Volume 115, No. 3Top
March 2019 Edition

They Said It...

"There is a growing body of evidence that childhood psychological trauma and adult behaviors are tightly linked. This linkage is particularly pronounced when it comes to substance use disorders." Dr. Matthew Behme, chair of General Internal Medicine and geriatrics associate residency program director, Einstein Medical Center. This comment is part of Dr. Behme's article on "Treating Opioid Use Disorder in My Office," published in the winter issue of the PCMS magazine, Philadelphia Medicine. You can go to the article by clicking here.

In the News... 
The Big Secret is There are no Secrets A1

The Trump Administration is moving closer to making significant changes in how much patient information may be shared.

The Office of National Coordinator for Health (ONC) has released a proposed rule that would implement the 21st Century Cures Act (CURES) related to electronic health information blocking, interoperability and the ONC Health IT Certification Program (Cert Program). At the same time, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule on patient access to data and interoperability.

These rules will have an impact on the way data is exchanged between patients, health providers, payers, technology developers, health information exchanges and other health care shareholders.

The AMA believes the rules promote some laudable goals, such as patient access and price transparency. The rule changes signal a major push by the Administration to remove barriers it has identified as impeding patient access to data, and to greatly expand access for payers and third-party companies.

The AMA also has concerns. In a statement released this month, the AMA stated that "there is a presumption that all patient information must be shared for a large variety of purposes... The interaction between what must be shared and what can be shared will present a significant challenge for physicians." The AMA statement added that there's also a lack of discussion around patients' awareness and understanding of how these rules permit other parties to obtain and use their data.

The AMA also believes that if the proposals go into effect, they will make it increasingly difficult for physicians to navigate the complexities of interoperability and patient access regulation across ONC, CMS and OCR - each of which has oversight and authority.

The AMA plans to submit comments on the proposed rules by May 3, the deadline for comments. You can read the February AMA letter submitted to HHS by clicking here.

CMS Releases new Mapping Tool on Opioid Use A2

CMS says the new mapping tool offers local communities greater transparency into opioid prescription rates in their area.

The CMS statement describes the updated tool as a "further demonstration of the agency's commitment to opioid data transparency and using the data to better inform local prevention treatment efforts, particularly in rural communities hard hit by the opioid crisis."

CMS Principal Deputy Administration for Operations Kimberly Brandt said, "Fighting this epidemic and its impact in every state, county and municipality is a priority of the Trump Administration, and this mapping tool gives our state and local partners the data they need to build on their own targeted solutions."

The new additions to the mapping tool include Medicaid state opioid prescribing rates. The Medicaid Mapping Tool allows users to review Medicaid opioid prescribing rates at the state level and compare prescribing rates in fee-for-service and managed care.

The tool has updated Medicare Part D geographic opioid prescribing rates by including additional maps that allow users to quickly compare Part D opioid prescribing rates in urban and rural areas at the state, county and ZIP code levels.

The opioid prescribing mapping tools are available at: https://go.cms.gov/opioidheatmap.

Statewide Overdose Epidemic Conference to be Held in Harrisburg A3

The Pa. Harm Reduction Coalition is holding a statewide conference, "A Safety-First Approach to the Overdose Epidemic" on October 28 and 29 at the Sheraton Hotel in Harrisburg.

Dr. Brandon Marshall will be the keynote speaker. Dr. Marshall is an associate professor of epidemiology at the Brown University School of Public Health. In a recent interview with "The New York Times", Dr. Marshall said the dominant factor in the exponential increase in opioid users "is the changing drug supply." He will share his expertise on the role of fentanyl testing strips as part of overall harm reduction strategies.

The conference is sponsored by Geisinger and co-hosted by the Allegheny Health Network. You can save $50 if you register by March 29 for $99.

Learn more about lodging and other logistics by visiting the conference logistics page: https://www.paharmreduction.org/.

Calendar of EventsCalendar

21 - Launch of MANNA Institute

Date: Thursday, March 21
Time: 3:00 PM - 5:00 PM
Place: MANNA Office, 420 North 20th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Learn how the MANNA Institute can help serve you and your community. The launch event will offer an opportunity to explore MANNA, and learn from its decades of success in providing nutritious meals to people with illnesses.

For information on the launch, call 215-496-2662.

26 - Social Determinants of Health

Date: Tuesday, March 26
Time: 6:30 PM - 8:30 PM
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society, 2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

The Philadelphia County Medical Society and the Philadelphia International Medicine Organization cordially invite you to a free educational program on Social Determinants of Health, the first in an educational series for International Medical Graduates and foreign born physicians. This program will help you to identify ways to create social and physical environments that promote good health for all.

30 - 5th Annual Jefferson Liver Disease Symposium

Date: Saturday, March 30
Time: 8:00 AM - 2:50 PM
Place: Bluemle Life Sciences Building, Campus of Thomas Jefferson University, 233 S. 10th Street, Philadelphia, PA 19107

The 5th Annual Jefferson Liver Disease Symposium will feature a multi-disciplinary approach to the treatment and management of patients with a potpourri of liver diseases presenting in the office of the gastrointestinal specialist, primary care practitioner, internist, and mid-level practitioner. Continuing education credits will be offered for physicians.

1 - Teen Health Week

Date: April 1 - April 7

Teen Health Week is a global initiative to raise awareness of the unique health issues facing teens all over the world. Every day will focus on a specific theme related to teen health.

6 - The 8th Annual Clinical Update in Gastroenterology

Date: Saturday, April 6
Time: 8:00 AM - 12:30 PM (Registration: 7:30 AM)
Place: The Philadelphia County Medical Society Headquarters, 2100 Spring Garden Street, Philadelphia, PA 19130

Our 8th Annual Clinical Update in Gastroenterology is coming up soon, with topics set to include Celiac Disease, Inflammatory Bowel Disease, Liver Disease and Esophageal Disease. This program is free and provides 4.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™

16 - Medical Cannabis Certification 4-Hour Live Webinar

Date: Tuesday, April 16
Time: 5:15 PM - 9:30 PM

The purpose of this course is to educate physicians, pharmacists, certified registered nurse practitioners or physician assistants seeking to register with the Pennsylvania Department of Health's Medical Marijuana Program. All health professionals interested in learning more about medical cannabis are also encouraged to attend. Discounted rates are available to members of PCMS (Equivalent to the rate for USciences Alumni).

29 - President's Installation and Awards Night

Date: Saturday, June 29
Place: The Philadelphia Country Club, 1601 Spring Mill Road, Gladwyne, PA 19035

Save the date! This year we will be celebrating the Inauguration of James L. Cristol, MD, as the 158th President of the Philadelphia County Medical Society.

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