Western Carolina Medical Society: The Physicians' Voice for a Health Community
 Weekly e-News of the Western Carolina Medical Society 
 Sponsor Message:
Join Our Mailing List

May 11, 2016

In This Issue:
Sponsor Message: JPS (left)
Heartstrings Kids Zone: A WCMS Foundation Fundraiser
Rural Medicine Affinity Group 5/23/16
Upcoming MAHEC Events
A Guide to Rational Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain
WCMS Association Board adds Opioid Addiction Crisis to Strategic Plan
WCMS Membership will be offered to Physician Assistants in 2017
2016 Burnout Retreat Survey Findings
Bowtie Briefing for 5/6/16
What Medicare pays Doctors for Services and Drugs
The New York Times: F.D.A. Imposes Rules for E-Cigarettes
Preventing Burnout: Finding Joy in Medicine
Job Board & Classified Ads
Heartstrings Kids Zone
Want to have fun with your family this memorial day weekend?  Come join WCMS at the Heartstrings Kids Zone at the Mountain Sports Festival.  Kids of all ages will have a blast sliding down an inflatable slide, jumping in a bounce house, getting their faces painted, learning about Tae Kwon Do, and more!  Proceeds from the Heartstrings Kids Zone go to the WCMS Foundation, supporting amazing programs like Project Access® and the WCMS Interpreter Network. Learn more and register here
Calling All Rural Physicians to Event and Tour of Cherokee Indian Hospital 5/23/16
If you practice outside of Buncombe County, please join us for the second Rural Medicine Physicians Affinity Group of 2016.

In order to promote attendance from all over Western NC, this meeting will be held at Cherokee Indian Hospital in Swain County.

The featured topic will be "Increasing Recruitment of Primary Care Doctors to Rural Communities" including a presentation from Dr. E. Blake Fagan, MAHEC Family Medicine Residency Director presenting information on the "hub" planned for Spruce Pine.

We may have time to touch on some other items as well, so bring your ideas, and your colleagues (regardless of their membership status with WCMS). 
Upcoming MAHEC Events
A Guide to Rational Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain - Online CME Course
MAHEC, working with the North Carolina Academy of Family Physicians, The Governor's Institute on Substance Abuse and Project Lazarus: A Project of CCNC, is pleased to present this online education: 
A Guide to Rational Opioid Prescribing for Chronic Pain

Only $15 for the first 6 months! Offers 3 hours of AAFP, AMA/AAFP Equivalency, and CDE.
More information can be found here: www.mahec.net/opioid
WCMS Association Board adds Opioid Addiction Crisis to Strategic Plan 
On 5/9/16, the WCMS Association Board voted to add addressing the Opioid Addiction Crisis to our strategic plan. We will focus on action steps to influence this pervasive dilemma. As an immediate action, the board voted to adopt and commit to the CDC guidelines. Roughly 3 in 4 physicians said in a Medscape Medical News poll that they lean toward adopting the stricter guidelines on prescribing opioids for chronic pain that the CDC issued in March to combat an epidemic of addiction and overdose deaths. Opioids should not be considered as first line therapy for chronic pain. Clinicians should first consider nonopioid pain relievers or non-drug alternatives, such as exercise, meditation, and cognitive-behavioral therapy.

Other WCMS actions will include legislative advocacy,  promoting educational resources for prescribing health care practitioners, and supporting local/regional efforts that are already underway, such as Pardee's recent work to develop best practices for prescribing for the treatment of chronic and post-operative pain.
WCMS Membership will be offered to Physician Assistants in 2017
Membership recently voted 73 yes-18 no to opening WCMS membership to Physician Assistants who practice in WNC. A quorum of 75 was needed for the vote to be recognized; 91 responded. 
2016 Burnout Retreat Survey Findings
On April 16th, 2016 WCMS hosted its second Burnout Prevention Retreat with Dr. Dike Drummond. All of the attendees were given a survey to evaluate the success of the retreat and what participants would like to see in programming from WCMS moving forward. Click here to view our survey results
Bowtie Briefing for 5/6/2016

Director of Legislative Relations Chip Baggett sums up a relatively quiet week at the General Assembly, with some movement forward on a bill that would address one aspect of the opioid epidemic. He also extends a friendly reminder to vote in the upcoming primaries for local congressional and judicial seats. Click here to view the video. 
What Medicare Pays Doctors for Services and Drugs

Diagnostic radiologists provided Part B Medicare services to more beneficiaries than any other type of provider.In the third round of what's now an annual event, the CMS posted a huge data set that breaks down how much Medicare paid individual physicians, diagnostic labs, ambulance services and other companies. Read More
The New York Times: F.D.A. Imposes Rules for E-Cigarettes In A Landmark Move
After years of debate about the health risks of electronic cigarettes, the federal government on Thursday made it final: They need to be regulated and kept out of the hands of children. The Food and Drug Administration issued sweeping new rules that for the first time extend federal regulatory authority to e-cigarettes, banning their sale to anyone under 18 and requiring that adults under the age of 26 show a photo identification to buy them. The long-awaited regulations, 499 pages of them, shifted the terms of the public debate over e-cigarettes, putting the federal government's heft behind a more restrictive approach to the devices. (Tavernise, 5/5)
Preventing Burnout: Finding Joy in Medicine
Physicians, hospitals and large provider groups are beginning to understand the high costs of physician burnout. The direct costs are exorbitant. The indirect costs are more difficult to calculate but may be even higher. Cost conscious organizations must buy into this simple truth - success and financial strength requires happy and engaged providers.  

Click here to read the rest of this article by Clark Gaither, MD.
Job Board & Classified Ads

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

WCMS is a thriving 700+ 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