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  Community Pulse - October 2016


In This Issue:
WCMS Membership Available to Physician Assistants in 2017
New Members to WCMS
Message from the WCMS Foundation Board Chair
The Physicians' Voice in the News
WCMS Rolls out Grassroots "Get Out the Vote" Materials
Order Now: 2016-17 Physician "Blue Book" Directories
Meet WCMS' ASL Interpreters
Shifting Healthcare from Fee-for-Service to Pay for Performance
WCMS' Third Quarter Strategic Plan Update
Aetna to Cut Back 70% on Obamacare Plans in 2017
CMS Announces Additional Opportunities for Clinicians to Join Innovative Care Approaches...
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!  

Message from the WCMS Foundation Board Chair
Dear WCMS Members, 

Greetings from your WCMS Foundation Board Chair. I hope this update finds you well and at peace, especially during this political season, chock full of things that can lead to stress and un-centeredness among our colleagues and our patients!

As a physician and medical director at a very busy health center, I know many of my colleagues are being pulled in so many directions these days, and sometimes we wonder, "Did I sign up for this?"

I find myself asking, why do I do this? One way I find some peace is reminding myself of the three pillars of the WCMS Foundation: Access to Health, Reducing Health Disparities, and Promoting Wellness. These pillars transcend politics and get to the core of why we do what we do. It also begs the question, "How many more folks in western North Carolina can benefit from these foundational pillars?"
Click here to read Dr. Wallenius' full message.
The 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.

Dr. Rachel Raab is a hematologist/oncologist with Cancer Care of Western North Carolina with an expertise in breast cancer. She is a member of the Western Carolina Medical Society. She sees patients at both the SECU Cancer Center and Hope Women's Cancer Center. The article is titled "Know and Reduce your Breast Cancer Risks"

"As a breast medical oncologist, patients ask me on a daily basis why they developed breast cancer and what they can do, in addition to recommended treatment, to reduce their risk for recurrence. Many patients are shocked by their diagnosis, as they are the first person in their family to be diagnosed with breast cancer.

Breast cancer, following non-melanomatous skin cancer, is the most common cancer in American women. About 1 in 8 women in the United States will develop breast cancer during her lifetime. I explain to my patients that there are many factors that contribute to development of breast cancer but that many women with risk factors never develop breast cancer."
Click here to read the full article. 
WCMS Rolls out Grassroots "Get Out the Vote" Materials 
WCMS is excited to announce that we have prepared some materials to help you educate your patients and staffs about the very important issue of Medicaid Expansion. We have a poster for exam/waiting rooms as well as bookmarks that a consumer may take with them.

Click the image to preview the materials.
Contact membership@mywcms.org to request materials for your practice

Order Now: 2016-17 Physician "Blue Book" Directories
The 2016-17 Physician Directory listing over 
1,600 WNC Physicians is now available.  

Remember, the price is discounted if you are a 100% Member Practice. Contact membership@mywcms.org if you're not sure. 
Meet WCMS' ASL Interpreters
Meet our ASL Interpreters and watch them sign!

Thanks to a very generous donation of time and talent from videographer Jim Lawrence, Deaf patients in our community can now view our ASL interpreters on our website and determine which interpreter best suits their language needs. People in the Deaf community asked for this, and thanks to Jim's philanthropy, we were able to deliver. Enjoy!
Click here to view
Shifting Healthcare from Fee-for-Service to Pay for Performance
CCWNC presents the QI Minute, short segments to introduce the pay-for-performance model. Each segment will focus on core concepts that build the foundation for CCWNC network practice support. Topics will include population health management, care coordination, team-based care, quality improvement and more! 
Click here to see the first installment. 
WCMS' Third Quarter Strategic Plan Update
Click here to view our progress on the 2016 Strategic Plan. 

Aetna to Cut Back 70% on Obamacare Plans in 2017
The health insurer said it will offer individual Affordable Care Act (ACA) exchange plans in just four states, down from 15 this year, in an effort to reduce its losses.
Click here to continue reading. 

CMS Announces Additional Opportunities for Clinicians to Join Innovative Care Approaches Under the Quality Payment Program
Today, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced new opportunities for clinicians to join Advanced Alternative Payment Models (APMs) developed by the CMS Innovation Center to improve care and potentially earn an incentive payment under the Quality Payment Program created through the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA). The Quality Payment Program rewards clinicians with sufficient participation in Advanced APMs that align incentives for high-quality, patient-centered care. By giving more clinicians the opportunity to participate in these models, today's announcement will extend the benefits of high-quality, coordinated care to more Medicare beneficiaries.
Click here to continue reading.  

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