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Members Urged To Speak Out on Provider Tax
On Jan. 15, a state task force composed of legislators and health care experts recommended that the 2 percent tax on health care services be re-instated. The tax is set to expire in 2019, but will stay in place if the Legislature adopts the group's plan. Read more here
MMA Focuses on Three Priorities for Upcoming Legislative Session
When the 2016 Legislative session begins on March 8, the MMA will be focused on three priorities that benefit Minnesota physicians, their practices and their patients. Read more here.  
MMA Makes ePA Materials Available; Some Payers Behind Schedule
As of Jan. 1, 2016, all Minnesota prescribers are required to submit, and payers are required to accept, electronic prior authorization (ePA) requests for prescription drugs. The MMA has created resources to help members get ready for ePA including a fact sheet, frequently asked questions, and a recording of a webinar that took place Dec. 3. Although the change took effect in January, several payers are not yet ready. The Department of Human Services has indicated it will not be able to accept ePA until April 1 at the earliest, and HealthPartners has not announced when it will be ready. Stay tuned to MMA News Now for further developments on ePA. 
CDC Offers Resources/Information on Zika Virus 
The Minnesota Department of Health, and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention confirmed the first case of Zika virus in Minnesota on Jan. 27. The Anoka County patient is expected to make a full recovery but it does bring the disease closer to home. For background on the mosquito-borne illness, visit the CDC website
Make Your Voice Count - Renew Your MMA Membership
There's only one organization that gives all Minnesota physicians a voice in the Legislature, in state agencies and with insurance companies - the MMA. With the Legislature considering re-instituting the provider tax, we need your voice now more than ever! We also need your support to fix the prior authorization process for medications. Renew now by visiting, or call 612-362-3728.  
Deadline Extended for Funds to Support PMP/EMR Integration
The Minnesota Board of Pharmacy has once again extended the deadline for Requests for Proposals (RFP) for qualified Minnesota health care systems and Minnesota licensed pharmacies interested in making the PMP directly accessible from their EMR or pharmacy operations software. This is part of an effort to increase the use of the PMP. Proposals are now due Feb. 12 by 4 p.m. (CST). The total amount of funding available is $100,000. 
Registration Open for Day at the Capitol on March 23
Physicians, residents and medical students can now register for the MMA's annual Day at the Capitol on March 23. During the upcoming legislative session, which begins March 8, the MMA will continue its quest to fix medication prior authorization and to maintain the repeal of the provider tax. In addition, the MMA will advocate for stronger childhood immunization laws, recommending the removal of the conscientiously held belief exemption that allows parents to opt-out of immunizing their children. To register, visit the MMA website
Rescheduled: Listening Session on Cancer Plan Minnesota Set for Feb. 11
Physicians are encouraged to take part in a one-hour listening session on Feb.11 at 6 p.m. at the MMA offices to help the Minnesota Cancer Alliance gather information for the update of its Cancer Plan Minnesota 2011-2016. Register here
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