August 27, 2021
FDA Approves First COVID-19 Vaccine
The U.S. Food and Drug Administration approved the first COVID-19 vaccine. The vaccine has been known as the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 Vaccine, and will now be marketed as Comirnaty (koe-mir’-na-tee), for the prevention of COVID-19 disease in individuals 16 years of age and older. The vaccine also continues to be available under emergency use authorization (EUA), including for individuals 12 through 15 years of age and for the administration of a third dose in certain immunocompromised individuals.


Source: U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA)
Joint Statement from HHS Public Health and Medical Experts on COVID-19 Booster Shots
Public health and medical experts from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) released the following statement on the Administration’s plan for COVID-19 booster shots for the American people.

“The COVID-19 vaccines authorized in the United States continue to be remarkably effective in reducing risk of severe disease, hospitalization, and death, even against the widely circulating Delta variant. Recognizing that many vaccines are associated with a reduction in protection over time, and acknowledging that additional vaccine doses could be needed to provide long lasting protection, we have been analyzing the scientific data closely from the United States and around the world to understand how long this protection will last and how we might maximize this protection. The available data make very clear that protection against SARS-CoV-2 infection begins to decrease over time following the initial doses of vaccination, and in association with the dominance of the Delta variant, we are starting to see evidence of reduced protection against mild and moderate disease. Based on our latest assessment, the current protection against severe disease, hospitalization, and death could diminish in the months ahead, especially among those who are at higher risk or were vaccinated during the earlier phases of the vaccination rollout. For that reason, we conclude that a booster shot will be needed to maximize vaccine-induced protection and prolong its durability..."


Source: U.S. Department of Health & Human Services
Florida Hospital Association COVID-19 Regional Data Summary
To view the Florida Hospital Association's COVID-19 Regional Data Summary, click here.

Source: Florida Hospital Association
FEATURED ADVERTISER: The Doctors Company
Tallahassee ER Doctor Ousted From Hospital After Promoting $50 Mask Opt-Out Letters
An emergency room physician who charged $50 for opt-out letters to Leon County parents who don’t want their kids to wear masks in school has been removed from Capital Regional Medical Center following a social media outcry for his ouster.

As a stricter mask mandate requiring a medical excuse took hold Sunday in Florida's capital county, Dr. Brian Warden posted a notice on a statewide anti-mask site inviting Leon County parents to contact him if they need a medical exemption letter. In another post, Warden said he’d provide a medical opt out letter on signed stationery for $50. Screenshots of the posts ricocheted around social media.


Source Tallahassee Democrat
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"We act with absolute integrity in all that we do, and it is our expectation that providers behave in a way that is consistent with those values," spokesperson Rachel Stiles wrote in an email. "Immediately upon learning of this physician's actions, we began the process of removing him from providing services to our hospital patients."


Source: MedPage Today
Calif. Medical Board: Stop Issuing Bogus Mask Exemptions to Students
In the wake of stories that some California medical doctors are handing out faux masks exemptions to college students, the Medical Board of California (MBC) issued a stern warning on Tuesday.

“A doctor who grants a masks or different exemption with out conducting an applicable prior examination and with out a discovering of a official medical motive supporting such an exemption inside the usual of care could also be subjecting their license to disciplinary motion,” the company stated.


Source: The Health News Express
State Medical Licensing Agency Opens “Investigation” Into Doctor for School Mask Mandate Stance
State investigators who grant and revoke medical licenses have opened an investigation into a sports doctor at Carle Hospital because of his personal stance opposing a mask mandate in schools, according to emails he says he received from the Illinois Department of Financial and Professional Regulation (IDFPR).

Dr. Jeremy Henrichs, a team physician for the University of Illinois’ Athletic Department, is also an elected member of the Mahomet-Seymour school board. Despite his opposition to mandatory mask rules in classrooms, the school district will still enforce the Governor’s new statewide school mask mandate and require all students to wear masks in class, according to documents posted on its website.


Source: WCIA.com
COVID Vaccines Show No Signs of Harming Fertility or Sexual Function
Rumors and myths about COVID-19 vaccine effects on all aspects of reproduction and sexual functioning have spread like a Delta variant of viral misinformation across social media platforms, where people swap rumors of erectile dysfunction and fertility disruptions following vaccination. Yet studies so far have not linked the vaccines with problems related to pregnancy, menstrual cycles, erectile performance or sperm quality. The evidence does show that COVID-19 can involve problems in all of these areas.


Source: Scientific American
Moderna Probes Reports of COVID-19 Vaccine Contamination in Japan
It's been a relatively smooth ride for Moderna's global COVID-19 vaccine roll out. But on Wednesday, the company said it's investigating the possible contamination of one batch sent to Japan. 
 
The company has received "several complains of particulate matter" in vials of its vaccine, a Moderna spokesperson said over email.


Source: Fierce Pharma
FDA Announces Recall of Venous Catheter Product After Missing Instructions Contribute to 2 Deaths
Cardinal Health is recalling a specific model of its umbilical venous catheter insertion tray after missing safety instructions contributed to numerous complaints and two deaths.

The U.S. Food and Drug Administration sent out a Class 1 recall warning for the Argyle UVC Insertion Tray on Friday, Aug. 20. This is the FDA’s most serious type of recall, indicating use of the product can cause serious injury or death.


Source: Health Imaging
Florida Medicaid Could Face Hefty Deficits
Florida’s swelling Medicaid rolls are expected to help create a nearly $1.9 billion deficit in the safety-net health care program over the next 22 months, according to new estimates by a state panel. 

The estimates show an anticipated $417 million deficit in Medicaid for the current fiscal year, which will end June 30, and a $1.434 billion deficit in 2022-23. 


Source: Health News Florida
Help Wanted: The WHO is Looking for Experts to Help Investigate the Origins of Pathogens - Including the Coronavirus
The Covid-19 pandemic has elevated scrutiny over how pathogens leap into humans like no crisis before it. To better understand how those events happen — and to better respond when they do — the World Health Organization is standing up a new Scientific Advisory Group for the Origins of Novel Pathogens, or SAGO.
 
Now, the agency needs experts to apply.


Source: STAT
Extreme Heat: A Guide for Health Professionals and Patients - My Green Doctor
Heat kills more Americans than floods, hurricanes, tornadoes, and earthquakes combined. This is why health professionals and their patients need to be aware of the dangers of heat and know the signs of heat exhaustion. Doctors and nurses can advise patients on how to protect themselves from heat’s dangers. The Capital Medical Society’s My Green Doctor this month provides a useful short guide (reading time 5 minutes): https://mygreendoctor.org/extreme-heat-a-guide-for-health-professionals-patients/.
 
My Green Doctor is a free membership benefit from the Capital Medical Society that saves our members money as our offices adopt wise environmental practices and as we share these ideas with our patients. Many offices of our members use My Green Doctor. It adds just five minutes to each regular office staff meeting. My Green Doctor explains what to say and do at each meeting so there is nothing for the office manager or you to study. Please register today and ask your manager to register as well: https://www.MyGreenDoctor.org/. Your practice can do this!

Would you like to have free waiting room brochures on wise environmental & climate choices mailed to your practice at no cost? Email mygreendr@gmail.com.

Source: My Green Doctor
Leadership Opportunities at the Capital Medical Society
The Capital Medical Society will be able to continue to navigate in the COVID-19 and post-COVID-19 eras. We have faced challenges before and there will be more in the future, but we can count on strong physician leadership to guide us. I know that the CMS will continue to make a major difference in shaping the future of healthcare in this community and in the State of Florida.
 
The Capital Medical Society Nominating Committee will be convening in the coming months to consider nominations for the CMS Board of Governors and for the CMS FMA Delegation. If you are interested in being considered for nomination to the CMS Board of Governors or to serve as a CMS FMA Delegate, please complete the form (https://capmed.org/wp-content/uploads/2021/08/2021-Succession-Planning-Questionnaire.pdf) and mail to Pam Irwin at:
 
Capital Medical Society
1204 Miccosukee Road
Tallahassee, FL 32308
 
Best,
Pam Irwin
Executive Director
Capital Medical Society
Florida E-Prescribing
Electronic Prescribing Requirements (Florida Board of Medicine)
House Bill 831 (2019), Electronic Prescribing, was signed into law by Governor DeSantis. The effective date is January 1, 2020. The bill provides important new requirements for prescribers to generate and transmit all prescriptions electronically upon licensure renewal or by July 1, 2021, whichever is earlier.

Florida ePrescribing Clearinghouse (Agency for Healthcare Administration)
The purpose of the Florida ePrescribing Clearinghouse is to provide information that contributes to the promotion and implementation of electronic prescribing by health care practitioners, health care facilities, and pharmacies in order to prevent prescription drug abuse, improve patient safety, and reduce unnecessary prescriptions. This Clearinghouse contains information on the advantages, processes, products, rules, and laws of ePrescribing as well as Florida ePrescribing reports.
Discounted Event Tickets at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center
Capital Medical Society members can receive a discount on certain events at the Donald L. Tucker Civic Center by using our promo code "CMS". The newest event is:

September 28-29, 2021
 
Members can receive the discount a few different ways:
  1. Click the show link above and enter the promo code "CMS"
2. Call 850-645-0747 to purchase over the phone and mention the promo code "CMS"
Save the Date for Upcoming CMS Meetings/Events
Talk to me, Goose.
We all need co-pilots. That's why the Capital Medical Society Foundation Physician Wellness Program is here for its members. The CMSF has teamed up with four wonderful resources who will help you fly - confidentially and autonomously. Your first six wellness coaching visits are at no cost to you. None. Nada. No identifying information. Nothing except peace of mind. Seriously. Pick up the phone and call any of the resources noted below. Telehealth options available.

Special thanks to MagMutual Foundation and others who are helping the CMSF fund this program.
 
Local Wellness Coaching Resources:
  • Paul Deitchman, Ph.D. - 850-878-3571
  • Tracey Morse, Ph.D. - 850-556-7944
  • Debra Weaver, Ph.D. - 850-942-5585
  • Stephen Wright, Ph.D. - 850-222-3045

C. Vincent Dix, Ph.D. has announced his retirement effective March 31, 2021. We appreciate the services Dr. Dix has provided to local physicians since the inception of the Capital Medical Society Foundation's Physician Wellness Program in 2017.

To view Physician Wellness resources, click here.

The Elephant in the Doctors' Lounge - With roughly 156 million Americans fully vaccinated for COVID-19, physicians are seeing signs of relief on the horizon. That relief can't come soon enough. The initial energy and adrenaline that drove physicians to treat their acutely ill patients in the early months of the pandemic have been replaced by fatigue, burnout, and post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). It's time to talk -- and to act -- so these feelings of struggle don't drive more of our colleagues into a mental health emergency.
Source: MedPage Today
CME Resources
Diabetic Retinopathy Webinar: Strategies for Improving Patient-Centered Care - 1.0 CME Credit Opportunity
August 27, 2021
5:00 pm

Re-envisioning Elder Care - CME Opportunity (Open flyer)
All-day Virtual Conference
September 10, 2021
8:15 am - 3:45 pm
Free with fees for CME credit

Wolfson Pediatric CME Webinars - 5.5 CME Credit Opportunity
Wolfson Children’s Hospital is proud to provide Continuing Medical Education opportunities to our partners and referring providers by offering monthly virtual CME sessions at no cost. If you have missed any of our previously offered live webinars and still wish to obtain CME credit for them, we have provided 4 recorded webinars for a total of 5.5 CME credits possible. Please follow the instructions below in order to take advantage of this opportunity!
 
1.      Open the flyer and choose which education session you would like to watch.
2.      Click the link in the attachment for the desired education session.
3.      Watch the webinar.
4.      Follow the instructions included in the video description to complete the required survey and input the associated activity code.
*Please note, if you are licensed outside of the state of Florida, you must contact the CME office at Kimberly.Branham-Nelson@bmcjax.com to request an official transcript of your participation.

Easy to use web portal makes it easy to find courses and track credits. Accredited activities for over 30 medical specialties; Over 100 active courses at any given time; Activity accreditations include ACCME, ANCC, AANP, ACPE, and more; Content is always current, and always free.

Free 1-hour online CME opportunity!
University of Florida's Department of Epidemiology
Raising awareness for Alzheimer's disease and increasing screening for cognitive impairment. This CME has a focus on primary care physicians but is applicable to all physicians who may encounter patients with cognitive impairments.

On-Demand CME by The Doctors Company
Diagnostic error continues to be a top patient safety concern, a global burden, and cause patient harm from treatment delay, testing, or misdiagnosis. “Prevention of Diagnostic Error in Primary Care” is an on-demand CME activity that features patient safety expert Jeffrey A. Gold, MD, professor of medicine, vice chair for quality and safety, for the department of medicine at the Oregon Health and Science University. This program highlights major contributing factors of diagnostic error along with the diagnostic process of care framework with additional focus on strategies to mitigate risk of patient harm in the primary care setting.

On-Demand CME by The Doctors Company
1.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™
Explore the challenges and risks associated with telehealth. Concerns regarding privacy, security, licensure, and technology that might instigate a malpractice claim are discussed.
Looking for Some Non-CME Credit Learning Opportunities?
TMH has a library of past CME courses for viewing on their MDnews page: https://www.tmh.org/mdnews/education. The recent CMEs cohosted by CMS and TMH may be found there or by opening: https://youtu.be/HJ50ZsIe2fc and https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TjgnCn77HSc&t=5s.
Opportunity to Support the 2022 CMS Membership Directory
The Capital Medical Society will publish its 2022 Membership Directory early next year. It will be distributed to all members. We have once again contracted with a company called E&M Consulting to produce the directory. E&M will be contacting our members over the next few months about advertising opportunities in the directory. E&M will manage all the ad sales, creative design, and formatting of the publication for us. This is a very professional group with experience in publishing association directories. If you have any questions or would like to advertise, please contact Rob Schmidt with E&M at 850-347-8182, 800-572-0011, or rob@emconsultinginc.com. Information on the available advertising opportunities can be viewed here or can also be viewed online at https://www.emconsultinginc.com/adreservation/cms/. Please be responsive and help support this directory. Remember, it will include our entire medical community.  
 
CMS will provide the content - including photos of our members. If you have an updated photo - please send it to us!
 
Please feel free to call us if you have any questions - and thank you for your support!
 
Sincerely,
The CMS Staff
(850) 877-9018
ABIM Extends Maintenance of Certification Requirement Deadlines Through 2022
Board-certified physicians are getting another extension on the deadline to maintain their internal medicine credentials.

In light of the COVID-19 pandemic, the American Board of Internal Medicine (ABIM) once again extended the Maintenance of Certification (MOC) requirements through December 2022.


Source: Fierce Healthcare
Coronavirus - Information, Updates, Resources
Updates and Resources

Maguire Medical Library - Florida State University College of Medicine: Coronavirus Disease 2019 (COVID-19): Basic & Current Information

The State-Level COVID-19 profile for Florida. This data is collected from medical facilities in one of two system HHS protect or National Healthcare Safety Network  
 and the White House Coronavirus Task Force analyzes and distributes the report.
   
The New England Journal of Medicine - A collection of articles and other resources on the Coronavirus outbreak, including clinical reports, management guidelines, and commentary
 
Epidemiological and Clinical Resources For The COVID-19 Pandemic
 
CDC Healthcare Supply of Personal Protective Equipment
 
CDC Guidance for People at Higher Risk for COVID-19 Complications
 
CDC PPE Poster
 
CDC Guidance for Travelers from Countries with Widespread Sustained (ongoing) Transmission Arriving in the United States
 
CDC Communication Resources
 
NETEC coronavirus page includes PPE validation checklists and video resource, in addition to many others:
 
 
From the Florida Medical Association: Coronavirus Educational Resource Center

Vaccine Updates


 
See the latest state Department of Health data summarizing the number of people in Florida who have either received their first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine or completed the vaccine series (FMA) 
 
 (Florida Department of Health in Leon County)
 
(Florida Department of Health in Leon County) 
 
 
(Centers for Disease Control and Prevention)
 
 
COVID-19 Pandemic Planning FAQ (dated 11/19/2020) includes important information regarding procurement and handling of costs for vaccine administration. (FEMA) 
 
What Happens Once There is a COVID-19 Vaccine? Key Challenges to Vaccinating America (12/3/2020) - VIDEO or SLIDES (Kaiser Family Foundation) 

Reporting for Health Care Providers and Laboratories

 
 
 
 
Notable recent additions to CDC guidance include more detailed infection prevention and control recommendations for health care settings: https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/hcp/infection-control.html.

Please continue to closely monitor the CDC novel coronavirus website for situation and guidance updates. https://www.cdc.gov/coronavirus/2019-nCoV/index.html.

If you have any patients who meet the person under investigation criteria, please contact the Florida Department of Health in Leon County Epidemiology Program at 850-404-6299.
 
Epidemiology and Disease Control Program
Florida Department of Health in Leon County
2965 Municipal Way
Tallahassee, FL 32304
Office Number: (850) 404-6299 
Confidential Fax: (850) 921-9855
Rx for Miracles
Florida RX Card has created a new program and resource card to help Children's Miracle Network children and families in need. This card will work just as Florida Rx Card, helping people save on their prescription medications. 

The flyer explains the program and can be used to share/download the app.
Informed Webinar Series: Understanding the CMS Proposed Rule: Reducing Provider and Patient Burden by Improving Prior Authorization Processes
On December 11, 2020, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a proposed rule that would improve the electronic exchange of healthcare data among payers, providers, and patients. If finalized, the CMS rule would streamline processes related to prior authorization with the goal of reducing the burden on providers and patients. Medicaid, CHIP (Children's Health Insurance Program), and QHP (Qualified Health Plan) payers would be required to build and implement FHIR-enabled APIs that could:
 
  • Allow providers to know, in advance, what documentation would be needed for each different payer. 
  • Streamline the documentation process. 
  • Enable providers to send prior authorization requests (and receive responses electronically) directly from the provider's EHR or other practice management system.
 
PAP Machine Donations Needed!
A PAP (Positive Airway Pressure) machine is an electronic respiratory ventilation device used to treat obstructive sleep apnea. Capital Medical Society Foundation, Inc.'s We Care Network program assists low-income, uninsured adults, whose income is at or below 150% of the Federal Poverty Level, with obtaining these potentially life-saving medical devices, when prescribed by a pulmonologist. Thanks to our partners at Desloge Home Oxygen and Medical Equipment, Inc., we are able to provide refurbished CPAP, AutoPAP, and BPAP machines for eligible We Care Network patients in Leon, Gadsden, Jefferson, and Wakulla Counties. We Care Network also accepts unused, unopened supplies for PAP machines, such as masks, nasal cannulas, and tubing. We Care Network coordinates over $8,000,000 in donated specialty medical and dental care annually.
 
Machine donations can be dropped off at Capital Medical Society Foundation's office at 1204 Miccosukee Road, Tallahassee, FL 32308. Donations to Capital Medical Society Foundation are tax-deductible within IRS guidelines Federal Tax I.D. #: 59-2104510. For additional information, please call 942-5215 or email dbixler@capmed.org.
You Can Support the CMS Foundation! Sign Up and Shop Today on AmazonSmile!
For eligible purchases at AmazonSmile, the AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the Capital Medical Society Foundation! 
 
Click here to access AmazonSmile and support the CMS Foundation today!
Check Out the Latest CMS Member Benefits