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 Weekly Member Update - August 26, 2011

Annual Meeting Attendees are Going Mobile

Federal Insurance Plan Provides Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions

One Question

This week we want to hear from our Annual Meeting attendees.  Are you bringing a mobile device to the meeting?  Tell us here

Annual Meeting Attendees are Going Mobile
ASSH has launched our first mobile application to help you navigate the 66th Annual Meeting in Las Vegas.  Download ASSH's first mobile app, ASSH AM 2011, to find everything you need for the 66th Annual Meeting. 
Need help getting started?  Watch our How-To Video.  Read the Mobile App FAQ.
ASSH AM 2011 includes a complete program listing with full session descriptions, a do-it-yourself schedule builder, conference center maps, exhibitor descriptions, speaker information, access to all available handouts for symposia and instructional courses, all available abstracts for clinical papers and posters, and access to the popular e-posters (coming later this month).

Thank You to AFSH Donors

J. John Bock, MD*
Morris Button, MD
Eric S. Gaenslen, MD
Julie A. Katarincic, MD*
John M. Rayhack, MD*
Patrick K. Stewart, MD
Charles L. Sullivan, MD
Tsu-Min Tsai, MD
Stefan V. Zachary, DO, MS

* Indicates contributions made in memory of James H. Dobyns, MD
Learn how you can donate in many ways including autopay, by check or with stock.

Apply Now for a Core Competency Innovation grant

OMeGA Medical Grants Association is now accepting applications for Core Competency Innovation grants for the 2011-'12 academic year. 

Applications from residency programs should promote education of the six ACGME core competencies (patient care, medical knowledge, practice-based learning and improvement, interpersonal and communication skills, professionalism, and systems-based practice).

Grants up to $20,000 are available, and initial funds will be distributed in November.  Applications will be accepted through September 16, 2011, 5 p.m. CDT.  Visit the OMeGA Medical Grants Association website for more information and to apply.

PDRP gives physicians a choice in regard to prescribing data - from AMA

The use of physician prescribing information by the pharmaceutical industry is a complex issue. As the debate continues, physicians and opinion leaders are voicing broadly disparate opinions.

Proponents of restricting access to physician prescribing information argue that pharmaceutical sales representatives use the data to persuade physicians to prescribe brand-name drugs. They contend that brand-name drugs are often more costly and that generic versions may be available at a lower price.

Opponents argue that physicians will prescribe the most appropriate medication for their patients regardless of pharmaceutical sales pitches. They contend that releasing prescribing data minimizes irrelevant sales calls because the data allow the reps to better understand physician needs and to deliver pertinent materials and samples.

​In consideration of the diverse opinions surrounding physician prescribing data, the American Medical Association (AMA) in 2006 created the Physician Data Restriction Program (PDRP). This unique AMA program offers physicians control over their prescribing data and whether it can be shared with pharmaceutical representatives. Although the AMA does not collect physician prescribing data, the PDRP allows the AMA to communicate and enforce physician preferences to health care information organizations (HIOs) that do collect this data. Without AMA involvement, HIOs would still collect the data, but physicians would have no control over how it is used.

As of June 2011, more than 28,000 physicians have registered for the PDRP. An AMA survey found 96 percent of the physicians that expressed an opinion on PDRP were either satisfied or very satisfied with the program. The PDRP is offered and promoted to all physicians, both AMA members and nonmembers.

Visit the AMA website to learn more about the PDRP.

Federal Insurance Plan Provides Coverage for Pre-Existing Conditions - from AMA

Under the Affordable Care Act (ACA), uninsured children and adults who have pre-existing health conditions can secure comprehensive health care coverage through the Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plan (PCIP) until the new insurance market rules take effect in 2014. At that time, PCIP enrollees will transition to the health insurance exchanges that will be established in every state.

Last month, the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) outlined more flexible steps that physicians can take to help PCIP applicants secure coverage in states where the federal government administers the plan. Previously, applicants had to provide a denial letter from an insurance company to prove they had a pre-existing condition. Now physicians can supply PCIP applicants with a letter stating that the applicant either currently has a medical condition, disability or illness, or that the applicant had one within the last 12 months.

This is a major step toward ensuring that patients get the care they need. HHS has provided a simple letter that physicians can use.

Visit the PCIP website to learn more about PCIP eligibility. The website also explains PCIP benefits and rates and how to apply in each state.