e-News is our electronic publication emailed as needed to keep physicians' practices up to date with time sensitive information.

October 10, 2019
Dear Physicians,

The California State Legislature has adjourned for this year and the California Medical Association, working on behalf of physicians and your patients, continued its string of legislative victories with some key wins.

CMA, with help from the local medical societies, was able to stop AB 1404 by Assemblyman Santiago from advancing ( see this letter from the Central Valley medical societies ). This onerous bill would have required a health care entity to disclose a contracted physician's complete compensation information, including base compensation, deferred compensation, and any bonuses and incentives that are part of their total compensation.
The Legislature also passed a CMA-sponsored bill, AB 744 by Assemblywoman Aguiar-Curry, to increase patient access through telehealth by requiring payment for telehealth services. The bill will require health insurers to cover services provided via telehealth in the same way they would pay for an in-person meeting.

Most significantly, the Governor signed legislation to prevent fraudulent school-exemption vaccines - SB 276 by CMA's own Senator Dr. Richard Pan. More information .

Thank you for practicing medicine in our community!

Chrisy Muchow
Executive Director, Merced-Mariposa County Medical Society
Learn more about MMCMS at our website!
FREE* Webinar: Are you getting your share of the Prop 56 supplemental Medi-Cal payments?
The supplemental Medi-Cal payments – made possible by the  Proposition 56 tobacco tax funding  – increase payments on  23 CPT codes . While there is no additional action required by providers who are reimbursed on a fee-for-service basis, physicians with capitated contracts must submit encounter data to the payor in order to receive the supplemental funds. Without the encounter data, the plan or its delegated entity will be unable to determine the services eligible for payment, which will result in non-payment of the supplemental funds. More...

*Free for MMCMS/CMA members and their staff (with a promo code).
Physicians for a Healthy California
CalMedForce GME Grants
CalMedForce is currently accepting applications for the second cycle of the graduate medical education (GME) grant program. Applications are due no later than October 28, 2019. Early submission is encouraged. More...
CMA supports bipartisan bill to fix physician shortage in Central Valley
California congressional representatives Josh Harder (CA-10), Paul Cook (CA-08) and Karen Bass (CA-37), and Texas representatives Joaquin Castro (TX-20) and Dan Crenshaw (TX-02) have  introduced the bipartisan Stopping Doctor Shortages Act , to close a loophole in federal regulations that prevents doctors in California and Texas from qualifying for student loan repayment programs. More...
CAHAN Disease Notification – Health Advisory for Health Care Professionals Regarding Vaping Associated Pulmonary Injury (VAPI)
Since June 2019, 102 cases of Vaping-associated Pulmonary Injury (VAPI) requiring hospitalization have been reported to the California Department of Public Health (CDPH). Most patients report vaping the cannabis compounds tetrahydrocannabinol (THC) and/or cannabidiol (CBD), and some patients also report vaping nicotine products, although the exact cause of illness is not yet known. This health alert advises:

  • Clinicians who identify cases similar to those described in this health advisory are asked to report the cases to their local health department.
  • Local health departments should report new cases or direct any inquiries to the CDPH Duty Officer or (916) 328-3605. Please also contact the CDPH Duty Officer when any vaping devices or supplies have been collected from a patient and can be turned over to CDPH for testing.
  • CDPH is urging everyone to quit vaping altogether, no matter the substance or source, until current investigations are complete. For those who continue, consumers are urged to avoid buying any vaping products on the street, to purchase cannabis products from licensed businesses (whose products are tested), never modify a store-bought vape product, monitor themselves for respiratory illness, and seek immediate medical attention if they experience symptoms related to VAPI.

Please see the Health Advisory for the full text of the health alert.
Updated payor profiles for 2019 now available
Anthem Blue Cross recently issued a notice to physicians with an amendment t The California Medical Association’s (CMA) Center for Economic Services has published updated profiles on each of the major payors in California including  Aetna Anthem Blue Cross Blue Shield of California Health Net UnitedHealthcare  and  Medi-Cal . Each profile includes key information on health plan market penetration; a description of the plan’s dispute resolution process; and the name and contact numbers for medical directors, provider relations, and other key contacts. More...
CDPH publishes resources for physicians who prescribe opioids
The California Department of Public Health (CDPH) Statewide Opioid Safety (SOS) Workgroup has published a resource sheet to help physicians improve patients’ pain management, while avoiding opioid misuse and addiction. The  Opioid Prescribers Resource Sheet  contains information and resources to help physicians treating patients that may be opioid dependent or struggling with possible substance addiction symptoms. More...
UpToDate - take advantage of our very discounted pricing!
UpToDate® is a clinical decision support system that uses current evidence to answer clinical questions quickly and easily, saving physicians time, improving outcomes and lowering health care costs. UpToDate® is available through the Web and Mobile Devices and you may be able to earn Category 1 CME credit for each hour of participation with the program.  For further information contact MMCMS at 209-723-2976 or  chrisy@mmcms.org .

To take advantage of MMCMS’ discounted pricing  click here .