Leadership News

The Annual Georgia Medical Student Family Medicine Day a Great Success!

Thirty-five medical students from Georgia attended the Annual Family Medicine Day in Athens on Saturday, March 2nd. The much-anticipated event brought together medical students, residents, and residency programs from across Georgia. It was a day packed with inspiration, clinical skills development, and connection building. The Georgia Academy would like to thank everyone for their participation this year, and most importantly, the Georgia residency programs and faculty for their continued support and participation in our residency fair.

Yasir Anzar (M4) says “It was one of the best experiences I have ever had in any conference of such nature. Not overly crowded, very professional staff, great food, fantastic environment and, not to mention, a stipend for medical students. I hope GAFP maintains this level of excellence in the future.”

Keshia Parker (M2) says “The conference was great! I learned a lot about the opportunities in Georgia and was able to make some great connections.”

For more information, updates and photos visit www.gafp.org/members/students/.

Board Meets with AMA President-Elect – Dr. Patrice Harris

The Georgia Academy Board of Directors met in Athens on March 3rd and invited AMA President-Elect Patrice Harris, MD to present on leadership.  Dr. Harris, an Atlanta-based child psychiatrist, has been a long-time supporter of family physicians and works tirelessly to improve the resource gap for children with mental illness. Dr. Harris also stressed the importance of physician leadership and working within our organization to activate leaders. The Board went on to review leadership and other initiatives related to our strategic plan. Click here to review the strategic plan:  https://www.gafp.org/medical-home/about/2017-2020-strategic-plan/

Nominations Now Open for 2019 GAFP Awards

To My Colleagues:

It’s award nomination season and we’d like you to think about honoring a fellow Georgia family physician, or a deserving student or resident in your program. Please help me and the rest of your Georgia family physicians in recognizing exemplary service to the profession of family medicine and contributions to our State, by nominating someone for one of the following awards:

Awards Deadline To Submit Nominations
Family Medicine Resident of the Year April 12, 2019
Keith Ellis Resident Scholarship April 12, 2019
T.A. Sappington, MD Award April 12, 2019
Family Medicine Community and Volunteer Services Award May 3, 2019
Georgia Family Physician of The Year May 3, 2019
Family Medicine Educator of The Year May 3, 2019

The Membership Committee will nominate a slate to be approved by the Board of Directors, and presentation of the awards will be held during the 2019 GAFP Annual Meeting in November.

Many noteworthy colleagues may not have been considered for an award because they were not nominated.  To download an electronic copy of the awards nomination package go to http://www.gafp.org/awards.asp.  Please complete the nomination form and return it via email to Angela Flanigan at aflanigan@gafp.org, or by fax (404) 321-7450.

The awards nomination package includes the awards and criteria, nomination forms and a list of past winners of each award.

If you have questions, please contact Angela Flanigan at 1-800-392-3841 or aflanigan@gafp.org.


Donald L. Fordham, MD, FAAFP

President, Georgia Academy of Family Physicians

Family Physicians Leading in Advocacy

On February 28th over 200 physicians and medical students stormed the State Capitol to bring the Georgia Academy’s legislative priorities to the Georgia General Assembly.  Governor Brian Kemp made welcoming remarks and Medicaid Chief Blake Fulenwider gave the group an update on current state health policy initiatives.

GAFP’s current legislative priorities are listed below:

House Bill 287 (Sponsor Rep. Matt Dubnik – Gainesville)

Workforce – Preceptor Tax Credit – Support tax credits for community-based physician faculty to precept Georgia medical students, physician assistants and advanced practice registered nurses.  (Pending House Ways and Means Committee – as of February 27)

Senate Bill 106 (Sponsor Senator Blake Tillery – Augusta)

Medicaid – Support Medicaid innovations (state waivers) to provide affordable access to health insurance for low income Georgians and stabilize the current insurance market for individuals and small businesses.  (Passed the Senate on February 26!!  Now heads to the House.)

House Bill 63 (Sponsor Rep. Sharon Cooper – Marietta)

Insurance – Step Therapy – Support legislation to require insurance (non-ERISA) and State Health Benefit Plans to have a process for step therapy exception protocols.  (Passed the House and now pending in the Senate Insurance Committee)

House Bill 409 (Sponsor Rep. Alan Powell – Hartwell/Senate Bill 109 (Sponsor Sen. Larry Walker – Perry)

Patient Safety – Oppose legislation that would allow APRN’s to order imaging without supervision of a physician and would also allow physicians to increase supervision from four to eight advance practice nurses at the same time in active practice.  The Georgia Academy has concerns about additional abundance of over-imaging of patients by allowing non-physicians to order screenings.  The GAFP also believes that increasing the number of active APRN’s working concurrently under a physician’s supervision diminishes the ability to provide accurate review of patient care. (Pending in the House Special Committee on Access to Quality Health Care / Passed in Senate Health Committee)

House Bill 416 (Sponsor State Rep. Rick Williams – Milledgeville

Child Safety – Oppose legislation that would create a state vaccine board to allow easing of mandatory childhood vaccines.  This legislation would reduce Georgia’s child immunization rates.  It would also be duplicative of the federal National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program.  Vaccines save lives by preventing disease. (Pending in the House Health & Human Services Committee.)

Thank you GAFP leaders who made the time to support our advocacy by connecting with our legislators.  Save the date for the 2020 Day at the Capitol – Thursday, March 5.

Sponsor of HB 287 (Tax Credit for Preceptor) State Rep Matt Dubnik – Gainesville joins Drs Monica Newton and Amy Bailey

Medical students at Capitol with past presidents’ Drs Mitch Cook and Mitzi Rubin

Georgia Academy Board-chair, Loy “Chip” Cowart, MD and President, Donald L. Fordham, MD pictured with State Representative Terry Bruce

Save the Date – April 23, 2019 – Georgia Medicaid Fair in Savannah

Spring Medicaid Fair

Save the Date

Dear Georgia Medicaid Providers and Stakeholders:

The Department of Community Health (DCH) and DXC Technology encourage you to save the date for our next Medicaid Fair!


Tuesday, April 23, 2019
Savannah Convention Center

1 International Drive

Savannah, Georgia 31421

The Medicaid Fair offers important updates on emergent issues by DCH leadership and more than a dozen break-out sessions covering a variety of topics. In addition, Care Management Organizations will be onsite to answer your questions. DCH and DXC Technology are also bringing back several 30-minute break-out sessions so you can get as much out of your Medicaid Fair day as possible. Please stay tuned for additional details. Registration information will be posted soon.

Want to help shape our agenda?

To ensure our planned break-out sessions (including time for questions and answers) address relevant topics for you, please submit your suggested breakout topics to GeorgiaMedicaidFair@dxc.com no later than Friday, March 1, 2019. The agenda will be developed based on your feedback and registration details will be posted soon.

Do you need more information about the Savannah Convention Center?

For location and directions to the Medicaid Fair, please visit the Savannah Convention Center website at:    http://www.savtcc.com/

Thank you for your continued participation in the Georgia Medicaid program. We look forward to seeing you on, Tuesday, April 23, 2019 in Savannah!


Georgia Department of Community Health

DXC Technology