Video of AMA/MAG/CMS QPP session now online

A video recording of the educational session that the Medical Association of Georgia co-hosted with the American Medical Association, the Medical Association of Atlanta, the Cobb County Medical Society, and the DeKalb Medical Society in Atlanta on December 1 that addressed Medicare’s new Quality Payment Program (QPP) is now available online.

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Sponsored message: CareSource – A different kind of Medicaid CMO partner

CareSource is health care with heart. Over 1.5 million members in four states already benefit from our unique and caring approach to providing Medicaid assistance. Now, we’re excited to put down roots in Georgia.

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‘Top Docs’ show to address Medicare’s new payment program

One of the state’s leading third party payer and practice management experts will discuss Medicare’s new Quality Payment Program (QPP) for physicians on the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) ‘Top Docs Radio’ program on the Business Radio-X Network at 12 p.m. on Tuesday, December 13.

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Reimbursement webinar now available for MAG members

A recording of a ‘Get Ready for the New Reimbursement Landscape’ webinar that

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AMA to host free MACRA QPP webinar

The American Medical Association (AMA) is encouraging physicians to register for a free, one-hour webinar that it will host to help them “prepare [for] and understand what the final [Quality Payment Program that was created by the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA)] rule means for their practice.”

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MAG promoting December 14-15 ‘Health IT’ event

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is promoting a ‘Health IT Series’ event that Healthcare Informatics will host at The Ritz-Carlton Atlanta on December 14-15.

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Don’t forget to register for a HealtheParadigm webinar

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging physicians in Georgia to register for a free, 90-minute ‘HealtheParadigm: Equipping Physicians for the Shift to MACRA/MIPS’ webinar that will be offered at 6 p.m. next Monday, December 12 and 12 p.m. next Tuesday, December 13.

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AHRQ to host free webinar on workplace violence

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services’ Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality (AHRQ) will host a free ‘Reducing Workplace Violence with TeamSTEPPS®’ webinar that will address “how teams can manage and care for aggressive and disruptive patients while maintaining quality and safety” from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. on Wednesday, December 14.

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MAG to host ‘new reimbursement landscape’ webinar

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) will host a free ‘Get Ready for the New Reimbursement Landscape’ webinar for its members and their practice staff from 12 p.m. to 1 p.m. on Tuesday, December 6.

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MagMutual acquires Tift Area Captive Insurance

MAG Mutual Insurance Company has announced that it has acquired Tift Area Captive Insurance Company, which was “owned by a series of multi-specialty Georgia physicians.”

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Nominations for 10th GPLA class due January 13

The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation’s Georgia Physicians Leadership Academy’s (GPLA) Selection Committee will be accepting nominations for candidates for the 2017-20187 GPLA class (X) through Friday, January 13.

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Save January 25 for the 2017 ‘white coat’ event

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Save the Date

January 25

AMA 'strongly supports' Rep. Price HHS nomination

The American Medical Association strongly supports the nomination of Dr. Tom Price to become the next Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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MAG endorsing U.S. Rep. Tom Price, M.D., HHS nomination

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is endorsing the nomination of U.S. Rep. Tom Price, M.D., to become the secretary of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS).

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‘Top Docs’ show on MagMutual Patient Safety Institute now online

A recording of a recent Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) ‘Top Docs Radio’ show that addressed MAG Mutual Insurance Company’s Patient Safety Institute is now available online.

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Like MAG's Facebook page for a chance to win a $200 gift card

Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) members who take a few seconds to “Like”

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Save June 23-25 for MAG’s 2017 ‘Legislative Education Seminar'

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Save the Date

June 23

‘Top Docs’ show on infectious diseases now online

A recording of a recent Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) ‘Top Docs Radio’ show that addressed important infectious diseases issues and the need for more young physicians to go into the specialty is now available online.

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Georgia DOI issues directive on preventive colorectal screenings

Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens has issued a directive that addresses in-network preventive care services (in the context of the Affordable Care Act) that says that “all services directly related to a preventive colonoscopy, including an associated facility, anesthesia, pathology, polyp removal, physician fees, and pre-operative examination and consultation, are to be provided with no member, subscriber or insured cost sharing.”

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GAMPAC supports 150 candidates in 2016

GAMPAC has released a list of the 150 candidates that it supported with campaign contributions during the primary and general elections in 2016. The list is only available for MAG members.

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Gov. Deal names new DCH, DBHDD commissioners

Gov. Nathan Deal today tapped new leadership for the Department of Community Health (DCH) and the Department of Behavioral Health and Developmental Disabilities (DBHDD). Following the appointment DCH Commissioner Clyde Reese III to the Georgia Court of Appeals, Gov. Deal appointed DBHDD Commissioner Frank Berry as the new DCH Commissioner. The appointment will take effect on December 1.

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Georgia AG issues key, pro-physician PDMP opinion

The Georgia Attorney General's office has released an opinion that says that, "O.C.G.A. § 16-13-60(c)(1) authorizes physicians to delegate their authority to access the Georgia Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (“GAPDMP”) to registered nurses or licensed practical nurses who are (1) members of the physician’s staff and (2) accessing the GAPDMP solely for the purpose of determining whether misuse, abuse, or underutilization of prescribed medication has occurred."

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MAG honors Waycross M.D. with distinguished service award

S. William Clark III, M.D., received the Joseph P.

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MAG honors late J. Harold Harrison, M.D., for humanitarian efforts

The late J. Harold Harrison, M.D., was honored with the Jack A. Raines Humanitarian Award during a ceremony that took place in conjunction with the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) 162nd House of Delegates meeting in Savannah on October 15.

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AMA releases MACRA QPP provisions summaries

The American Medical Association (AMA) has released two new summary documents

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MAG honors DPH leader with award for contributions to medicine

J. Patrick O’Neal, M.D., received the Lamartine Hardman Cup during a ceremony that took place in conjunction with the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) 162nd House of Delegates meeting in Savannah on October 15. The MAG award is given to a physician who has solved an outstanding problem in public health or made a discovery in surgery or medicine or a contribution to the science of medicine.

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Roswell anesthesiologist installed as MAG's 162nd president

Steven M. Walsh, M.D., was sworn into office as the president of the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) during a ceremony that took place in conjunction with the organization’s 162nd House of Delegates meeting in Savannah on October 15.

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MAG honors four legislators with 'Friend of Medicine' award

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) has honored four state legislators with its ‘1849 Friend of Medicine Award’ to recognize them for their efforts during the General Assembly in 2016.

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AMA flagging 2017 Medicare payment adjustment reports

The American Medical Association (AMA) says that, “Two new reports are now available with information on 2015 cost and quality data that indicate which physicians or practices will see related Medicare payment adjustments in 2017.”

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CMS releases fact sheet on MA-VBID model

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released a fact sh

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CMS issues Medicare fraud/ID theft fact sheet

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services is promoting a new fact sheet that was developed to “assist beneficiaries [to guard] their Medicare number from Medicare fraud and identity theft.”

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DEA warns carfentanil '10,000 times more potent than morphine'

[The U.S. Drug Enforcement Agency] has issued a public warning to the public and law enforcement nationwide about the health and safety risks of carfentanil.

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Results of Physicians Foundation survey troubling

The Physicians Foundation says that the key takeaway message from its fifth ‘Biennial Physician Survey’ is that “physicians are struggling to maintain morale levels, adapt to changing delivery and payment models, and to provide patients with reasonable access to care.”

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AMA resources help practices prepare for MACRA

The American Medical Association (AMA) has developed a number of resources that will help physician practices prepare for the transition to the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 (MACRA) payment system.

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MAG encouraging Georgians to get flu vaccine

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging Georgians to get vaccinated for the flu by the end of October.

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AMA: Data show U.S. 'needs more competition in health insurance'

The American Medical Association (AMA) distributed the following press release on September 21…

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MAG opposing measure to preempt state telemedicine laws

The Medical Association of Georgia is one of nearly 50 state medical associations that signed a letter to Congressional leaders to express concern over federal telemedicine legislation that would “preempt state laws governing medical licensure, medical practice, and professional liability by changing the originating site of care from where the patient is located to where the physician is located.”

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AMA: Physicians making progress to reverse opioid epidemic

The American Medical Association (AMA) has released a new fact sheet that shows that physicians are making progress to reverse the nation's opioid epidemic.

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Study finds 'significant' number of physicians leaving private practice

The Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) has released a "Physician Practice Acquisition Study: National and Regional Employment Changes" that was conducted by Avalere Health that “confirms a significant, nationwide increase in the number of physicians leaving private practice and entering into employment arrangements with hospitals and health systems.”

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AMA unveils Medicare Payment/MACRA web page

The American Medical Association has unveiled a ‘Medicare Payment Reform/MACRA’ web page, which features a physician/medical practice preparation checklist, information on AMA’s advocacy efforts to improve the rule, and details on the new merit-based incentive payment system (MIPS) and alternative payment models (APMs).

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MAG revenue cycle webinar now online

A recording of a ‘Best Practices in Revenue Cycle Management’ webinar that the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) recently hosted for its members and their practice staff is now available online.

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Physicians Foundation promoting book on poverty/health care

The Physicians Foundation is promoting a book – Poverty and the Myths of Health Care Reform – that it commissioned the late Richard ‘Buz’ Cooper, M.D., to write.

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MAG members can get 15% off & free shipping on Rx pads & EMR paper thru October

Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) members who order 40 or more tamper-resistant prescription pads or 2,000 or more sheets of EMR printer paper from Rx Security will receive free shipping through October 31. This is in addition to the normal 15 percent MAG member discount.

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MAG Sponsor Profile: Angel Flight Soars

Angel Flight Soars will be one of the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) House of Delegates (HOD) meeting sponsors in 2016.

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GBI arrests NP for PDMP infraction

The Georgia Bureau of Investigation has announced that on July 28 it arrested a nurse practitioner for “illegally accessing and disseminating sensitive patient prescription information stored within the PDMP (Prescription Drug Monitoring Program) database.”

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MAG offers 'Medical Cannabinoid Oil Registry' fact sheet

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is reminding its members that it off

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MAG calling for 2017 ‘Doctor of Day’ volunteers

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging physicians in the state to serve as a MAG ‘Doctor of the Day’ program volunteer during the 2017 legislative session, which will run from January 9 until the middle of April.

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MAG signs letter to oppose VA APRNs proposal

The Medical Association of Georgia is one of nearly 100 physicians’ advocacy organizations that signed a letter that was sent to the Under Secretary for Health at the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs.

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MAG Foundation: Naloxone credited with saving Gordon County man

The Medical Association of Georgia Foundation reports that a Gordon County deputy recently used naloxone to save an overdose victim’s life.

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MAG calling for emails to block mergers as Georgia AG joins DOJ lawsuit to do the same

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is calling on Georgia physicians and practice staff to take a few moments to send emails to mergercomments@oci.ga.gov by the end of this week to urge Georgia’s Division of Insurance (DOI) to block the pending Aetna/Humana merger.

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AMA applauds DOJ for filing lawsuit to block mergers

The American Medical Association (AMA) is applauding the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) for filing a lawsuit to block the pending Aetna-Humana and Anthem-Cigna mergers.

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MAG calls for VA to reject proposed APRNs scope rule

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is calling for the U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs (VA) to reject a proposed rule that would allow advanced practice registered nurses (APRNs) – including nurse anesthetists – to provide services to VA health care system patients without the clinical oversight of a physician (i.e., ‘RIN 2900-AP44-Advanced Practice Registered Nurses’ aka the ‘VA Proposed APRN Rule’) because it would undermine their care.

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MAG supporting bill to clarify Sunshine Act

The Medical Association of Georgia is one of many physicians’ advocacy organizations that signed a June 29 letter that was sent to U.S. Sen. John Barrasso, M.D., to support a bill, S. 2978, the ‘Protect Continuing Physician Education and Patient Care Act.’

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MAG responds to AJC article

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) believes that an article (‘Exposed and vulnerable patients violated in every state – yet the doctors were forgiven’) that appeared on the front page of The Atlanta Journal-Constitution on July 6 that said that sexual abuse by physicians “occurs far more often than any of us would have expected” is misleading and irresponsible.

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Like MAG, consumer groups opposing Anthem/Cigna and Aetna/Humana mergers

The following letter and comments were submitted to the Georgia Department of Insurance (DOI) on behalf of Consumer Action, Consumers Union, Consumer Federation of America, U.S. Public Interest Research Group, and Consumer Watchdog on June 28.

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AMA applauds California commissioner for stand on mergers

The American Medical Association applauds California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones for taking a strong stand to prevent a near total collapse of competition in the state’s health insurance market. He has taken the right approach to protect California by opposing the Anthem-Cigna and Aetna-Humana mergers.

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News and notes for MAG's 2016 House of Delegates

MAG’s 2016 HOD meeting will take place at the Hyatt Regency in Savannah on Saturday, October 15 and Sunday, October 16. MAG’s Board of Directors will meet at the Hyatt in Savannah on Friday, October 14.

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U.S. Sens. call for DOJ to block mega mergers

A number of leading U.S. Senators have called for the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to block the proposed Anthem-Cigna and Aetna-Humana mergers.

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Gov. Deal signs MAG’s legislative priorities into law

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal signed three of the Medical Association of Georgia’s (MAG) legislative priorities for 2016 into law on April 26. This included…

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CMS promoting Medicare revalidation resources

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is stressing that it has established a requirement for “all enrolled providers/suppliers to revalidate their Medicare enrollment information under new enrollment screening criteria.”

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MAG Alliance receives national award

The Medical Association of Georgia Alliance (MAG Alliance) – which is a network of physicians' spouses who volunteer to improve the health of all Georgians – was honored with the American Medical Association Alliance LEAP Award for its grassroots efforts to pass the Georgia Lactation Consultant Practice Act (H.B. 649) in 2016.

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California insurance commissioner calls for DOJ to block Anthem/Cigna merger

California Insurance Commissioner Dave Jones has “urged the U.S. Department of Justice to block the merger deal between Anthem, Inc., and Cigna Corporation.”

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MAG, OB-GYN groups file brief to support medical practice

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) recently joined the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG) and the Georgia Obstetrical and Gynecological Society in filing an amicus brief to support the Atlanta Women’s Health Group in a lawsuit that is pending in the State Court of DeKalb County.

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CMS promoting specialty-specific ICD-10 resources

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is reminding health care providers that it offers a series of guides that compile “key information about ICD-10 codes for each specialty.”

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AMA, others call for change in EHR interoperability measures

The American Medical Association (AMA) and 36 specialty medical associations recently sent a letter to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and the Office of Health Information Technology (ONC) to urge them to “rethink the way [they] measure the interoperability of electronic health records.”

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United Health Foundation releases senior health report

The United Health Foundation has released its ‘America’s Health Rankings Senior Report’ for 2016. The group says the study “offers a comprehensive analysis of senior population health on a national and state-by-state basis across 35 measures of senior health.”

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AMA says VA proposal to give APRNs "full authority" would undermine patient care – physicians urged to comment

The American Medical Association (AMA) reports that the Veterans Health Administration has published a proposed rule that “would give full authority to four categories of APRNs: Certified Nurse practitioner (CNP), Certified Registered Nurse Anesthetist (CRNA), Clinical Nurse Specialist (CNS), or Certified Nurse-Midwife (CNM).”

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Order: Aetna/Humana deal would violate Missouri’s standards

Medical Association of Georgia Executive Director Donald J. Palmisano Jr. reports that the Missouri Department of Insurance, Financial Institutions and Professional Regulation has issued an order that says that the proposed merger between Aetna and Humana would violate competitive standards and that the health insurers would not be allowed to conduct business in the state if the merger goes through – though the companies will be given additional time to propose corrective action.

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Physicians Foundation releases patient survey report

The Physicians Foundation has released the results of its first comprehensive patient survey, which “found that the physician-patient relationship remains strong, with nine out of 10 U.S. adults reporting high levels of satisfaction with their primary care physicians (PCP).”

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CMS issues MACRA fact sheet for small practices

The American Medical Association (AMA) reports that the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has issued a ‘MACRA – Flexibilities and support for small practices’ fact sheet that outlines aspects of the proposed MACRA regulation that were intended to address the needs of smaller physician practices.

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MAG president GHN op-ed: Mergers would be “disastrous” for patients and physicians

Medical Association of Georgia President John S. Harvey, M.D., addressed why be believes the pending Aetna/Humana and Anthem/Cigna mergers would have “disastrous results for patients and physicians in this state” in an op-ed that was posted on the Georgia Health News web site on April 18.

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MAG CEO urges state commissioner to block Aetna/Humana & Anthem/Cigna mergers

Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) Executive Director Donald J. Palmisano Jr. has called for Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens to block the pending Aetna/Humana and Anthem/Cigna mergers.

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AMA unveils ‘Block the Mergers’ campaign

The American Medical Association’s (AMA) Advocacy Resource Center is promoting a new ‘Block the Mergers’ (i.e., Antitrust Reform) campaign, which addresses the proposed Aetna-Humana and Anthem-CIGNA mergers. The Medical Association of Georgia and AMA have both urged the U.S. Department of Justice to block the mergers.

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PAI calls for DOJ to block insurer mergers

The Physicians Advocacy Institute (PAI) is urging the Antitrust Division of the U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) to use its authority to block the pending Aetna/Humana and Anthem/Cigna health insurer mergers.

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MAG encouraging Georgians to oppose health insurer mergers

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) is encouraging Georgians to contact Courtney Faust at cfaust@oci.ga.gov or 404.463.2825 or Scott Sanders at ssanders@oci.ga.gov or 404.657.7742 to urge Georgia Insurance Commissioner Ralph Hudgens to oppose the pending Aetna/Humana and Anthem/Cigna mergers.

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