News Now Header
Top Stories
Legislative Deadline - HHS Budget Talks Continue

Negotiations continue in St. Paul concerning budget targets for Health and Human Services spending for the next biennium. The Legislature has until midnight on Monday, May 18, to reach an agreement. Going into negotiations, the House wanted to reduce general fund spending in HHS programs by $1.2 billion while the Senate wanted to add $341 million. Much of the MMA's legislative work (on medication prior authorization, increasing Medicaid reimbursement, loan forgiveness for primary care physicians) is contained in the HHS bill. Negotiations on the final bill cannot continue until the governor, House and Senate come to agreement on overall spending and tax numbers.   

MMA Officially Opposes MinnesotaCare II  

In a letter to Senate and House members of the Health and Human Services budget conference committee, the MMA came out in opposition of legislation that would dismantle the state's MinnesotaCare program. Read more here.

Dayton Signs Trisomy Bill into Law

On May 11, Gov. Mark Dayton signed into law a bill that requires physicians to direct patients to specific information on the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) website if a prenatal diagnostic test shows that a fetus has a trisomy condition. MDH needs to ensure the information on the site is current and evidence-based. The site must include data on life expectancy; expected physical, developmental, and social outcomes; treatment options; contact information for support groups; and other information. Earlier this session, the MMA sent a letter to legislators urging caution in adopting bills such as this, as they represent significant interference in the physician-patient relationship.

Rochester Networking Event Draws Large Crowd

More than 100 physicians and physicians-in-training attended a free social event in Rochester on May 7. The MMA, Zumbro Valley Medical Society, and the MMA's Young Physicians, Residents and Fellows and Medical Student sections hosted the event. Sponsors included US Air Force, Cambria, US Army, Home Federal, US Navy, Limb Lab, Clements and the MMA Foundation.

CMS Offers ICD-10 Implementation Guidance

Physicians and practice managers can take advantage of a free ICD-10 webinar, which takes place May 19 from 9 to 11 a.m. Read more here.

Member Running Unopposed for AMA Board Position

MMA member Maya Babu, MD, a neurosurgery resident at Mayo Clinic, is running unopposed for a second two-year term as the Resident and Fellow Section member of the AMA Board of Trustees. She was first elected in June 2013. Babu holds a B.S. in neuroscience and a B.A. in psychology from the University of Minnesota. She graduated from both Harvard Medical School and Harvard Business School. Babu has served in many roles within the MMA as well, including as a member of the MMA Board of Trustees. Her election will take place at the AMA House of Delegates meeting June 6-10 in Chicago. 

Retired Minnesota Physician to Receive Humanitarian Award

On May 17, Helmut Diefenthal, MD, will receive the first-ever Humanitarian Award from the American College of Radiology. For the past 30 years, Diefenthal and his wife, Ro, have lived and worked in Moshi, Tanzania. He formerly taught and practiced radiology at the University of Minnesota and Veterans Affairs Medical Center. He was profiled in a 2009 issue of Minnesota Medicine. He co-founded the East Africa Medical Assistance Foundation and helped create a sister organization called the Foundation for Cancer Care in Tanzania.

What Diagnosis Do You Dread?

Minnesota Medicine is seeking case studies about dreaded diagnoses -- the kind that are either difficult to make or treat or that are devastating to patients. Case studies should be between 500 and 1,000 words in length and include references and images, if relevant. Those selected for publication will appear in the August issue. Deadline for submissions is June 8. Click here to submit your case.

Inspiring Physicians

Being a physician is a noble profession. Few would argue with that. But some go above and beyond their regular work of treating patients, researching diseases or educating physicians-in-training. Our latest group of inspiring physicians includes a doctor who integrates new perspectives and insights from East and West, medicine and psychology, and science and spirituality into practice; another who has been providing care to people in Guatemala for the past 10 years; and a third who is helping address the rise of heroin use, emerging infectious diseases, potential pandemics and the threat of chemical warfare.  

Digital Rounds - the MMA Blog

Medication prior authorization is a daily battle for Minnesota physicians. Sometimes it's one that lasts for weeks and weeks. Read more here.  

Minnesota Medicine


The first year
A look at the experience of students in the state's medical schools


On the go? Get the latest edition of Minnesota Medicine in one place in its Digital Edition.


Other MMA News
In Case You Missed It
Inspiring Physicians
Connect with the MMA
Like us on Facebook  Follow us on Twitter  View our videos on YouTube 
Join Our Mailing List