Enjoy your first

NCMS Morning Rounds of the week.

  June 15, 2020

NCMS Legislative Update

Last week saw a flurry of activity at the NC General Assembly with multiple committee meetings and legislation moving.

A few items of note:
SB808 – Medicaid Funding Act This proposal was previously called Medicaid Transformation Necessities, but is now the Medicaid Funding Act. The Senate Appropriations Committee did hear it last week. Among its many provisions it sets the go-live date for the state’s move to Medicaid managed care to July 1, 2021.
• The House Health Committee heard from NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) Secretary Mandy Cohen, MD, MPH, this week on the state’s response to the COVID-19 pandemic. Read a summary of the questions and discussion with Sec. Cohen and access her presentation here.
HB1169 – Bipartisan Elections Act is now on the Governor’s desk awaiting his signature. This bill seeks to help ensure public health and safety during the November election in light of the current pandemic.

As activity ramps up, it may signal the session is coming close to an end – at least for now. In the meantime there is much behind the scenes activity that the NCMS advocacy team is keeping up with. Be sure to watch our legislative blog for updated information on the bills we’re tracking.

Policy Committee Sends Two Recommendations to NCMS Board

The NCMS Policy Committee met for its second quarter meeting last Wednesday, June 10 and approved two new policies after robust discussion. The committee recommended to the NCMS Board of Directors for consideration policies on:

The Board of Directors will consider these recommendations at their upcoming meeting later this week.

The Policy Committee’s next meeting will focus on health equity. As a roadmap for its work, the Policy Committee uses the NCMS Guiding Principles, which the committee developed and the NCMS Board of Directors approved last January. Committee members consider key policies through the lens of these principles.

NCMS Partner Mako Medical Offers Test Kits

Mako Medical Laboratory is generously providing 20,000 COVID-19 test kits to NCMS members.

“We are thrilled that our Project OBOT partner, Mako Medical Laboratory, has been able to make available these tests to NCMS members and other health care providers,” said NCMS Vice President for Rural Health Systems Innovation Franklin Walker, MBA. Walker leads the NCMS’ Project OBOT, a collaborative approach to treating opioid use disorder.

You do not need to have a contract with Mako to take advantage of the offer. Simply fill out the online form requesting the tests and Mako will send the tests with a return FED EX to send the tests back to the lab. Once the online form has been completed, a Mako representative will contact your practice.

With the NC Department of Health and Human Services (NCDHHS) urging more testing and expanding the guidelines for those who should be tested, this donation by Mako offers an easy way to access the necessary testing supplies.

Learn more and order your COVID-19 tests here.

In the News

What We Know (and Don’t Know) About Asymptomatic Spread, The Advisory Board Forum, 6-11-20

Learning Opportunity

The Durham Orange County Medical Society had a well-attended virtual dinner meeting on the topic of LGBTQ + Health at its meeting last week. Watch the recorded presentations and discussion here to learn more about this important subject.

Speakers included Tonia Poteat, PhD, PA-C, MPH from the UNC Department of Social Medicine; Kristen Russell, LCSW, MSW, Child Development and Behavioral Health Specialist, Clinical Social Worker at Duke Health; and Dane Whicker, PhD, Medical Instructor in the Department of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences, Duke University School of Medicine

Don’t forget tomorrow’s, Tuesday, June 16, NCMS Foundation/NC Medical Group Management Association Lunch & Learn Webinar from noon to 1 p.m., which will feature presenters from the Seniors’ Health Insurance Information Program (SHIIP) speaking on ‘Medicare 2020: Navigating the Unprecedented Waters Together!’ Just when we thought the ever-changing world of healthcare was manageable, along comes a global pandemic. Join us for a conversation focusing on the SHIIP mission to assist Medicare beneficiaries in safeguarding their healthcare benefits as well as serving as a resource to practice managers in North Carolina. Learn more and register.

If you have policies you’d like your NCMS Board of Directors to consider, please complete the Board input form here. Thanks for reading!