Latest News

  • November 10, 2020 4:00 PM | Anonymous

    Wisconsin Health News

    Wisconsin had the largest drug take back collection in the country this year during a national daylong event in late October, Attorney General Josh Kaul said Monday. 

    The state collected 89,982 pounds of unused and unwanted medications on Oct. 24.

    Kaul said in a statement that the “efforts help with the fight against substance-use disorder by ensuring that those unused medications won’t be diverted.”

    Across the state, 230 law enforcement agencies hosted events and collected drugs from 485 permanent drug disposal boxes.

    The drugs will head to Indianapolis where they’ll be incinerated. 
  • November 01, 2020 12:08 PM | Anonymous

    Financial planning now available to WisMed members

    In order to help Wisconsin Medical Society members be secure, the Society has launched WisMed Financial, Inc. “Helping members with their finances can change the direction of a family and is a tremendous responsibility. WisMed Financial will have a meaningful and positive influence for our members,” said Mark Ziety, CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™. And the data supports it. Fifty percent of physicians under age 40 who use a professional financial advisor are ahead in savings, emergency funds and retirement tools according to a report.

    To ensure the client’s interest always comes first, the company follows a no commission, fee-only model and is held to the fiduciary legal standard. According to The White Coat Investor®, it is estimated that 80% of doctors need, want and should use a financial planner and/or an investment manager. So it was important to put these high standards in place at the company’s creation.

    Providing top-notch service and products is critical, too. The firm is partnering with TD Ameritrade, RightCapital and other industry leaders. In addition, Mark Ziety brings more than 15 years of experience, he is a CERTIFIED FINANCIAL PLANNER™ and Accredited Investment Fiduciary®.

    The company helps members invest and plan for retirement, eliminate student loans, reduce taxes, plan for their family (wills and trust), charitable strategies, college funding and other personal financial matters. Mark can be reached at mark.ziety@wismedfinancial.org or 608.442.3750. 

    Packers, other state pro teams join WisMed in COVID coalition

    The Green Bay Packers, Milwaukee Brewers and Milwaukee Bucks have joined the ever-growing coalition of health care, business and government advocacy organizations urging the public to help control the spread of COVID-19. The Stop the COVID Spread! coalition also released another public service announcement statewide on October 26 featuring the Packers’ Adrian Amos, Kenny Clark and Marquez Valdes-Scantling. This new message follows on the heels of another PSA featuring former Wisconsin Governor and current UW System President Tommy Thompson.

    The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is a founding member of the coalition, helping to launch the campaign earlier this month.

    “The Packers playing in an empty Lambeau Field really drives home the point of what can happen when a pandemic hits our state,” Society CEO Bud Chumbley, MD, MBA, said. “I know we all miss getting together with our family and friends to do things like watch the Packers play, so we hope the message of masking, hand washing and social distancing coming from some of Green Bay’s finest themselves will grab people’s attention.”

    The Society is also using its social media accounts to help share these safe behavior messages; Society members are encouraged to share, retweet and post those messages on their own personal accounts.

    Contact Society Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD for more information.

    SARS-CoV-2 CME series begins next week with Virus Biology and Vaccine Development

    Scott S. Terhune, PhD, Professor of Microbiology & Immunology and Biomedical Engineering at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), kicks off the first of five sessions in the Wisconsin Medical Society’s SARS-CoV-2 CME Town Hall Series* with the presentation Virus Biology and Vaccine Development.

    Terhune received his PhD from Northwestern University and his postdoctoral training at Princeton University. He participates in both graduate student and medical student education at MCW focusing on virus replication and infection. Research in the Terhune laboratory focuses on defining how human cytomegalovirus manipulates human cells and alters networks of interactions to support infection.

    This webinar is free for Wisconsin Medical Society members, but registration is required to attend.

    Session topics and schedule for the entire series are listed below. All live presentations will be held from 12:15 – 12:45 p.m. To view the sessions and to register click here.

    November 4, 2020: SARS-CoV-2 Virus Biology and Vaccine Development
    November 11, 2020: The Current State of Therapeutics
    November 18, 2020: Communicability and Public Health Response
    November 25, 2020: The Convergence of Seasonal Flu and SARS-CoV-2
    December 2, 2020: Combating COVID-19 Challenges in Disadvantaged Populations – a Case Study

    Please email education@wismed.org with any questions.

    *This activity has been approved for AMA PRA Category 1 credit™.

    Governor’s prescription costs task force releases final recommendations

    Governor Tony Evers’s Task Force on Reducing Prescription Drug Prices released its final recommendations October 21 on potential future state law and policies that could improve prescription drug accessibility and affordability. The task force membership included 21 people from diverse backgrounds, including members from the state executive and legislative branches and private citizens with health care, insurance and consumer experience. Wisconsin Medical Society member Michael Goldrosen, MD, was a task force member.

    The task force divided their recommendations into separate tiers: those with support from a majority of the task force, issues for further consideration and issues that came up but weren’t discussed thoroughly. Among the top-tier items:

    • Passing legislation related to pharmacy benefit managers (PBM) similar to a bill proposed and amended this legislative session (Assembly Bill 114 as amended by Assembly Substitute Amendment 1) that passed the state assembly unanimously but did not receive a state senate vote.
    • Limiting what insurers can charge for a month’s insulin supply.
    • Requiring companies in the prescription drug supply chain to provide information to aid transparency in understanding the cost drivers of high-costs prescription drugs.
    • Increasing the number of state Department of Justice consumer protection and antitrust attorneys focused on improper drug company practices.
    • Developing a statewide medication repository with a centralized prescription drug inventory or collaborating with an existing system in another state.

    The entire 156-page report is available here, along with information about the task force’s activities and membership. An executive summary is here. It is likely that some items in the report could be included in Governor Evers’s next biennial budget proposal, which will be unveiled in the winter of 2021.

    Contact Society Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD for more information. 

  • October 23, 2020 12:35 PM | Anonymous

    In partnership with American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists (ACOG), the American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) is providing courses to help providers, who care for pregnant women, obtain their X-Waiver and feel more comfortable with management of substance use disorders during pregnancy.

    They are also offering a question + answer session to focus on more specific, provider-driven concerns and to offer mentorship.

    Please share on your networks!

    Here is the link: https://www.asam.org/education/live-online-cme/waiver-qualifying-training/ob-gyn-focus

  • October 22, 2020 3:20 PM | Anonymous

    Wisconsin DHS

    The COVID-19 pandemic has presented challenges in healthcare for those who may be at greater risk for adverse health outcomes such as people who use drugs or people who have a substance use disorder. To better facilitate provision of care, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) organized a COCA Call on Thursday, October 22 to help improve understanding among clinicians of the concerns of people who use drugs and people who have a substance use disorder. The COCA Call featured speakers from CDC, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), and the American Society for Addiction Medicine (ASAM).

    During the COCA Call, subject matter experts highlighted existing resources and exceptions for clinicians who prescribe medications for opioid use disorder, increased awareness of existing community-based linkage to care resources, and discussed the outpatient telemedicine experience from a front-line provider perspective.

    If you were unable to attend the live COCA call, the recording and slide set will be available for viewing on the COCA Call webpage a few hours after the live event.

    Free Continuing Education (CE) will be offered for the COCA Call.

  • October 07, 2020 4:57 PM | Anonymous

    WISAM has joined the Vote Safe Wisconsin 2020 Coalition! We are committed to sharing with our community partners about encouraging safe voting. We encourage you to vote absentee, early, or with a mask and social distance at the polls! Join us and learn more: https://www.wpha.org/mpage/VoteSafeWisconsin2020


  • October 06, 2020 11:50 AM | Anonymous

    WISAM is pleased to share these updates from our partners at the WI Medical Society

    As Governor extends statewide mask order, the Society urges proactive public behaviors

    As Governor Tony Evers declared a new public health emergency and issued a new face covering mandate on September 22 due to increases in the state’s COVID-19 case rate, the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) took the opportunity to remind the public how they can take proactive measures to help reduce the spread of the virus, regardless of any government action related to the pandemic.

    In a media statement sent statewide the afternoon of the Governor’s announcement, Society CEO Bud Chumbley, MD, MBA, emphasized how mask wearing, physical distancing and regular hand washing are proven effective strategies to reduce the spread of COVID-19. “If we all agree to take simple steps, we can reduce the spread of the pandemic and protect our state’s physical and economic health,” Dr. Chumbley said in the statement. “We strongly urge everyone to wear masks, maintain social distancing and continue to wash hands often and thoroughly,” Dr. Chumbley said. The statement also emphasized that with seasonal influenza season looming, getting a flu vaccination is another action individuals can take that helps protect themselves and the public.

    The statement is the latest in a series of actions the Society has taken to help remind the public of their important role in helping stem community spread, including three public service announcements that have been aired on statewide television and on the Society’s various social media channels.

    Contact Mark Grapentine, JD for more information.

    Medical Examining Board concerned over possible proposal to change nursing collaboration requirement

    Many physician members of the state’s Medical Examining Board (MEB) raised concerns at its monthly meeting on September 16 over a potential Board of Nursing (BON) proposal that would repeal a requirement that Advanced Practice Nurse Prescribers (APNP) work in collaboration with at least one physician or dentist. While the MEB does not have jurisdiction over how nurses are regulated, numerous MEB members were concerned that such a proposal would have negative impacts on Wisconsin’s high-quality health care system.

    The MEB’s concerns rose from a BON meeting on Sept. 10, which included initialization of the process used to change the administrative code: preparing a proposed “Scope Statement” laying out the desired change. The specific scope statement proposal, which requires approval from the Governor before it can be developed further, was included in yesterday’s MEB agenda for discussion.

    State MEB administrative staff indicated that the BON may be withdrawing or further modify the scope statement and said a BON subcommittee will be discussing the issue Sept. 18. The Society will attend that subcommittee meeting and has already been in contact with other physician-centric advocacy organizations to ensure all are aware of the possible attempt to alter the collaboration requirement.

    In other action, the MEB unanimously approved its own scope statement for a regulatory update that would extend the current requirement for physicians holding a U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration number to complete controlled substance education as part of the 30 hour biennial license requirement.

    That statement will now be sent to the Governor for review; the Board will further develop the rule following the Governor’s likely approval.

    Contact Society Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD  for more information.

    Society's COVID-19 Task Force asks physicians to review DHS alert on antigen testing

    The Wisconsin Medical Society’s (Society) COVID-19 Task Force recommends that Wisconsin physicians review a COVID-19 Health Alert on antigen testing issued today, September 24, by the state’s Department of Health Services’ (DHS) Bureau of Communicable Diseases.

    Calling this testing an “important and evolving topic,” DHS Chief Medical Officer and State Epidemiologist for Communicable Diseases Ryan Westergaard, MD, PhD, MPH, provides important information regarding various aspects of this type of testing, including considerations for using antigen tests in symptomatic vs. asymptomatic patients, the characteristics of the antigen tests for SARS-CoV-2 currently available and a list of antigen tests currently authorized for use in the U.S.

    The Society’s COVID-19 Task Force continues to meet biweekly as Wisconsin battles the pandemic, and regularly updates relevant information on the Society’s COVID-19 Resources webpage.

    Contact Society CEO Bud Chumbley, MD, MBA with any questions for the COVID-19 Task Force.

    Virtual Trivia – October 8

    Join your fellow Wisconsin Medical Society members for a virtual WisMed Meet Up! Trivia nights provide an opportunity to connect with your peers across the state from the comfort of your home.

    The Society will create trivia teams, or you are welcome to invite colleagues to create a team of your own by emailing Jess. (Maximum of 4 people per team).

    Date: Thursday, October 8, 2020
    Time: 6:00-7:00 p.m.
    Register here! 

    Gift cards will be awarded to the winning team! Please contact our Membership Specialist at jessica.schreiter@wismed.org with any questions.

    Thanks to Exact Sciences for sponsoring this member exclusive event!

  • October 05, 2020 11:48 AM | Anonymous

    The Wisconsin Elections Commission encourages every eligible citizen to vote and to become involved in the election process. One way to get involved is to become an Election Day poll worker, also known as an election inspector).  

    Citizen involvement is essential to conduct open, accurate and fair elections in Wisconsin. And, Addiction Medicine Physicians as well as other healthcare providers are uniquely positioned given the comfort level with PPE.

    There are several different jobs at polling places in Wisconsin, all of which are appointed by municipal clerks. Learn more at elections.wi.gov.

  • October 02, 2020 11:58 AM | Anonymous

    In response to the increasing COVID-19 cases, Governor Evers announced a new Emergency Order—EO-2.  Included in this new order are new provisions applicable to health care providers including interstate reciprocity, credentialing, and Telemedicine.  

    In addition, the provisions from previously released EO-16 related to physician assistants and nurses are included by reference.  The new order is effective immediately and unless suspended by the legislature or the courts, will remain in effect for the duration of the federal declared public health emergency.  

    View the Governor's press release

  • October 01, 2020 4:02 PM | Anonymous

    U.S. Department of Health & Human Services | HHS.gov

    Today, under the leadership of President Trump, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS), through the Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA), is announcing $20 billion in new funding for providers on the frontlines of the coronavirus pandemic. Under this Phase 3 General Distribution allocation, providers that have already received Provider Relief Fund payments will be invited to apply for additional funding that considers financial losses and changes in operating expenses caused by the coronavirus. Previously ineligible providers, such as those who began practicing in 2020 will also be invited to apply, and an expanded group of behavioral health providers confronting the emergence of increased mental health and substance use issues exacerbated by the pandemic will also be eligible for relief payments.

    Providers can begin applying for funds on Monday, October 5, 2020.

    “HHS has worked to ensure that all American healthcare providers receive support from the Provider Relief Fund in a fast and fair way, and this new round helps ensure that we are reaching America’s essential behavioral health providers and takes into account losses and expenses relating to coronavirus,” said HHS Secretary Alex Azar. “We’ve worked with all of the resources we have across HHS to ensure that America’s heroic healthcare providers know they can apply for support.”

    HHS has already issued over $100 billion in relief funding to providers through prior distributions. Still, HHS recognizes that many providers continue to struggle financially from COVID-19’s impact. For eligible providers, the new Phase 3 General Distribution is designed to balance an equitable payment of 2 percent of annual revenue from patient care for all applicants plus an add-on payment to account for revenue losses and expenses attributable to COVID-19.

    Further, HHS recognizes constraints such as the stay-at-home orders and social isolation have been particularly difficult for many Americans. A recent Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) report found the prevalence of symptoms of anxiety disorder in the second quarter of 2020 was approximately three times those that reported in the second quarter of 2019 (25.5% versus 8.1%); and the prevalence of depressive disorder was approximately four times that reported in the second quarter of 2019 (24.3% versus 6.5%). Our behavioral health providers have shouldered the burden of responding and confronting this expanded challenge triggered by the pandemic. When traditional face-to-face counseling was restricted and new telehealth flexibilities were put in place in response to the pandemic, many behavioral health providers invested in and adopted - PDF telehealth technologies to continue providing patient care. While some Medicare or Medicaid behavioral health providers have already received prior General Distribution payments, others have not. Working with the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), HRSA developed a list of the nation’s behavioral health providers now eligible for funding, which includes, for example, addiction counseling centers, mental health counselors, and psychiatrists.

    Read more.

  • September 16, 2020 2:54 PM | Anonymous

    National Addiction Treatment Week is an initiative which promotes that addiction is a disease, evidence-based treatments are available, and recovery is possible. The week also highlights the need for clinicians to enter the field of addiction medicine. Join us October 19 - 25, 2020!

    The American Society of Addiction Medicine (ASAM) launched National Addiction Treatment Week in 2017 along with partner organizations in order to generate awareness of the disease of addiction and push for more medical professionals to enter the field of addiction medicine.

    Find more information on the website and stay tuned as WISAM shares information, resources and more leading up to and during this designated week!

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