WCMS with tagline
  Community Pulse - June 2016



In This Issue:
JPS - Sponsor Message (Left)
New Members to WCMS
Physicians' Voice in the News
2016 Heartstrings was a Great Success
WCMS in Raleigh for White Coat Wednesday
Public Health Update from BCHHS: Zika Pregnancy Registry Provider Memo
WCMS Foundation Produces New Video
Celebrating 20 Years of Project Access®, the Annual Campaign is Released
Medicaid Reform Plan Sent to Feds, Now the Negotiation Starts
Governor McCrory Signs Life-Saving Overdose Prevention Legislation
CMS Proposes Rule to Improve Health Equity and Care Quality in Hospitals
Dr. Samantha Read-Smith: Why I'm a Member of WCMS
WCMS Job Board
Attention Doctors:

Do you enjoy your monthly Community Pulse? Did you know that if you become a member you can get even more critical, time-sensitive information sent to you weekly right to your inbox? Information such as our calendar of educational and networking events,  how to take action to address reimbursement cuts, important new bills introduced into the NCGA, public health alerts, advice on how to get paid in your practice, new ACO developments, how to address burnout, updates on philanthropic and innovative physician programs in WNC, and how to improve quality in your practice? 

Sign up today to become a member. Don't miss out on critical information that will help drive your professional decisions.

New Members to WCMS
Click here to view the newest physicians to join WCMS!  

Physicians' Voice in the News
WCMS is proud to announce another high quality addition to the series of "The Physicians' Voice," a series of media presentations for the general public that showcase physicians' world-class medical expertise and focus on patient/community health.

Here's a recent article from WCMS member Dr. Britt Peterson:

Excerpt: "Mental illness generally refers to an aspect of abnormal mental functioning (for example, mood states, behavior, thinking) that leads to difficulties in one's daily life. It is important to note there is not one mental illness, nor one way that one lives with mental illness. Labeling someone mentally ill (or even more unclear terms such as crazy that are still sometimes used) is of little value in describing their problems. In my work, I diagnose and treat many different conditions. These include "psychiatric" conditions, such as clinical depression, post-traumatic stress disorder, bipolar disorder, or schizophrenia, but also include substance use disorders and/or "medical" problems that cause similar symptoms. I use quotes because psychiatric conditions ARE medical conditions."
To read Dr. Peterson's full article in the Citizen Times, click here.
2016 Heartstrings was a Great Success and a Lot of Fun!

The WCMS Foundation Fundraiser, the Heartstrings Kids Zone, was held over Memorial Day weekend at the Mountain Sports Festival. There were multiple bounce houses, face painting, tae kwon do demonstrations, and other kid activities. 

Over the weekend, we were able to raise both awareness and funds for the charitable programs of the Foundation, Project Access and WIN. We are so thankful to all of our amazing sponsors, volunteers, the Foundation Development Council, and co-chairs Alex Diez and Emilee Dickerson for making this event so successful. 
Click here to see more pictures from 2016 Heartstrings.
WCMS in Raleigh for White Coat Wednesday 6/15/16

On June 15, WCMS CEO Miriam Schwarz and members Drs. Mark McNeill, Frank Sutton, and UNC medical student Brittany Papworth visited Raleigh for White Coat Wednesday. They had a great day and report productive meetings with Senators Terry Van Duyn and Jim Davis, as well as WNC Representatives Brian Turner (pictured), Joe Sam Queen, and William Richardson.They discussed key issues such as Medicaid Expansion, Opioid Abuse, and Scope of Practice Issues.
Public Health Update from BCHHS: Zika Pregnancy Registry Provider Memo
As part of the response to Zika virus infection, CDC has created the Zika Pregnancy Registry to ensure complete and accurate case reporting and to develop more comprehensive information on the effects of Zika infections during pregnancy.

The North Carolina Division of Public Health is currently working with CDC to enroll all pregnant women with positive or indeterminate Zika virus test results in the Pregnancy Registry. 
* NC DPH staff will contact the medical providers of these pregnant women and their infants to request completion of case report forms about the mother and child. 
o Providers will be contacted once during each trimester of pregnancy, at delivery, and after the infants' routine health exams at 2, 6 and 12 months of age.
Click here to continue reading.
WCMS Foundation Produces New Video             
The WCMS Foundation has created a new video to showcase their work.

The Foundation, a 501(c)3 organization, is the physician and community-led charitable arm of the medical society, addressing issues of access to quality healthcare, disparities in health, and health & wellness.               
Celebrate 20 Years of Project Access and Donate to the Annual Campaign
This year the WCMS Foundation is celebrating the 20th birthday of Project Access.  Project Access is a volunteer physician program that has provided free healthcare to over 200,000 people in Buncombe County over the past two decades.  Please donate today to ensure that this life-giving program remains in our community for decades to come.

Your donation to Project Access will improve the life of someone in need. Mavis, suffered incredible pain for 8 years. Young and uninsured, she had nowhere to turn. She enrolled in Project Access and within a month she was able to get the surgery she needed. After a second month she was literally up and running. Her life was so changed that she ran a marathon in honor of Project Access and raised over $1,000 in funds for the program. Your donation has the power to give someone back their health. Please consider donating to the WCMS Foundation Annual Campaign today.


Medicaid Reform Plan Sent to Feds, Now the Negotiation Starts
North Carolina's Medicaid plan is poised on the brink of change. The first big step was putting in an application to the federal government to approve plans to make change a reality.
Click here to continue reading. 
Governor McCrory Signs Life-Saving Overdose Prevention Legislation
Greensboro, N.C. - Governor Pat McCrory joined law enforcement officers, first responders, legislators and health care officials today at the Guilford County Sheriff's Office to sign legislation making naloxone, a life-saving opioid reversal drug that has already saved 3,300 North Carolinians, more accessible. 

"Addressing mental health, substance use, underage drinking and drug overdose have been primary focuses of our team since day one," said Governor McCrory, who prioritized these issues in his first State of the State address. "Signing this legislation builds on our success and will save lives throughout North Carolina. I want to thank our legislators for unanimously passing this bipartisan initiative."
Click here to continue reading. 

CMS Proposes Rule to Improve Health Equity and Care Quality in Hospitals
On June 13, CMS proposed new standards to improve the quality of care and advance health equity in our nation's hospitals. The proposal applies to the 6,228 hospitals and critical access hospitals that participate in Medicare or Medicaid. The rule proposes to reduce overuse of antibiotics and implement comprehensive requirements for infection prevention. CMS estimates that these new requirements could save hospitals up to $284 million annually, while also improving care and potentially saving lives.
Click here to continue reading. 

Dr. Samantha Read-Smith: Why I'm a Member of WCMS
In this short video, WCMS association president Dr. Samantha Read-Smith explains why she felt compelled to become a member of her regional medical society. Dr. Read-Smith is a Hospitalist with Mission Hospital and she feels "...with all of the changes happening in medicine that physicians and patients have not been heard enough. Medical societies are a great way to be heard." Click here to watch the full video.

Job Board

Click here to see the latest jobs posted on our website. 


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

Learn more about the Western Carolina Medical Society on this page. We would love to hear from you. Please contact us with any questions, comments or concerns you may have.   



Miriam Schwarz


Miriam Schwarz signature


Miriam Schwarz, MPA

WCMS CEO/Executive Director 
(828) 274-2267 ext. 312