Mississippi Academy of
Family Physicians Newsletter
December 23, 2017

It's Renewal Time

Upcoming Events

MAFP Capitol Day
March 7, 2018
Mississippi State Capitol, Jackson

MAFP Spring Conference and 
Spring Fling
April 20-22, 2018

Sign up for Doctor of the Day at Mississippi State Capitol

Recent MAFP Newsletters

New Members
Sheree Melton, MD
Jackson, MS

Gabriel I. Madu, DO
Meridian, MS

WCUCOM Students
Hassan Allahrakha
Anam Ansari
Alex Beloke
Jessica Brady
Caitlyn Brett
Cassie Brown
William Buck
Richard Burgan
Steven Burkett
Zachary Campos
Vrewer Carter
Benjamin Caulum
Christina Chanthanivong
Harry Chen
Dong Soon Choi
Paarth Dodia
Garrett Gratesi
Angella Gyamfi
Darian Harris
Max Isaac
Hayden Ivey
Rumbidzai Kapjumruti
Sheryar Khan
Matthew Kon
Cecilia Lawn
Kristin LeBrasseur
Sarah Lopes
Abubaker Malik
Jayson Morrison
Jay Napolitano
Alex Nay
Huong Nguyen
So Park
Nishant Patel
Amena Payami
Duc Pham
Felipe Pubillones
Andrew Rauch
Gino Singer
Macey Sutherland
Ghalis Thaljeh
Nusrat Uddin
Andrew Van Hersh
Kim Vu
Hannah Wikoff
George Wilson
Julia Zhang

UMMC Students
Kelsey Bounds

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Miss. Academy of Family Physicians



GETU1 and promote healthy living in the state of Mississippi by purchasing a Live Healthy specialty license tag for the small fee of $31.
Request this tag at your county tax collector's office when you renew your license tag. Proceeds from the sale of this tag benefit the Mississippi Academy of  Family Physicians Foundation.

Merry Christmas to our Members!
Past presidents and Board members gathered Dec. 8-9 in Indianola for a winter board meeting. (Above, from left) Drs. Mary Gayle Armstrong, Tim Alford, Sue Simmons, John Mitchell, Susan Chiarito, Jennifer Gholson and Wade Dowell. (Below, from left) Drs. John Mitchell, Katherine Patterson, Susan Chiarito, Bruce Longest and Wade Dowell.

Board of Medical Licensure Votes to Pass New Opioid Regulations
Members of the Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure met Dec. 15.

After a short public work session on Dec. 15, members of the Mississippi State Board of Medical Licensure unanimously passed new regulations to change the way opioids are prescribed in Mississippi. 

After a public comment period and public hearing in November, the work session was called in order to incorporate any necessary changes to the final version to be filed with the Secretary of State's (SOS) office. The board did listen to the medical community on several issues, making the following changes:
  • Hospice patients were granted an exception to the new regulations, and some exceptions were made for emergency room patients
  • The proposed 7-day limit on opioid prescriptions in Mississippi was changed to 10 days.
  • The 100-hour minimum continuing education requirement for pain management practices was changed from "live" to "interactive"
  • the prohibition on physicians prescribing controlled substances for weight reduction was changed from a maximum of 30 days to a maximum of 90 days

Some of the changes family physicians found most onerous, such as a prohibition on prescribing opioids and benzodiazapenes concurrently, the requirement for urine testing at every visit and prior to every new prescription, were left intact.


Thirty days following the filing of the new regulations with the SOS, the regulations then go before the Mississippi Occupational Oversight Board, which meets quarterly and at other times as called by the chair. If approved and enacted, it will go into effect sometime in 2018. The MSBML has not yet posted revised regulations on its website, but we willl continue to update the MAFP website 'opioid' page about the changes.

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Dr. Ed Hill, Family Physician, 
Retires After Practicing 54 Years
When a family physician retires after 54 years, you might expect them to have a broad perspective on the profession and its future. That's true for Dr. J. Edward Hill of Tupelo, who is retiring at the end of the year from North Mississippi Medical Center's Family Medicine Residency Program (NMMC FMRP) in Tupelo.

"As a physician, you will end every day knowing you have significantly had a positive influence on somebody's life," he says. "That's true for any physician, but in particular family medicine, where you become so intimately involved with peoples' families and you know them so well."

Dr. Hill came to Tupelo as founding director of the NMMC FMRP, which has grown from one resident that first year to 24 at present. He served as program director from 1995-2001 and from 2008-2013, and has remained on the faculty since 2013.

"Dr. Hill's many significant contributions to the care of patients and to the education of family physicians will be remembered, cherished and appreciated for many decades to come," said Shane Spees, North Mississippi Health Services President and CEO. "Dr. Hill's legacy will live on through the residency program and through the many family practitioners he helped train over the past 22 years." Story Continues Here

Will You Step Up and Lead 
at AAFP Conference in April?
When the  AAFP Leadership Conference convenes April 26-28 in Kansas City, could YOU represent one of the following groups: women physicians, minority physicians, LGBT physicians, new physicians, international medical graduate physicians?

MAFP is seeking physicians who want to represent these groups on Mississippi's behalf! The conference combines two 'tracks': the Annual Chapter Leader Forum (ACLF) for state chapter officers and staff, and the National Conference of Constituency Leaders (NCCL) for underrepresented groups, including those listed above. The NCCL was established as a policy and leadership-development event to help establish positive change. The deadline for registering is March 16, 2018. Contact Beth Embry if you're interested.

Chiarito Appointed to AAFP Commission on Health of the Public
Dr. Susan Chiarito, MD, FAAFP, of Vicksburg has been appointed to the AAFP's Commission on Health of the Public and Science. She and four other physicians were named to the commission, where they will serve until 2021. Dr. Chiarito is the only Mississippian appointed this year.

The AAFP Board of Directors appoints members to commissions to deliberate on issues within their scope of work. AAFP Commissions meet to make recommendations to the Board regarding policy, development of new programs and projects, and improvements to current activities. 

The Commission on Health of the Public and Science supports the AAFP's strategic objectives of payment reform, practice transformation, family medicine workforce and clinical expertise. Dr. Chiarito will take part in January meetings in Kansas City. 

State Health Department Seeks 
Pilot Projects for Special Needs Kids
Physicians who have innovative ideas to help special-needs kids can apply for grants to implement their pilot projects in Mississippi until January 15.

The Mississippi Department of Health has announced the availability of $375,000 in grant funds over the next 3 years, with about 5 awards to be given annually at $25,000 per grant.

The grants must be for pilot projects aimed at helping children and youth with special needs. Proposals must fall  into one  of these categories:
  1. Enhancing the medical home for children with special needs
  2. Innovative community-based programs to improve the quality of life of children with special needs

About $375,000 in funding is available over a 3-year period, and the approximate average annual award is $25,000. Information and Grant Application can be found here.

Vulnerable Rural Hospitals Could be Affected by Medicaid Changes
Vulnerable rural hospitals in 47 states could be affected by scheduled changes in Medicaid Disproportionate Share Hospital (DSH) payments.  A new rural policy brief from the RUPRI Center for Rural Health Policy Analysis   provides information about the potential impact of the changes.
Get Your Live Healthy Car Tag Today!
Foundation Sells More Than 324 License Tags in 2017
The 'Live Healthy' license tag has received statewide interest, with 324 tags sold so far in 2017 in county tax collectors' offices. For each 'Live Healthy' tag sold, the MAFP Foundation receives $24. Make sure to get your tag when you renew this year to benefit the Foundation all year round. For more information about the Foundation's programs, click here.