WASHTENAW COUNTY MEDICAL SOCIETY
Legislative action & community outreach since 1827
The WCMS E-Newsletter is a bi-weekly publication that highlights major medical, public health, and community issues affecting physician and medical student leaders in Washtenaw County. Distribution is a unique benefit of WCMS membership. Past editions are available on the WCMS website here.
COVID-19 Information

COVID-19 statistics as of Wednesday, September 30:

Looking for COVID-19 testing sites in Washtenaw County? Follow this link.
WCMS COVID-19 Workgroup - Thursday, October 8 at 6:00 PM

Since March, WCMS has convened regular COVID-19 teleconferences to discuss resource allocation, emergency preparedness, and tracking and tracing among Washtenaw's health systems and physician leaders. The workgroup is led by University of Michigan infectious diseases specialist and WCMS Executive Council member Sandro Cinti, MD. The workgroup receives updates and modeling data from UM Public Health epidemiologists. To access recordings and resources from past meetings, please follow this link.

WCMS members are encouraged to join the virtual meeting on October 8 from 6:00 - 7:00 PM. Please contact the Society Office for login credentials.
Prior Authorization Reform Legislation Moves Out of Senate Committee

Senate Bill 612, legislation that reforms prior authorization and step therapy, successfully cleared the Senate Health Policy and Human Services Committee on September 24. MSMS President Bobby Mukkamala, MD testified in support of the legislation on behalf of the Health Can't Wait Coalition. The legislation is now before the full Senate chamber.

August survey data released by the American Medical Association affirms what Michigan patients and physicians have known for years - prior authorization and step therapy red tape adversely affects patient outcomes. According to the survey, 91% of physicians say prior authorization leads to delays in care and 16% report the delay in care has led to a patient’s hospitalization.

Have you or your patients experienced delays in accessing care or medications because of insurance company prior authorization or step therapy requirements? Lend your voice to the Coalition by submitting your story here.
Sign the Petition to Keep MI Kids Tobacco Free

WCMS is a proud member of the Keep MI Kids Tobacco Free Alliance, a group of nearly 70 organizations committed to working to revise Michigan's tobacco control policies. The Alliance is asking WCMS members and interested stakeholders to sign the petition to tell Michigan health officials to protect kids by removing flavored e-cigarettes from the market.

Youth vaping continues to be a dangerous public health crisis in Michigan, with flavored e-cigarettes targeting our young people. To protect our kids, Governor Whitmer is working to create a permanent public health rule that would end the sale of flavored e-cigarettes in the state.

Please click here to sign the petition, and learn about the Alliance's critical work on behalf of MI kids and families.
Add Your Voice to Critical Advocacy Issues Before Congress

Updates from the American Medical Association:

  • Congress will consider additional COVID-19 relief legislation soon. Take action to support yourself and your physician colleagues by urging the Senate to take additional steps to preserve the viability of physician practices and protect patient access to care.
  • The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services will be issuing new payment policies in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule for 2021. While the changes have many positive attributes, including improvements for maternity care and much-needed payment increases for physicians delivering primary and complex office-based care to some of our nation’s most vulnerable patients, there is a cost. Tell Congress to oppose cutting Medicare payments during a pandemic.
Washtenaw Voter Information

November 3, 2020 is Election Day! Ensure you are prepared by reviewing this important voting information.

Registration deadlines
Online: Oct. 19
By mail: Postmarked by Oct. 19
In person: Nov. 3

Absentee ballot deadlines
Request: Oct. 30 by 5:00 p.m.
Return by mail: Postmarked by Nov. 2
Return in person: Nov. 3 by 8:00 p.m.

Early voting
Sep. 24 - Nov. 2, but dates and hours may vary based on where you live

Visit Michigan.gov/Vote to:
  • Find your polling location
  • Find your City or Township Clerk
  • Request an Absentee Voter Ballot or track an absentee ballot you’ve requested.
  • View a sample ballot for an immediately upcoming election
  • Learn how to become a poll worker
Register for the 2020 Annual Scientific Meeting, October 21-30

Physicians of all specialties, residents, students, nurses, and other health care professionals are invited to join the Michigan State Medical Society Foundation at its 155th Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) which will be held virtually for the first time this year. This six-day conference will be held October 21-30 and will give attendees the opportunity to learn about cutting-edge clinical advances from local and national experts, from the safety and comfort of their homes.

MSMS designates this live activity for a maximum of 45.5 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s). To access the online course listing and register for ASM, please click here.
Leadership Opportunities at WCMS

WCMS at the MSMS House of Delegates
The House of Delegates (HOD) is the official policy-making body of MSMS. Resolutions are the vehicles used to debate and determine the policies, priorities, and direction of MSMS. Each year, physician and medical student members serve as delegates, review resolutions, testify in reference committees, and vote on important policy decisions. WCMS was allocated 16 delegate slots in 2020.

The April 2020 meeting was postponed due to COVID-19. The Speaker has announced the following timeline:
  • Washtenaw Delegation Meeting – October 7, 2020 at 6:00 PM
  • Online voting – Week of October 12, 2020
  • Post final report – October 26, 2020
To learn more, click here.

WCMS Executive Council
The Executive Council is the voting body that supervises the function and activities of WCMS. Council members determine annual events, legislative priorities, and community outreach directives. The Executive Council now meets virtually the first Thursday of each month.

WCMS Committees and Task Forces
Each committee meets approximately three-four times annually and members are simply asked to share a passion for the subject and interest in learning skills in the field.
  • Environmental/Climate Change Task Force
  • Finance Committee
  • Legislative Committee
  • Membership Committee
  • Programming Committee

To learn more about these opportunities and volunteer to serve, please follow this link.
*Reference to any specific commercial product, process, or service, or the use of any trade, firm or corporation name is for the information and convenience of members, and does not constitute endorsement, recommendation, or favoring by the Washtenaw County Medical Society.
THANK YOU FOR YOUR MEMBERSHIP AND SUPPORT OF WCMS!
The Washtenaw County Medical Society has been the leading physician medical association for legislative action and community outreach since 1827. WCMS collaborates with the Michigan State Medical Society to optimize patient, physician, and community well-being through professional support; public health activism; and advocacy for excellence in patient care.