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Physicians Want More Research Before Taking Part in Cannabis Program

Nearly half of Minnesota physicians who are not taking part in the state's medical cannabis program say it's because there's not enough scientific research to demonstrate the drug's benefit, an MMA survey found. Read more here

MMA Past President to Become ACMC CEO

Immediate Past President Cindy Firkins Smith, MD, was named president and CEO of Willmar-based Affiliated Community Medical Centers on July 6. She will assume her new role on Jan. 1, 2016. Read more here

Conference Registration Opens, New Technology Speaker Added

Register now for the MMA's 2015 Annual Conference "Looking at Medicine's Future." The Sept. 25 and 26 event will feature nationally known speakers discussing the future of medicine and the future of health technology. Just added: "You've Got an App for What?" This activity has been approved for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit.™ Read more here.  

MMA Asks Mpls City Council to Help Fight Tobacco

The MMA sent a letter to the Minneapolis City Council on July 7 asking the body to bar the sale of flavored tobacco products outside of adult-only tobacco stores and to establish a minimum price for cigars. The Council is scheduled to discuss the topics at its July 10 meeting. Read more here

AMA and CMS Reach Agreement on ICD-10 Grace Period

On July 6, the American Medical Association and Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services announced that they've reached an agreement for a "grace period" for the Oct. 1 implementation of the ICD-10 diagnosis code set. Read more here

DHS Seeking Doctors for Opioid Group, Health Service Advisory Council

The Minnesota Department of Human Services is currently seeking physicians for positions on two health care advisory groups - one dealing with prescription opioids and another dealing with health care benefit and coverage policies for Minnesota's public health care programs. Read more here.  

A Continued Push for the Elimination of the Provider Tax

Another legislative session has come and gone and the repeal of the Provider Tax remains intact. At the end of December 2019, the 2 percent gross revenues tax on medical services provided by physicians, hospitals, dentists, chiropractors and other health care providers will cease to exist. At least, that's the plan. Read the latest Insights article from MMA President Donald Jacobs, MD, on why we need to keep our foot on the accelerator when it comes to getting rid of the sick tax.  

Students/Residents Invited to Attend July Board of Medical Practice Meeting

The Minnesota Board of Medical Practice is inviting medical students and residents to attend its July 18 board meeting held at 9 a.m. in the Thomas H. Swain Room in the McNamara Alumni Center, 200 Oak Street SE in Minneapolis.  Students and residents will be interested in a special educational presentation on "Misdiagnosis and Missed Diagnoses as Identified in Malpractice Cases" featuring Laurie Drill-Mellum, MD, MPH. Drill-Mellum is Midwest Medical Insurance Company's (MMIC) and Utah Medical Insurance Association's chief medical officer and vice president of patient safety solutions.  For more information, call 612-617-2130 or e-mail Medical.Board@state.mn.us.  

Opioids Seminars Scheduled for Mankato and Duluth Physicians

The MMA will host two free REMS (risk evaluation and mitigation strategy) seminars on opioids for physicians who prescribe extended-release (ER) and long-acting (LA) opioid medications. The first event will take place on Aug. 13 at the Courtyard by Marriott in Mankato; the event will be repeated on Oct. 1 in Duluth at the Black Woods Event Center. Both events will take place from 5:30 to 8 p.m. and will feature food and a cash bar. This activity has been approved for AMA PRA Category 1 Credit™. Both seminars will be led by MMA member Charles Reznikoff, MD, an addiction medicine specialist. To register for the Mankato event, click here. For Duluth, click here.

Have an Issue You Want to Discuss with Your MMA Peers?

The MMA is now accepting topics for its Open Issues Forum at this fall's Annual Conference. Click here to fill out a form so your topic can be considered for discussion. The deadline for submissions is Aug. 22. The Annual Conference will be held Sept. 25 and 26 at the Doubletree Park Place Hotel in St. Louis Park.

$500 Cash Prize Available for Students, Residents

The MMA's second annual poster symposium will be held during the Annual Conference, Friday, Sept. 25 in St. Louis Park. Student and resident participants will have the opportunity to chat with practicing physicians from across the state. Conference attendees will vote on the People's Choice Award, which will be presented during the inaugural dinner, along with a $500 cash prize. Additional information can be found here.

MMA Looking for Candidates for MMIC and Constellation Boards

The MMA is searching for two candidates to recommend for board positions on MMIC Insurance, Inc. and its parent company, Constellation. Both companies are focused on professional liability markets in Minnesota, regionally and nationally. A strong candidate will have current knowledge or a desire/capability to quickly learn about professional liability issues, demonstrated understanding regarding service on corporate boards and active involvement in organized medicine especially with the MMA. If you are interested in being considered for one of these roles contact George Lohmer at the MMA at 612-362-3746 or George Lohmer before July 16.

Trying to Figure out Medical Cannabis? New MMA Manual Can Help

The MMA's new Medical Cannabis Policies and Procedures Manual offers a comprehensive, ready-to-use guide to help physicians understand the consequences of registering or not registering to certify patients for medical cannabis and to ensure their clinics are ready to manage patients. The manual will help clinic staff confidently, consistently and legally manage medical cannabis questions and requests from patients and will save time, effort and money in development costs. Read more here.

Medical Cannabis - Question of the Week
Members in the News
Member David Ross, MD, was quoted in the Hutchinson Leader in a June 27 story on medical cannabis. Members Mark Matthias, MD, and George Morris, MD, were quoted in a July 1 story in USA Today on the same topic. Member Katherine Nickels, MD, talked with Minnesota Public Radio about certifying patients for medical cannabis on July 1.
Digital Rounds
Digital Rounds MMA's Blog

Immediate Past President Cindy Firkins Smith, MD, and her patient's struggles continue over prior authorization. She's now enlisted Sens. Amy Klobuchar and Al Franken. Read more here.

 

Are young physicians saving enough for retirement? That's a good question and it's answered by two financial planning experts. Read more here.

 

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