Archive for March, 2015

CMS’ Practice Transformation Network (PTN) – Get Involved! Recruitment Webinar for Georgia Clinicians

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The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services Innovation Center (CMMI) will be funding Practice Transformation Networks (PTNs) to provide on-the-ground technical assistance to help primary and specialty care practices achieve the Triple Aim (better health, better care, at lower cost) and thrive in the pay-for-value environment.

The Iowa Healthcare Collaborative (IHC), Telligen, Georgia Academy of Family Physicians, and five other state-based organizations are working together to become a PTN through this innovative grant. The PTN will work together to offer population-based health management, and educate clinicians’ on value-based contracting versus fee-for-service, with the ultimate goal of improving common HEDIS measures related to chronic disease.

Join Dr. Tom Evans and our President, Dr. Wayne Hoffman on March 26th at 12:00pm or 6:30pm for a webinar to learn more about this exciting opportunity for transforming clinical practice. The webinar will be approximately one hour.

Register using this link -12:00pm: https://telligen.webex.com/telligen/onstage/g.php?MTID=e78ce26754093c3a3638254b937ac64c8  (or cut and paste into your browser)

Register using this link – 6:30pm: https://telligen.webex.com/telligen/onstage/g.php?MTID=ed778ae6d77123c89aa38966aaab9a9d5  (or cut and paste into your browser)

Following registration, you will receive login instructions.

*This opportunity excludes clinicians that participate in the following programs: Medicare ACO SSP, Medicare ACO Pioneer, Comprehensive Primary Care Initiative,and Multi-payer Advanced Primary Care Practice.

Summer Family Medicine Weekend Registration is now OPEN!

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The GAFP invites you to take advantage of the only early registration discount for the Summer Family Medicine Weekend, June 18-21, at the Sandestin Golf and Beach Resort in Destin, FL.  Early registration is $298 for GAFP and AAFP members and covers 15 CME credits*, networking opportunities, and family planned activities.

Over the course of the three day meeting, there is a robust selection of clinical topics including:  Sleep Disorders, Obesity, Concussion Guidelines, GI Diseases, PQRS Updates, and Meaningful Use.  We also balance the CME sessions with family and beach activities.  The full agenda is available to preview on the Summer Meeting Event Page.

In addition, GAFP will again offer three Self-Assessment Modules (SAMs) on the following topics:  Hypertension on Thursday from 1:00 pm – 5:00 pm; Heart Failure on Friday from 8:00 am – 12:00 pm; and Childhood Illness on Saturday from 2:30 pm – 6:30 pm.  Be sure to register early as the SAMs sessions sell out very quickly!

Sandestin is a premier destination Florida vacation resort including 30 charming village neighborhoods featuring condominiums, villas, town homes and a wide variety of hotel accommodations. The resort boasts more than seven miles of sugar-white sand beach and bayfront property, four championship golf courses, 15 world-class tennis courts, 19 swimming pools, a 113-slip marina, water sports, children’s programs, a fitness center and spa, 65,000 square feet of meeting space and a pedestrian village featuring a host of boutique shops, casual and fine dining restaurants, nightclubs and bars that come alive with strolling musicians, street performers, dancing fountains and lively festivals and events. This event sells out every year so make your hotel reservations now!  Call 1.800.320.8115 and ask for the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians’ room block.  Single room rates start at $219.

To learn more about the agenda and registration, visit the Summer Meeting Event Page and you can always call GAFP offices at 800-392-3841 to register by phone.

If you have any questions about the meeting schedule, registration or other concerns, feel free to contact Mary Claire Leverett at mleverett@gafp.org or 1-800-392-3841.

The Georgia Healthy Family Alliance Awards $12,000 in First Cycle 2015 Community Health Grants To Support Good Works of GAFP Members

The Georgia Healthy Family Alliance (GHFA) awarded three Community Health Grant Award applicants a total of $12,000 in first cycle 2015 grants.  Grant awards were made to GAFP member affiliated charitable organizations that support GHFA program priorities including underserved populations and outreach programs that promote healthy practices consistent with the principles of Family Medicine. The application deadline for second cycle grants is May 1, 2015. Visit http://www.georgiahealthyfamilyalliance.org/grants/  for more information or to download the application. The 2015 first cycle Community Health Grant Recipients are:

Martha Crenshaw, MD, Physicians Care Clinic, Dekalb County $4,000

In 2014, 50% of Physicians Care Clinic patients had high blood pressure, 19% high cholesterol, and 13% of patients were diabetic.  The clinic’s Chronic Disease and Diabetes Management Program is the only organized clinic program in DeKalb County offering on-going prevention and education classes and monitoring supplies. Many of the clinic’s diabetics have a history of not managing the disease effectively.  Financially, they have not had the ability to invest in regular medical treatment due to lack of insurance and the inability to pay out of pocket.  Funding from this grant will support the following outcomes: Improved A1C levels compared to baseline; compliance with chronic disease and diabetes–related medical care (eye/vision, foot care, etc.); improved cholesterol and B/P levels as well as diabetes education classes.

Ambar Kulshreshtha, MD, Emory Department of Family Medicine, Atlanta $4,000

The SIMPACT: Simple 7 and Million Hearts for Improving Cardiovascular Health and Compliance with Targets project hopes to use the Simple 7 and Million Hearts initiative for emphasizing health promotion among young adults and advancing population health with implementation of evidence based care at primary care level. Unhealthy diet, smoking and obesity are also prevalent among Georgia youth and the trends are concerning. CVD related behaviors develop early in life and are related to development of atherosclerotic plaques. Thus, modification of risk factors and health behaviors for CVD among youth must be reinforced and complemented at multiple levels of intervention. The goal of the SIMPACT project is twofold: at the community level,  to improve cardiovascular health education among Georgia youths through physician led lectures at participating colleges; at the clinic level, to conduct a quality improvement intervention for better compliance with evidence based guidelines.

Caleb King, GRU Medical Student, Equality Clinic, Augusta, $4,000

The Equality Clinic project will address the gap in care for the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender community in Augusta and surrounding areas. Equality Clinic serves those in the LGBTQ community who are underinsured or uninsured and fall below 200% of the federal poverty level. Wherever patients fall on the complex spectrums of gender identity they can come to Equality Clinic and discuss their specific health needs without fear of judgment or discrimination. Non-reusable supplies are the major source of clinic-to-clinic expenses. Their patients often have complex health conditions that require specific equipment (e.g. glucose strips), which must be kept stocked. Other supplies allow providers to narrow their differential diagnosis and provide the appropriate care (e.g. pregnancy tests). Having funding for these items will allow the Equality Clinic to focus on long-term needs such as more point-of-care testing equipment and community outreach.

These are only a few of the important programs your colleagues are lending their talents and time to statewide! Please consider making a contribution so that the Alliance can continue to support important projects like the six worthy projects we were unable to fund this grant cycle. All donations are tax deductible. Make your Alliance contribution easily online at http://www.georgiahealthyfamilyalliance.org/donate/ or contact Alliance staff at ksinkule@gafp.org or calling (800) 392-3841.

New AAFP Foundation Program: Family Medicine Leads

A new AAFP Foundation program, Family Medicine Leads, was created to ensure the future of the family medicine specialty by supporting efforts to fill the workforce pipeline with the quantity and quality of family physicians needed to improve the health of all people.

Through a year-round program building upon the National Conference of Family Medicine Residents and Students, the program will:

  • Increase the number of scholarships to National Conference from 200 to 250. Scholarships focus on rising second- and third-year students to influence their commitment to the specialty.
  • Deliver a competitive leadership development program, Family Medicine Leads Emerging Leader Institute. The program will begin with a post-National Conference event for selected applicants followed by project work over a 12-month period. The project will conclude with award recognition and related special opportunities. The experience is meant to enhance the interest and appeal of family medicine, while supporting the development of future family medicine leaders.

Applications for this program are due April 1.

Visit the AAFP Foundation website (www.aafpfoundation.org) to learn more about this exciting leadership development opportunity and Family Medicine Leads Scholarships for National Conference for students and residents. Chapters may wish to share this opportunity with students and residents.

Contact Phyllis Naragon at pnaragon@aafp.org or ext. 4410 with questions.

AAFP Urgent Request – Speak Out to Avoid Medicare 21 Percent Cut

On April 1, family physicians across the country face a dramatic 21% cut in their Medicare payments as a result of the flawed sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula. This failed policy has plagued physicians and has stunted innovation in care delivery for more than a decade. Ridding the Medicare program of this policy has been a top priority for the AAFP for several years.

The AAFP has been working aggressively and it is our understanding that the House of Representatives is very close to introducing SGR repeal and payment reform legislation based on the AAFP supported bipartisan/bicameral agreement reached in the 113th Congress. The current version of this proposal, developed by Speaker John Boehner, Democratic Leader Nancy Pelosi and Democratic Whip Steny Hoyer, has an excellent opportunity to be considered by the full House in the next 15 days. Passage in the House is a critical first step towards achieving our goal of repealing this failed payment formula once and for all.

We have two activities that we are soliciting your assistance with:

  1. Send a letter to your elected officials using Speak Out. Find a draft letter here: Chapter Sign On Letter
  2. Join the AAFP in a virtual lobby day on Thursday, March 19 urging the House of Representatives to pass SGR repeal and physician payment reform legislation.  AAFP is establishing a toll-free phone line that will connect family physicians with their Representatives.  Additional details that includes the toll free number will be pushed out in the next few days.