Let's Be Clear Georgia meeting

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Save the Date

03.10

Let's Be Clear Georgia meeting

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03.02

$17K & climbing: Help MAG’s CEO raise $25K for MAG Foundation effort to reduce Rx drug abuse

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging member physicians and other individuals and corporate sponsors to support MAG Executive Director Donald J. Palmisano Jr. and outside legal counsel Trey Reese (with Hall Booth Smith) with a donation when they run a 200-mile race to raise $25,000 for the MAG Foundation’s ‘Think About It’ campaign to reduce prescription drug abuse in the state.

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SCOTUS: NC board “suppressed competition” in non-dentists/teeth whitening case

"State professional regulatory boards may seek out more state supervision or even change their membership makeup because of a U.S. Supreme Court decision Wednesday against a North Carolina dental board accused of illegally suppressing competition."

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CMS extends 2014 EHR attestation until March 20

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that “eligible professionals now have until 11:59 p.m. on March 20, 2015, to attest to meaningful use for the Medicare Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program 2014 reporting year.”

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Dalton CME event to address addiction among health care workers

The Hamilton Medical Center is encouraging physicians to register for an "Addiction Among Healthcare Workers in Georgia: New Promises and Problems" CME event that will take place from 12:30 p.m. to 1:30 p.m. on Thursday, March 5 at the Brown Conference Center at the Hamilton Medical Center in Dalton.

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Dalton CME event to address addiction among health care workers

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Save the Date

03.05

CMS issues final rule on ACA payment parameters & provisions

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a final rule that addresses the payment parameters and provisions for the Affordable Care Act’s (ACA) risk adjustment, reinsurance and risk corridor programs and cost-sharing parameters and cost-sharing reductions and user fees for federally-facilitated ‘Exchanges’ for 2016.

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Hall County Medical Society Meeting

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DeKalb Medical Society Meeting

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03.26

North Georgia “Rural Bus Tour” cancelled

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) has been advised that the “Rural Physician Outreach Bus Tour” that was scheduled to take place in North Georgia this Wednesday and Thursday (February 25-26) has been cancelled as a result of the potential for inclement weather and the dangerous driving conditions.

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Stephens-Rabun CMS Meeting

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03.11

MAG one of 150+ to ask NGA to emphasize OD prevention & treatment

The Medical Association of Georgia is one of more than 150 state and national organizations that signed a letter that urged the National Governors Association (NGA) to turn “the nation’s discussion about prescription drug abuse and diversion into one that places increased emphasis on overdose prevention and treatment.”

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AMA Annual Meeting

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06.06 - 06.10

AMA National Advocacy Conference

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02.23 - 02.25

Emory Neonatalogy 2015 Conference

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Save the Date

04.30 - 05.01

Medicare QIN/QIO promoting heart health, HIT & PQRS/VBPM initiatives

Alliant GMCF – which is the Quality Innovation Network/Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) for Medicare in Georgia – is promoting the availability of three new initiatives for physicians and other health care stakeholders in Georgia.

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Medicare QIO promoting cardiac health webinar

Alliant GMCF is encouraging physicians in the state to register for an “Improving Cardiac Health and Reducing Cardiac Healthcare Disparities” webinar that will take place from 4 p.m. to 5 p.m. on Thursday, February 26.

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Recording of MAG “D.C. Issues” town hall now online

A recording of a 45-minute “D.C. Issues Update” conference call that the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) hosted on February 16 is now available online.

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PAI weighs in on Medicare RAC audit reform

The Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) recently submitted a letter to a U.S. House of Representatives subcommittee to outline PAI’s “key policy goals for reforming the (Medicare) RAC audit program.

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Avalere issues report addressing drugs used for complex diseases in ACA plans

Avalere Health has issued a report that “analyzes cost-sharing for drugs used to treat complex diseases in health plans offered on the Affordable Care Act’s Exchanges.”

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‘TopDocs’ interview on MAG’s correctional medicine program now online

A recording of the interview that Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) Executive Director Donald J. Palmisano Jr. and MAG Director of Correctional Medicine Clyde Maxwell recently conducted on the ‘TopDocs Radio’ program on the Business Radio-X Network to discuss MAG’s Correctional Medicine program is now available online.

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AMA promoting free advocacy training webinar

The American Medical Association (AMA) is encouraging physicians to register for a free “advocacy training webinar” that it will host at 7 p.m. next Tuesday, February 17. The webinar will focus on “effective grassroots advocacy tools and techniques to facilitate interaction between physicians and lawmakers during the upcoming National Advocacy Conference as well as in the district.”

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AMA encouraging physicians to attend National Advocacy Conference

The American Medical Association (AMA) is encouraging physicians to attend its National Advocacy Conference, which will take place at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. on February 23-25.

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National Rx Drug Abuse Summit

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Save the Date

04.06 - 04.09

Payscape Advisors corrects phone number in MAG Journal ad

The telephone number that was noted in the advertisement that Payscape Advisors ran in the most recent edition of the Journal of the Medical Association of Georgia was incorrect.

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MAG, PAI encouraging physicians to take virtual credit cards survey

The Medical Association Georgia and The Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) are encouraging physicians in Georgia to complete a short survey that was developed by the Workgroup for Electronic Data Interchange (WEDI) that addresses virtual credit cards.

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DCH extends Medicaid revalidation enrollment until March 1

The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) has announced that it has “extended the deadline for Medicaid providers to revalidate enrollment to March 1, 2015. The Affordable Care Act mandates that states revalidate the enrollment of all providers every five years.”

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Listen to MAG Town Hall & ‘Top Docs Radio’ interviews

MAG members can click here to listen to every MAG Town Hall & ‘Top Docs Radio’ interview.

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Blog: ABIM leaders announce significant changes to MOC program

"Today, ABIM announced substantial changes to its Maintenance of Certification (MOC) program and indicated a desire to work more closely with the internal medicine community. I reached out to our diplomates via e-mail to open a conversation about how we can work together to improve MOC."

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Study sheds light on views of CMS, QIOs

Market Connections conducted a study to measure the perceptions of the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and Quality Improvement Organizations (QIOs).

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FSMB refutes critics of Interstate Medical Licensure Compact

The Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) has issued a press release and a fact sheet that “(refute) false and misleading public statements and distortions made by individuals and organizations opposing the Interstate Medical Licensure Compact, which was recently developed by representatives of several state medical boards in an effort to streamline licensing for physicians who want to practice in multiple states.”

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CMS to use rulemaking process to "help" providers meet EHR requirements

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that it “intends to engage in rulemaking this spring to help ensure providers continue to meet (the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Record [EHR] Incentive Programs) meaningful use requirements.”

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More than 50 physicians attend 2015 ‘Physicians’ Day at Capitol’

Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) Government Relations Director Marcus Downs reports that the 2015 ‘Physicians’ Day at the Capitol’ was a huge success – as more than 50 physicians were on hand for the event that took place on January 28.

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Free ‘physician workforce’ webinar to take place on February 26

The Physicians Foundation is encouraging physicians to register for a free ‘Learning To Identify Physician Workforce Challenges in Your Community’ webinar that will take place from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Thursday, February 26.

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HHS issues report on ACA ‘marketplace’ enrollment

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has released a report that says that “over 9.5 million Americans (were) selected or were automatically reenrolled into a 2015 health insurance plan through the (Affordable Care Act’s) Marketplace.

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AP: Government to overhaul Medicare payments to doctors, hospitals

"Medicare will change the way it pays hospitals and doctors to reward quality over volume, the Obama administration said Monday, in a shift that officials hope will be a catalyst for the nation's $3-trillion health care system."

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CMS: Attestation deadline for 2014 EHR program is February 28

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is reminding eligible professionals who are participating in the Medicare EHR Incentive Program that they “have until February 28, 2015 to attest to demonstrating meaningful use of the data collected during your EHR reporting period for the 2014 calendar year.”

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MAG HOD meeting

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Save the Date

10.17 - 10.18

Make a difference as a MAG “Doctor of the Day” volunteer

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is recruiting physicians to serve as a MAG ‘Doctor of the Day’ volunteer during the 2015 legislative session, which will run from January 12 to the middle of April.

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PAI comments on NAIC model managed care act

The Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) has submitted comments to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners' (NAIC) Subgroup that is responsible for modernizing the NAIC Managed Care Plan Network Adequacy Model Act.

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Governor appoints insurance agent to DCH Board

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal recently appointed Russ Childers to the Georgia Department of Community Health’s (DCH) Board of Directors.

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‘TopDocs’ interview on MAG’s advocacy efforts now online

A recording of the interview that Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) Council on Legislation Chair Michael E. Greene, M.D., and MAG Director of Government Relations Marcus Downs recently conducted on the ‘TopDocs Radio’ program on the Business Radio-X Network to discuss MAG’s advocacy efforts is now available online.

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MAG honors five legislators with "Friend of Medicine" award

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) has honored five state legislators with its 1849 Friend of Medicine Award to recognize them for their efforts during the General Assembly in 2014.

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CMS soliciting volunteers for ICD-10 test

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced that a “sample group” of (about 850) providers will have the opportunity to participate in an ICD-10 coding “end-to-end” testing project with Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) and the Common Electronic Data Interchange (CEDI) contractor during the week of April 26.

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MAG CEO & member physician address Medicaid in WABE report

According to a WABE article, "Poor Georgians will have a more difficult time finding doctors this year, because fewer physicians will take Medicaid patients. They say the federal government is not paying enough for the care they provide to low-income residents."

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The Medical Center Foundation golf tournament to benefit the MAG Foundation in 2015

The Medical Center Foundation in Gainesville has announced that it will donate the proceeds from its golf tournament in 2015 to the Medical Association of Georgia Foundation's (MAG Foundation) 'Think About It' campaign to reduce prescription drug abuse. The 'Medical Center Open' raised $250,000 in 2014.

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Residents now able to get NPI/Medicaid ID to prescribe outpatient Rx

The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) has announced that, “Effective January 1, 2015, medical residents may obtain an NPI and Medicaid ID in order to prescribe outpatient prescription medications.

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CMS expects to penalize 50% of physicians in EHR program in 2015

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging physicians who have received a payment as a result of participating in the Medicare and Medicaid Electronic Health Records (EHR) Incentives Program to contact their EHR or HIPAA solution vendors to confirm that they are meeting the program's "meaningful use" requirements in full.

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Classified: Physicians needed to perform physicals in Brunswick & Macon

A practice is seeking physicians as independent contractors who have a Georgia medical license and board certification in family or internal medicine to perform physicals in Brunswick on Saturdays and/or Macon on Thursdays and Saturdays.

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EHR meaningful use penalty will hit 257,000 clinicians in 2015

According to an article on Medscape.com, the Medicare program will penalize more than 257,000 physicians and other health care providers 1% of their pay next year for failing to achieve meaningful use of electronic health record...

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MAG member forming network to evaluate "open source" EMR concept

One of the members of the Medical Association of Georgia's (MAG) Electronic Health Care Committee, Gary Botstein, M.D., would like to identify physicians in the state who took an active role in programming or developing the electronic medical record (EMR) system that's used in their practice to share their experiences on a blog or a bulletin board to determine whether it's feasible to design a free or low cost "open source" EMR to enhance patient care and improve practice efficiency.

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AMA: CMS clarifies CME/Open Payments reporting requirement

The American Medical Association (AMA) reports that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) recently clarified the need for physicians to report Continuing Medical Education (CME) in the CMS Open Payments System, which is used to collect information about the financial relationships that physicians and hospitals have with health care manufacturing companies.

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DCH to sign new Medicaid CMO contracts

The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) has announced that the “contracts for the Care Management Organizations (CMOs) serving nearly 1.4 million Georgia Medicaid/Georgia Families and Georgia Families 360˚ members will expire on June 30, 2016.

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Dr. Shah’s interview on IMGs on ‘TopDocs’ show now online

A recording of the interview that Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) President Manoj H. Shah, M.D., and MAG Membership Director Kate Boyenga recently conducted on the ‘TopDocs Radio’ program on the Business Radio-X Network to discuss the important role that international medical graduates (IMGs) play in today’s health care system is now available online.

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DCH: Medicaid providers should verify their mail-to address

The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) is stressing that, “It is critical [for Medicaid] providers [to] ensure that their mail-to-address is correct in the Georgia Medicaid Management Information System (GAMMIS).”

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AMA: Congress to pass bill to fund “most” of government through September

The American Medical Association (AMA) is reporting that Congress is expected to pass the “Consolidated and Further Continuing Appropriations Act, 2015” this week to fund “most of the federal government” through September 2015. In terms of key health care provisions, AMA says…

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AMA: Congress owes Medicare physicians, patients peace of mind

The following is a summary of a message that the American Medical Association (AMA) distributed on December 9 to address the efforts that are underway to reform how the Medicare program pays physicians.

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MAG, PAI address Medicare appeals backlog in letters to HHS

Medical Association of Georgia President Manoj H. Shah, M.D., recently submitted two letters to U.S. Department of Health & Human Services departments – including one to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) that addresses the two-year backlog in the Medicare claims appeals process that is attributed to the Recovery Audit Program and one that provides the Office of Medicare Hearings and Appeals (OMHA) with suggestions for addressing that backlog.

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CMS says proposed rule will “strengthen” Medicare ACOs

On December 1, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a proposed rule that is believes will “strengthen” the Medicare Shared Savings Program for participating accountable care organizations (ACOs) by placing a “greater emphasis on primary care services and promoting transitions to performance-based risk arrangements.”

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MAG calling on physicians to urge Speaker Boehner to support two-year ICD-10 delay

As part of a nationwide grassroots advocacy effort, the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging physicians in the state to mail a letter on their practice letterhead to U.S. Speaker of the House of Representatives John Boehner to urge him to support a two-year delay in the implementation of the ICD-10 billing codes...

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Avalere says exchange plan specialty drug costs will increase in 2015

Avalere Health has released a report that says that the out-of-pocket costs associated with specialty drugs – “which are often used to treat life threatening illnesses such as cancer, rheumatoid arthritis, or multiple sclerosis” – for the average patient who is covered by the federal health insurance exchange will increase in 2015.

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Recording of MAG town hall on “patient collections” now online

A recording of a “Patients are Payers, Too – What You Need to Know about Collections” town hall conference call that the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) hosted on December 2 is now available online.

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‘James Magazine’ honors MAG & its GR director as leaders

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) has been honored as one of James Magazine’s “Top Trade or Business Associations” in Georgia for the third consecutive year, rising from third in 2013 to second in 2014. In a related development, MAG Government Relations Director Marcus Downs has been lauded as one of James Magazine’s “Rising Stars” in 2014.

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Grady out of BCBSGa network, calls for grassroots action

The Grady Health System has announced that effective November 24 “[its] facilities are considered out of network for all Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia (BCBSGA) members, including Medicare Advantage and the Georgia State Health Benefit plan.

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MAG calling on physicians in Georgia to support H.R. 4015/S. 2000 to repeal Medicare SGR

MAG is encouraging physicians in the state to call 800.833.6354 to contact their congressional leaders as soon as possible to urge them to support the "SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014" (H.R. 4015/S. 2000) before the end of this year.

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MAG urging NAIC to adopt meaningful standards

The Medical Association of Georgia was one of more than 110 medical and patient groups that signed a letter that was sent to the National Association of Insurance Commissioners (NAIC) to urge it to adopt meaningful standards as it revises its ‘Managed Care Plan Network Adequacy Model Act.’

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MAG Foundation ‘Think About It’ campaign radio interview now online

Two of the leading voices for the Medical Association of Georgia Foundation's 'Think About It' campaign to reduce prescription drug abuse in the state appeared on the TopDocs Radio program on the Business Radio-X Network on November 11.

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MAG urging physicians in Georgia to review new BCBSGa agreement ASAP

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is alerting physicians in the state that a new Blue Cross Blue Shield of Georgia, Inc. and Blue Cross Blue Shield Healthcare Plan of Georgia, Inc. (BCBSGa) provider agreement will automatically go into effect on November 15.

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MAG Foundation resource to reduce Rx drug abuse reaching 350,000 patients in Georgia

The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation (MAG Foundation) has announced that some of the most trusted and recognized health care system entities are supporting its ‘Think About It’ campaign to reduce prescription drug abuse by distributing more than 350,000 informational leaflets in the state.

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MAG CEO discusses key M.D. issues on “Top Docs RADIO” program

Medical Association of Georgia Executive Director and CEO Donald J. Palmisano Jr. went to bat for physicians in the state on the "Top Docs RADIO" program on the Business RadioX Network on September 2.

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MAG Foundation promoting 2015 Rx drug abuse summit

The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation is encouraging physicians in the state to make plans to attend the 2015 “National Rx Drug Abuse Summit,” which will take place at the Westin Peachtree Plaza Hotel in Atlanta on April 6-9.

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Georgia DCH Board approves SHBP options for 2015

“The (Georgia) Board of Community Health today voted to approve the 2015 member contribution rates and plan designs for the Georgia Department of Community Health’s State Health Benefit Plan (SHBP), providing more choice in plan options for members next year."

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HHS issues memo on NDPB early resolution of claims payment reporting requirements

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) has issued a memo that addresses National Practitioner Data Bank (NPDB) reporting requirements for early resolution of medical claims payments.

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DEA promoting new Naloxone summary for community pharmacies

The Georgia Drugs and Narcotics Agency is promoting the availability of a new “Naloxone Information for Community Pharmacies in Georgia: What You Need to Know” summary.

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MAG, 100+ more express concerns over implementation of “Sunshine Act”

The Medical Association of Georgia was one of more than 100 state and national medical associations that signed a letter that was submitted to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Marilyn Tavenner on August 5.

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Physicians Foundation/UNC unveil forecasting tool for M.D.s, others

The Physicians Foundation and the Cecil G. Sheps Center for Health Services Research at The University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill have unveiled a “tool to help policy makers, physicians and health systems better plan where to practice and what type of practitioners will be needed in order to meet the growing utilization of health care in the United States.”

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Georgia insurance commissioner issues directive on QHP, grace period claims

Georgia Commissioner of Insurance Ralph Hudgens recently issued a directive to “Qualified Health Plans (QHP) Issuers” in the state to clarify the “interplay” between the federal Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (45 CFR § 156.270(d)(3)) and Georgia law – including the requirements that cover the “grace period” that is related to payments for health insurance claims.

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Insurer gets award for test to improve outcomes for young adults in foster care in Georgia

Health insurer Amerigroup will receive a U.S. Health and Human Services Department (HHS) award of as much as $5.8 million to conduct a test that is designed to “improve outcomes for transitional young adults ages 17 to 20 who are transitioning out of foster care and who will receive health care coverage until the age of 26 for the first time under the (Patient Protection and) Affordable Care Act (PPACA).”

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New White House report addresses Medicaid expansion

The U.S. Council of Economic Advisers – which is an agency within the Executive Office of the President – has released a ‘Missed Opportunities: The Consequences of State Decisions Not to Expand Medicaid’ report that “details the effects of state decisions regarding Medicaid expansion on access to care, financial security, overall health and well-being of residents, and state economies.”

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MAG Foundation and Walgreens announce effort to reduce Rx drug abuse in Georgia

The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation (MAG Foundation) has announced that Walgreens stores in Georgia will support its ‘Think About It’ campaign to reduce prescription drug abuse in the state by distributing informational leaflets to patients who have their prescriptions filled at Walgreens pharmacies beginning today.

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MAG one of 80+ M.D. groups to call for delay in CoPs rule changes

MAG was one of more than 80 physicians’ advocacy organizations that signed a letter that calls for the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) to take immediate action to delay the implementation of the final rule regarding Conditions of Participation (CoPs) that will dramatically alter the make-up and efficacy of hospital medical staffs nationwide.

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DCH names insurers for SHBP for 2015

The Georgia Department of Community Health (DCH) has announced that it has named the insurers for the State Health Benefits Plan (SHBP) for the 2015 plan year, which will begin on January 1, 2015.

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MAG encouraging medical staffs to update bylaws to account for Medicare CoPs changes

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) recently changed 42 CFR 482.12 and 482.22, which are related to the Medicare Conditions of Participation for Hospitals (CoPs).

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AMA: Insurers now required to offer e payments using ACH

The American Medical Association (AMA) is stressing that health plans are now “required to offer electronic funds transfer (EFT) payments using the Automated Clearing House (ACH) Network to physician practices that request this method of claims payment.”

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MAG honored for website for sixth time

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) recently won a Web Health Awards’ bronze award for its www.mag.org website.

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UHC to reduce Medicare Advantage network in Georgia by about 10 percent

UnitedHealthcare (UHC) has advised the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) that it will reduce the size of its Medicare Advantage network in Georgia by about 10 percent.

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CMS/ONC proposal would allow CEHRT flexibility, extend Stage 2

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology (ONC) released a notice of proposed rulemaking (NPRM) that would allow providers who are participating in the Medicare and Medicaid EHR Incentive Programs to use the 2011 edition of certified electronic health record technology (CEHRT) for the 2014 calendar and fiscal year.

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CMS promoting EHR Stage 2 attestation guide

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is promoting the availability of a new (Medicare EHR Incentives Program) “Stage 2 Attestation User Guide for Eligible Professionals.”

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CMS outlines plans for Medicare claims

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is reporting that (in the event a scheduled Medicare pay cut goes into effect) it has “instructed the Medicare Administrative Contractors to hold claims containing services paid under the MPFS (Medicare Physician Fee Schedule) for the first 10 business days of April…hold would only affect MPFS claims with dates of service of April 1, 2014, and later."

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U.S. House passes bill to repeal Medicare SGR

In a vote of 237 to 182, the U.S. House of Representatives passed an amended version of the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014” (H.R. 4105).

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AMA provides update on efforts to repeal Medicare SGR

The American Medical Association (AMA) recently provided the Medical Association of Georgia with an update on the efforts to pass legislation that would repeal the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula.

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AMA issues update on Medicare SGR legislation

The American Medical Association is reporting that “(House) Ways and Means Chairman David Camp (R-MI) introduced the anticipated amendment to offset the costs of H.R. 4015, the ‘SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014,’ with a five-year delay in implementation of the ACA’s tax penalties for individuals who do not purchase health insurance.”

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AMA calling for grassroots support for Medicare SGR bill

The American Medical Association (AMA) is encouraging physicians to contact their U.S. Representative and their U.S. Senators as soon as possible to urge them to pass H.R. 4015 to repeal the Medicare SGR.

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MAG expressing conditional support for bill to repeal/replace Medicare SGR

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is supporting the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act” (H.R. 4015/S. 2000) – which would repeal the formula that is used to pay Medicare physicians and replace it with a new system – “as long as one medical specialty does not benefit to the detriment of another” and pending its review of the “offsets” (i.e., funding mechanisms) that are included in any final legislation.

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MAG EC votes to support SGR bill on conditional basis

During its meeting on March 2, the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) Executive Committee voted to support the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act” (H.R. 4015/S. 2000) – which would repeal al the Medicare SGR and create a new Medicare payment system – “as long as one specialty does not benefit to the detriment of another specialty” and pending a review of “pay for/offsets” (i.e., funding mechanisms) in any final legislation.

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House GOP M.D. group supporting SGR measure pending review of final bill with offsets

The U.S. House of Representatives GOP Doctors Caucus has sent a letter to the leaders of the U.S. House and Senate stating that it “agreed to the policies contained in the (H.R. 4015/S. 2000), the SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act…it is our hope that leaders in the House and Senate will move as expeditiously as possible to negotiate acceptable offsets that we can support.”

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New AMA summary addresses SGR legislation

The American Medical Association has created a “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014 – H.R. 4015/S. 2000” summary.

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AMA says debt ceiling bill includes $2.3 billion SGR “transitional” fund

The American Medical Association (AMA) is reporting that, “The debt ceiling extension legislation posted online by the House Rules Committee (on February 10) calls for extending the sequester for an additional year, through 2014, in order to offset the cost of restoring retired military pay benefits that were reduced in the budget bill passed last December.”

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Update on legislative negotiations to repeal the Medicare SGR

The American Medical Association (AMA) reports that, “Staff for the chairmen and ranking minority members of the three Congressional committees of jurisdiction briefed physician groups this afternoon (February 6) on the results of their bicameral, bipartisan negotiations on repealing the (Medicare) SGR.

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CMS: Medicare EHR EPs may be subject to adjustments in 2015

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is says that “Eligible professionals (EPs) participating in the Medicare EHR Incentive Program may be subject to payment adjustments beginning on January 1, 2015. CMS will determine the payment adjustment based on meaningful use data submitted prior to the 2015 calendar year.

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MAG supports bill to expand Georgia's medical marijuana law

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) has announced that it supports the legislation (H.B. 885) that Rep. Allen Peake (R-Macon) introduced at the State Capitol today that would expand the state’s law permitting the use of marijuana in strictly controlled research programs to patients who suffer from seizures. Georgia’s existing law only covers patients who have cancer or glaucoma.

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AMA matrix highlights key provisions of bills to repeal SGR

The American Medical Association has created a matrix that shows how the three bills that Congressional leaders are considering to repeal the Medicare SGR differ from the existing law.

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AMA reports that Congress has okayed three-month Medicare update

The American Medical Association (AMA) is reporting that, “Congress has adopted a 0.5 percent update to Medicare payments for three months, following a bipartisan vote of 64 to 36 in the U.S. Senate Wednesday afternoon.

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AMA promoting model bill to address ACA ‘grace period’

The American Medical Association (AMA) is promoting a model state-level bill

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Surgical societies oppose Medicare SGR/pay bill, call for delay

Sixteen surgical societies – including the American College of Surgeons – have sent letters to Congressional leaders to oppose the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Beneficiary Access Improvement Act of 2013” in its current form, according to the American Association of Neurological Surgeons and the Congress of Neurological Surgeons.

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AMA releases resources addressing SGR, physician pay proposal

According to the American Medical Association (AMA) “(on December 5) the (U.S.) House Committee on Ways and Means and the (U.S.) Senate Committee on Finance released revisions to their bipartisan, bicameral proposal to repeal Medicare’s SGR formula and reform the physician payment system.”

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Modifications to SGR Discussion Draft of SGR Repeal & Medicare Physician Payment Reform

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