Improve the health of the people of Wisconsin by supporting and strengthening physicians' ability to practice high-quality patient care in a changing environment.

Medigram: February 7, 2013

Top Story

Nominees for Society offices selected
The Nominating Committee of the Wisconsin Medical Society’s Board of Directors prepared a slate of nominees for Society offices during its meeting on January 25. Nominating Committee members selected the nominees after carefully reviewing the candidates’ written submissions, interviewing the candidate for the position of president-elect and engaging in deliberations. Read more.

News Briefs

Medicaid primary care pay increase
estimated at 78%, will be retroactive to Jan. 1

Primary care physicians in Wisconsin who provide services to Medicaid beneficiaries will receive a significant increase in payments retroactive to January 1, 2013 – the effective date of an Affordable Care Act (ACA) provision to boost Medicaid pay rates to Medicare levels. The Wisconsin Department of Health Services (DHS) expects to begin making retroactive payments by mid-2013, after all of the required system changes are implemented. Read more.

Council on Ethics meets Friday
The Wisconsin Medical Society’s Council on Health Care Ethics will continue its discussion about neonatal ethics and shared decision making during its meeting at 10 a.m. tomorrow. The guest speaker will be Kellie Lang, JD, RN, assistant adjunct professor of bioethics and medical humanities at the Medical College of Wisconsin. Read more.

New partnership streamlines continuing education process
Registering for and participating in the Wisconsin Medical Society’s wide range of learning opportunities just got a whole lot easier. In partnership with InReach, the Society now offers online registration for live and on-demand webinars as well as the Society’s highly popular seminars. For more than a decade, InReach has provided continuing education management solutions to hundreds of organizations, including the Texas, Oregon and Florida medical associations. Read more.

CMS releases Sunshine Act final rule
The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid (CMS) released last Friday the long-delayed final rule implementing the Physician Payments Sunshine Act. The Sunshine Act, part of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act, requires manufacturers of drugs, devices, biologicals and medical supplies covered by Medicare, Medicaid or the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) to report payments or other transfers of value they make to physicians and teaching hospitals to CMS. Additionally, the final rule requires applicable manufacturers and group purchasing organizations (GPOs) to disclose to CMS physician ownership or investment interests. Read more.

Consider the Conversation on statewide
public television next week

Consider the Conversation: A Documentary on a Taboo Subject will air on Wisconsin Public Television’s (WPT’s) statewide network at 9 p.m. Wednesday, February 13. The documentary focuses on the challenges faced by patients, families and physicians near the end of life. Co-producers Mike Bernhagen and Terry Kaldhusdal presented the film at the Society’s 2011 Annual Meeting, and Bernhagen is a member of the Statewide Steering Committee for Honoring Choices Wisconsin, the Society’s advance care planning initiative. Read more.

Essays about rural health sought, $2,500 cash prize to be awarded
The Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative (RWHC) is seeking submissions for the 21st Annual Monato Rural Essay Prize, a competition highlighting the importance of rural health. The competition, in memory of Hermes Monato, Jr., who worked at RWHC, features a $2,500 cash award. Students at all University of Wisconsin (UW) System campuses are eligible. Read more.