Enews                                                                                                           MAY 2020
In This Issue
Pertinent Information
Re-opening Florida 
Starting Monday, May 4th, Governor Ron DeSantis' plan to re-open Florida will begin.  Phase 1 questions & answers can be found here.  
Governor Ron DeSantis' Executive Order 20-211 provides that hospitals, ambulatory surgical centers, office surgery centers, dental offices, orthodontic offices, endodontic offices or other healthcare practitioners' offices (i.e., physicians) may perform procedures under certain conditions.  Click here for the FMA's summary. 
Keeping members informed
The HCMA has created dedicated COVID-19 news emails for members. Watch your in-box for the newest editions.  Previous April editions are available by clicking the links below:
Payment increase by CMS
In response to efforts by organized medicine, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced yesterday that they will be increasing payments for audio-only telephone visits between Medicare beneficiaries and their physicians to match payments for similar office and outpatient visits. This would increase payments for these services from a range of about $14-$41 to about $46-$110, and the payments are retroactive to March 1, 2020. View full CMS report here.

This is a major victory for medicine that will enable physicians to care for their patients, especially their elderly patients with chronic conditions who may not have access to audio-visual technology or high speed Internet.
HCMA Leadership changes begin May 13th
Dr. Michael Cromer will be installed as the HCMA's 117th President while adhering to COVID-19 protocols. The video of his installation will be posted on the HCMA website and will be sent to members via email - watch your inbox!

We look forward to hearing Dr. Cromer's formal presentation at the September 1st HCMA Membership Dinner. Details will be sent over the summer.

The following HCMA members will serve in the following officer and representative capacities beginning May 13th:

President Elect: Joel Silverfield, M.D.
Vice President: Eva Crooke, MD
Treasurer: Alejandra Kalik, MD
Secretary: Raviender Bukkapatnam, MD
District 1: Jennifer Ting, MD
District 3: Damian Caraballo, MD
At Large: Colleen Jakey, MD, Arun Kalava, MD, & Rebecca Johnson, MD
Board of Trustees: Thomas Bernasek, MD & Edward Farrior, MD
Board of Censors: Raj Mohapatra, MD
Beware - Phishing emails disguised as DOH
The Florida Department of Health has been alerted to phishing emails sent to health care licensees reporting to be a license update and bearing the Department's logo. Clicking on links from this email will prompt you to enter credentials that malicious actors may use to access your account and maybe also used for an attack known as credential stuffing, where attempts are made to access other accounts using the same or similar password patterns. Read the full warning here.
2020-2021 HCMA Membership Directory is accepting advertisements
Preparations for the HCMA's Annual Membership Directory is in full swing. All Active, Affiliate, and Life members, whose 2020 dues are paid in full, will be listed in the directory. Please check your listing from last year here - if you have any updates, please email them to ELubin@hcma.net prior to May 28th. Members-only advertising rates are listed here.
Two Minutes - What's the Risk?
HCMA Benefit Provider, ProAssurance, has produced a series of two minute educational videos which include topics such as patient tracking/follow-up, documentation, using scribes, non-compliant patients, and recording patient conversations. Additional videos are uploaded to the ProAssurance Risk Resource YouTube page regularly, so keep checking back for other valuable information and advice.   Click here  to view the ProAssurance Risk Resource videos.
HCMA Foundation Grant Recipient Update
An update from Shiloh Capone, Post Award Grants Coordinator for the Women and Children's Service Lines of BayCare Health System reported on the adult flu vaccinations that the Mobile Medical Clinic was able to provide with the generous support of the HCMA Foundation. A total of 141 adult flu vaccines were administered from October through mid-December 2019 as a result of this funding, allowing the Clinic Team to provide immunization and protection for the entire household.

Ms. Capone stated, "In the wake of the Novel Corona Virus pandemic, we see clearly how important public health is for the community, and work tirelessly to advocate for the health of the community we serve, a mission we share. We are very grateful for this opportunity to support our community, and I look forward to working together in the future as well! I hope this email finds you and the HCMA Team healthy and safe."
From the Board of Medicine
Public Health Emergency License Reactivation
In an effort to ensure that all Floridians have access to licensed health care providers the Florida Department of Health will temporarily reactivate unencumbered inactive licenses for those who make a request through the Department as provided for in section 381.00315(1)(c)3., Florida Statutes.

Inactive medical doctors and osteopathic physicians will have the option to temporarily reactive their inactive license for a period of 90 days to assist during the public health emergency due to COVID-19. A license that is reactivated under this provision will return to inactive status when the public health emergency ends or when State Surgeon General determines that the health care practitioner is no longer needed.

To temporarily reactivate an inactive license, log into MQA Online Services Portal and follow the user guide. Once reactivated, the License Verification website will display "Public Health Emergency Active" for a period not to exceed 90 days.
Physician Wellness
HCMA Foundation Physician Wellness Program
The Program provides a safe harbor for members to address life difficulties, especially during this time of uncertainty and challenges due to the ongoing threat of COVID-19, in a confidential and professional environment.

Please take advantage of this valuable HCMA benefit if you are experiencing...
  • Family Issues
  • Relationship Problems
  • Work-related Challenges
  • Depression/Anxiety
  • Stress/Mood Swings
  • Suicidal Thoughts
Appointments are made within 24 hours of request with independent doctorate-level clinical psychologists, licensed mental health counselors, and marriage & family therapists. Please note: All appointments will be operating fully via HIPAA compliant telehealth during the COVID-19 pandemic. Six (6) complimentary sessions per year for all HCMA members regardless of membership category. Complete confidentiality; no information disclosure. Appointments are self-referred and initiated with no medical diagnosis made, no insurance billed, and no electronic records kept. 

Visit the LifeBridge HCMA Foundation Physician Wellness Program webpage to utilize this exclusive benefit and learn more about additional wellness resources.
Personal News
Dr. Bruce Shephard
So much for retiring
HCMA Past President, Dr. Bruce Shephard, has been keeping himself busy. Not only is he raising monarch caterpillars at his home, but he has become a new contributor to the online publication 83 Degrees .  He has interviewed Dr. Jose Montero, Professor of Internal Medicine at USF College of Medicine, about the local COVID-19 situation and Dr. Jay Rao for insights from a Tampa emergency room physician during COVID-19.  Word has it that Dr. Shephard has yet another physician interview in the works...stay tuned!
Drs. Lockey & Ledford
Fundraising champion!
Dr. Dennis Ledford, USF Professor in the Division of Allergy and Immunology,  was instrumental in raising $250,000 from friends and graduates of the program to fund the Richard F. Lockey, MD MS FAAAAI & University of South Florida Lectureship and Faculty Development Award. The American Academy of Allergy Asthma and Immunology Foundation supports young physicians and their research.  Keep up the great work!  
Helping those in need
Dr. Robert Norman, a Tampa Dermatologist, offered "Free Derm Day" on March 6th.  Pictured here, Dr. Norman stated, " Removed a painful tumor from the scalp of this refugee from Honduras. One of many patients in great need-all free today!!  Good to have skills and help from above..."

Thank you healthcare workers!
HCMA Benefit Provider for marketing, Full Circle PR, has created a way to say thank you to our healthcare providers and support locally-owned restaurants.  Visit the fundraising page by clicking here:  GoFundMe and donating $50 which secure a sign to show your support and will also be spent at local restaurants to provide meals for healthcare workers in our community.
Spotlight on Savings
We are pleased to announce the continuation of The Bank of Tampa/HCMA Benefit Provider partnership!  The Bank of Tampa has been a supporter of the HCMA for decades, serving our medical community with personal outstanding service. Please contact Oliviana Catrone, Private Relationship Manager, ocatrone@bankoftampa.com or 813.998.2617, she is looking forward to assisting you with all of your banking needs.

COVID-19 Disaster SBA Relief Options:  To keep you informed on information that may be helpful to you and your practice, The Bank of Tampa have summarized SBA resources that may be available to you. Click here to receive a list of resources.
The Bulletin
The most current issue of HCMA's publication can be viewed online by clicking here. Previous issues are also available.

Beginning in June, The Bulletin will transition to a quarterly publications.  Issues will be published in Summer, Fall, Winter, and Spring.

For advertising information, contact Elke Lubin, Managing Editor.
Upcoming Events
Complimentary Webinars to assist during COVID-19  from T he Florida Healthcare Law Firm
Wednesdays in May, noon-1pm

Beginning Wednesday, May 6th, the Florida Healthcare Law Firm (FHCLF) will be offering weekly webinars. Register by clicking the link after the webinars that interest you:
May 6, 2020, noon-1pm
Telemedicine During COVID-19: From Basics to Potential Pitfalls
May 13, 2020, noon-1pm
Managing HR During COVID-19:
From Furlough to Layoff and a Return to Work
May 20, 2020, noon-1pm
Virtual Practices: Turning Challenges into Opportunities
May 27, 2020, noon-1pm
Maximizing COVID-19 Government Support Dollars
Virtual Town Hall Meeting for Members
May 2020

Watch your email for 
further details!

Casino Night (tentative)
August 15, 2020, 6-10pm
Palma Ceia Country Club

All net proceeds will benefit the Judeo Christian Health Center and the USF BRIDGE Clinic.

Tickets are $125 per person.

Watch your email as more details become available.
Classified Ads
Office space for rent in established South Tampa medical office. Otolaryngology/Facial plastic instruments and equipment for sale in good condition. Call 813-879-6207 for information on both.
Post a classified ad in the HCMA's monthly electronic newsletter, Enews. $40 per 400 characters (including spaces) per issue.

To place your ad, contact Elke Lubin, Managing Editor.