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VITAL SIGNS
 The Weekly e-News of the Western Carolina Medical Society 

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September 25, 2013

CircOfFriends VS
In This Issue:
Premier Screening of "A Unified Presence" (10/15
Advanced Care Planning Workshop (10/17)
Join us for the 2013 WCMS Fall Conference (11/13)
DocbookMD is now open to non-physician members of the care team
WNC Health Care Providers Struggle to Get Paid
NCTracks Transition Includes Hidden Physician Rate Cut
NC Medicaid Director Resigns after Eight Months on Job
Pricing Revealed on Health Insurance Exchanges
AMA Launches "FixMedicareNow.org" to Target SGR Repeal
Toolkit on Shared Savings Distribution
Member Announcements
Job Board & Classified Ads
UPCOMING EVENTS
 
Premier Screening of "A Unified Presence" (10/15) 
You're invitied to a premier screening of "A Unified Presence"; a compassionate exploration of the cross-continental partnership between Four Seasons Compassion for Life and the Palliative Care Association of Zambia.

Running time: 24 mins. Filmed on location in Zambia and North Carolina.  Produced by Trivette Images.

Get more information on our website.
Advanced Care Planning Workshop (10/17) 
The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at UNC Asheville will hold an advance care planning workshop Thursday, October 17, 2013, 7-9 p.m. at the Reuter Center.

Learn more at their website.
Join us for the 2013 WCMS Fall Conference (11/13) 
Thriving in Leadership:
Skills for Changing Times

WCMS is pleased to be partnering with the WNC Medical Managers Association once again on our 2013 Fall Conference and this year they are merging their November luncheon with our Fall Conference. This year's event will focus on Leadership, how to thrive in changing times.

Date: November 13, 2013
Time: 8:00am - 4:30pm
Location: DoubleTree by Hilton- Biltmore

Our keynote presenter, Dr. Grace Terrell of Cornerstone Healthcare, will discuss what it means to be a leader in today's healthcare environment.  Other topics include an update on the Affordable Care Act, a PCMH Panel and more!

ACMPE credit hours will be available.
 
Please visit our website here for full details and to register!

Event presented by MagMutual.  Click here to view all Sponsors.
LOCAL NEWS 

DocbookMD is Now Open to Non-physician Members of the Care Team

More than 16,500 physicians throughout 32 states are now using DocbookMD, a HIPAA-secure messaging application for smartphones and tablets. DocbookMD has historically only been accessible to physicians. Today, due to physician demand for secure communication with their medical staff, the platform is being opened up to all members of the care team, with the physician at the center of the communication. An exclusive HIPAA-secure smartphone platform designed by and for physicians,
DocbookMD allows physicians and their care team to share patient information and collaborate with their medical colleagues. DocbookMD is offered through WCMS to our members. To register or for more information on DocBookMD, please visit www.docbookmd.com or read more on our website.
WNC Health Care Providers Struggle to Get Paid  
Read the article from Asheville Citizen-Times.

A note from NCMS: "Since NCTracks was launched July 1, 2013, NCMS has been working diligently to resolve problems for its members related to NCTracks implementation. Members have registered serious problems on the NCMS Trouble Log and that information has been extremely helpful in our advocacy with officials at CSC and the NC Division of Medical Assistance. We invite you to continue registering your NC Tracks problems on the Trouble Log at www.ncmedsoc.org or by contacting our Member Solutions Center at (919) 833-3836."
STATE NEWS 
 

NCTracks Transition Includes Hidden Physician Rate Cut

Read more from NCMS.

NC Medicaid Director Resigns after Eight Months on Job

NATIONAL NEWS 
 

Pricing Revealed on Health Insurance Exchanges

HHS today released a report providing the first comprehensive look at the average premium prices consumers purchasing coverage on the Affordable Care Act's health insurance exchanges can expect to pay, including data on the 36 states where the federal government will run the exchanges. Obama administration officials said consumers in those 36 states will be able to choose from an average of 53 health plans, with plans in most states offered by two or more insurers. Across the 48 states for which data are available, the report showed that the typical individual consumer will pay an average of $328 per month for the second-lowest-cost "silver plan," which will cover 70% of projected medical costs. Meanwhile, premiums for a family of four varied greatly, from about $600 in Arizona to $1,069 in Indiana. The report noted that federal subsidies would lower costs even more, and in some places will offset the entire expense of the least-costly plan. (Sources: New York Times, 9/25; Reuters, 9/25; AP/Sacramento Bee, 9/25; Washington Post's " Wonkblog," 9/25) 

AMA Launches "FixMedicareNow.org" to Target SGR Repeal

The AMA has embarked on a grassroots campaign that will ramp up this fall to put concerted pressure on members of Congress to once and for all repeal Medicare's Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula for physician reimbursement. An important component of this effort will be an interactive website- FixMedicareNow.org. The site will engage both patients and physicians in the campaign to repeal the SGR, and also educate policymakers on Capitol Hill on the urgent need to do so. Moreover, the site will function as a recruitment tool, enlisting Americans from all walks of life and all over the country to sign-up and join the campaign via social media channels and a variety of online marketing efforts; an advocacy platform that integrates grassroots alerts and calls to action for activists to email, call, and utilize social media to spur lawmakers to act; and an interactive information portal that will house videos, online info-graphics, and other resources that effectively make the case for SGR repeal.

Visit FixMedicareNow.org today and help the AMA to eliminate what for more than a decade has been the SGR's barrier to improving. 
ITEMS OF INTEREST 
 
Toolkit on Shared Savings Distribution 
Here is a newly published toolkit on shared savings distribution: Distribution Based on Contribution-A Merit-based Shared Savings Distribution Model. Our nation is in the midst of an inexorable shift in health care delivery from "pay for volume" to "pay for value." It is well documented that our current largely fee-for-service system is unsustainable and that a dramatic incentive shift must occur. Every provider needs to be committed to providing the highest quality at the lowest cost. This is the fundamental goal of the pay-for-value system.

Continue reading.
Member Announcements 
Are you a WCMS Member who is opening a new practice? Are you a 100% Member Practice who has hired a new physician? Send us your announcements and we will post them for you in our new Member Announcements section of Vital Signs to keep other members informed about what's happening in our WCMS community! Contact Kristina Isenhour, Member Services Coordinator at kristina@mywcms.org   
Job Board & Classified Ads
Pardee Hospital: Multiple Opportunities
WNC FQHC: FNP
GYN Practice: Temporary Phone Triage Nurse
Asheville Internal Medicine: PA or FNP

Asheville Private Practice: Office Manager 

Carolina Spine & Neurosurgery: Physician Extender 

ECP: Nurse Practitioner/Physician Assistant 

ECP: Physicians

Sisters of Mercy: PRN Physicians 

Sisters of Mercy: PRN PA or FNP   

   

To find out how you can post a Job or Classified Ad Click here.

WCMS is a thriving 900-plus member professional association of the physicians of western North Carolina and a chartered component medical society of the NC Medical Society and the AMA. The WCMS is an organization run by physicians for physicians.


Our Mission
The WCMS is the physicians' voice advocating for the health of the medical profession, the health of the patient, and the health of the community.  

Our Vision
To be a dynamic physician community dedicated to a healthy, vibrant Western North Carolina.


About WCMS
The purpose of WCMS is: 

  • To strengthen the voice of WNC physicians in advocating for the health of the medical profession, the health of the patient, and the health of our region
  • To inform, educate and prepare physicians for rapidly occurring changes in health care at national, state, and local levels
  • To share legislative and policy information and advocate on behalf of physicians in areas of mutual interest
  • To share available resources in areas of mutual interest
  • To promote physician-to-physician communication and dialogue in an open, honest and safe environment

We hope you enjoy our weekly e-newsletter. If you have questions or suggestions please feel free to contact me.  

Sincerely,

Miriam Schwarz

 

Miriam Schwarz signature




 

Miriam Schwarz, MPA

WCMS CEO/Executive Director