supervision and Collaboration Requirements
Governor Cuomo’s announcement this week that he has ended the state of emergency also brings to an end numerous Executive Orders suspending various laws and regulations, including those laws that otherwise require physician supervision and or collaboration requirements for various non-physician health care practitioners. To that end, the New York State Education Department issued the following announcement about the end of these Executive Orders as applicable to various Title 8 professionals:

Please be advised that the COVID-19 Disaster Emergency declared by the Governor, pursuant to Executive Order 202 issued on March 7, 2020, and each successor Executive Order to Executive Order 202 have expired as of June 25, 2021. While the several exceptions and authorizations relevant to the Title VIII statutes and regulations contained within these Executive Orders have now expired, the Department understands the concern regarding the short notice of the expiration of the COVID-19 Disaster Emergency and will take that into consideration in the event of any potential inquiries involving activity that had previously been authorized by Executive Order 202 and its successor Executive Orders at this time. However, Title VIII professionals should exercise due diligence and good faith efforts to return to compliance with all Title VIII statutory and regulatory requirements without delay. The Department is working closely with other New York State agencies and the Governor’s Office to clarify issues relating to the expiration of the Disaster Emergency and the reinstatement of laws and regulations that have been previously modified or suspended during the COVID 19 Disaster Emergency. Please continue to monitor the Department’s website for updated guidance


Physician Participation Needed in Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement Focus Groups
The NYS Department of Health, Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement is seeking input from users of the Prescription Monitoring Program and has reached out to MSSNY to seek physicians willing to participate in focus groups, which will be held in July. Please see message below and provide Pat Clancy, MSSNY Sr. Vice President of Public Health and Education (pclancy@mssny.org) with your name, email, and dates and time that you are available. MSSNY will provide that information to BNE by June 30, 2021.

The New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH), Bureau of Narcotic Enforcement (BNE) is working on a project to improve the utility of the Prescription Monitoring Program (PMP) Registry and is seeking input from PMP users. The proposed enhancements to the Registry consist of an updated format for the patient search landing page (Confidential Drug Utilization Report) and a dashboard that will display a summary of key visual indicators to highlight patient risk factors. The proposed indicators include the number of pharmacies and practitioners visited by the patient in the last 30 days, the presence of overlapping benzodiazepine and opioid prescriptions, and the presence of prescribed stimulants.

To develop enhancements that best serve PMP users, BNE is eager to incorporate stakeholder input into the project planning and development process through two types of engagement opportunities: virtual focus group and web-based survey. BNE has benefited from collaborations with New York State-based associations to aid in identifying participants for focus groups, surveys, and other stakeholder engagement efforts. BNE once again is looking to the associations to assist in this recruitment process.

Virtual Focus Group Participation
Focus groups will be comprised of five (5) participants for each session and will be held in July 2021. BNE is seeking assistance from interested professional associations including the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY), to identify 35-40 association members each who would be interested in participating in one of the focus groups. We are requesting that a contact list of interested association members be emailed to BNE at the earliest convenience, however, no later than June 29th,2021. BNE would manage the focus group registration process if MSSNY can provide a contact list of its interested members.
The expected participant commitment includes:

• Participation in a one-hour virtual focus group session conducted on a weeknight during evening hours from July 6 -16 and July 26-27, 2021.
• The focus group will be conducted as a recorded webinar, with the expectation that the participant will sign in 5-10 minutes before start of the program.
• Participants will be asked to engage in open and guided discussion.
• Participants will be provided a description of the focus group findings after BNE completion of analysis.
• Participation in a short evaluation survey to provide feedback on resulting enhancements, six (6) months after their implementation.

Web-Based Survey
In addition to the focus group, BNE is also designing a web-based survey to gather input on a morphine milligram equivalents (MME) calculator that has already been developed and can be accessed via the navigation bar within the PMP Registry. The survey offers an opportunity for feedback from PMP users in a format that will only take 10 minutes. MSSNY’s assistance would benefit the effort by disseminating the survey link broadly to its members. The survey will be available in early July and BNE will provide the link and email language to describe the effort. BNE will also manage all logistics related to survey responses. Participants will be provided a final description of survey findings after BNE completion of analysis.


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MSSNY Comments on Expiration of Telehealth Waivers in Crain’s
Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced Wednesday that the state’s disaster emergency designation will expire today—and with it, waivers expanding access to telehealth services could go away too. However, some industry advocates say they can see a way to ensure their continued access.

Since the declaration in March 2020, Cuomo has signed executive orders lifting restrictions on telehealth services, including those related to cost-sharing, the kind of services that can be conducted and who can provide them and where.

Although the cost-sharing waiver ended June 4, insurance coverage for audio-only telehealth services had been extended through July 6. Beyond that, it’s not clear whether such services will continue to be covered, said Moe Auster, vice president of legislative affairs for the Medical Society of the State of New York.

Other restrictions lifted via executive order, such as provider types and location requirements, had been included in the 2022 budget, which passed in April.

Many patients need the broad coverage, advocates say.

“Even prior to the Covid-19 pandemic, it was clear that many parts of the state lacked adequate access to basic health care services,” said Sen. Gustavo Rivera, chair of his chamber’s health committee. He represents a district that includes the Bronx. Telehealth had been an effective and safe tool to ensure that many New Yorkers, especially seniors, immunocompromised individuals, and residents with chronic conditions, could access basic health care services, he said.

Although the Legislature’s regular session ended June 10, the state Department of Financial Services has the power to require health insurers to continue covering audio-only telehealth services, Auster said. However, advocates will continue to work with state lawmakers during next year’s session, he added.

“We want to make sure the laws are updated to ensure this continues and grows,” said Assemblyman Richard Gottfried, chair of his chamber’s health committee. His district includes parts of Manhattan.

“We plan to continue conversations which amplify access to care for our most vulnerable populations,” Rivera said. “We’ve seen the potential of telehealth and must adapt our systems to expand virtual care across the state.”

Should insurance coverage of audio-only access go away, it could deter providers from using that platform, Auster said.

“Physicians have invested in trying to deliver telehealth well,” he said, “but if there’s no adequate payment, we will likely see the stop in investment.”

To protect access to telehealth services, Gottfried and Rivera also introduced payment parity bills in their respective chambers, although they did not pass in this year’s session. The bills sought to ensure that health providers are paid the same rate by insurers for services provided over telehealth as in-person visits.

“If reimbursement parity for Medicaid is not maintained, providers will be impacted,” Gottfried said. “And on the commercial side, there continues to be concern that providers will discontinue offering services via telehealth if they are not adequately reimbursed.” —Shuan Sim, Crain’s Health Pulse, 6/24/21


Please Urge Governor to Sign into Law Two Bills to Assist Patients to Receive Needed Medications
Physicians are urged to contact Governor Cuomo to urge that he sign into law two bills that are critical to helping patients to be able to receive the medications they need as well as to ensure greater oversight over pharmacy benefit formulary development practices.   A letter or tweet can be sent from here: Urge Gov. Cuomo to SIGN two RX bills – Regulating PBMs and Restricting Mid-Year Formulary Changes (p2a.co)

The first bill (A.1396, Gottfried/S.3762, Breslin), will provide greater accountability and transparency of the practices of pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). The bill was significantly revised from the version that passed the Legislature in 2019, but vetoed, to address concerns raised in your veto message.  The bill would require that PBMs be licensed by the Department of Financial Services (DFS) and adhere to standards established by DFS. The bill would also provide for the disclosure of all possible revenue streams and terms and conditions that they place on their networks of pharmacies.MSSNY has supported greater oversight and regulation of PBMs as one manner to address restrictive formularies and excessive prior authorization requirements that interfere with patients obtaining needed medications.

The second bill (A.4668, People-Stokes/S.4111) Breslin, would significantly limit the ability of health insurers to move medications to higher cost-sharing tiers for their prescription drug formularies during a policy year. The bill was revised from the version that passed both chambers two years ago, but was vetoed. To address concerns raised in your veto message in 2019, the legislation would prohibit the applicability of a mid-year formulary change for those patients who were on the medication at the beginning of the policy year, or suffer from a condition for which the medication is part of a treatment regimen, for that condition. However, other mid-year formulary changes could still occur.


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MSSNY & Patient Advocates Continue Discussions with Department of Financial Services (DFS) About Step Therapy Reforms
MSSNY joined patient advocates for a follow up call with staff at DFS this week to continue discussions about whether New York health plans are complying with the step therapy reform law that passed the legislature in 2016 and the possibility for further legislative reforms. Among the key items for discussion is ensuring greater transparency regarding the number of step therapy override determinations that have been made by various insurers, including having these figures be specifically enumerated within public documents from DFS that detail the numbers of internal and external appeals.

Step Therapy, also known as “fail first”, is a policy used by insurers to “control costs”, that requires patients to try and fail on one or more drugs prescribed by their physicians, before an insurer will provide coverage for the originally prescribed treatment. Step therapy protocols can also lead to serious health consequences and increased costs for patients. MSSNY was a key player in the coalition that worked to pass the law in 2016 that sets forth specific criteria that enable a physician to override a health plan step therapy protocol.

The group is planning on future discussions with DFS staff and MSSNY will provide updates as they happen.


Department of Financial Services (DFS) Decision to Eliminate Cost-Sharing Waiver for Patients’ Telehealth Care Likely Permanent
With the announcement this week that the Governor was ending the declared state of emergency, it made it significantly more likely that the DFS’ recent decision to end an emergency regulation requiring insurers to waive out-of-pocket expenses for patients receiving care via Telehealth would not be reversed.

Early on in the pandemic, with the support of MSSNY and many other patient advocacy organizations, DFS and the state Department of Health (DOH), adopted critically important policies to better enable patients to obtain health care services via telemedicine, including waiving cost-sharing requirements for services delivered via telemedicine, expressly permitting coverage for health care services via audio-only, and allowing delivery of telemedicine services through basic smartphone video technologies. Medicare also followed this path, waiving the federal statute that limits Medicare coverage for Telehealth to rural areas and significantly increased the payments for video and audio-only Telehealth services. The current emergency regulation expressly stating that health insurers must cover “audio-only” telehealth services has been extended until July 6, and MSSNY will be urging that it be continued after that date.

Even as a significant portion of the population is immunized against COVID19, public health experts anticipate that Covid-19 will remain a public health threat for the foreseeable future, making continued expanded patient access to Telehealth services important. MSSNY will continue to advocate for measures that remove barriers to patients receiving Telehealth services from their physicians, including fair payments for these services. We will also continue to work with Assemblywoman Woerner (D- Saratoga, and Senator Rivera (D-Bronx), and a range of patient and provider organizations partners, in support of their bill (A.6256/S.5505) to require insurer payments for services provided using Telehealth are on par with in-office visits.

Read the new policy here.


Please Urge Governor to Veto Multiple Pro-Trial Lawyer Tactical Bills
Physicians are urged to contact Governor Cuomo to urge him to VETO Regressive Liability Bills. There are multiple problematic pro-trial lawyer bills passed at the end of the Legislative Session that if signed could have the effect of significantly disadvantaging defendants generally in litigation in New York State, including physicians and hospitals defending against malpractice claims.

While these bills do not have the same gargantuan premium impact as other legislation sought by the trial bar that would expand lawsuits and awards against physicians, they would continue to make New York’s already dysfunctional medical liability adjudication system even more unbalanced and add to New York’s notorious outlier status with regard to medical liability payouts.  These bills include:

  • A2199/S473 – Expanding the time period for the imposition of New York’s excessive 9% judgment interest in cases where a plaintiff’s request for summary judgment was not initially granted, but then overturned on appeal.
  • A8040/S7093 – Changing a long-standing rule that heretofore excluded a “hearsay”.
  • A8041/S7052 – Imposing excessive insurance disclosure requirements on defendants during litigation.


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Guidance for New York State COVID-19 Vaccination Program
All individuals 12 years of age and older that reside in the United States are eligible to be vaccinated. Performance, throughput, effort, and effective administration of vaccines by providers continue to be key factors in making future vaccine allocations, along with equity, access, and regional positivity rates.

All vaccine providers in New York State, including those located in the City of New York and those participating in federal programs, must follow New York State Department of Health (NYSDOH) guidance and directives, including the requirement to accurately and completely report doses administered to the appropriate immunization information system (NYSIIS or CIR) within 24 hours of vaccine administration per Executive Order 202.82 as extended by 202.89, and must maintain up-to-date inventory in such system.

Accurate and timely reporting to NYSIIS/CIR is critical, as this information can be used to allow individuals to display proof of vaccination, such as the Excelsior Pass.

Read Guidance for NYS COVID-19 Vaccination Program in its entirety.


NYSIIS/CIR Reporting Requirements for the COVID-19 Vaccination Program
NYSIIS or CIR access is required to submit requests for vaccine, manage COVID vaccine inventory, and report doses administered. As a condition of receiving federally funded vaccine, all providers must report:

Within 24 hours of administering a dose of COVID-19 Vaccine and adjuvant (if applicable), Organization must record in the vaccine recipient’s record and report required information to the relevant state, local, or territorial public health authority. 

Organization must submit Vaccine-Administration Data through either (1) the immunization information system (IIS) of the state and local or territorial jurisdiction or (2) another system designated by CDC according to CDC documentation and data requirements.

For providers administering vaccine in New York State, submitting data to NYSIIS and CIR satisfies the federal reporting mandate. Providers should continue to submit this data to the NYSIIS and CIR within 24 hours of vaccination. Please continue to ensure you are entering all patient demographic and vaccine information completely and without errors.


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time. 212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


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


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: June 23, 2021 – CMS Recouping Medicare Advance Payments from Last Year


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CMS Recouping Medicare Advance Payments from Last Year
Physicians should be aware that CMS has begun recouping “advanced and accelerated” Medicare payments it provided to physicians, hospitals, and other providers last year at the height of the COVID-19 pandemic.  For more information on how this will occur, please review this document.

Through May 8, 2020, the Medicare program distributed $92 billion of these advanced and accelerated payments to Part A providers and $8 billion to Part B providers, including $6.5 billion to New York Part A providers and $458 million to New York Part B providers.
Click here for a State by State and Provider Type breakdown for Medicare Accelerated and Advance Payments.

During the recoupment period, CMS is holding back a portion of new Medicare payments – 25% during the first 11 months after the beginning of recoupment and 50% during months 12-17 after the beginning of recoupment — until the payments advanced last year are fully repaid.  Providers are required to have paid back the advanced payments in full 20 months after they received the first payment. If they fail to do so, CMS will charge interest of 4% percent on the remaining balance.

These Medicare repayments were re-scheduled to begin in August 2020, but following advocacy by the AMA and state medical societies across the country, CMS and Congress extended original repayment timelines and significantly reduced required interest payments in light of the ongoing struggles stemming from the pandemic.


MSSNY President-Elect Dr. Parag Mehta Represents MSSNY at Governor Cuomo’s Press Conference to Unveil Renderings for Essential Workers Monument and Announce Child Care Scholarships for Essential Workers
MSSNY President-Elect Dr. Parag Mehta represented MSSNY today as Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today unveiled renderings for the Essential Workers Monument. The Commission of labor leaders representing all essential workers have chosen a location in Battery Park City to install the monument. The Circle of Heroes design will represent the essential workers who served their communities throughout the pandemic, sacrificing so much in order to keep their fellow New Yorkers safe and supported. Construction of the Essential Workers Monument is due to be completed by Labor Day, September 6. Additionally, in tribute to our essential workers, Essential Worker Park will be established in Battery Park City.

In April, Governor Cuomo announced the formation of the Essential Workers Monument Advisory Committee, which includes MSSNY Immediate Past President Bonnie Litvack, MD:

  • Mario Cilento, President, New York State AFL-CIO
  • Gary LaBarbera, President of the New York State Building & Construction Trades Council and President of the Building & Construction Trades Council of Greater New York
  • Vincent Alvarez, President, New York City Central Labor Council
  • Stuart Appelbaum, President, Retail, Wholesale and Department Store Union
  • Oren Barzilay, President, Uniformed EMT’s, Paramedics & Fire Inspectors – FDNY
  • Kyle Bragg, President, 32BJ SEIU
  • Sam Fresina, President, NYS Professional Firefighters Association
  • Henry Garrido, Executive Director, DC 37
  • Thomas Gesualdi, President, Teamster’s Joint Council 16
  • George Gresham, President, 1199 SEIU
  • Pat Kane, RN, Executive Director, New York State Nurses Association
  • Bonnie Litvack, MD, President, Medical Society of the State of New York
  • Rich Maroko, President, Hotel Trades Council
  • Harry Nespoli, President, Uniformed Sanitationmen’s Association
  • Andrew Pallotta, President, New York State United Teachers
  • Michael Powers, President, New York State Correctional Officers Police Benevolent Association
  • Major General Raymond F. Shields, Jr., Adjutant General of New York
  • James Shillito, Utility Workers of America Local 1-2
  • Wayne Spence, President, New York State Public Employees Federation
  • Mary Sullivan, President, CSEA Local 1000
  • Dennis Trainor, Vice President CWA District 1
  • Tony Utano, President, TWU Local 100
  • Richard Wells, President, Police Conference of New York State

In addition, Governor Cuomo announced that New York State will provide $25 million in childcare scholarships to all essential workers starting June 23, 2021. Essential workers include first responders such as health care providers, pharmaceutical staff, law enforcement, firefighters, transportation workers, food delivery workers, grocery store employees and others. This is the first in a series of new investments to support working families and the childcare industry through the federal Coronavirus Response and Relief Supplemental Appropriations Act and American Rescue Plan Act.

Child care costs will be covered for essential staff whose income is less than 300 percent of the federal poverty level (or $79,500 for a family of four) and will be paid up to market rate for each region statewide for children aged six weeks through 12 years. Families currently receiving child care scholarships under the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security Act are strongly encouraged to also apply for this new funding opportunity. It is important to note that the CARES childcare scholarships will end on June 28; those currently receiving CARES scholarships will need to reapply.

To streamline the application and funding process, parents will apply for funding through a single online application, and providers will be paid directly on behalf of the parent. The online application can be submitted starting June 23, 2021, until funds are depleted. Applications will be processed and awarded on a first-come, first-served basis. For more information and to apply for the funding, please click here.


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MSSNY President Dr. Sellers Comments in Crain’s on Supreme Court Decision to Uphold ACA
Leaders in the state’s health industry applauded the U.S. Supreme Court’s Thursday decision to uphold the Affordable Care Act, saying it could make it tougher for future lawsuits to challenge the law and frees up the state to pursue providing coverage to those yet uninsured.

“Since passage of the ACA, New York has done more over the last decade than almost any other state to expand health care coverage, bolster services for its most vulnerable residents and improve the quality of care,” said Eric Linzer, president and CEO of the New York Health Plan Association, which represents 28 members in the state. “Today’s decision will ensure that the coverage millions of New Yorkers depend on remains protected.”

New York leaders played a role in the court’s decision, noted Kenneth Raske, president of the Greater New York Hospital Association. GNYHA had joined with other hospital associations in filing an amicus brief in defense of the law, led by Attorney General Letitia James and other states’ attorneys general, Raske said.

“We strongly support the ACA, which has made health care accessible to so many Americans, and we are grateful that it has once again survived legal challenge,” he added.

The ACA has withstood two previous legal challenges.

“We hope this case once and for all stops these lawsuits, which unnecessarily endanger health insurance coverage for millions of patients across New York and across the country,” said Dr. Joseph Sellers, president of the Medical Society of the State of New York.

This victory might not necessarily spell the end of challenges from Republicans, but it will make it harder for future attempts, said Diana Silver, associate professor of public health policy and management at the NYU School of Global Public Health.

“This eliminated another way for opponents to get in,” Silver said. Proponents have been on edge since the Supreme Court announced it would take up the case, and the odds appeared stacked in favor of the opponents, she added.

However, this decision does free up time and energy for states, including New York, to focus on extending coverage to those who are not yet insured, Silver said. With more than 95% of residents with insurance, the focus now should be on achieving the goal of universal health care, Linzer said.

Although the ACA did not expand the state’s Medicaid benefits much, as they were already broad, it did ensure comprehensive coverage—eliminating preexisting-condition exclusions and payment limits as well as establishing preventive care—for New Yorkers, Silver said. The law being kept in place protects those types of care.

The court’s decision will also ensure the state’s accountable-care organizations—health provider groups that work to improve health outcomes while reducing costs—can continue to flourish, Silver said.

“The ACA had enabled a shift of funding for ACOs to care not just about providing services, but also about outcomes,” she said.

There were about 477 accountable-care organizations nationally as of January, of which about 30 were in New York.

“Those entities would not have been able to function had ACA been struck down,” she said. — Shuan Sim, Crain’s Health Pulse, 6/18/21


CMS Increases Medicare Payments for COVID-19 Monoclonal Antibody Infusions and At-Home Covid-19 Vaccinations
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently announced it has increased the Medicare payment rate for administering monoclonal antibodies to treat beneficiaries with COVID-19, under the Medicare Part B COVID-19 vaccine benefit. CMS notes that beneficiaries pay nothing out of pocket, regardless of where the service is furnished – including in a physician’s office, healthcare facility or at home.

The national average payment rate will increase from $310 to $450 for most health care settings. CMS will also establish a higher national payment rate of $750 when monoclonal antibodies are administered in the beneficiary’s home, including the beneficiary’s permanent residence or temporary lodging (e.g., hotel/motel, cruise ship, hostel, or homeless shelter).

CMS is updating the set of toolkits for physicians, states and insurers to help the health care system swiftly administer monoclonal antibody treatment with these new Medicare payment rates here.

In addition, CMS is updating coding resources for physicians here.

CMS also recently announced that, as of June 8, in addition to the current payment amount, Medicare will pay an additional amount of $35 per dose for administering the Covid-19 vaccine in the home for certain Medicare patients that have difficulties leaving their homes.

Medicare will pay the $35 amount in addition to the standard administration amount (approximately $40 per dose), for a total payment of approximately $75 for a single-dose vaccine or $150 for both doses of a 2-dose vaccine. Medicare will also geographically adjust the additional amount and administration rate based on where the vaccine is administered.  For more information, click here.


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NYS DOH Call to Action: Catch Up Children and Teens in Need of Vaccines, Including COVID-19
The COVID-19 pandemic has disrupted many preventive services, including childhood and adolescent vaccination. According to data reported to the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS), more than 400,000 fewer vaccine doses were administered to children and teens in New York State (NYS) outside of New York City in 2020 compared with 2019. Achieving and maintaining high immunization coverage rates is critical to prevent school and community outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases such as measles, mumps, and pertussis.

As travel increases and more in-person schooling resumes, the risk of outbreaks of vaccine preventable diseases in NYS increases. It is critical that students attending schools, child caring centers, nursery schools, or pre-kindergarten programs in-person or via a hybrid model be up to date on all vaccines required for school entrance and attendance in NYS unless they have a medical exemption to required vaccines and that campers and camp staff be up to date on all vaccines recommended for their age according to the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices schedules.

Additionally, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommend that international travelers be up to date on routine vaccines prior to travel, regardless of school or job requirements.

Read the full NYS Department of Health document.


Excelsior Pass Fact Sheet for Vaccine Providers
Users who have trouble retrieving their Passes may ask physicians for help as their vaccine provider. This fact sheet is intended to help vaccination providers such as yourself resolve issues quickly.

Fast Facts

  • Excelsior Pass is a free, voluntary, and verifiable way to retrieve proof of COVID-19 vaccination or negative test results and users’ data is kept confidential and secure.
  • Anyone who receives the COVID-19 Vaccination in the State of New York is eligible for an Excelsior Pass.
  • You can help New York residents who were vaccinated outside of New York State (that provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination, e.g., CDC card) access their Pass by entering their information into the secure New York State or New York City immunization databases as historical doses. Visit “Important Reminder for All Health Care Providers” to learn how.
  • Individuals may retrieve their Vaccination Pass 15 days after the final dose of the vaccine was administered (e.g., 15 days after the one-dose of Johnson and Johnson/Jansen vaccination series or 15 days after the second of the two-dose Pfizer or Moderna series).
  • Individuals that receive a positive COVID-19 test result within the previous 10 days will not be able to retrieve a Pass, even if they are fully vaccinated.
  • Each Excelsior COVID-19 Vaccination Pass is valid for 365 days. The 365 days relates only to the length of time the Pass is valid, not the length of immunity from the vaccination.
  • Individuals whose COVID-19 Vaccination Excelsior Pass expires after 180 days or has already expired can update their pass by visiting www.epass.ny.gov/home or downloading the NYS Excelsior Pass Wallet App, and follow the step-by-step instructions there.
  • Excelsior Pass can be accessed through the Excelsior Pass website Portal or the Excelsior Pass Wallet App and can be presented on a phone or tablet screen, or printed on paper by those who may not have smartphones or other devices.
  • Vaccine providers must enter each individual’s COVID-19 vaccine information accurately into the provider system and the New York State or New York City immunization databases.
  • Users must match their information exactly to retrieve their Pass.

Click here for Fact Sheet with more information.


Regents Physician Loan Forgiveness Award Program
The State-funded Regents Physician Loan Forgiveness Award Program will grant 80 awards In 2021 (pending the appropriation of State funds during the 2021 session of the New York State Legislature) to physicians who agree to practice primary care medicine in an area of New York State designated by the Board of Regents as having a shortage of physicians.

The award amount is based on undergraduate and medical school student loan amount and loan interest expense. Award recipients will receive two annual payments of up to $10,000 each year for two years. Recipients who have incurred more than $20,000 in eligible expenses may apply for an additional two-year award.

The amount of the award received will be based upon the amount of undergraduate and medical school loans and loan interest expense incurred by the physician. Offer for 2021 awards will begin to be made to eligible individual in July 2021. Applicants who are unsuccessful in this competition may compete in subsequent years, provided they continue to meet the eligibility requirements. The Regent Loan Forgiveness Program is now accepting applications for 2021.  More information may be found here and here.


Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time.  212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Ophthalmic Office to Sublet – NYC
340 E. 49TH St. (Ground Floor -Handicap Accessible) 1-3 Lanes Wed/Fri/Sat/Sun Full use of: VF / OCT /Pachymeter/ Autorefractor /Autolensometer / Argon / YAG Lasers
Please contact Scott Weissman MD. privacyssw@gmail.com. 914-772-5581

Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


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


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: June 18, 2021 – Physicians’ Offices Preferred COVID Vaccine Sites for Unvaccinated Americans

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Physicians’ Offices Preferred COVID Vaccine Sites for Unvaccinated Americans

Colleagues:

We celebrated an important milestone earlier this week when New York State reached 70 percent adult COVID-19 vaccination rate. As the news hit, I was reminded of the important work accomplished by MSSNY and my predecessor, MSSNY’s Immediate Past President Dr. Bonnie L. Litvack—who serves as a member of the Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force.

But the fight is not over. We must get as close to 100 percent vaccination as we can. And it’s now more important than ever for us—our patients’ trusted physicians—to instill confidence in the safety and efficacy of the vaccine.

Just this week in my office, I was reminded of the important role physicians play in continuing to get New Yorkers vaccinated. I had three patients with three distinct barriers preventing access to the healthcare system—one with limited health literacy, one with impaired mobility, and one with substance abuse issues. In our office—a healthcare setting they trust—we were able to counsel each patient and get them all vaccinated.

In fact, results of a new national poll of more than 12,000 people conducted jointly by the African American Research Collaborative and the Commonwealth Fund show that more than half of unvaccinated Americans would prefer to get a COVID-19 vaccination at their physicians’ office.  The preference to be vaccinated in a medical office was three to five times higher among unvaccinated Americans than were other options like retail pharmacies, community health centers, public health clinics, and large public vaccination sites.

As new variants of COVID-19 continue to emerge, we need to be prepared and ready to prevent a resurgence. Let’s get as close to 100 percent vaccination as we can by instilling vaccine confidence in our patients.

We, as our patients’ trusted physicians, are uniquely qualified to accomplish this goal.

Joseph Sellers, MD, FAAP, FACP
MSSNY President.


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MSSNY Press Statement in Support of US Supreme Court Decision to Uphold the ACA in California v. Texas
Statement from Joseph Sellers, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

We appreciate that the US Supreme Court has—once again—upheld the legality of the Affordable Care Act.  We hope this case once and for all stops these lawsuits which unnecessarily endanger health insurance coverage for millions of patients across New York and across the country.

“While MSSNY continues to pursue reforms to the law that would help to better ensure patients can obtain comprehensive first-dollar health insurance coverage, the ACA has importantly set the stage for millions across New York State to obtain health insurance coverage that they previously they were unable to afford.

“MSSNY looks forward to working with patient and physician groups across New York State and across the country to expand comprehensive health insurance coverage options for our patients.”


Longtime MSSNY Member Dr. Erick Eiting Receives AMA Excellence in LGBTQ Health Award
The AMA Foundation presented the Excellence in LGBTQ Health Award to Erick Eiting, MD, MPH, MMM at the 16th Annual Excellence in Medicine Awards Ceremony on Sunday, June 13.

The award honors a physician who has demonstrated outstanding work, innovation and leadership in LGBTQ policy, advocacy, patient care, academics, workforce diversity, or health care administration.

Dr. Eiting has been a tireless advocate for the care of underserved and vulnerable populations, particularly in the LGBTQ+ community in New York City where he serves as the vice chair of operations for emergency medicine at Mount Sinai. He has also served as the vice chair for the AMA Advisory Committee on LGBTQ Issues and helped establish the LGBTQ Honor Fund at the AMA Foundation.

An active member of MSSNY, Dr. Eiting currently serves as co-chair of the Committee on Health Equity and has served on several other committees, including as a member of the Task Force on Medical Student Tuition and Debt and the Committee on Medical Education.



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MSSNY Joins Legislative Champion on Telehealth in Letter Questioning Department of Financial Services (DFS) Decision to Eliminate Cost-Sharing Waiver for Patients
MSSNY and several specialty societies have joined a joint letter to the New York Department of Financial Services (DFS) initiated by Assemblywoman Carrie Woerner (D- Saratoga Springs), raising concerns with DFS ending its policy adopted in March 2020 exempting patients from out-of-pocket expenses including co-pays, coinsurance, and deductibles for in-network Telehealth services. It should be noted that the latest DFS extension of emergency coverage is valid through July 4, 2021 and continues to ensure that commercial health insurers must cover audio-only Telehealth services. Assemblywoman Woerner is also the lead sponsor of legislation (A.6256/S.5505) strongly supported by MSSNY to require insurer payments for services provided using Telehealth are on par with in-office visits.

Early on in the pandemic, with the support of MSSNY and many other patient advocacy organizations, DFS and the state Department of Health (DOH), adopted critically important policies to better enable patients to obtain health care services via telemedicine, including waiving cost-sharing requirements for services delivered via telemedicine, expressly permitting coverage for health care services via audio-only, and allowing delivery of telemedicine services through basic smartphone video technologies. Medicare also followed this path, waiving the federal statute that limits Medicare coverage for Telehealth to rural areas and significantly increased the payments for video and audio-only Telehealth services.

Even as a significant portion of the population begins to be immunized against COVID19, public health experts anticipate that Covid-19 will remain a public health threat for the foreseeable future, making continued expanded patient access to Telehealth services all the more important. Therefore, MSSNY has raised concerns to DFS that it may still be premature to re-instate otherwise applicable patient cost-sharing requirements when many immuno-compromised patients still may be more comfortable receiving ongoing care where appropriate via telehealth. Moreover, MSSNY will continue to advocate for measures that remove barriers to patients receiving Telehealth services from their physicians, including fair payments for these services.

Read the new policy here.


Please Urge Governor to Veto Multiple Pro-Trial Lawyer Tactical Bills
As reported in MSSNY e-news last week, the State Legislature ended its regular 2021 Legislative Session without passing legislation (S.74-A/A.6770) strongly opposed by MSSNY and many other groups that could have prompted untenable increases in New York’s already excessive medical liability costs by greatly expanding the types of damages awardable in “Wrongful Death” actions. One recent actuarial estimate indicated that passage of legislation such as this could have required a liability premium increase of nearly 50%, which could have meant tens of thousands of dollars in new liability insurance costs for many physicians particularly in downstate New York. We thank the many physicians who took the time to send a letter or tweet reminding legislators of the devastating impact this legislation could have on patient access to care in their communities.

However, in the Session’s final days, the State Legislature did pass multiple problematic pro-trial lawyer bills that if signed could have the effect of significantly disadvantaging defendants generally in litigation in New York State, including physicians and hospitals defending against malpractice claims. These bills include:

  • A2199/S473 – Expanding the time period for the imposition of New York’s excessive 9% judgment interest in cases where a plaintiff’s request for summary judgment was not initially granted, but then overturned on appeal.
  • A8040/S7093 – Changing a long-standing rule that heretofore excluded a “hearsay” statement made by a defendant’s employee.
  • A8041/S7052 – Imposing excessive insurance disclosure requirements on defendants during litigation.

As MSSNY works together with other aligned organizations to urge the Governor to veto these bills, physicians are urged to send a letter or tweet to the Governor from here Urge Governor Cuomo to VETO Regressive Liability Bills also asking him to veto these bills.


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Please Urge Governor to Sign into Law Two Bills to Assist Patients to Receive Needed Medications
Physicians are urged to contact Governor Cuomo to urge that he sign into law 2 bills that are critical to helping patients to be able to receive the medications they need as well as to ensure greater oversight over pharmacy benefit formulary development practices. A letter or tweet can be sent here: Urge Gov. Cuomo to SIGN two RX bills-Regulating PBMs and Restricting Mid-Year Formulary Changes.

The first bill (A.1396, Gottfried/S.3762, Breslin), will provide greater accountability and transparency of the practices of Pharmacy Benefit Managers (PBMs). The bill was significantly revised from the version that passed the Legislature in 2019, but vetoed, to address concerns raised in your veto message. The bill would require that PBMs be licensed by the Department of Financial Services (DFS) and adhere to standards established by DFS. The bill would also provide for the disclosure of all possible revenue streams and terms and conditions that they place on their networks of pharmacies. MSSNY has supported greater oversight and regulation of PBMs as one manner to address restrictive formularies and excessive prior authorization requirements that interfere with patients obtaining needed medications.

The second bill, A.4668, People-Stokes/S.4111, Breslin, would significantly limit the ability of health insurers to move medications to higher cost-sharing tiers for their prescription drug formularies during a policy year. The bill was revised from the version that passed both chambers two years ago, but was vetoed. To address concerns raised in your veto message in 2019, the legislation would prohibit the applicability of a mid-year formulary change for those patients who were on the medication at the beginning of the policy year, or suffer from a condition for which the medication is part of a treatment regimen, for that condition. However, other mid-year formulary changes could still occur.


Several New York Congressional Members Urge Federal Surprise Bill Law Implementation to Ensured Balanced Consideration of Factors
Eleven members of New York’s Congressional delegation signed on to a letter to the Secretaries of several federal agencies urging an implementation of the No Surprises Act (NSA) that ensures “a balanced process to settle payment disputes between health plans and providers.” It was designed to push back against aggressive efforts by the insurance and business industries that want to distort the federal Independent Dispute resolution (IDR) process to resolve surprise out of network medical bills to essentially have a presumption in favor of insurer payments.

The Center for Consumer Information and Insurance Oversight (CCIIO) is developing regulations over the next several months implementing the NSA with the law operative beginning January 1, 2022.

The letter was initiated by Rep. Tom Suozzi (D-Long Island) and Brad Wenstrup (R-OH), and whose bi-partisan list of 93 signers including Rep. Adriano Espaillat (D-Bronx and Manhattan), Rep. Andrew Garbarino (R-Long Island), Rep. Brian Higgins (D-Erie and Niagara counties), Rep. John Katko (R-Central New York), Rep. Sean Patrick Maloney (D-Hudson Valley) Rep. Grace Meng (D-Queens), Rep. Joe Morelle (D-Monroe County), Jerrold Nadler (D-Kings and Manhattan), Rep. Tom Reed (R-Western New York) and Rep. Nydia Velasquez (D-Kings, Manhattan and Queens).

The Suozzi-Wenstrup letter notes that “the No Surprises Act instructs the certified IDR entity to consider each of these listed factors, as well as any allowable information brought by either party or requested by the certified IDR entity. To match Congressional intent, your implementation of the law should ensure an IDR process that captures the unique circumstances of each billing dispute and does not cause any single piece of information to be the default one considered.”

The letter further notes that the IDR process established in the No Surprises Act prevents artificially low payment rates that would incentivize insurance companies to keep providers out of their networks. Providers and payors are able to bring relevant information with the exception of billed charges and public payor information for consideration, and the certified IDR entity shall consider:

  • Median in-network rates
  • Provider training and quality of outcomes
  • Market share of parties
  • Patient acuity or complexity of services
  • Teaching status, case mix, and scope of services of the facility
  • Demonstrations of previous good faith efforts to negotiate in-network rates
  • Prior contract history between the two parties over the previous four years.

Both MSSNY and the AMA have submitted letters to CCIIO also urging that no one of these factors be given a priority over the other factors.


 

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Health and Human Services (HHS) Issues Important New Information for Provider Relief Fund (PRF) Recipients
HHS held a call on Tuesday, June 16th with health provider associations across the country to provide education for recipients of COVID-related emergency funding regarding information about new deadlines, auditing, and reporting requirements. Recipients include those who received funding from the CARES Act and the Paycheck Protection Program (PPP), among others. More than $186 billion dollars were distributed through these programs, throughout the COVID crisis, and provided relief to healthcare providers, hospitals, businesses and a range of others.

All information is available through the HHS and Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) websites and includes key details like an extension for the period to complete reporting from 30 to 90 days, allowable expenditures, who is required to report, and a host of other important details. All changes supersede previous information.

To learn more, please use the following links:

Provider Reporting Portal
https://prfreporting.hrsa.gov/s/

Deadlines for Recipients
https://www.hhs.gov/coronavirus/cares-act-provider-relief-fund/reporting-auditing/index.html

Examples of Allowable Expenditures
https://www.hhs.gov/sites/default/files/allowable-expenses-one-pager.pdf


COVID-19 Vaccines: Expiration and Beyond Use Dates (BUDs)
Determining when a vaccine expires is a critical step in proper storage, handling, and reporting. The expiration date should always be checked prior to preparing or administering vaccine. Expired vaccine should NEVER be used. As additional stability data become available, the expiration dates for some products may change. Follow the instructions below to determine the expiration date of COVID-19 vaccines.

  • Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine: This vaccine product has an expiration date located on the vaccine vial.
  • Moderna COVID-19 vaccine: The expiration date is NOT printed on the vaccine vial or carton. To obtain the expiration date of the lot number received, providers can scan the QR code located on the vial or carton or access the manufacturer’s website directly, enter the lot number and the expiration date will be displayed.
  • Janssen/Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine: The expiration date is NOT printed on the vaccine vial or carton. To determine the expiration date:
    • Scan the QR code located on the outer carton, or
    • Call 1-800-565-4008, or
    • Go to jnj/, enter the lot number and the expiration date will be displayed.

For Moderna and Janssen/J&J COVID-19 vaccines it is important to write the expiration date on the carton or vials since it is not printed.  Orders of Moderna and Janssen/J&J received in NYSIIS will contain a placeholder date of 12/31/2069.  The actual expiration date must be updated in NYSIIS and CIR as well, as part of inventory management.  Vaccines should always follow a first in, first out process in which vials that have the earliest expiration date are used first.  CDC’s https://www.cdc.gov/vaccines/covid-19/downloads/expiration-tracker.pdf can help providers keep track of the expiration date by lot number. Vaccine inventory should be managed using a “first in first out” tracking process to limit the potential for wastage.

Beyond Use Dates (BUDs)

All vaccines have expiration dates, and some routinely recommended vaccines have a beyond use date (BUD), which is calculated based on the date the vial is first punctured and the storage information in the package insert.  Whenever a vial of COVID-19 vaccine is moved to storage conditions that affect BUD or a multidose vial is punctured, label the vial(s) with the beyond use date/time.  The BUD must never exceed the labeled expiration date.  Once the vaccine has reached its expiration or beyond use date/time, unused doses must be disposed of as medical waste and reported in NYSIIS as wastage or in CIR as wastage.  A summary of COVID-19 vaccine beyond use dates and resources are listed below.



Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Medical Claims LogoSmall Group and Independent Practitioners – Advancing Private Practices
The Best billing company GUARANTEED! Increase your annual revenue by 20-30%. Proven results and backed by 25 years of experience. Chooses MA MEDICLAIMS you will Save time on those RVUs/the 8-minute rule and have more time for your patient’s health. Get your free Practice analysis at www.ma-mediclaimsllc.com or call 877-927-1996.


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time.  212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Ophthalmic Office to Sublet – NYC
340 E. 49TH St. (Ground Floor -Handicap Accessible) 1-3 Lanes Wed/Fri/Sat/Sun Full use of: VF / OCT /Pachymeter/ Autorefractor /Autolensometer / Argon / YAG Lasers
Please contact Scott Weissman MD. privacyssw@gmail.com. 914-772-5581

Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


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


 

 

 

 

MSSNY eNews: June 16, 2021 – MSSNY Press Statement: New York State Reaches 70 Percent Adult COVID-19 Immunization

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MSSNY Press Statement: New York State Reaches 70 Percent Adult COVID-19 Immunization
Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force Member and NYS Medical Society Immediate Past President Bonnie L. Litvack, MD, Reflects on Reaching Important Milestone and Calls for Continued Vaccination Efforts

Statement from Bonnie Litvack, MD
Immediate Past President, Medical Society of the State of New York
Member, Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force 

“As of today, 70 percent of the adult population in New York have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. As we hit this important milestone, I am reminded of the resilience, the resolve, and the forbearance of my fellow New Yorkers. We were once at the epicenter of the pandemic and now—in true New York fashion—we have pulled together, stayed strong, and achieved 70 percent immunity.

“When Governor Cuomo established the Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force in September 2020 to advise and set up operations for the state’s COVID-19 vaccination program, it was my hope—and that of the entire Task Force—that we would one day achieve this important milestone.

“But the fight is not over. My hope going forward is that as cases continue to decrease, more New Yorkers will see what can happen when we work together to get vaccinated.

“As variants increase, it is more important than ever for every eligible citizen to roll up their sleeves—and get the COVID-19 vaccination.”

Statement from Joseph Sellers, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York
“I am extraordinarily proud of my colleague, Dr. Bonnie Litvack, for the important work she has done as a member of the Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force,” said MSSNY President Dr. Joseph Sellers. “I know that her hard work will continue as we aim to get 100 percent of New Yorkers fully vaccinated.”

Press Coverage:
Politico New York (6/15, Young) reports, “The Medical Society of the State of New York touted the vaccination milestone as a reminder of New York’s resiliency.” In a statement, MSSNY immediate past president Bonnie L. Litvack, MD, who is a member of Cuomo’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force, said: “We were once at the epicenter of the pandemic and now – in true New York fashion – we have pulled together, stayed strong, and achieved 70 percent immunity.”

Democrat & Chronicle/USA TODAY Network’s Atlantic Group (6/15, Spector)
New York lifts most COVID restrictions as vaccination rate hits 70%
“Bonnie Litvack, past president of the state Medical Society who served on Cuomo’s vaccine task force, said New Yorkers’ resolve should continue.

“The fight is not over,” she said in a statement.

“My hope going forward is that as cases continue to decrease, more New Yorkers will see what can happen when we work together to get vaccinated. As variants increase, it is more important than ever for every eligible citizen to roll up their sleeves—and get the COVID-19 vaccination.”


AMA Survey Shows Over 96% of Doctors Fully Vaccinated Against COVID-19
The American Medical Association (AMA)’s recent survey (PDF) among practicing physicians finds that more than 96 percent of surveyed U.S. physicians have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19, with no significant difference in vaccination rates across regions. Of the physicians who are not yet vaccinated, an additional 45 percent do plan to get vaccinated.

The national AMA survey is the first to specifically collect data on practicing physicians’ COVID-19 vaccination rates. The survey was conducted June 3–8 and showed an increase of more than 20 percent for physicians who have been fully vaccinated for COVID-19 compared to a May 2021 Medscape poll.



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Medicare Increases Payments for at Home COVID-19 Vaccination
With an estimated 1.6 million persons 65 and older who have not been vaccinated against COVID-19 because of difficulty leaving home, the Biden Administration announced that, in addition to the current payment amount, Medicare will pay an additional amount of $35 per dose for administering the vaccine in the home for certain Medicare patients that have difficulties leaving their homes. The change was made effective June 8.  Medicare will pay the $35 amount in addition to the standard administration amount (approximately $40 per dose), for a total payment of approximately $75 for a single-dose vaccine or $150 for both doses of a 2-dose vaccine. Medicare will also geographically adjust the additional amount and administration rate based on where the vaccine is administered.  For more information: Vaccination administration in the home.


Shelf Life Extended for Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine
On June 10, the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) authorized an extension of the shelf life for the Johnson & Johnson’s Janssen single-shot COVID-19 vaccine (J&J vaccine) from 3 months to 4.5 months (an additional 6 weeks). The decision is based on data from ongoing stability assessment studies, which have demonstrated that the vaccine is stable at 4.5 months when refrigerated at temperatures of 36 – 46 degrees Fahrenheit (2 – 8 degrees Celsius).

Vaccine providers that have J&J vaccine in storage should visit https://vaxcheck.jnj/ and enter the lot number to confirm the latest expiration dates of vaccine, including those currently available for administration throughout the U.S. This extension applies to refrigerated vials of J&J COVID-19 vaccine that have been held in accordance with the manufacturer’s storage conditions.

Mark the vials and carton with the new date displayed and also update the date in the NYSIIS or CIR inventory module.  If you have vaccine in storage that expired prior to June 10, 2021, those vials should be disposed of as medical waste and reported as wastage in NYSIIS/CIR (see NYSIIS wastage reporting guidance here and NYCIR here.

COVID-19 vaccines that are authorized under an EUA do not have fixed expiration dates, and their expiration dates may be extended as the FDA receives and reviews additional stability data.  Please be sure to check the manufacturer’s website to obtain the most up-to-date expiration dates for COVID-19 vaccines you have on hand.


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Join CareClix on June 23 @ Noon for an Overview of Virtual Care Management Program
MSSNY Members receive a discounted rate for implementing CareClix, a virtual telehealth platform that enables you to put your patients first.

Join CareClix for a brief overview of the platform followed by a Q&A session with CareClix’s CEO to answer any questions.

Details:

Date: June 23rd, 2021
Time: 12 pm EST

Where: https://mssny.zoom.us/s/96348830789?pwd=bUxVTjQxMGR0S3RTQm55YlQvQnpRUT09

Presenter: Dr. John Korangy, MD, MPH, CEO of CareClix

CareClix’s all-in-one platform lets you deliver an exceptional patient experience that’s convenient for your patients and efficient for you. Allow patients – new and old – to chat straight from your website or mobile app. Increase appointment bookings and capture patient demand 24/7.

Key features that will be demonstrated in the webinar:

  • Messaging
  • Scheduling
  • Appointments
  • Provider Dashboard
  • Virtual Waiting Room
  • 3rd Party Invite
  • Account Settings
  • Setting Up Clinic
  • Setting up Fee and Specialties

Time and Financial Costs for Physician Practices to Participate in the Medicare Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS)
The MIPS track of the Medicare Quality Payment Program influences payment for more than 1 million physicians annually. There is growing concern that MIPS increases administrative burden, and little is known about what it costs physician practices to participate. Research published by the Physicians Foundation examines this issue using interviews from December 2019 to June 2020 with leaders of 30 physician practices across the U.S.

  • An average of $12,811 was spent per-physician to participate in MIPS in 2019; small and medium primary care practices had mean per-physician costs of $18,466 and $13,631, respectively.
  • Physicians and administrators spent more than 200 hours per physician on MIPS-related activities.
  • Physician time accounted for the greatest proportion of overall MIPS-related costs with a mean cost of $6,909.
  • Average MIPS-related costs were substantial, totaling $1,111 per physician.

JAMA Network | May 2021 Click here to view the full report.


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Classifieds

Classified Ads Available for:

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

For help, information or to place your ad, call Roseann Raia at 516-488-6100 ext. 302 

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


Office Rental 30 Central Park South
Two fully equipped exam, two certified operating, bathrooms and consultation room.  Shared secretarial and waiting rooms.  Elegantly decorated, central a/c, hardwood floors. Next to Park Lane and Plaza hotels. $1250 for four days a month. Available full or part-time.  212.371.0468 / drdese@gmail.com.


Ophthalmic Office to Sublet – NYC
340 E. 49TH St. (Ground Floor -Handicap Accessible) 1-3 Lanes Wed/Fri/Sat/Sun Full use of: VF / OCT /Pachymeter/ Autorefractor /Autolensometer / Argon / YAG Lasers
Please contact Scott Weissman MD. privacyssw@gmail.com. 914-772-5581

Albany Medical OfficeProfessional Office Space For Sale – Albany, NY
319 S. Manning Blvd, Suite 308A. Albany NY. Located on the St. Peter’s Hospital Campus. 2000 SF. Bright, 3rd floor location. Office is in move in condition. Waiting room, front reception area for 3 staff, 2 consult rooms, 4 exam rooms, 1 large procedure room, eat in break room, storage room, walk in storage closet. 369K. Contents negotiable. Please contact 518-222-4956 / email perrotmi@yahoo.com


 

 


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


 

 

 

 

MSSNY Supports US Supreme Court Decision to Uphold the ACA in California v. Texas

For Immediate Release
June 17, 2021 

MSSNY Supports US Supreme Court Decision to
Uphold the ACA in California v. Texas


Statement from Joseph Sellers, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York

We appreciate that the US Supreme Court has—once again—upheld the legality of the Affordable Care Act.  We hope this case once and for all stops these lawsuits which unnecessarily endanger health insurance coverage for millions of patients across New York and across the country.

“While MSSNY continues to pursue reforms to the law that would help to better ensure patients can obtain comprehensive first-dollar health insurance coverage, the ACA has importantly set the stage for millions across New York State to obtain health insurance coverage that they previously they were unable to afford.

“MSSNY looks forward to working with patient and physician groups across New York State and across the country to expand comprehensive health insurance coverage options for our patients.”

# # #

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


Media Contact:
Roseann Raia | Communications / Marketing
Medical Society of the State of New York
865 Merrick Avenue
Westbury, NY 11590
516.488.6100 x302 | rraia@mssny.org

 

New York State Reaches 70 Percent Adult COVID-19 Immunization

For Immediate Release
June 15, 2021 

 

New York State Reaches 70 Percent Adult COVID-19 Immunization

Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force Member and NYS Medical Society Immediate Past President Reflects on Reaching Important Milestone and Calls for Continued Vaccination Efforts

 

Statement from Bonnie Litvack, MD
Immediate Past President, Medical Society of the State of New York
Member, Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force 

“As of today, 70 percent of the adult population in New York have received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine. As we hit this important milestone, I am reminded of the resilience, the resolve, and the forbearance of my fellow New Yorkers. We were once at the epicenter of the pandemic and now—in true New York fashion—we have pulled together, stayed strong, and achieved 70 percent immunity.

“When Governor Cuomo established the Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force in September 2020 to advise and set up operations for the state’s COVID-19 vaccination program, it was my hope—and that of the entire Task Force—that we would one day achieve this important milestone.

“But the fight is not over. My hope going forward is that as cases continue to decrease, more New Yorkers will see what can happen when we work together to get vaccinated.

“As variants increase, it is more important than ever for every eligible citizen to roll up their sleeves—and get the COVID-19 vaccination.”   

 

Statement from Joseph Sellers, MD
President, Medical Society of the State of New York
“I am extraordinarily proud of my colleague, Dr. Bonnie Litvack, for the important work she has done as a member of the Governor’s Vaccine Distribution and Implementation Task Force,’ said MSSNY President Dr. Joseph Sellers. “I know that her hard work will continue as we aim to get 100 percent of New Yorkers fully vaccinated.”

# # #

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


Media Contact:
Roseann Raia | Communications / Marketing

Medical Society of the State of New York

865 Merrick Avenue

Westbury, NY 11590

516.488.6100 x302 | rraia@mssny.org

 

 

 

 

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