News & Announcements
On Friday, May 10, seventeen Family Medicine residents arrived at MAFP Headquarters in Okemos eager to gain information to help them successfully advance their careers as family physicians. They left armed with new connections who offered support and insights for acing a family physician job interview, understanding and negotiating the employment contract, and making sound financial planning decisions. Attendees’ feedback affirmed that these topics are, more often than not, missing from medical school and residency curriculum yet desperately needed by physicians in training.
Analysis of a new Center for Health and Research Transformation survey of 756 primary care physicians delivers mostly good news when it comes to access to healthcare in Michigan. Overall, PCPs' capacity to accept new patients is high for all types of insurance. Nearly two-thirds (62%) of survey respondents said they have room to care for new Medicaid patients and 80% said they are able to see new Medicare and privately insured patients. On the downside, a majority of the survey respondents reported that they completed their clinical training more than 20 years ago and nearly half said they anticipate discontinuing practice in the next 10 years, confirming concerns about our future healthcare workforce capacity.
Due to the focus on budgeting and road funding, the state legislative and policy making process has been moving at a relatively slower pace at this point in the legislative cycle compared to other years. Over the past several weeks, however, the Michigan House and Senate have taken swift action to pass several bills of interest to family physicians. Among them are hot-button bills that address auto no-fault reform, e-cigarette/vaping regulation, and pregnancy termination restrictions. The latter coincides with the newly passed Alabama Human Life Protection Act, signed into law this week by Alabama Governor Kay Ivey, that calls for life in prison for physicians who perform abortions.
As of April 26, the Centers for Disease Control & Prevention (CDC) reports that 704 individual cases of measles have been confirmed in 22 states. This reflects an increase of 78 cases from the previous week, with new outbreaks reported in Georgia, Maryland, and parts of California. This is the largest number of cases reported in the U.S. since 1994. In Michigan, the number of confirmed cases stands at 43, as reported by the Michigan Department of Health and Human Services on April 17.
MAFP was among 25 state chapters that sent full delegations to AAFP’s National Conference of Constituency Leaders (NCCL), April 25-27, in Kansas City, Missouri. Delegates are charged with writing and debating resolutions, through the lens of their special constituency, aimed at bringing about change to better family medicine and/or improve patient care and outcomes. Topics of discussion included, among other things, incentivizing preceptors, board certification, the family physician shortage, hospital privileging, adopting gender-neutral language.
During the Michigan Rural Health Conference held April 25-26 at Soaring Eagle Casino & Resort in Mt. Pleasant, Mark Hamed, MD, MBA, MPH (Sandusky) was honored with the 2019 Michigan Rural Health Professional Award by the Michigan Center for Rural Health.
Michigan Department of Health and Human Services announced on April 26 that it has released an application to identify primary care physicians interested in engaging in a preferred Patient Centered Medical Home payment model program. Physician interest applications must be submitted electronically by May 24, at 11:59 pm ET. The application is being issued solely for information and planning purposes. It does not constitute acceptance into a program or commitment of the MHPs to execute a contract.
On April 22, the U.S. Department of Health & Human Services (HHS) and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced the new CMS Primary Cares Initiative, offering primary care practices and other healthcare providers with five new payment model options designed to initiate transformation to value-based care in primary care settings across the country.
Following the Michigan House Health Policy Committee’s April 25th hearing on the state’s measles outbreak, the Parent Information Network (PIN), of which MAFP is a proud member, raised concerns over the growing but preventable outbreak by issuing the following statement: “The measles can be prevented and our children protected with a simple vaccination. We are grateful that state health officials are taking this dangerous outbreak seriously and thank lawmakers for their work notifying the public about the dangers of infection and the importance of prevention.” As of April 17, 43 measles cases have been confirmed in Southeast Michigan.
On Saturday, April 27, from 10 am to 2 pm, local agencies in communities across Michigan and the U.S., in partnership with the Drug Enforcement Administration, will give the public its 17th opportunity in nine years to prevent pill abuse and theft by ridding their homes of potentially dangerous expired, unused, and unwanted prescription drugs. The service is free and anonymous, no questions asked.