It’s Super Tuesday! And time for your

NCMS Morning Rounds

  March 3, 2020

Happy ‘Super Tuesday’ — your last chance to cast your ballot during the 2020 primary election in North Carolina if you didn’t get to the polls during the early voting period.  If you haven’t yet, check out exactly who is on your ballot here before you go. You can confirm your polling place here. Polls open at 6:30 a.m. and close at 7:30 p.m.

One other reminder: If you haven’t already completed the 1-question NCMS Sunday Survey on access to affordable health care, please take just one minute to do so now. This first in a series of five surveys on issues of importance to your practice and your patients will close at noon on Thursday with results published in Friday’s NCMS Morning Rounds. TAKE THE SURVEY.

Latest from NCDHHS on Covid-19

Last Friday, the NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) issued updated Covid-19 guidance for clinicians and laboratories. Read the latest memo from State Epidemiologist Zack Moore, MD, MPH.

As of yesterday afternoon, no cases have been confirmed in North Carolina and the risk to the general public in the state is considered low, according to NCDHHS officials. However, the situation continues to evolve rapidly.

Clinicians caring for patients with suspected or confirmed COVID-19 should immediately contact their local health department or the state Communicable Disease Branch (919-733-3419; available 24/7) to review the risk assessment and discuss laboratory testing and control measures. Check the NCDHHS and Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Covid-19 websites frequently as they will have the most up-to-date information. These sites also offer resources like posters for your waiting room to alert patients to proper hygiene.

“We remain grateful for the tireless efforts of our providers and local health departments and for the essential role they play in this response,” wrote the CDC’s local field officer with the NCDHHS Division of Public Health Jennifer MacFarquhar, MPH, BSN, RN, CIC, in a note to NCMS CEO Robert W. Seligson, MBA, MA and other state association leaders. “NC DHHS is actively responding to this rapidly evolving situation; we look forward to ongoing communication to best support our local partners.”

With the virus continuing to dominate headlines, the media and other organizations are working to dispel misinformation and provide credible, helpful material.
• The NC Chamber has compiled a ‘Coronavirus Resource Guide’ to help businesses prepare.
• The CDC issued advice on new ICD-10 codes for the Covid-19 virus along with interim guidance. Read the CDC’s announcement.
• The Advisory Board Forum also debunked five of the most ridiculous myths circulating on social media about the virus (e.g. garlic can prevent Covid-19) in this article.

At this point the key message seems to be ‘stay calm and wash your hands.’

You Now Have Access to ‘Vital Directions in Health’

Last November NCMS members and staff participated in the National Academy of Medicine’s Vital Directions for Health & Health Care: The North Carolina Experience, held in Durham. Read the NCMS Morning Rounds report from the symposium.

Now, the presentation transcripts and videos from this 2-day gathering are available for you to review including remarks from NC Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Mandy Cohen, MD, MPH and a wealth of other national and local experts who spoke about achieving better health and well-being for the nation.

Access these resources.

NCMS Participates in Racial Equity Training

NCMS leadership and staff took part in a 2-day workshop led by the Racial Equity Institute last Friday and Saturday at the NCMS Center for Leadership in Medicine. The facilitators for the training provided a definition and history of racism in the United States designed to challenge assumptions and prompt meaningful conversations to promote racial equity in our organizations and the larger systems we are all part of.

Addressing racial disparities is central to the NCMS’ work, especially as we seek to implement our Guiding Principles and as we work to help attain the goals of the NC Institute of Medicine’s Healthy NC 2030 report and bring the state into a top 10 health ranking nationally over the next decade. The workshop provided NCMS leadership and staff ways to think about and frame the issues to help achieve these objectives.

In the News

Partisan Bickering Delayed Zika Funding for Months. With Coronavirus Experts Worry History Will Repeat Itself, STAT, 3-2-20

Learning Opportunity

The Center for Prevention Services in Charlotte is offering a series of trainings to be held each Friday beginning March 22 with the topic ‘New Ethical Dilemmas in the Digital Age.’ Future topics include ‘Overdoses and the Addiction Epidemic: Ethical and Proficient Treatment Responses to a Community in Crisis;’ ‘Kratom, Marijuana, and Cannabidiol’ and ‘Clearing the Clouds,’ which addresses tobacco use. Learn more and register for any or all of the trainings.