Issue 04 | January 24, 2020
All of the bills on the Governor’s desk from the 218 th Legislative Session were either signed or pocket vetoed by January 21 at 12 noon in accordance with constitutional mandates. Stay tuned for the full session recap later this week.

Maternal Mortality will continue to be a hot topic in the 219 Legislative Session. I have included the press release below detailing the overview for the new plan developed by the Murphy Administration. More details will be provided as they become available.
On Maternal Health Awareness Day, First Lady Tammy Murphy announced the partnership between the Murphy Administration, the Nicholson Foundation, and the Community Health Acceleration Partnership to develop a comprehensive, statewide maternal and infant health strategic plan. The strategic plan, which will build on the Administration's progress over the past two years, will aim to reduce New Jersey's maternal mortality rate by fifty percent and eliminate racial disparities in birth outcomes. The plan will be part of the First Lady's Nurture NJ initiative, which is a statewide awareness campaign committed to reducing infant and maternal mortality and morbidity and ensuring equitable maternal and infant care among women and children of all ethnicities and races.

"In order to improve health outcomes for New Jersey's mothers and babies, we must continue to work at repairing the centuries of imbedded, institutional racism that has led to disparities in maternal and infant health," said First Lady Murphy. "As we do this, we are simultaneously working on the factors that contribute to the disparity, including access to healthcare, housing, transportation, nutritious food, quality childcare, workforce development, education, and more. Our comprehensive and innovative strategic plan will incorporate national best practices for improving these factors and identify the best plan to make New Jersey the safest place in the country to give birth."

To reduce maternal mortality by fifty percent and eliminate racial disparities in birth outcomes, the plan will integrate community engagement and evidence-based strategies. The strategic plan will include a statewide assessment of existing infrastructure to support improvements in maternal and infant health. The plan will examine community investments, clinical and social factors, private sector engagement, and policy development. Work will be further informed by talking directly to women across the state; interviewing and engaging the Administration's 18 collaborating agencies; working with leading state health providers; and talking to a range of community-based organizations. In parallel, the plan will incorporate national best practices for improving maternal and infant health and eliminating disparities, in order to identify areas where state activities could better align with scientific evidence. To set up Nurture NJ for long-term success, the comprehensive plan will include specific, actionable recommendations for all stakeholders, and a concrete implementation plan for ensuring equity for mothers, babies, and their families.

In addition to First Lady Murphy and leadership from the Murphy Administration, the Nurture NJ strategic planning team will be led by Dr. Vijaya Hogan, a perinatal epidemiologist and Clinical Associate Professor at the Gillings School of Global Public Health at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, and supported by Dr. Debra Bingham, an expert in perinatal quality improvement, Elizabeth Lee, a public health policy consultant, and other experts. The strategic planning team collectively holds over 125 years of experience and represents the great diversity of thought that is needed to address New Jersey's maternal and infant health crisis.

"I am so grateful to First Lady Murphy and this administration for making this issue a priority and continuing to push forward on it. We have to do more to ensure infants and mothers are healthy and thriving in New Jersey and across the country," said Congresswoman Bonnie Watson Coleman, a cofounder of the Congressional Caucus on Black Women and Girls. "We are losing mothers in ways that could be prevented with proper care. We are losing Black mothers and Black infants at astonishing and unacceptably disparate rates. This is an issue that's critically important for me, and one that I will continue to work on with our partners in New Jersey and at the federal level."

"As part of the Administration's campaign to combat the unacceptable racial disparities in maternal and infant health outcomes in New Jersey," said Human Services Commissioner Carole Johnson. "The Murphy Administration is making changes to Medicaid to better support pregnant women and infants including creating new Medicaid doula services benefits and new group prenatal or 'centering' prenatal benefits, and making new investments in quality, affordable child care. The Department welcomes the opportunity to advance these and other policy changes through the whole-of-government approach of the First Lady's Nurture NJ initiative and the development of the statewide plan on maternal and infant health. Supporting the First Lady's Nurture NJ campaign and eliminating disparities in maternal and infant health outcomes includes making sure families have access to quality, affordable health care and child care. The Murphy Administration is making health care and child care priorities because they are critical to child development and to families' economic development. We're committed to using all available tools to best help women and children get the best health outcomes and live healthy lives."

"The Department of Health is committed to creating sustainable change to improve outcomes for all of the women in New Jersey," said New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli. "Working with our partners, we are developing strategies for healthcare quality improvement, increasing access to services for underserved communities and working to make our health care system more responsive to the needs of women."

"My team is excited to contribute to the First Lady's efforts to improve maternal and infant health, and collaborate with the many Commissioners, advocates, providers and communities who have laid a foundation for success in New Jersey," said Dr. Vajaya Hogan. "Tammy Murphy has set a high bar for NJ and for other states to follow and I look forward to working to produce an innovative, equity-based strategic plan that we hope will make NJ the safest place for all women to give birth."

"The Nicholson Foundation is committed to working with the Office of the First Lady and the Community Health Acceleration Project to eliminate disparities in maternal and infant mortality," said Dr. Kimberly Boller, Chief Strategy and Evaluation Officer at The Nicholson Foundation. "We are thrilled Dr. Vijaya Hogan and her team are collaborating with all of us to assess existing systems and develop an integrated, cross-sector Nurture NJ plan."

"The Community Health Acceleration Partnership and The Nicholson Foundation are committed to working with the Office of the First Lady to eliminate disparities in maternal and infant mortality," said Wendy McWeeny, Director of US Initiatives at the Community Health Acceleration Partnership. "We are thrilled Dr. Vijaya Hogan and her team are collaborating with all of us to assess existing systems and develop an integrated, cross-sector Nurture NJ plan. This plan will acknowledge where women are dying—not just in hospitals but in their homes and communities, and will highlight the need for community-based, social support interventions. When we value something, we have a plan for it: the Nurture NJ strategic plan will ensure that NJ is a place where women don't just survive childbirth, but where women thrive in motherhood."

"The mortality numbers for pregnant women in New Jersey were shameful to say the least. Compacting that with the fact that more black women do not survive pregnancy and have complications than any other group of women in the State and around the country," said Assemblywoman Shavonda Sumter. "Our work in this last legislative session put this issue at the forefront of our policy initiative as it should be. It was very clear that there was a serious problem and we had to find out why. We are not done. To effectively help women, we need more answers."

"It is imperative we continue to bring attention to African-American and Caucasian disparities in the State's maternal mortality rate. We will continue to do more to help improve the numbers," said Assemblywoman Verlina Reynolds-Jackson. "All New Jersey women deserve a safe and healthy pregnancy and birth for themselves and their child."
NJAOPS' Member Appreciation Event: Complimentary CME Dinner
A Night of Networking and Continuing Medical Education for Our Current and Future Members

You are Cordially Invited to NJAOPS' Membership Appreciation Event on Wednesday, January 29th, 2020, from 6:00p.m. until 8:30 p.m. Come meet NJAOPS' Staff and Leadership while learning how YOU can get involved with the association. We hope to see you there!

For a Complimentary Dinner and a CME Lecture on:
Screening, Diagnosis and Treatment of Pulmonary Arterial Hypertension: An Overview
Our Presenter:
Evelyn M. Horn, MD
Professor of Clinical Medicine Circulatory Support and Pulmonary Vascular Disease Programs
Perkin Center for Heart Failure
Medical Director, Pulmonary Hypertension Comprehensive Care Center
New York Presbyterian Hospital/Weill Cornell Medical Center
New York, New York 
Including Remarks from:

Ed Gaelick, CLU, ChFC
PSI Consultants, LLC

David Bollard, DO
2019-2020 NJAOPS President

Tajma Kotoric
NJAOPS CEO/Executive Director
Banquet Room, Level 2
299 Paramus Road
Paramus, New Jersey

CME Information:
Educational Objectives:
This CME program is designed to improve competence, performance, and patient care practices by instructing clinicians in the highest quality of care for patients with PAH. At the conclusion of this program, participants will be able to:

  • Accurately diagnose patients through comprehensive screening and early recognition of symptoms

  • Evaluate the patient’s condition and prescribe optimal long-term management, including knowing when and how to treat and when to consult with colleagues at an established PAH center
NJAOPS is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) to provide osteopathic continuing education for DO physicians. NJAOPS designates this educational activity for up to a maximum of 1.0 Category 1-A credits and will report CME and specialty credits commensurate with the extent of the physician's participation in this activity.

Be a quitter: Medicaid now covers tobacco cessation in NJ

Legislation sponsored by state Sen. Shirley Turner, D-15th District, that expands Medicaid coverage to include comprehensive tobacco cessation benefits, was signed into law on Tuesday. The law takes effect immediately.

“Medicaid and NJ FamilyCare recipients are more than twice as likely to smoke compared to individuals with private insurance,” said Turner. “This is costly not only for the smokers but also for the state, due to the endless health conditions that often go along with tobacco use. Expanding Medicaid to cover tobacco cessation will not only save money, but it also has the potential to save lives and ultimately create a healthier New Jersey.”

The law expands the state Medicaid program to include tobacco cessation treatment such as brief and high-intensity individual and group counseling, as well as telemedicine. It will also cover all medications approved by the Food and Drug Administration for tobacco cessation.

When Massachusetts implemented a similar program in 2006, it saw a 10 percent decrease in the smoking rate. Every dollar spent on the program resulted in $3.12 in savings for cardiovascular conditions alone.

Information regarding the availability of tobacco cessation products and services will be provided to all eligible individuals.
Member pricing is $545,
Nonmember registration cost is $820
PLUS — A special offer for DO’s who have not been members since 2017:
take advantage of a special discounted price of $870 for AROC registration AND Full NJAOPS membership!
Registrations can be faxed to 732-940-8899; emailed to Pat McNamara at or mailed to 666 Plainsboro Rd Suite 356 Plainsboro, NJ 08536
Back to the Boardwalk for 2020!
We are excited to be hosting our convention at the fabulous and exciting Hard Rock in Atlantic City ! Save the date for April 22-25 for the most relevant education and resources for the successful clinician. Our physicians will be able to earn over 32 AOA Category 1-A CME Credit, 29 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit ™ and AAFP Prescribed CME Credit. A new addition for this year - we will feature hands-on workshops on topics including interventional radiology, thyroid ultrasounds, Utilizing OMM in your busy practice and orthopedics.
Keynote Remarks:                             
NJAOPS is pleased to welcome Congressman Frank Pallone, Jr. to AROC 2020 as the Keynote Speaker for the Opening Sessions.

Throughout his tenure in Congress, Pallone's legislative accomplishments have been geared to the protection and restoration of environmental resources and making health care more affordable and accessible. In 2019, Pallone was sworn in as the Chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, which has jurisdiction over issues pertaining to energy, environment, health care, commerce, and telecommunications.

Pallone is focused on fighting the opioid epidemic in New Jersey and throughout the country. He led democratic efforts to pass the Comprehensive Addiction and Recovery Act (CARA) of 2016, which improves the tools available to prescribers to prevent opioid abuse. CARA also expands access to lifesaving opioid overdose reversal drugs and Pallone helped secure an additional $1 billion to combat the opioid epidemic as part of the 21st Century Cures Act, which also passed in the 114th Congress. 21st Century Cures allocates billions towards cutting edge medical research and development of new treatments.
Get In On Incredible Hotel Deals:
Included in Your Hotel Room Is:
  • High speed WiFi Internet Access
  • Twenty-Four Hour access to the Body Rock Fitness Center
  • Unlimited entry and exit in parking areas after initial feel has been paid
  • Chair and Towel services at the indoor pool or seasonal beach area

Or you can call the hotel directly at 609.449.1000 and use the same group code! 
Some of the Hot Topics in Medicine Covered at AROC 2020:  
  • The Measles Outbreak and What We Learned From the Epidemic 
  • Endocrinology Symposium to include topics on PCOS, Management of Type 2 Diabetes, Autoimmune Diseases and How to Manage Them, Current Devices on the Market for Type 2 Diabetes and How YOU Can Get Paid to Download and Manage Patients' Data 
  • VAPING: The Current Public Health Crisis 
  • Women's Health: Migraines, Menopausal Lipidology and LDL Risk Reduction in Women CME 

State Mandates for:
  • Pennsylvania: 14 Hours of Patient Safety and Risk Management Which Needs to be Fulfilled by October 31st, 2020 
  • Florida: 7 Hours of Continuing Medical Education Credits on Topics Including Human Sex Trafficking, Preventing Medical Errors and Florida Rules and Regulations 
  • HIPPA Compliancy 
  • End-of-Life: 2-Hour CME Lecture 
  • Alternatives to Opioids: NJ, PA and NY State Mandate
This year's AROC is the perfect opportunity to support your professional advancement, while also supporting NJAOPS! 

Your attendance at AROC 2020 is a win/win for everyone! Not only will you recieve great educational topics, extensive credit opportunities and business opportunities - but your attendance also helps to support and promote your association. We like to think of it as an investment opportunity for our members. When we prosper - so do you, and no one can serve your professional needs better in the State of New Jersey than NJAOPS!

Learn more about this year's program by clicking on the image to the right, or visiting  
Ambassadors Wanted:
Help Support Your Association

As a practicing physician, you encounter many opportunities, throughout the business week, to contribute to the advancement of NJAOPS and to help support AROC 2020.

Following up on last year's successful campaign "Support My Association", once again we are encouraging NJAOPS Members to provide business vendors, pharmaceutical reps and strategic partners of any kind with a convenient handout that explains our mission, and promotes sponsorship opportunities available at this year's conference.

If these individuals are interested in doing business with you, they should be very interested in the opportunity to get in front of several hundred of your colleagues that have similar needs and interests... Additionally, your personal endorsement and encouragement goes further than any marketing message we could craft on our behalf. We know that our members are our most valuable ambassadors, and we want to tap into that resource.

To download and print this promotional flyer, please click here, or on the image above. To learn more information on exhibitor and sponsorship information, please contact  Skip Heymann, Sales Director at: 917-608-7653 or . You can also direct any potential supporters to for information.