Volume 113, No. 3
March 2017 Edition
They Said It...
"Artists are plastic surgeons for the heart and soul." Robert Lytle, the father of a young girl who had plastic surgery, commenting on the portrait of his daughter, done by "Face to Face: The Craniofacial Program Portrait Project." The artists of Philadelphia's Studio Incamminati do the portraits. The program is supported by the Children's Hospital of Philadelphia and the Edwin and Fannie Gray Center for Human Appearance at the University of Pennsylvania. We have much more on the program in our upcoming issue of our magazine, Philadelphia Medicine, which will soon be in your mailbox.  
In the News... Top 


DOH Issuing a Blizzard of Regs on Medical Marijuana

Dating Service

AMA Blasts Republican Health Care Plan A1 

The American Medical Association says it cannot support the GOP's replacement plan for the Affordable Care Act. The AMA says the proposal unveiled by the Republican leaders in Congress would cause many people to lose their health coverage.

In a March 7 letter to the chairmen and ranking members of the House Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce Committees, James Madara, MD, the AMA's executive vice president and CEO, wrote, "We cannot support the AHCA (American Health Care Act) as drafted because of the expected decline in health insurance coverage and the potential harm it would cause to vulnerable patient populations."

Dr. Madara likes the plan's proposed tax credits to help individuals buy health insurance, but opposes the way the Republican bills have designed them, because they are tied to age, rather than income. Tying the credits to income, Madara argues, would help a greater number of people and be a more efficient use of tax dollars.

The AMA letter adds that rolling back Medicaid expansion is a bad idea. "Medicaid expansion has proven highly successful in providing coverage for lower income individuals."

The AMA letter concludes that the bills must be changed, to ensure that low and moderate income Americans can secure affordable coverage. "We urge you to do all that is possible to ensure that those who are currently covered do not become uninsured."

Return Engagement A2 

A bill that would allow Certified Registered Nurse Practitioners (CRNP) to practice medicine independently of physicians, has been reintroduced in the Pa. Senate. Senate Bill 25 would let nurse practitioners with national certification practice without the supervision of a physician, when practitioners meet existing requirements and practices in one of the specified settings.

PCMS and PAMED continue to strongly oppose the bill, arguing that the best scenario for patients, is for nurse practitioners to work as a team with physicians. You are encouraged to make your local state senator aware of your concerns about this issue before March 20, while senators are not in session, and are most likely still in their home districts.

Six Flu Deaths in Philadelphia A3

The flu is being blamed for causing the deaths of six people in Philadelphia. No influenza deaths of children have been reported. Flu activity has been widespread in Pennsylvania this fall and winter, and continues to be high. There have been about 48,000 flu cases in the state since October.

Physician General Tells Phila. Task Force on Opioid Epidemic, "We Need an All-Hands-on-Deck Approach" A4

Dr. Rachel Levine met with the task force to share recommendations on how health systems and community outreach can work together to reduce overdose deaths. "The Wolf Administration is committed to ending this crisis that has already taken far too many lives. We are pleased to collaborate with Mayor Jim Kenney and his team to reduce the rates of addiction and overdose in Philadelphia and across the commonwealth."

The opioid epidemic has killed far more people in Philadelphia than gun violence. Last year, there were about 840 overdose deaths in the city. Mayor Kenney has charged the task force with developing a comprehensive plan to reduce opioid abuse, dependence and overdose in the city.

Immediate past president of PCMS, Dr. Michael Della Vecchia, is a member of the task force.
CDC Releases Voluntary Opioid Prescribing Guidelines A5

The CDC's final guideline includes 12 recommendations on prescribing opioids for chronic pain outside of cancer treatment and palliative care. The guideline offers primary care providers information on medication selection, dosage, duration, and when and how to reassess progress, and to discontinue medication if needed. The CDC says that the 12 recommendations are based on three principles:
  • Nonopioid therapy is preferred for chronic pain outside of active cancer, palliative and end-of-life care.
  • When opioids are used, the lowest possible effective dosage should be prescribed to reduce risks of opioid use disorder and overdose.
  • Providers should always exercise caution when prescribing opioids and monitor all patients closely.
The guideline is an effort to help fight the opioid epidemic in the country. About 40 Americans die from prescription opioid overdoses each day.

Thought for FoodA6

MANNA (Metropolitan Area Neighborhood Nutrition Alliance) is holding its annual "Nourish" event at PCMS headquarters on March 30. The day will conclude with a reception that will honor this year's recipient of the Nourish Award, Ted Dallas, secretary of the Pa. Dept. of Human Services.

The event will run from noon to 7 pm, and include a seminar by Secretary Dallas on the partnerships his department has developed with community-based health and nutrition organizations across the state. You can find more details on the day, including how to register, by going to " Dating Service," our calendar of events.

MANNA promotes healthy, healing meals for people battling life-threatening diseases. It has created menus for special diets, offering health and hope for those in need.
DOH Issuing a Blizzard of Regs on Medical MarijuanaA7

The Pa. Dept. of Health continues to refine its temporary regulations regarding medical marijuana. They cover a wide range of issues - safe harbor provisions, growers/processors, dispensaries, laboratories, permit applications, medical marijuana regions, and a review of how well the temporary regulations are working. And more temporary regs will soon be released, concerning physicians, caretakers and research.
You can find everything you need to know about medical marijuana in Pa., by clicking here.
Dating ServiceA8

13 - A Drop of Life: The Global Water Crisis and Its Unique Impact on Women  
Date: Monday, March 13
Time: 6:00 PM - 8:00 PM
Place: International House, 3701 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19104 
Filmmaker and eco-activist Shalini Kantayya will present her award-winning short film about the global water crisis, A Drop of Life, and discuss the borderless global water crisis' unique impact on women all over the world. A Drop of Life was used as a tool to organize for water rights in 40 villages across Africa- making a real-world impact in the lives of thousands. Food, refreshments and an opportunity to engage with environmentalist groups confronting these issues will be made available.
14 - Contract Review Program 

Date: Tuesday, March 14
Time: 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM 
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society 
2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Information will include Basic Principles of the Employment Contract; Negotiating Tips; Your Duties and Obligations; Representation and Legal Review; Contract Duties; Restrictive Covenant; Malpractice Insurance; Dispute Resolution.

This program is FREE but you must register:

18 - Opioid CME Program: Scope of Pain    

Date: Saturday, March 18
Time: 7:30 AM - 12:00 PM 
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society 
2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130  

PCMS has partnered with Prevention Point and several other agencies to present the "SCOPE of Pain" education program, provided by Boston University School of Medicine. SCOPE of Pain is a nationally recognized CME program that discusses safer opioid prescribing. 
21 - PCMS Block Captain Health Care Advisory Council Community Meeting
The Philadelphia Corporation for Aging Ambassador Program - Connecting the Community With Services

Date: Tuesday, March 21
Time: Dinner - 5:30 PM | Program - 6:00 PM - 7:30 PM 
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society 
2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130    

There will be a free dinner. Please RSVP to Eileen Ryan at eryan@philamedsoc.org or call (215) 563-5343 x 113.

25 - 3rd Annual Addictions Symposium   

Date: Saturday, March 25
Time: 7:00 AM - 5:00 PM 
Place: Thomas Jefferson University, 1020 Locust Street
Jefferson Alumni Hall, Philadelphia, PA 19107

The Philadelphia Psychiatric Society and the Pennsylvania Society of Addiction Medicine are excited to invite PCMS members to attend the 3rd annual Addictions Symposium, Expert Minds Unite: A Two Track Update on Addictions. New this year, they are offering two, full-day tracks to help maximize your experience and learning. Participants are eligible for up to 6.5 category I CME credits.
25 - XXII Doctor Carlos Finlay Conference    

Date: Saturday, March 25
Time: 7:30 AM - 2:00 PM 
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society
2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

The Society of Ibero Latin American Medical Professionals (SILAMP) and The Philadelphia County Medical Society present The XXII Doctor Carlos Finlay Conference: The Contamination of Water and the Healthcare of Our Community.
30 - Nourish Seminar & Award Presentation   

Date: Thursday, March 30
Time: 2:00 PM - 7:00 PM 
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society & Dalian on the Park 
MANNA's annual Nourish event honors the accomplishments of health care leaders who strive to incorporate nutrition services into our health care landscape. The MANNA Nourish Award will be presented to Secretary Ted Dallas for his commitment to supporting innovative policies that recognize the role of nutrition in managing health.
3 - Public Health Day

Date: Monday, April 3
Time: 8:30 AM - 12:30 PM
Place: College of Physicians, 19 South 22nd Street, Philadelphia, PA 19103

The Public Health Day Symposium kicks off Public Health Week and provides a unique collaborative environment for all academic, community, and government public health professionals in the greater Philadelphia region.
19 - PAMED's Upcoming Spring Practice Manager Meetings  
Date: Wednesday, April 19  
Time: 8:30 AM - 11:30 AM (Registration and breakfast at 8:00 AM)
Place: Crowne Plaza, 260 Mall Blvd., King of Prussia, PA 19406 
Date: Tuesday, April 25 
Time: 12:00 PM - 3:00 PM (Registration and lunch at 11:00 AM)
Place: Pittsburgh Marriott North, 100 Cranberry Woods Dr., Cranberry Township, PA 16066 

Date: Tuesday, May 2 
Time: 8:30 AM - 11:30 AM (Registration and breakfast at 7:45 AM)
Place: PAMED, 777 East Park Dr., Harrisburg, PA 17111 
The Pennsylvania Medical Society is hosting member-only programs that will help you keep up to date with MACRA, MIPS and other important updates affecting your practice.
22 - 6th Annual Clinical Update in Gastroenterology  

Date: Saturday, April 22
Time: Registration - 7:30 AM | Program: 8:00 AM - 12:00 PM   
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society 
2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

We have a fantastic line up of speakers and topics!  Free continental breakfast; Free program; Free education credits!  Don't miss it! 

Philadelphia County Medical Society | 
215-563-5343 |  http://philamedsoc.org