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  Community Pulse - August 2016


In This Issue:
WCMS Blue Books will be Available in October
New Members to WCMS
Attention New Physicians: You're Invited to the WCMS Newcomers' Picnic
Blue Ridge Bone & Joint Merges with 3 NC Practices to Form One of the State's Largest Physician-Owned Orthopaedic Practices
Public Health Alert from BCHHS: ACIP Recommendation Against Intranasal Flu Vaccine
Passing of Dr. William Gough
Physicians' Voice in the News
MAHEC Family Health Center at Swannanoa Opening 9/6
NC Medical Board to Explore Issues Facing Employed Physicians
Many Well-Known Hospitals Fail to Score 5 Stars in Medicare's New Ratings
Aetna CEO to Justice Department: Block our Deal and We'll Drop Out of Obamacare
The Family Health Centers Adds Two New Physicians
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!  

Attention New Physicians: You're Invited to the WCMS Newcomers' Picnic

Every year, WCMS hosts a picnic to welcome new physicians to WNC. The 2016 picnic will again be held at Yesterday Spaces in Leicester. We're looking forward to welcoming physicians who are new to the area and meeting Physician Assistants who will be eligible for membership in 2017! Bring the whole family for an afternoon of food and fun!

"Blue Ridge Bone & Joint" Merges with 3 NC Practices to Form One of the State's Largest Physician-Owned Orthopaedic Practices
July 28, 2016- In a common mission to provide streamlined, patient-centered care, four independent orthopedic physician groups across North Carolina have joined together to form a new practice called EmergeOrtho. With 49 office locations in 21 counties statewide, EmergeOrtho is one of the largest physician-owned orthopaedic practices in the country. Additional practices are poised to join during a second phase of expansion projected for early 2017. The combined practices include 126 physicians and 237 physician assistants, nurse practitioners and therapists. With the projected 2017 expansion, there will be approximately 170 physicians in the practice.
Click here to continue reading.
Public Health Alert from BCHHS: ACIP Recommendation Against Intranasal Flu Vaccine for 2016-17 Flu Season
As you likely have heard by now, in June 2016, the CDC's Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) issued a recommendation that the live attenuated influenza vaccine (LAIV; also known as the "nasal spray" flu vaccine or FluMistŪ) not be used for the 2016-2017 flu season. 
Click here to continue reading.
Passing of Dr. William Gough
WCMS is saddened to learn of the death of Dr. William Gough of Asheville Arthritis and Osteoporosis Center.  Dr.  Gough passed away last Saturday evening, August 27, 2016 after a brief illness.  A memorial service will be held at 2:00 pm Saturday, September 3rd at Trinity Episcopal Church, 60 Church Street, Asheville, NC 28801.
Memorials may be made to: The Division of Rheumatology for the David S. Caldwell, M.D. and John R. Rice, M.D. Rheumatology Fund. (c/o Duke Health Development and Alumni Affairs c/o Jake Pope, 710 West Duke Street, Suite 200 Durham, NC 27701) or to Trinity Episcopal Church, 60 Church Street, Asheville, NC 28801.
WCMS sends our deep condolences to Dr. Gough's family, friends, and colleagues.
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 the recent article from WCMS Member Dr. Gregg Goldin, RadiationOncologist with 21st Century Oncology,"Aggressive Prostate Cancer is on the Rise"

Excerpt: September is Prostate Cancer Awareness Month. Most of us know someone who has had cancer of their prostate gland because it is still the most common malignancy that plagues American men, and it's also the second deadliest (30,000 men die each year) to lung cancer. Despite these facts, in 2012 the United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) recommended against PSA-based screening for prostate cancer (other organizations, like the American Urological Association, the American Cancer Society and the American College of Physicians disagree and still promote screening for certain populations). Consequentially, use of the PSA test has dropped since 2012, especially among primary care providers.
Click here to continue reading
MAHEC Family Health Center at Swannanoa Opens September 6th

MAHEC's newest primary care office will be staffed by Dr. Ben Aiken and Dr. Nicole Evans.  They will offer care for the entire family including pregnancy care, pediatrics, and geriatric care.  The practice is located at 2313 US Hwy 70 in the Swannanoa Valley Shopping Center near Ingles.  New patients are currently being accepted - (828) 407-2400

NC Medical Board to Explore Issues Facing Employed Physicians
NCMB will host a roundtable discussion in November to explore challenges specific to physicians who work in salaried positions, as opposed to independent solo or group practice.

As more physicians have moved to employment arrangements, NCMB has noticed that policies and protocols put in place by employers sometimes make it challenging for the employed licensee to comply with individual professional obligations to patients. For example, when a physician retires or departs a practice, the Board's expectation is that the physician will be permitted to provide appropriate notice to patients, ensure continuity of care, and allow patient selection.

The roundtable is tentatively scheduled for the afternoon of Tuesday Nov. 15. Do you have suggestions for issues related to employed physicians that should be discussed at this event? Send them to forum@ncmedboard.org.
More information is available here.

Many Well-Known Hospitals Fail To Score 5 Stars In Medicare's New Ratings

The federal government released its first overall hospital quality rating, slapping average or below average scores on many of the nation's best-known hospitals while awarding top scores to dozens of unheralded ones.
Click here to read the full article and here to view the data as a PDF.
Aetna CEO To Justice Department: Block Our Deal And We'll Drop Out Of Obamacare
The change in tack for Aetna is also noteworthy because Bertolini was talking up the business potential of the exchanges as recently as April, when he said during a call with analysts and investors that the exchanges were "a good investment," despite the losses incurred. At the time, Bertolini said that Aetna was "committed to working constructively with the administration and lawmakers to find solutions that can improve this program, stabilize the risk pool, and expand product flexibility, all with the goal of creating a sustainable program that makes health care more affordable and accessible for all consumers." Now, the company appears to be taking its ball and going home. 
Click here to continue reading. 

Dr. Bailey A. Balentine and Dr. Jeffrey B. Graham join 
The Family Health Centers of Asheville, Arden & Hominy Valley
For Immediate Release

Asheville, August 30, 2016

The Family Health Centers of Asheville, Arden & Hominy Valley, Western North Carolina's largest privately-owned primary health care practice, announces the appointments of Bailey Balentine, DO and Jeffrey Graham, MD, MPH as its newest family physicians. 

A native of Asheville, Dr. Balentine earned a Doctor of Osteopathic Medicine degree at the Edward Via College in Blacksburg, VA, and graduated from the Family Medicine Residency Program at the New Hanover Regional Medical Center, an affiliate of UNC Chapel Hill in Wilmington, NC. Her professional interests include Women's Health, Pediatrics and Osteopathic Manipulation. Dr. Balentine is accepting new patients at the Arden office. 

Dr. Graham earned his Medical Doctorate at the University of Arkansas and a Master of Public Health degree at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill. Dr. Graham's interests include Orthopedic Sports Medicine, Contraceptive Care and Pediatrics. Dr. Graham is also an advocate for patients suffering from Gender Dysphoria, and will provide Hormone Replacement Therapy for those in need. Dr. Graham is accepting new patients at the Downtown Asheville office. 

About The Family Health Centers of Asheville, Arden 
& Hominy Valley, PA
The Family Health Centers, PA is the largest independent family practice in Western North Carolina. The organization employs twenty-five board-certified providers and more than seventy full-time staff members. The practice was an early-adopter of electronic medical records, and, secure online access to personal health records for its patients. The practice is a founding member of the Western North Carolina Independent Physician's Association. (WNC IPA, LLC.) Find The Family Health Centers online at www.fhconline.com 
Job Board

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Miriam Schwarz


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Miriam Schwarz, MPA

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