Archive for February, 2016

ABFM Offering FREE Support to Help Physicians Transition to Value-Based Care

The American Board of Family Medicine is sponsoring free support and tools to help GAFP members maximize and ease the transition to value-based care:

Georgia Academy of Family Physicians (GAFP) member practices can join the PRIME Registry for free for 3 years through the DAIQUERI Pilot.

The PRIME Registry turns your EHR data into actionable information

  • Easy to access dashboard for identifying and monitoring quality and care gaps across your practice
  • Integrates Maintenance of Certification-FP with your routine practice improvement efforts
  • Provides data extraction and submission pipeline for PQRS, Meaningful Use (and future MACRA/MIPS), research needs, and more
  • Nothing to buy from your EHR vendor. Our trusted technology partners at FIGmd use their Registry Connector interface—designed to work with more than 85 different EHRs—to retrieve both structured and unstructured data (e.g. physician notes, other free text) and turn it into measures that matter!

An additional benefit to those who participate in the PRIME registry through the DAIQUERI Pilot is the opportunity for Maintenance of Certification Part IV credit.

In order to sign up, simply go to the following link, fill out the information and sign the agreements to start.

Enrollment will end February 29 or at the first 50 physicians, whichever comes first.

If you would like additional information about the PRIME registry including the DAIQUERI Pilot

Contact John Johannides at

Celebrate Cancer Prevention Month by Helping Georgia Improve HPV Vaccination Rates

February 1, 2016

Dear Colleagues,

February is National Cancer Prevention Month. Cancer remains the second leading cause of death in Georgia. One major opportunity in cancer prevention is increasing completion of the HPV vaccination series among children age 13-17. We are making significant progress in vaccinating our children against the HPV virus, but we still lag behind compared to other required vaccinations like Tdap and Meningococcal.

You hold the power to change these statistics as a committed practitioner. Parents overwhelmingly listen to and act based solely on their doctor’s recommendation. In fact, studies have shown that a patient who receives a provider recommendation is four to five times more likely to receive the HPV vaccination.

Nearly 60 percent of males ages 13-17 in Georgia do not receive any doses of HPV vaccine. HPV can cause men to develop certain kinds of cancer. In particular, oral cancers (mouth, throat, tongue) attributable to HPV have been increasing over the past three decades in men. Thirty five percent of females ages 13-17 in Georgia do not receive any doses of HPV vaccine putting them at risk of cervical and other cancers. Getting vaccinated against HPV can help prevent these health problems.

Accordingly, the Georgia Department of Public Health and the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians ask for your help in improving rates of HPV vaccine completion for both males and females.

1.    Recommend the HPV vaccine to the parents of teens and children;

2.    Present the HPV vaccination as a strongly recommended vaccination; and

3.    Learn more about the HPV vaccine.

In an effort to improve education on HPV guidelines and recommendations, the CDC is offering free CE credits in a training called You Call the Shots Module on HPV. You Call the Shots is updated regularly to include the latest guidelines and recommendation in vaccine practice. Physicians can access the webinar here:

We know you have multiple priorities as they concern the health of your young patients; however, you have an opportunity to truly prevent some types of cancer in our future generations. Together, we will not only save the lives of Georgians, but we will also save future economic resources by preventing more cancer diagnoses.

Thank you for your continued commitment to the health of our children.


Brenda Fitzgerald, MD


Georgia Department of Public Health


Mitzi Rubin, MD, FAAFP


Georgia Academy of Family Physicians

Save the Date for the 2016 GAFP Summer Meeting!

Save the date for the GAFP’s 2016 Summer CME Meeting at the Omni Hilton Head, June 9th through the 12th.

Beat the mad rush and make your room reservation now! Room rates at the Omni Hilton Head start at $229 a night. To make your reservations, call 1-800-843-6664 and request the Georgia Academy of Family Physician’s room block, or get your room online at (GAFP room rates automatically applied).

Be on the lookout for additional meeting registration information in the coming weeks and check the event page on the GAFP Website for updates. Take advantage of the opportunity to earn up to 15 CME credits during the Summer Meeting! We look forward to seeing you in June!

Limited Number of Stipends Available for Tar Wars Presenters For Remainder of 2015-16 School Year!

The Georgia Healthy Family Alliance (GHFA) needs your help spreading the tobacco-free Tar Wars message to fourth- and fifth-grade students in all corners of Georgia.

A limited number of $150 stipends are available to FMIG and Family Medicine Resident groups who present the program in a school before the end of May 2016. Individual GAFP members are also eligible for $50 stipends to present the program. Please help us spread the tobacco-free Tar Wars message to youth in your community by volunteering just one hour of your time this school year.

Presenting Tar Wars is easy – and fun! We’ll mail a Tar Wars Classroom Kit to you with all the materials you will need for the presentation. The kit includes all the activity materials and handouts you’ll need, plus poster board and markers to help the students create posters “advertising” the benefits of  living a tobacco free life. Prior to the presentation, we can also schedule a presenter “training” session to review the Tar Wars Program Guide, which contains step-by-step instructions for each Tar Wars classroom activity.

Tar Wars can also be presented to both Boy Scout and Girl Scout Troops as well as youth after school enrichment programs, youth groups, etc. To volunteer or learn more about potential presentations in your area please contact Kara Sinkule at or call (404) 321-7445.

Tar Wars is a tobacco-free education program operated by the American Academy of Family Physicians for fourth- and fifth-grade students. The program is designed to teach kids about the short-term, image-based consequences of tobacco use, the cost associated with using tobacco products, new and emerging products like E-Cigarettes and the advertising techniques used by the tobacco industry to market their products to youth. To learn more visit the Tar Wars home page located at

*Stipends are made possible by the W.G. Raoul Foundation

GAFP and PeachState Collaborate to Enhance Primary Care for Patients with Inflammatory Bowel Disease

A new change in PeachState’s review process will allow coverage for family physicians and other primary care specialists to order Remicade for Inflammatory Bowel Disease (IBD). Peach State initiated this policy change in response to the collaborative initiative with the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians that began in August 2015.  Discussions between Peach State and GAFP originated from a report received from a GAFP physician member where a denial for coverage resulted in a patient hospitalization.  The denial for Remicade treatment was based primarily on the Centene/Peach State policy that emphasized physicians’ specialty in the determination of medical necessity.  The policy at that time required a gastroenterologist or colorectal specialist to be the ordering physician.  Upon review, PeachState and the Georgia Academy agreed that inflammatory bowel treatments fall within the purview of family medicine and other primary care specialties, who are capable of meeting other factors in the determination of medical necessity, including tissue biopsy diagnosis.  Peach State implemented this change in review process this January.  The Georgia Academy would like to thank Peach State for their continued efforts in supporting family medicine to improve the quality of care for the communities we serve.