Weekly e-News of the Western Carolina Medical Society 
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March 15, 2017
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In This Issue:
Sponsor Message: Membership Now Open to PAs (Left)
2017 WCMS Dues - Stay with us!
Results from last week's Weigh In
Register Now: Women in Medicine Affinity Group 3/23/17
Register Now: Rural Medicine Affinity Group 3/28/17
Register Now: Physician Assistant Welcome Event 4/12/17
Register Now: Healthy Healer - Mindfulness in Medicine Retreat 4/22-23
Independent Physicians Affinity Group
Now Recruiting Bernstein Fellows!
Important Policy Announcement from NC Obstetrical & Gynecological Society
Bowtie Briefing for 3/10/17
From AMA: American Health Care Act
Surgeons were told to stop prescribing so many painkillers. The results were remarkable.
The Healthy Healer
WCMS Job Board
2017 WCMS Dues - Stay with us!
If you haven't already, please pay your 2017 dues! 

This is a big year for legislative advocacy. Stay with us to:
* Keep legislation out of the physician-patient relationship and exam room
* Make your voice heard about patient safety issues
* Fight for patient access to high quality health care

And we're building up our Healthy Healer program. Will include:
* Discounts on counseling/coaching
* Mindfulness in Medicine Retreat, April 22-23
* Large event with renowned speaker, November 4

There's a lot happening at WCMS - check out our full 2017 Strategic Plan.

Not sure whether you've paid? 
Results from last week's Weigh In on the STOP Act
Last week we asked you to let us know what you thought about the STOP Act being proposed to curb the state's opioid abuse epidemic.  

Here are the results: 
Do not support - 1
Support with modification - 8

Here's what two of your colleagues had to say:

"This is going to create a big administrative burden for physicians. The controlled substances database system is terrible, not user friendly. I have to call tech support each time I try to use it. E scribing controlled substances requires a fee to our vendor of $600 per MD per year. Who will cover that? Our issue as specialists is that patients come to us on meds by their PCP, then we have to be the "bad guy" on this. It takes a lot of extra time that we don't really have."

"I am in favor of the bill! There are some pieces that will require a change of practice, but it needs to happen! - We have not corrected it on our own and we do need to change for the benefit of our patients and the community at large!"

We'd love to hear from more of you! WCMS will be in Raleigh next week, so let us know what you think! 

Note from WCMS CEO - Our intention for this effort is to garner physician input on various health care policy issues so that we can advocate appropriately. We are not endorsing one policy over another; we are looking for input and dialog from a diverse physician community so that we can appropriately focus our efforts on what's most important to the majority of our physicians without losing the voices (or membership) of physicians who may dissent with the prevailing opinions of the day.
Register Now: Women in Medicine Affinity Group 3/23/17
"The Two Sides of Money"

Join us for the first Women in Medicine affinity group of 2017! 
Laura Webb, CFP will be leading a presentation and discussion. 

Register Now: Rural Medicine Affinity Group 3/28/17
The Rural Medicine Group will be meeting to discuss a variety of community partnerships happening throughout the region.

Topics to include:

* New Rural FQHCs
* Pending grants to expand Project Access beyond Buncombe
* Medserve
* Bernstein Fellows Recruitment
* Legislative update
Register Now: Physician Assistant Welcome Event 4/12/17
Attention PAs!
Please join us on April 12 at Thirsty Monk, Biltmore Park! This will be an excellent opportunity to connect with other PAs and learn about the benefits of membership at WCMS! We encourage you to come with any questions or ideas to boost growth of our PA membership base! 
Register Now: Healthy Healer - Mindfulness in Medicine Retreat 4/22 & 23

This 2-day retreat is part of our Healthy Healer program and will focus on these topics:
* Mindfulness
* Resilience
* Narrative Medicine
* Appreciative Inquiry

Earn 13 hours CME. Click here for more information and to register. 
Independent Physicians Affinity Group
On March 13, the Independent Physicians Affinity Group, along with several Practice Managers and staff, attended a presentation given by Michelle Bilsky, Vice President of Risk Management for MedMal Direct. The presentation, titled "First Class Patient Experience," contained excellent and practical ideas to improve patient experience. The slides can be viewed
Now Recruiting Bernstein Fellows!
The purpose of the Jim Bernstein Community Health Leadership Fellows Program is to develop future leaders to work in and improve the health of rural and underserved communities in North Carolina. The Fellows Program commemorates the life and career contributions of James D. Bernstein, North Carolina's rural health pioneer who led the state's efforts for community-driven care of low- and moderate-income, isolated, and underserved populations for more than 30 years.

Click here for more information. 
Important Policy Announcement from NC Obstetrical & Gynecological Society
Click here to view the message. 
Bowtie Briefing for 3/10/17

From AMA: American Health Care Act
On March 6, the House Republican leadership introduced the American Health Care Act (AHCA), legislation that would repeal and replace several major provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA). The bill was introduced in two parts-one that will be marked up by the House Energy & Commerce
Committee and one that will be marked up by the House Ways & Means Committee. Both markups will occur on Wednesday, March 8. Below is a top-line summary of the key provisions in the legislation, as introduced.
Click here to continue reading. 
Surgeons were told to stop prescribing so many painkillers. The results were remarkable.
The head of general surgery at Dartmouth-Hitchcock Medical Center had a remarkably simple idea not long ago: What if the department suggested that surgeons limit prescriptions of narcotic pain pills to a specific number for different kinds of operations?
Click here to continue reading. 
The Healthy Healer
Scott MacGregor is a licensed clinical therapist and stress reduction educator with over fifteen years of meditation practice including retreats for mindfulness, meditation in medicine and research, insight meditation, and spiritual reflection. 
Scott will be one of the instructors for our upcoming "Healthy Healer Retreat: Mindfulness in Medicine."

WCMS Job Board

If you are a 100% Member Practice, posting job openings here is FREE! 
Click here for more information. 
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. WCMS is an organization run by physicians, for physicians. In 2017, WCMS opened membership to physician assistants.

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