Western Carolina Medical Society: The Physicians' Voice for a Health Community
 Weekly e-News of the Western Carolina Medical Society 

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March 11, 2015
WCMS Circle of Friends: Van Winkle Law Firm & Johnson Prics Sprinkle, PA
In This Issue:
Deerfield - Sponsor Message (Left)
Register Now: Early Career Affinity Group
Register Now: White Coat Wednesdays
Register Now: Physician Leadership Academy
Dr. Bunio Named Director of CIH Clinical Services
Mental Health Facility Plans to Double Number of Beds
Practicing Rural Health Care Right Here at Home
Filling the Need for Doctors in Rural Area
First Quarter Meeting of WCMS Independent Physicians Affinity Group
WCMS is Gearing Up for Doctor's Day!
Getting Paid in Your Practice
Job Board & Classified Ads
Register Now: Early Career Affinity Group
The Early Career Affinity group is for any physician within their first 10 years of medical practice- residents and medical students are also invited!  This is a great time to enjoy good food/drinks and to connect with other physicians in your stage of career.  

When: Wednesday, March 18th 5:30 - 7:30
Where: Thirsty Monk South Biltmore Park in South Asheville

Join WCMS Colleagues for White Coat Wednesday in Raleigh (3/25)

White Coat Wednesday is your chance to impact the future of healthcare legislation and learn more about the ins-and-outs of government affairs. Join other WNC physicians on Wednesday, March 25th on a trip to Raleigh where you'll be briefed by NCMS in the morning with tips on speaking to legislators and on the hot-button medical issues currently in the spotlight at the General Assembly.


Following this briefing, head down to the General Assembly and meet with WNC legislators; view committee meetings and see the legislature in action. 


To join our WNC delegation, email Miriam Schwarz or 274-2267 x 1312. The more physicians who can attend to represent our region, the more impact our voice can have on important healthcare topics like stopping the retroactive 3% cut to Medicaid, achieving Medicaid reform and/or expansion, addressing mental health reform and more!


WCMS is planning a second White Coat Wednesday on May 13. If you are unable to attend the March 25 event, save the date for May 13 and head to Raleigh with us then.

Register Now: Physician Leadership Academy

Leading Healthcare Organizations: Optimizing Clinical & Financial Performance While Finding Joy in Practice

"Given the changes in the healthcare landscape and the challenges that lie ahead, there is a great sense of urgency to identify and develop physician leaders who can effectively position their organizations for success" (Len Fromer, MD, Executive Medical Director of Group Practice Forum).

MAHEC's Physician Leadership Academy is a three part curriculum designed to help physicians and advanced care practitioners realize their own leadership potential and develop the skills need to address challenges within healthcare. Built with the busy provider in mind, the curriculum is delivered using a flipped classroom model-independent readings, video presentations, assessments and inventories will be accessed online and completed prior to monthly in-person training sessions.

Course curriculum is divided into three types of leadership: Individual Leadership, Collaborative Leadership, and Organization & System Leadership. Lectures, activities, and independent self-study assignments will focus on strengthening intrapersonal and interpersonal awareness and skill, support networking and synergy, and demonstrate strategic and operational thinking.

Module 1: Individual Leadership
Thursday, March 26, 2015

Module 2: Collaborative Leadership
Thursday, April 23, 2015

Module 3: Organization & System Leadership
Thursday, May 21, 2015

Please note that MAHEC has discounted the participation fee for this Leadership Series by over 20% for WCMS members. 


Click here to download brochure

MAHEC regularly provides courses for CME credit. 
Check out our website calendar to see upcoming opportunities.  Here are the next few events:

March 13 - New Prevention in Primary Care (Friday and Saturday morning)
March 19 - Motivational Interviewing (evening)
March 24 - Dementia Care (evening)

Dr. Bunio Named Director of CIH Clinical Services

Dr. Richard Bunio was recently named executive director of Clinical Services of Cherokee Indian Hospital.  He replaces Dr. Michael Toedt, who has accepted a detail position with Indian Health Service.  Prior to this appointment, Dr. Bunio had served as the medical director for the Cherokee Indian Hospital's Satellite Clinics for three years.

Mental Health Facility Plans to Double Number of Beds 

ASHEVILLE, N.C. -- Thanks to a $2 million grant, Smoky Mountain center announces it will open a new 24-hour urgent care center and crisis facility. Smoky Mountain's CEO says their provider treats 800 people a month in Buncombe County with many more not getting the help they need. "Far too often, folks will end up being in emergency department, which is not ideally suited to addressing the needs they have," Smoky Mountain CEO Brian Ingraham said.

Practicing Rural Health Care Right Here at Home 

A residency program in Hendersonville is preparing primary care physicians to live and work in the state's rural areas. "If we want to keep docs here, we need to grow our own."


Click here to read more

Filling the Need for Doctors in Rural Area

Read about how UNC medical students Rivers Woodward and Brittany Papworth are inspiring high school students in Mitchell and Yancey Counties to pursue health care careers. 


Click here to read more 

WCMS Independent Physicians Affinity Group

Last Tuesday, March 3, over 15 physicians gathered for an Independent Physicians Affinity Group.  The topic for the event was learning about Community Physicians of North Carolina (CPNC), a new Clinically Integrated Network (CIN).  Dr. Chip Watkins gave a presentation, then the rest of the night was spent answer questions physicians had about CPNC, and CIN's/ACO's in general. 


If you'd like to view the presentation about Community Physicians of NC, click here.

WCMS also thanks Carolyn Coward (Van Winkle Law Firm) and Mary Williams Matthews (Johnson Price Sprinkle PA) for providing their expertise to help answer physician questions about some of the legal and financial implications of the CIN and ACO landscape. 


We look forward to the next Independent Physicians Affinity Group in a few months!


WCMS is Gearing Up for Doctor's Day!

For Doctor's Day (March 30th) we are running radio spots on ESPN and Mix 96.5 between March 9-30th. Take a listen to one of the spots just recorded with Mary Williams Matthews of Johnson Price Sprinkle by Asheville Radio Group here (Click here to listen). We will also have announcements on WCQS between March 27-30th. 

WCMS has written an article about Doctor's Day that has been sent to media outlets around WNC. You can read that article here.

Also, please be aware that Dr. Ed Diez is one of 10 finalists for the North Carolina Doctor of the Year award.

Voting will begin on March 16th. The winner receives a $5,000 grant. WCMS will let you know when you can begin voting. We want Dr. Diez to win by a landslide.


Click here to read more 


Getting Paid in Your Practice

By: Mary Williams Matthews, Johnson Price Sprinkle

In an era when over 65% of patient bad debts are coming from insured patients, these simple steps may help save your practice time and bring greater success to the collections process.

Click here to read more

Job Board & Classified Ads
Job Board: 
Practice Manager (Hendersonville Ob/Gyn Associates)
Hospitalist (MAHEC)
Medical Interpreter  (WCMS)

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

WCMS is a thriving 750 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
WCMS Association: WCMSA is the physicians' voice advocating for the health of the physician, the patient, and the community, through strengthening the physician-patient relationship.

WCMS Foundation: WCMSF is the physician and community-led charitable arm of the medical society improving access to quality healthcare, decreasing disparities in health, and promoting health & wellness.   


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.  


Photo: Miriam Schwarz, WCMS CEO
Miriam Schwarz


Miriam Schwarz signature


Miriam Schwarz, MPA

WCMS CEO/Executive Director