LEGISLATIVE UPDATE

 

NHMA has started its Fall Six Region Forums on the ACA Update with US Department of Health and Human Services – informing the health professionals and students and community leaders attending about the needs for our community to better understand health insurance as 10 million Latinos enroll for the first time. We are focused on discussion of strategies to increase enrollment of Hispanics and the opportunities to educate our patients, families and community leaders. We recognize the importance of documenting the strategies. The Forums are being supported by the Anthem Blue Cross, Empire Blue Cross, Jannsen Pharmaceuticals, Transamerica Center of Health Studies, Texas Blue Cross, University of Indiana School of Medicine, and the Cancer Treatment Centers of America.

 

On August 29, HHS -CMS announced  a New MEANINGFUL USE RULE allows flexibility in certified EHR technology for 2014 - Rule will help more providers to have flexibility in electronic health record technology to meet meaningful use for an EHR Incentive Program reporting period for 2014 so that more providers are able to participate and meet important meaningful use objectives like drug interaction and drug allergy checks, providing clinical summaries to patients, electronic prescribing, reporting on key public health data and reporting on quality measures.

 

The rule also finalizes the extension of Stage 2 through 2016 for certain providers and announces the Stage 3 timeline, which will begin in 2017 for providers who first became meaningful EHR users in 2011 or 2012.

 

How the ACA benefits women

The HHS Office on Women’s Health (OWH) collaborated with the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services and WebMD/Medscape on products that educate consumers and health care providers on how the Affordable Care Act benefits women. You can visit the WebMD website (consumer-oriented) and find easy-to-understand articles, checklists, and interviews with experts on topics, such as understanding your health benefits, and coverage for quitting smoking, maintaining a healthy weight, and becoming a new mom. It also tackles issues such as birth control, pregnancy, and screening tests and immunizations.

 

OWH and Medscape also developed two online activities for health care professionals involved in women’s health. Primary care physicians, nurses, obstetricians/gynecologists, and other providers can receive continuing medical education credits while learning about the clinical preventive services now available for women through the health care law. Please share these CME programs with your members.

 

The resources include and are available at:

·         Understanding the Affordable Care Act and Women's Health

·         Prevention Across a Lifetime: Women's Health and the ACA (Please note, users need to create a free account to access Medscape)

·         Women's Health and the Affordable Care Act: What's Covered (Please note, users need to create a free account to access Medscape)

 

Small Businesses such as medical practices and the ACA:

The national health reform debate continues to draw on Massachusetts’ 2006 reform initiative, with a focus on sustaining employer-sponsored insurance. This study provides an update on employers’ responses under health reform in fall 2008, using data from surveys of working-age adults. Results show that concerns about employers’ dropping coverage or scaling back benefits under health reform have not been realized. Access to employer coverage has increased, as has the scope and quality of their coverage as assessed by workers. However, premiums and out-of-pocket costs have become more of an issue for employees in small firms.

 

Health Insurance Literacy – According to Kaiser Family Foundation -

 37% of enrollees don’t know the amount of their deductible. The deductibles in the plans sold on the exchanges are large; on average $2,300 for single coverage in the most popular plan, a Silver plan.  For many people their deductible will be as important to their family budgets and their ability to get health care as the premium they pay, especially if they get a premium subsidy as most do in the exchanges. If people don’t understand their deductibles and copays they may pick a plan based solely on the premium and be in for a nasty surprise when they begin to use care and their deductible hits. It can also be important to know if services such as some physician visits and tests or generic drugs are exempt from the deductible.

 

Speaking of the subsidies, 46% of enrollees in the new insurance marketplaces say they’re getting a subsidy, when official numbers indicate about 85% actually get them.  And even among those who know they’re receiving a subsidy, 47% don’t know the amount of the subsidy.

 

Many enrollees also don’t grasp basic insurance terms. A study of people eligible to enroll in the marketplaces showed that many were not confident in their understanding of a premium (36%), deductible (31%), copayment (28%), coinsurance (48%), maximum annual out-of-pocket spending (38%), provider network (36%), covered services (35%), annual limits on services (39%) or excluded services (40%).  People with lower incomes were even less likely to understand the key elements of insurance.

 

People gaining coverage also have to understand the intricacies of provider networks in the plans they choose, especially if they have a health problem requiring specialty care.  It can also be important to understand how drug coverage is tiered – with brand-name drugs costing much more than generics.

 

Chronic disease will be a focus of the Next Congress Health Policy and NHMA

 

The design and implementation of comprehensive programs and sound practices are needed to ensure quality of care and to reduce the risk and burden of chronic disease. Adopting a public health perspective moves the focus of the workforce from caring for one patient at a time to planning care for populations of patients. A public health approach to care includes a view of patients and providers as parts of a wider health-care context in which health-care delivery and organization are influenced by numerous factors, including sub-national and national health-care policies. In addition, a public health perspective requires the provision of care across the disease continuum, from clinical prevention to palliative care. Key Areas of focus

 

Effective management of chronic diseases requires a comprehensive and integrated approach to care. This includes organizing multidisciplinary health-care teams and linking patients to community resources.

 

Integrated care also requires collaboration between health-care workers and patients to ensure that patients and their families have the knowledge, tools and skills needed for self- management of chronic conditions.  Communication and information systems are vital to the provision of adequate patient care. Information systems, from paper and pencil records to sophisticated electronic databases, are essential for organizing and monitoring patients’ responses to treatments and outcomes, and prompting healthcare providers to schedule patient follow-up. Communication systems, from radios to mobile telephones to the Internet, allow the exchange of timely patient information with other providers, particularly specialists, who may be in distant locations.  Provide a computerized patient self-assessment system to generate individualized self-management plans. Establish a system to provide supplementary self-management support by telephone or through the Internet to patients living with chronic diseases. Organize multidisciplinary primary healthcare teams including, where possible, physicians, nurses, allied health professionals and expert patients. Connect healthcare systems electronically via a common clinical information system.  Incorporate evidence-based, locally tailored guidelines into assessment tools, patient registries and flow sheets in order to increase the likelihood of their use.

 

NHMA PROGRAMS UPDATE

 

SAVE THE DATE: NHMA 19th Annual Conference, March 27-29, 2015 to discuss strategies to sustain healthcare delivery in our Hispanic communities given the health disparities our people face, limited resources supporting healthcare facilities and programs in our poor areas, yet the strong quality of care provided by Hispanic physicians and others who are committed to providing care to our Hispanic families. Join us as a Speaker and complete our Abstracts, as a Poster Presenter, or as a Participant.  Click here for the Abstract Application. We will have Federal experts provide updates for our physicians, academic faculty and residents and medical students as well as other health professionals and industry experts interested in learning how to provide care to Hispanics. NHMA Leadership Institute to focus on Federal and Corporate Leadership Nominations and Appointments.

 

 

NHMA Leadership Fellowship – a year-long Executive Leadership Program for 10 mid-career physicians that has produced over 120 Fellows from across the nation who are in leadership trajectories in healthcare. Application consists of form with statement of interest, CV with documented leadership, and recommendation letter. Program for Class of 2015 to begin with a 2 day Orientation (Mar. 25-26) prior to the NHMA Conference in Washington, DC followed by a Summer Webinar Series on Leaders and a 4 day Washington, DC Leadership Institute in September, 2015. Policy Analysis Teams will be meeting with faculty and other Fellows and will present at NHMA Conference in 2016 at third meeting. Program Fee is $10,000. Applications to be on website in October with due date of January 31, 2015.

 

NHMA Member Appointments Program - NHMA collaborates with the US Department of Health and Human Services, VA, and White House Office of Presidential Personnel, Congressional Hispanic Caucus to identify senior executives for Federal service, researchers for NIH research positions, as well as for part-time leadership positions on national Boards and Commissions, Boards of Directors in the Corporate Sector and for non-profit education institutions and hospitals and clinics.  For those interested, contact Dr. Rios today at (202) 628-5895.

 

NHMA Mentoring Programs for Residents and Undergraduate Students – programs have monthly communications with mentors assigned in the Fall of each year for one year. See applications on website www.nhmamd.org.  All mentors and mentees are encouraged to attend NHMA Annual Conference (Spring) and Region Forums (Fall).

 

Click here for more information on the Resident Mentorship Program

 

NHMA – GE Medical Student Mentoring Program - up to 50 medical students encouraged to apply from the 5 metro areas: Los Angeles, San Antonio, Chicago, NYC, Atlanta interested in primary care and community healthcare delivery in Hispanic communities. Deadline of November 1, 2014. Students will be assigned mentors in November and have a webinar to start the program before the holidays. Students are also required to minimum of monthly contact with mentors, preceptorship for 2-3 days at a community practice/clinic and to attend the NHMA Annual Conference in Washington, DC. (transportation, hotel, registration covered). For more information and to apply please visit http://nhmamd.org/index.php/programs/ge-nhma-health-professional-student-leadership-mentoring-progam or contact John Aguilar at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

NHMA Recruitment to Medical School Conferences with the University of Texas Health Science Center, San Antonio on Nov. 8th and at Charles R Drew University, Los Angeles – date pending. NHMA is now mentoring 90 medical students interested in applying to medical school this year. Support provided by the US Department of Health and Human Services Office of Minority Health.

 

NHMA Policy Briefings on Early Child Obesity for Hispanics with the W.K. Kellogg Foundation with the State Legislators of CA and NY next winter 2015; and on Hepatitis C with Abbvie in Sacramento, CA and Austin, TX and Washington, DC next spring 2015.

 

MEMBERSHIP UPDATE

 

During the past month ----

 

Victor Cueto, MD, Chairman, NHMA Council of Residents speaks for the Ohio Latino Health Commission on the Cultural Competence Lessons for health professionals treating Hispanic patients in Columbus, Ohio.

 

NHMA Board Members visited Pfizer Inc in NYC to discuss advocacy and collaborations with NHMA Conference and Scholarship Dinner for 2014-15 with Pfizer government affairs teams, Pfizer RX Pathways, and others met with Dr. E. Rios, Dr. Jorge Puente and Dr. Judy Flores to discuss working to improve Hispanic health.

 

Elena Rios, MD invited to participate in the Cancer Treatment Centers of America Hispanic Advisory Committee meeting in Atlanta, GA with the president of the US Hispanic Chamber of Commerce and other Hispanic leaders affiliated with the Treatment Centers.

 

ANNOUNCEMENTS

 

The Board of Directors of NHMA has stressed the importance of building partners who value our services to transform their programs with the health experts from our networks – physicians and other health professionals who care for Hispanic populations. The Major Services we offer include consulting to develop policy summits, Congressional Briefings, advocacy campaigns for Hispanic populations and our patients, policy white papers, and we nominate Health Expert Speakers and Representatives for public and private sector advisory committees and conferences.

 

Conference of Interest: “Price, Profit, & Reward: Winners and Losers in Healthcare Transformation

 

The National Physicians Alliance Annual Conference and Healthcare Summit will take place October 24 & 25, 2014 at the Consumer Reports National Research and Testing Center in Yonkers, New York, on the Hudson: “Price, Profit, & Reward: Winners and Losers in Healthcare Transformation,”

 

The meeting will bring together physicians, medical students, consumers, and innovators to wrestle with difficult issues surrounding cultural shifts required to achieve high value health care.

 

Confirmed speakers include:

 

– Elisabeth Rosenthal, MD—Senior writer for The New York Times, author of provocative 2013-14 series about high health care costs, "Paying Till it Hurts"

 

– Lauren Taylor, MPH—Co-author of The American Health Care Paradox: Why Spending More is Getting Us Less

 

– Steven D. Pearson, MD, MSc, FRCP—Founder & President of the Institute for Clinical & Economic Review

 

– Steve Woloshin MD—Professor of Medicine, Geisel School of Medicine, Dartmouth; Co-Director Medicine and the Media Program

 

– Lisa Schwartz, MD, MS—Professor of Medicine, of Community Medicine and of the Dartmouth Institute; Co-Director Medicine and the Media Program

 

Speakers will address rating systems, controversial screening tests, Open Payments, and how to help patients deal with complex scientific evidence.  Saturday will be structured as an interactive summit focused on Public Good, Price, Waste, and Overtreatment.

 

Registration, program, and hotel information are available at this link: http://npalliance.org/npa-2014-annual-conference/

 

Job Opening: Chair of Neurology: Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai

 

The Department of Neurology in the Mount Sinai Health System encompasses outstanding programs at Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai, The Mount Sinai Hospital, Mount Sinai Beth Israel, Mount Sinai Roosevelt, Mount Sinai St. Luke’s, and New York Eye and Ear Infirmary of Mount Sinai. The department’s multidisciplinary approach to patient care offers unparalleled clinical and training experiences and supports cutting-edge translational and bench research.

 

Across the Mount Sinai Health System, the Department of Neurology employs more than 100 full-time faculty and 450 staff. Patient volume in 2013 included more than 80,000 outpatient visits and 3,000 inpatient discharges. A full range of clinical services is provided, and specialty programs focus on multiple sclerosis, Parkinson’s disease and other movement disorders, Alzheimer’s disease and other dementias, stroke, epilepsy, headache and pain medicine, neuroAIDS and other neurological disorders.

 

The vibrant research program of the Department of Neurology spans basic, translational, and clinical investigation, with approximately $20 million in extramural research grants in 2013. The department has ACGME-accredited residency training programs at The Mount Sinai Hospital and Mount Sinai Beth Israel, as well as 13 fellowship programs across four member hospitals.

The ideal candidate for Chair of Neurology will be an experienced academic neurologist at the full professor level who is a distinguished national leader in his or her field of expertise. The candidate must have a proven track record in clinical care, research, and teaching. Strong communication skills, ability to collaborate, and managerial experience are essential. Applicants must hold an MD or MD/PhD, must be board-certified in neurology, and must hold or be eligible for a New York State medical license.

 

Mount Sinai offers a competitive salary and an excellent benefits package. All interested applicants are invited to send their curriculum vitae and letter of interest to Eric Nestler, MD, PhD, Search Committee Chair at This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..

 

Mount Sinai Health System is an equal opportunity/affirmative action employer. We recognize the power and importance of a diverse employee population and strongly encourage applicants with various experiences and backgrounds.

 

Million Hearts Announcement for Nominations

The number of Americans who have high blood pressure has increased dramatically in the past decade, and nearly 1,000 people die each day in the United States as a result of high blood pressure-related illnesses.

 

The latest data show that nearly 1 in 3 American adults— approximately 70 million—have high blood pressure. About half of those with high blood pressure don’t have it under control, even though many have insurance, are being treated with medicine, and have seen a doctor at least twice in the past year.

 

Since its launch, “Million Hearts” has recognized 11 Hypertension Control Champions for their success in achieving greater than 70 percent control among their patient populations with high blood pressure.

 

This year, we want to recognize even more Hypertension Control Champions. Clinicians, practices, and health systems that provide continuing care and have achieved hypertension control rates greater than 70 percent are eligible to enter.

 

Please help us spread the word about what it takes to get high blood pressure under control:

 

·         Submit your nomination. The Challenge is open August 20 through 11:59pm on October 10, 2014.

 

·         Encourage high-performing, small and large practices to enter the 2014 Million Hearts® Hypertension Control Challenge at www.millionhearts.hhs.gov.

 

2014 Champions will be announced on the Million Hearts® website in February 2015. For more information on eligibility requirements, please visit http://go.usa.gov/EzhR. Questions about the Challenge should be directed to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. with “Challenge” in the subject line.



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