Happy Thursday! Enjoy your NCMS Morning Rounds.

August 26, 2021

NCMS Town Hall Survey Results Are In

Thank you to everyone who completed our first NCMS Town Hall Survey last week. As promised, here is a brief summary of the results of the quick, 3-question survey.

What is the biggest issue facing your practice today?

Staffing shortages came up most frequently as the biggest challenge. In particular, practices are weighing the costs and benefits of mandating vaccination against COVID-19 while maintaining adequate staff.

“We have staff who don’t want to get the COVID-19 vaccine, yet we want to mandate vaccinations. So, it is a balance between losing valuable staff and being able to adequately staff the clinic along with the clear benefits of getting everyone vaccinated,” wrote one respondent.

Another person wrote the biggest issue is “hiring enough nursing staff; we cannot even begin giving COVID vaccine in the current nursing workforce environment in our eastern semi-rural location.”

What is the biggest issue facing your patients today?

Cost of care and COVID were the top issues noted in response to this question.

What is the biggest current challenge to your well-being as a health care professional?

Overwhelming demands on your time and feeling unappreciated seem to be the biggest challenges to well-being among the respondents.

“Dealing with patients’ expectations and their complaints while rarely hearing appreciation for the hard work of all the clinic staff and myself,” one person wrote.

“Overwork/burnout due to inability to satisfy patients’ needs (demands), worsened by pandemic,” another wrote.

We hear you and value this input as we, as your professional organization, strive to address your needs.

Watch for details on upcoming NCMS events to bring our members together to support one another and to collaborate on solutions.

Next month we will again check in with you through the NCMS Town Hall Survey to assess on-going or new issues for you and your practice. We hope you will participate.

CMS Expands Medicare Payments for At-Home COVID-19 Vaccinations

As part of the Biden-Harris Administration’s ongoing commitment to increasing access to vaccinations and improving health equity, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) is expanding opportunities for people to receive COVID-19 vaccinations in their home. To ensure Medicare beneficiaries who have difficulty leaving their homes or are otherwise hard-to-reach can receive the vaccination, health care professionals can now receive additional payments for administering vaccines to multiple residents in one home setting or communal setting of a home.

Read the full press release here.

NCHA Virtual Town Hall

The North Carolina Healthcare Association is hosting a free virtual town hall TODAY, Thursday, August 26 at 1 p.m. on “Building Healthier Rural Communities.”

Panelists will include leaders from Appalachian Regional Healthcare System, Cape Fear Valley Health, Hugh Chatham Memorial Hospital, and the North Carolina Rural Center. The discussion will touch on how COVID-19 is affecting North Carolina’s rural hospitals, among other topics. There will be time for audience Q&A.

Learn more and register here.

In the News

What To Say To Your Vaccine-Hesitant Patients: A Doctor’s 5 Tips, Advisory Board, 8-24-21

Learning Opportunity

REMINDER: Virtual Office Hours: Supporting Members Transitioning to Medicaid Direct, TODAY, THURSDAY, AUGUST 26 | 4-5 PM

Medicaid Transformation Provider Services and North Carolina AHEC are conducting a series of Virtual Office Hours for providers beginning in March 2021. These sessions offer an interactive format for providers to have their questions answered. Providers are encouraged to submit questions in advance for discussion. Virtual Office Hours will cover a range of Medicaid Managed Care topics.

Register here.


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