Enjoy your Tuesday

NCMS Morning Rounds.

  April 14, 2020

NCMS Legislative Update

Last Thursday, the NCMS Legislative Cabinet met virtually to set its priorities in anticipation of the upcoming Legislative Session, which is still slated to begin on April 28. These priorities will guide the NCMS’ advocacy efforts, and, for the moment, focus on the immediate needs of our members in dealing with the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic. The priorities are:

  • Telehealth parity
    • Ensuring cash flow
    • Tax deferrals
    • Liability protections

Legislative Cabinet members discussed what they are experiencing in their own practices as well as what they have been hearing from colleagues and reviewed the results of the NCMS’ Sunday Survey series to arrive at these priorities.

While the Legislative Session is still nearly two weeks away, the NC House Select Committee on COVID-19 has been meeting to address various issues associated with the pandemic including health care and economic supports among others. NCMS staff already is actively communicating our priorities to the chairs and members of this key legislative committee.

Read summaries of the last several COVID-19 committee meetings, which NCMS staff have been attending virtually, on our NCMS Legislative blog.

The Legislative Cabinet also had a broader discussion about how COVID-19 has accentuated health disparities. Their comments centered on this blog post by the NC Institute of Medicine, which addresses limited access to healthy foods, a condition that has been magnified during the pandemic.

Before COVID-19 prompted the current upheaval in all aspects of our daily lives, the NCMS identified the NCIOM’s Healthy NC 2030 report as a focal point for our LEAD Health Care Conference this fall and beyond. Legislative Cabinet members agreed that many of the disparities outlined in the report have been brought into stark relief over the past six weeks, making the need to address them even more pressing.

Special Help with NCMS Telehealth Benefit

As announced earlier this month, the NCMS is offering Presence, a telemedicine platform, to all health care providers in the state at no charge until the COVID-19 pandemic abates. To help remove any barriers to signing up for this valuable tool, experts will be available tomorrow and Thursday at three convenient times to help walk you through the onboarding process. You just need to have your NPI number and an internet connection available in order to complete the process.

Tomorrow and Thursday, help will be available at 7:30 a.m., noon and 5:30 p.m. to accommodate your schedule. Access help at each time by calling or clicking on the appropriate link below. Watch tomorrow’s NCMS Morning Rounds for access information for Thursday’s sessions.

Wednesday, April 15 at 7:30 a.m.
Join Zoom Meeting: https://therecoveryplatform.zoom.us/j/92993467952

Meeting ID: 929 9346 7952
One tap mobile +16465588656,,92993467952# US (New York)

Wednesday, April 15 at noon 
Join Zoom Meeting https://therecoveryplatform.zoom.us/j/96280402133

Meeting ID: 962 8040 2133
One tap mobile +16465588656,,96280402133# US (New York)

Wednesday, April 15 at 5:30 p.m.
Join Zoom Meeting https://therecoveryplatform.zoom.us/j/97240344510

Meeting ID: 972 4034 4510
One tap mobile +16465588656,,97240344510# US (New York)

Presence offers a central portal where patients can schedule a telemedicine visit, look up a physician or PA by practice or name and be given a calendar with times the physician or PA has reserved for telemedicine or phone based appointments. You will receive a notification of scheduled visits and access the Presence dashboard to initiate and manage these patient interactions.

Learn more about Presence and how it can help ease the burden as your respond to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic.

NCPHP Is Here to Help

We are living in truly extraordinary times. The challenge for all of us to be at our best has never been stronger and the communities we serve depend on it.

The North Carolina Professionals Health Program (NCPHP) is here to help medical workers and professionals facing unprecedented challenges and stressors in their workplace due to COVID-19. To this end, NCPHP stands ready to assist NCMS members in facing any of these difficulties.

NCPHP staff is on-call 24 hours a day, 7 days a week, 365 days a year. The office remains open Monday through Friday, 8 a.m. to 5 p.m. and can be reached by calling 919-870-4480. Staff is available to assist any medical professionals in need of help. You may also call after work hours or on the weekend (919-870-4480), and will be automatically routed to a person on-call who can help you access the needed assistance.

None of us were prepared for the current challenges we are facing with a worldwide pandemic. NCPHP is prepared, however, to help anyone get the help they need. It’s crucial now more than ever.

In the News

Will an Antibody Test Allow Us to Go Back to School or Work?, The New York Times, 4-10-20

Learning Opportunity

In partnership with the NC Psychiatric Association, this week’s NCMS Foundation‘s ‘Power Hour’ will focus on the psychiatric impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic on the health care community and will be held Friday, April 17 from 1 to 2 p.m. The guest moderator for the discussion will be Harold Kudler, MD, Adjunct Associate Professor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences at Duke University School of Medicine. Register here.