NYS Immunization Information
Participants Needed for
May 10, 2011
ACOG District II
152 Washington Ave.
Albany, NY 12210
518.436.3461 (phone)518.426.4728 (fax)firstname.lastname@example.org (email)www.acogny.org (website)
From the Chair
Scott D. Hayworth, MD, FACOG
Think Spring at the ACM
As we fight the bitter cold of winter - it's time to think ahead to spring! Please make plans now to attend the 59th Annual Clinical Meeting in Washington, DC April 30 - May 4, 2011 at the Washington Convention Center. This is your once a year opportunity to join friends and colleagues from across the country for an innovative program that covers the broad range of the ob-gyn specialty while providing useful information for your practice. Dr. Richard Waldman's President's Program will include:
Dr. Francis Collins, Director of the NIH, will discuss the latest and future directions of genomics
Dr. Roberto Romero will address the subclinical intrauterine infection/inflammation as a cause of preterm labor and cerebral palsy
Dr. David Grimes will discuss misogyny and how that can affect women's health
For further meeting details, Click Here. There is certainly nothing like springtime in our nation's capital. I encourage you to embrace this opportunity to explore all that Washington, DC has to offer - from outstanding restaurants and historic monuments - to the National Zoo. I look forward to seeing you in DC April 30 - May 4 at the Annual Clinical Meeting!
From the Executive Director
Donna Montalto, MPP
Saving Lives Through DII
For Northeasterners, the first two months of 2011 have been a skier's paradise - particularly in the Capital District region. While the mountains are full of snow, you won't find people who work in and around the Legislature hitting the slopes. Every day cell phones are ringing and emails are being sent with the latest buzz on the state of the state including the dire state of New York's fiscal health or most recent addition to "the list" of Medicaid cuts proposed by Governor Andrew Cuomo's Medicaid Redesign Team. Read more below on the Medicaid cuts. While the frenetic pace of the executive branch is keeping everyone in our office caffeinated, District II is also working with the health department on ways to keep our Safe Motherhood Initiative (SMI) alive. Recently we developed a poster for each of the 211 legislators' offices to remind policy makers that women continue to die in childbirth - we linked this image with a little bit of marketing for our annual Women's Healthy Life Expo coming up this May. Click Here to see the poster. As you may remember, last spring funding for our Safe Motherhood Initiative (SMI) was pulled by New York State. I am happy to report that Dr. Cynthia Chazotte and I met with health department leaders last week and ACOG District II has been asked to consider developing an educational initiative based in the findings from our latest round of hospital reviews. Over the next few weeks we will continue to talk to the department about how this education should progress and what role District II might play in future efforts to reduce maternal mortality in New York State. Lastly, if you are a skier, I hope you are enjoying this winter wonderland!
Two weeks ago, the Medical Society convened a conference call of key stakeholders in an attempt to recreate the Medical Liability Reform Task Force that originated in 2007 under then Governor Eliot Spitzer. Each organization (hospital associations, liability insurance carriers and high risk medical specialty societies) were asked to relay any conversations thus far with the Cuomo Administration on medical liability reform and to obtain each group's perspective on what kind of reform can be accomplished in the current budgetary and political environment. The goals of this group are to craft a reform platform that we can all support and move forward on together (and quickly). During this call, suggestions were made to engage Mayor Bloomberg's administration in our cause particularly due to his recent remarks to the Bar Association indicating that the Bar should consider tort reform - namely the neurologically impaired infant proposal. Click Here to see his remarks.
The group discussed the following list of tort reform proposals:
A neurologically impaired indemnity fund. (Not ACOG's proposal). This is a priority for the Greater NY Hospital Association, CCC, Inc, HIC, as well as others. It was recognized that the NI indemnity fund is one of the few reforms that will provide immediate and substantial cost savings for the hospitals to offset the anticipated impact of Medicaid cuts that could be as high as 10%.
- Concern was raised that the indemnity fund would only help the hospitals. Therefore, what about the physicians?
- Hospital representatives made clear that the indemnity fund was their primary focus of relief. As such, while they would listen to other ideas, they did not want to see the focus on the indemnity fund diminished by adding other non hospital-specific reforms to a package that we could all support.
- A key argument in support of this initiative is that it can be scored to provide real savings to the Medicaid program.
- The Neurologically Impaired Infant Program of New York State (NIPNY) - ACOG - recently drafted newborn no-fault compensation program (distinct from the indemnity fund above);
- Limit physician exposure to policy limits;
- Mandatory arbitration;
- Examine the feasibility of non-economic damage caps that could be part of a package that could include something the trial lawyers want (ie: higher contingency fees) and also result in budgetary savings to the Administration;
- Disclosure of expert witness identity and the ability to depose the expert;
- Require the expert to be of the same specialty as the defendant physician;
- Certificate of Merit Reform: ie: Require a signed affidavit from the consulting physician concluding that there exists a reasonable basis for the commencement of the malpractice lawsuit;
- Lower primary layer attachment point for physicians to be eligible for the excess layer (ie: $1 million rather than $1.3 million);
- Address MMIP legacy losses. Spread responsibility beyond only the med mal carriers.
At this point, the loosely formed task force remains disjointed in its approaches to tort reform. To that end, a letter was drafted for all parties to sign-on, reminding the new governor how important we all think achieving substantial medical liability reform will be during this budget cycle and that we welcome more detailed discussion of reforms as soon as possible. The letter also reviews the high costs of defensive medicine while suggesting that the excess program could be eliminated if significant tort reform was implemented. Of course, each society and hospital group is moving forward on its own. This letter (if agreed to) will show state leaders that medical liability reform is urgently needed for physicians, hospitals, and insurance companies to stay in business. The District II office will continue to keep you informed on tort reform progress but as always, feel free to call the office for up-to date information on negotiations and meetings.
Biggest Cuts Ever Made by a Governor
The largest Medicaid cut ever suggested by a sitting governor has been put forth by this administration. In order to close a roughly $10 billion gap - without raising taxes or borrowing - Governor Cuomo has suggested trying to achieve a Medicaid savings target of $2.85 billion for 2011-12. Recall that Medicaid health care costs are also paid for by the federal government (50%) so that if the state cuts $2.85 billion, the actual loss is $5.9 billion. The governor has empowered the Medicaid Redesign Team to come up with suggestions for cutting Medicaid.
Note: the plan also calls for up to 9,800 state layoffs if negotiations with unions fail to produce necessary savings.
Medicaid Redesign Team
The Medicaid Redesign Team, established by Governor Andrew Cuomo, recently concluded its public hearings across the state. The task force has been charged with reducing costs through Medicaid program redesign rather than across-the-board cuts. More than 500 organizations participated in oral testimony and over 1,000 recommendations were submitted for consideration.
As requested by Jason Helgerson, the new state Medicaid director, District II submitted brief written testimony to the Medicaid Redesign Team. Our comments relayed the need for implementation of the Neurologically Impaired Infant Program of New York State and the related cost savings such reform could offer. Unfortunately at this time, District II could not present the administration with actual cost savings associated with our NIPNY proposal because we do not have the needed $70,000 to complete a professional actuarial study on our bill. We continue to communicate weekly with state leaders on our proposal. The Medicaid Redesign Team must report its findings and recommendations to the governor by March 1, 2011 for consideration in the budget process.
To see last week's list of 274 reform proposals submitted to the Medicaid Redesign Team for consideration, Click Here, and to see our written comments.
Tuesday, May 10th - Albany, NY
Tuesday, May 10, is ACOG District II's Lobby Day. Ob-gyns rom across New York will meet with lawmakers in Albany to discuss critical issues such as medical liability premiums and the need for tort reform as well as maternal mortalilty reviews and education, and patient safety efforts. REGISTER TODAY to attend Lobby Day on May 10. YOU are the most effective spokesperson with our state's newly elected officials.
Also on May 10, we will be hosting the annual Women's Healthy Life Expo. The Expo is held annuallly and draws thousands of women to Albany's Empire State Plaza Concourse. (For those of you who are unfamiliar with Albany, the concourse is a massive underground marble corridor connecting the Capitol to the state agency and legislative office buildings). This annual event will feature free screenings, education and activities related to women's health, including a private "ask the doctor" booth.
For more information on either of these activities, please contact the ACOG District II office at email@example.com or (518) 436-3461.
New Remibursement Guidelines
Please note the following new reimbursement guidelines became effective on January 1, 2011:
- All requests for reimbursement in excess of $25 that are submitted to the District II Treasurer at the Albany office, must include a receipt(s). This amount was $50 previously.
- The maximum daily amount that will be reimbursed for meals, that are not provided as part of an officially sanctioned District II meeting, is $115 per day. Should the amount exceed $115, justification must be provided in writing.
- As of January 1, 2011, the IRS allowed mileage rate is fifty one cents ($.51) per mile.
The travel voucher has been updated and is available on our website by Clicking Here.
ACOG District II Adds Smoking Cessation to Its Well-Woman Initiative
ACOG District II is pleased to announce a new two-year grant project, "Enhancing Early Assessment, Diagnosis, and Treatment of the Casual Smoker: In-Office Education for Ob-Gyns and Their Patients." This latest project is the second â€œinstallmentâ€ of the Well-Woman Education Initiative (WWEI) that began in September 2010. The first project on immunizations is ongoing and will be completed in August 2011.
This smoking cessation grant project will utilize five ob-gyn offices as pilot sites for the development of a comprehensive, in-office educational model on smoking cessation for the casual smoker. This education would become part of the routine annual well-woman visit. A chart assessment tool and resources will be developed over the next two years to assist ob-gyns in identifying patient needs.
If your office is interested in participating in
the ACOG smoking cessation pilot project
or physician task force,
The comprehensive WWEI will serve as an enduring educational tool and will incorporate various components of the well-woman visit over the next several years. In addition to immunizations and smoking, subsequent topics may include osteoporosis, adolescent gynecology, healthy weight management and diabetes, and integrative medicine.
New Manager of Cancer Project
Please join us in welcoming Courtney Ronner as the latest addition to the ACOG District II staff. As Manager of Cancer Projects, Courtney is responsible for coordinating cancer related efforts associated with District II's Well Women Initiative.
Courtney has always been passionate about women's health care and has a strong background in public health. She joins us from Columbia University, College of Physicians and Surgeons where she worked in the Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. While there, Courtney focused on marketing and outreach efforts for several divisions. Prior to her position at Columbia University, she was an Associate for Public Policy at the New York State Association of Health Care Providers, Inc.
Courtney is active in the Northeast Kidney Foundation as well as the Leukemia and Lymphoma Society of New York City. She graduated from Siena College with a B.A. in Political Science and Women's Studies.
Membership & Meetings
District II Election Results are In
Please join us in congratulating our new District and Section officers who take office this October:
2011-2014 ACOG Fellow District Officers-Elect
2011-2014 ACOG Fellow Section Officers-Elect
Call for Nominations
Nominations are currently being accepted for the positions of Chair and Vice Chair for the following District II Sections: Section 1 (Manhattan), Section 4 (Long Island), and Section 7 (Hudson Valley). The terms of office for Section Chair and Vice Chair are three years, beginning in November 2012 and ending in October 2015.
By June 1st, Fellows from these Sections who are interested in running for the position of Section Chair or Vice Chair should submit the items listed below to District II via email, firstname.lastname@example.org, or mail, ACOG District II, 152 Washington Ave., Albany, NY 12210.
- A letter stating the office or offices for which they would like to be a candidate;
- A one-page summary statement of their curriculum vitae (Click Here for a sample of this format); and
- A complete curriculum vitae.
District II Announces ACOG Leadership Institute Participants
The ACOG Leadership Institute is designed to give high potential ob-gyn's the tools to distinguish themselves among their peers. The 2011 program is entitled Leading Transformation in the 21st Century for Women's Healthcare. The program offers a series of non-traditional, interactive workshops in an intensive four-day course. Physicians gain an introspective look at their personality traits and leadership skills. The 2011 program will begin on April 13 in Chapel Hill, North Carolina and District II is pleased to announce participation by the following Fellows: Ana Cepin, MD, FACOG, Adina Keller, MD, FACOG, Laura MacIsaac, MD, MPH, FACOG, and Sandra McCalla, MD, FACOG. For additional information on the Institute, please Click Here.
District II Awards and Recognition
Throughout the year, District II has the opportunity to recognize those Fellows whose efforts go above and beyond the typical day-to-day activities of the specialty. The following nominations have been submitted to ACOG National for review by the Committee on Honors and Recognition - please join us in wishing these Fellows good-luck!
- Cynthia Chazotte, MD, FACOG, has been nominated to receive the 2011 Outstanding District Service Award for her tireless effort in the area of maternal mortality prevention education.
- Dianna Contreras, MD, FACOG has been nominated to receive the ACOG Mentor Award for her assiduous efforts as a role model for today's Young Physicians leaders.
Junior Fellows in the News
The following residents have been selected to participate in the Ob/Gyn Reporter Program during the 2011 Annual Clinical Meeting in San Francisco this spring: Erin C. Gertz, MD (Beth Israel Medical Center); Jamie H. Chao, MD (Albany Medical Center); Jamie Kramer, MD (New York Presbyterian/Weill Cornell Medical College); Jaclyn Taub, MD (Maimonides Medical Center). Junior Fellows participate in an outstanding education program designed for the reporters, in addition to the unique opportunity to learn a lot about ACOG/The College. Click Here to read the reports from District II 2010 participants Sharmilee Thota, MD, (Bronx Lebanon); Charnetta Smith, MD, (Westchester Medical Center); Tamatha Britt Fenster, MD, (Beth Israel Medical Center); and Elise J. Simons, MD, (University of Rochester).
Call for Participation - Junior Fellows in Section 6 (Buffalo) & Section 8 (Bronx)
District II is seeking interested and qualified Junior Fellows for Section Vice Chair positions for the 2011-2012 term. The Junior Fellow Section Vice Chair ideally serves a two-year term: one year as Section Vice Chair followed by one year as Section Chair. Please contact Carolyn Barie via email, email@example.com, if you are interested in becoming involved with District II.
Attention Medical Students
Interested in attending a District II meeting? The John Gibbons Medical Student Travel Award is available to provide financial help for medical students to attend ACOG meetings. Click Here to see a list of our upcoming meetings. Click Here for more information on the travel award.
- New Medicare Annual Wellness Visit Benefit Confuses Patients and Providers - Click Here
- Medical Malpractice Liability in the Age of Electronic Health Records - Click Here
Patient Safety & Quality Improvement
Attention OB Chairs
In January, the ACOG District II Patient Safety and Quality Improvement (PSQI) Committee mailed a letter to NYS hospital obstetric department chairs requesting a copy of protocols and/or checklists on the following subjects:
- Massive Obstetrical Hemorrhage
- Hypertensive Crisis
- Shoulder Dystocia
- Use of Oxytocin for Labor Augmentation
The committee will create an online e-library of model protocols and/or checklists so that hospitals may tailor their own protocols. If you have yet to receive this letter, please contact Kelly Gilchrist, Medical Education & Patient Safety Manager at firstname.lastname@example.org
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