Dear Colleague:

Your CMS board of directors met May 13 and this memo is a brief update from the meeting. The guiding principles of The New CMS include, among others, putting members first, promoting the profession and being highly transparent, open and inclusive. The board of directors, Dr. Lozano and I welcome a reply to this email with your thoughts and perspective.

1.    Payer Issues and Burnout: We are committed to resolving payer issues, especially those that create barriers to excellent patient care and lead to physician dissatisfaction and burnout. The board passed a motion for the CMS Delegation to the AMA to file and advocate for a resolution at the June AMA meeting that directs the AMA to: 
  1. Urge federal CMS to include provider experience as a metric for determining overall performance by ACOs and other payment models based on MACRA (Medicare and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015); and,
  2. To study the benefits of adding a fourth dimension to the 'Triple Aim' as federal health care policy to include improving satisfaction and wellness of health care professionals with a report to the AMA House of Delegates in November 2016. 
Your CMS Committee on Wellness developed the resolution in March in view of the recent Mayo Clinic study demonstrating that over 50% of all U.S. physicians demonstrate one or more symptoms of burnout. 
Click here to read the resolution in its entirety.
Click here to read 7 Strategies to Achieve Work-Life Balance produced by the Committee on Wellness (please distribute to your colleagues).
2.    The New CMS-Governance Responsibilities: This was the initial meeting of our downsized board of directors and primarily focused on our governance responsibilities and the transition to The New CMS. We are seizing the opportunity of the newly downsized board to achieve the benefits of the governance restructuring to fulfill our commitment to and meet the needs of you and other CMS members by retaining a nationally recognized expert in non-profit governance. Specific to the major governance and communications projects of The New CMS, the board took the following actions:
  1. All-Member Elections: The Office of CMS President-elect and AMA Delegates and Alternates beginning this year will be elected by the entire membership and were open to any member to apply as a candidate to the Nominating Committee. The New CMS governance reforms include a new skills-based course expected to begin in 2017 to develop medical society leadership for CMS and component medical societies. The board's discussion focused on approaches to a more deliberate marketing and candidate recruiting process for 2017 and beyond. In the past, CMS officers were elected by a dwindling number of members who served as Delegates at a governance-heavy Annual Meeting held every September. Moving to member-wide direct elections is hoped to lead to more member engagement and more contested elections in the future. 
    • Click here to review the 2016 slate of candidates approved on Friday.
    • Click here to review the election cycle guide for 2017.
    • Click here to review members of the Nominating Committee.
    • Click here to review Friday's discussion outcomes.
  2. Surfacing and Tagging: Major Governance and Communication Projects of The New CMS: Because your board has a responsibility to monitor implementation of the governance and communication reforms of The New CMS and to identify what might be missing in this process, an exercise was conducted to surface strategic ways to strengthen these projects. These high-level ideas will be evaluated and vetted in more detail at the July and September meetings.
    • Click here to review a brief summary status report on The New CMS Governance and Communication reform projects and high-level issues surfaced by the board.
  3. Ensuring the benefits of restructuring: Charney and Associates facilitated a discussion to elicit ways the board will use its limited volunteer time to focus on high-level issues and a new approach to meetings and execution. A review of traditional structures and processes is needed to ensure that the board is even more effective and responsive in meeting the needs of members. The board will review and discuss the consultant's recommendations in July.
  4. Other Fiduciary Duties: The board took action on the following items
    1. Click here to review the board's current Standards of Conduct.
    2. Click here to review the board's working group appointed to review and make recommendations on any needed changes.
    3. Click here to read a bylaws change relating to board service by the Medical Student Component.
    4. Click here to read the minutes of the March 11, 2016 board meeting.
    5. Click here to read the Consent Calendar. 
3.    Please join us Sept. 16-18 in Keystone where we will come together as a community for the first Annual Meeting absent the antiquated House of Delegates governance process to engage the experts, state and national, across the most pressing subjects of immediate relevance and concern to our medical community. The meeting has been re-engineered as a motivational sanctuary for physicians to share, argue and learn from the best of the best, which is not the sort of thing you can get from a website. In an era of burnout and relenting change and stress, this gathering is intended to stimulate, entertain, and help -- peer-to-peer -- remember why doctors are doctors.

Click here to review 7 Reasons to Attend the Annual Meeting.
Click here to go to the Annual Meeting webpage for more information and to register.
Thank you for all that you do for the communities and patients you serve.
Best regards, 
Mike Volz, MD, President
Allergy and Immunology

Katie Lozano, MD, President-Elect