September 16, 2021

GO PAC GO campaign kicks off to a strong first quarter
The GO PAC GO fundraising campaign kicked off on Monday with an email from the WISMedPAC board encouraging Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) members to get off the bench and get into the game.

State Medical Board discusses possible chaperone rule
The Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) had a lengthy discussion at its monthly meeting, September 15, on a potential administrative rule proposal that would require physicians to have a trained chaperone present when examining a patient’s breast, genitals or rectum, or inspecting parts of the body that could be near those areas.

Call for physician volunteers for telehealth appointments
Physicians with a Wisconsin medical license are invited to volunteer for the telehealth program of Saturday Clinic for the Uninsured. Physician volunteers will work with MCW first- and second-year medical students during telehealth appointments to help them practice their interviewing and presentation skills.

DSPS notification of physician license renewal, sent this week
It’s time for physician license renewal. This year the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) has moved their notification process online, and all physicians should have received an email earlier this week notifying them that their license is due for renewal.

Free bias awareness webinar for WisMed members
Wisconsin Medical Society members are invited to a complimentary one-hour webinar Biases in Healthcare: Awareness Can Influence Patient Outcomes, to be presented on September 30 at 7 a.m. by Laurette Salzman, Senior Risk Resource Advisor for ProAssurance.

Conflicting investment headlines
Trying to save and make smart investment decisions for your future can be difficult enough. But, if you check investing headlines and see something like those on September 7, you might be a bit confused.

September 9, 2021

DSPS moves to email communication for license renewal notification
Physician license renewal is coming up and the Wisconsin Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS) is moving their notification process online. Due to this change physicians will need to be certain that their profile contains a valid email address to ensure they receive accurate and timely information from DSPS.

Meet WisMedPAC Board Member Dr. Hartman
John Hartman, MD, is a board-certified nephrologist with an extensive background in technology. He is the chief executive officer of Visonex, LLC, former Vice Chair of the Wisconsin Medical Society Board of Directors, Treasurer of Brown County Medical Society and Chair of WisMedPAC. Dr. Hartman shared some thoughts about being politically active.

Physician Wellness Program pilot
The LifeBridge Physician Wellness Program for Dane County Medical Society Members launched in July as a partnership of the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) and Dane County Medical Society. The Society encourages other county medical societies to contact Jim Lorence for information about offering the wellness program in your county.

Prescription labeling survey to improve patient care
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is working with Wisconsin Health Literacy on their important initiative to make prescription drug labels easier to understand for patients. Wisconsin Health Literacy, a division of Wisconsin Literacy, works to promote clear communication between those who give and those who receive health care services.

Life insurance can change lives
September is Life Insurance Awareness Month. It's a reminder of the many times I’ve experienced the life changing impact of life insurance.

September 2, 2021

WisMed joins with state’s pediatricians, others on school safety recommendations
In a letter sent this week to Wisconsin Governor Tony Evers, the Wisconsin Medical Society joined with the Wisconsin Chapter of the American Academy of Pediatrics, the Wisconsin Academy of Family Physicians and others outline recommendations to maximize student and school staff COVID-19 safety during the 2021-22 school year.

Physician coalition continues fight against nursing independence bill
A large physician coalition continues to sound the alarm over a legislative proposal to allow certain advanced practice nurses to independently diagnose and treat patients with no requirement for physician involvement (the companion bills are AB 396 and SB 394).

Register by September 9 for final 2021 Taste of the Foundation
Join the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation on June 23 for the last of the 2021 Tasting Series. The event will feature Jasmine Zapata, MD, MPH, Chief Medical Officer and State Epidemiologist for Community Health at Wisconsin Department of Health Services and the Foundation’s 2020 Superhero of Medicine Award.

WisMed COVID-19 Task Force approves new patient Q&A resource
The Wisconsin Medical Society’s (Society) COVID-19 Task Force approved a new resource that physicians can provide to patients or coworkers who may have questions about the safety and effectiveness of COVID-19 vaccines. Titled “Common COVID-19 Concerns & Misconceptions,” the four-page handout is an easily understood resource that can help answer questions or inspire further conversations between patients and their physicians.

September 10 Friday Report to explore new proposals, 2022 elections
The second installment of the Wisconsin Medical Society's (WisMed) members-only advocacy update series runs next week – Friday, September 10. WisMed’s Friday Report will give an up-to-the-minute update on the latest health care policy up for debate in Madison, plus a bit of an insider look into politics and policy.

New WisMed Financial service – estate documents
Although everyone needs an estate plan, 47% of Americans say they would like one but haven’t gotten around to it yet. This estate plan might include a will, trust or power of attorney documents.

August 26, 2021

Time is right to contact legislators on independent nursing proposals
As the Wisconsin State Legislature readies for an active fall floor session beginning next month, now is a key time for physicians to contact their elected officials about proposed legislation that would allow certain advanced practice nurses to practice independently – from pediatric and family care practices to the potential creation of independent pain clinics, without needing any physician involvement.

Input needed to help guide Foundation initiatives
The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation (Foundation) relies on Wisconsin physicians to share what they’re seeing in their clinics and communities as the most pressing population health and workforce issues - setting the Foundation apart from other public health philanthropy. Each year, the Foundation takes action based directly on the input received in the Physician County Survey.

WisMed members featured at OnRamp Healthcare Conference
Wisconsin Medical Society President, Alicia Arnold, MD, kicked off the morning plenary session of OnRamp Healthcare on Thursday, August 19.

Free MEB-approved opioid CME for Milwaukee County physicians
Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) members practicing in Milwaukee County are eligible for free registration for the highly rated on-demand webinar, Alternatives to Opioids in Treating Acute and Chronic Pain. This limited number of free registrations are available through a collaboration with Community Advocates Public Policy Institute and the Society.

Disability insurance – I should have listened
One of the worst things for WisMed Assure advisors to hear is, “I should have listened to you years ago about purchasing personal disability insurance. I realize that it will now be very expensive, but I also realize that I need it. Can you please get some quotes for me?”

Survey to inform dementia friendly toolkit
The Center for Aging Research and Education (CARE) at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of nursing is working on developing dementia friendly training hospital materials. The purpose of this study is to understand the challenges faced by individuals living with dementia when they are seen in the emergency department or admitted to the hospital.

August 19, 2021

State Med Board registers concerns with independent nursing bills
The state of Wisconsin’s Medical Examining Board (MEB) voted unanimously to register its concerns over pending state legislation that would allow certain advanced practice nurses to provide patient care independently from physicians. Noting concerns over how the bill could affect the health and safety of the public, the motion also cites the MEB’s desire to “(remain) open to reasonable proposals to advance the state of health care for the citizens of Wisconsin.”

Taste of the Foundation to feature Dr. Zapata and Future Superhero of Medicine Fund
Join your colleagues for A Taste of the Foundation on September 23 at 7 p.m. to hear from Jasmine Zapata, MD, MPH. Dr. Zapata will be talking about the importance of supporting students from underrepresented minorities on their journeys to become physicians and why it matters.

Physician and med student input needed for justice, equity, diversity and inclusion survey
The Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) task force is currently collecting survey data from physicians and medical students in the state. Data is so important to understanding the environment facing physicians in the state and all Wisconsin physicians and medical students are encouraged to fill out the survey and share it with colleagues and other medical groups in the state.

What to look for when hiring a financial advisor
Everyone experiences life changes or difficult times that require tough decisions. Unless the next steps are obvious, it’s easy to freeze up and do nothing. Maybe it’s because of uncertainty, an overwhelming number of options or a lack of understanding.

August 12, 2021

Register today for Monday’s webinar with Ashok Rai, MD, CEO, Prevea Health
Join Prevea Health’s CEO Ashok Rai, MD, and WisMed’s Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer, Mark Grapentine, JD, for a special webinar, COVID-19 Vaccination: The Prevea Model on Monday, August 16, from 12:30 - 1 p.m.

WisMed Members participating in clinician panel at OnRamp Healthcare Conference
How to Convert Good Ideas into Startups, a clinician panel to be held as part of OnRamp Healthcare Conference will include WisMed Member’s Wendy Molaska, MD, and Tim Bartholow, MD.

Advocacy updates from Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD – WisMed’s Friday Report starts tomorrow
The Wisconsin Medical Society's (WisMed) members-only advocacy update series starts tomorrow – Friday, August 13. WisMed’s Friday Report will give an up-to-the-minute update on the latest health care policy up for debate in Madison, plus a bit of an insider look into politics and policy.

WisMed Assure adds new employee benefits services
The WisMed Assure team works to create and offer the best employee benefits insurance solutions and services to the health care companies of Wisconsin. Over the past several years, they have added multiple services and solutions to support their clients.

CME to meet the Opioid Prescribing Guideline
Physicians with a DEA number need to complete two CME credits for the MEB’s Responsible Opioid Prescribing Requirement by December 31, 2021. The Wisconsin Medical Society offers a catalogue of on-demand webinars approved by the MEB to meet the Opioid Prescribing Guideline, required for the 2020-2021 CME licensure cycle.

August 5, 2021

Society calls for COVID-19 vax mandates in health care facilities
Continuing to show its leadership in fighting the COVID-19 pandemic, the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) issued a statewide press release August 2 calling for health care entities to require their employees be vaccinated against COVID-19. The call for more widespread vaccinations comes as spread of the Delta variant continues to show a troubling uptick in infections primarily among the unvaccinated population.

Meet WisMedPAC Board Member Dr. Campbell
Andrew Campbell, MD, is a Facial Plastic Surgeon and Aesthetic Visionary at Quintessa in Ozaukee County. Dr. Campbell has been a WisMedPAC board member since 2014.

Wisconsin health care leaders to discuss innovations changing health care at OnRamp Healthcare Conference on August 19
The third annual OnRamp Healthcare Conference to be held virtually on Thursday, August 19, 2021, and will bring together leading corporations, clinicians, investors and startups who are disrupting health care and the future of medicine.

WisMed’s Friday Report starts next week with Advocacy updates from Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD
The Wisconsin Medical Society's (WisMed) members-only advocacy update series starts on Friday, August 13. WisMed’s Friday Report will give an up-to-the-minute update on the latest health care policy up for debate in Madison, plus a bit of an “insider” look into politics and policy.

State’s DHS seeking more physician-led COVID-19 vaccination sites
In a drive to increase the number of health care offices and clinics providing COVID-19 vaccinations, Wisconsin’s Department of Health Services (DHS) started sending out letters this week to physicians from specific specialties either thanking them for being a COVID-19 vaccination site or asking that they look into becoming one.

New leaders for Med Student, Resident/Fellow and Young Physician Sections
The Medical Student Section, Resident Fellow Section (RFS) and Young Physician Section (YPS) results from the election are included below.

Does money buy happiness?
What’s been the biggest surprise for you in the past year? For most people, the answer will be something negative.

July 29, 2021

Physician Wellness Program launches in Dane County
The Wisconsin Medical Society is proud to announce in partnership with Dane County Medical Society the launch of the LifeBridge Physician Wellness Program for Dane County Medical Society Members.

Please take survey to improve understanding of justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in Wisconsin
Your input is hugely valuable to us. Please take a few moments to complete the Wisconsin Medical Society task force’s Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Survey.

WisMed’s Friday Report brings members regular Advocacy updates from Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD
The Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) is excited to announce a new members-only series that will bring the benefit of Advocacy, in a new format, on a regular basis.

Physicians speak out against nursing independence bill at Capitol hearing
On two consecutive days at the state Capitol this week, physicians from around the state took the time to share their opposition to legislation (SB 394 and AB 396) that would allow advanced care registered nurses (APRN) to practice independently.

Register today for upcoming webinar with Ashok Rai, MD, CEO, Prevea Health
Join Prevea Health’s CEO Ashok Rai, MD, and WisMed’s Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer, Mark Grapentine, JD, for a special webinar, COVID-19 Vaccination: The Prevea Model on August 16, from 12:30 - 1 p.m.

Digital marketing discounts for members
Wisconsin Medical Society members can now access an exclusive discount to produce a digital marketing or TV broadcast campaign with WMSN Fox 47 News.

Latest issue of WMJ explores lessons learned from COVID-19
The most recent issue of WMJ explores the lessons of the COVID-19 pandemic and reflects on ways these experiences may shape the future.

Congratulations to Kathy Mueller, retiring after 26 years with WisMed Assure
After 26 years with WisMed Assure and more than 35 years as an insurance professional, Kathy Mueller is retiring on August 1.

July 22, 2021

Advocacy Alert Reminder: Nursing independence bills get State Capitol hearings next week
Next week the State Capitol will host two public hearings on proposals that would allow certain nurses to provide patient care independent of any physician oversight. The companion bills, Senate Bill 394 and Assembly Bill 396, will get public hearings next Wednesday and Thursday in the Senate Health committee and Assembly Health Committee respectively.

Foundation to present Kenneth M. Viste, Jr., MD, Young Physician Leadership Award to Derrick Siebert, MD
The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation (Foundation) will honor Derrick Siebert, MD, with the Kenneth M. Viste, Jr., MD, Young Physician Leadership Award at the Aspirus Wausau Hospital Birthing Center and NICU at 11:30 a.m. on Friday, July 23, 2021. The Kenneth M. Viste, Jr., MD, Young Physician Leadership Award is presented annually to a young physician who demonstrates commitment to patients, the medical profession and the community.

COVID-19 Task Force update
Wisconsin Medical Society Members formed a COVID-19 Task Force more than a year ago that has since been interacting with experts and state leaders, educating the public and keeping Wisconsin’s physicians up to date on the pandemic.

State Medical Examining Board welcomes new members
The state of Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) greeted three new physician members at its monthly meeting Wednesday, July 21, will all three starting a four-year term on the regulatory board.

Dr. Petty to head new fellowship program which aims to transform health equity for LGBTQ+ community
The University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health (UWSMPH) will be the first institution to participate in the American Medical Association’s new National LGBTQ+ Fellowship Program, which is designed to improve medical care provided to LGBTQ+ people in the US.

OnRamp Healthcare Conference – It was life changing… business changing for sure!
As we ramp up for the OnRamp Healthcare Conference on August 19, 2021 and the agenda is set, Jennifer Swartz, RN, shared her thoughts on the OnRamp conference. When she attended the 2019 event, she had just launched Conduct RM, her remote cardiovascular implantable electronic device (CIED) monitoring business.

Stock market dips or drops
Monday was one of the larger down days for US stocks this year fueled by renewed concerns of COVID’s impact on the global economy. We know there will be declines from time to time, but it still doesn’t feel good.

July 15, 2021

Society warns legislature about kratom legalization proposal
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) warned state legislators this week about a proposal that would remove two compounds from the state’s list of controlled substances that are found in leaves of the kratom tree and can have psychotropic effects.

Healthcare Economics Summit explores direct primary care
By Wendy Molaska, MD - Wisconsin Medical Society President-elect - As the world of health care continues to change, I had the honor of presenting at the recent Healthcare Economics Summit at Concordia University in Mequon, Wis. Concordia University and the Remedium eXange (Rx) Think Tank brought together an impressive roster of health care, business and thought leaders from across the nation to engage Wisconsin executives in a discussion about Free Market Health Care and Direct Primary Care (DPC).

Groundhog Day in July? State’s largest business lobby again attempting to impose price controls on work comp care
Fictional television meteorologist Phil Connors, played by Bill Murray in the movie “Groundhog Day,” found himself marooned in Punxsutawney, PA, forced to relive February 2 an untold number of times. Cynical and arrogant, Connors’s escape from the time loop happens only after he finally rejects the belief that he is superior to the “hicks” of rural Pennsylvania and realizes that life is best experienced in finding joy in self-improvement and doing good deeds.

Physician Advocacy CME now available
Physicians are uniquely qualified to advocate for responsible health care policies. To help Wisconsin physicians be more aware of their role in health policy and understand how to effectively lobby to improve patient outcomes, the Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) created the brief webinar, Physician Advocacy 101, presented by Mark Grapentine, JD.

Physician employment contract tip sheet
The Wisconsin Medical Society, in partnership with the Arizona Medical Association and Missouri State Medical Association, comprise the National Medical Health Collaborative (NMHC). The purpose of the NMHC is to promote and advance the health care field by providing education, policy development and resources aimed at improving the delivery of patient care.

Jim Davis joins WisMed Assure team
WisMed Assure is pleased to announce that a veteran insurance professional, Jim Davis, has joined the team as Vice President Medical Professional.

July 8, 2021

Nursing independence bill to get State Capitol committee hearing – your voice needed to help promote physician-led care
State legislation that would allow certain nurses to provide patient care with no physician involvement is tentatively scheduled for a public hearing before a key legislative committee later this month. While a public hearing does not necessarily signal further advancement in the legislative process, it does show the need for legislators to hear from their physician constituents.

Medical Mystery Tour webinar series now on demand
The Medical Mystery Tour webinar series is now available on demand. Medical professionals are frequently called upon to diagnose a wide variety of disorders, initiate treatment regimens and recognize when specialist referral or emergency management and hospitalization are necessary – particularly in the diagnosis and treatment of rare or unusual clinical diseases or syndromes.

WisMed Meet Up Happy Hour next Thursday
Enjoy a fun happy hour from the comfort of your couch! Join your fellow Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) members for the next virtual WisMed Meet Up. Feedback from previous Meet Ups have requested a happy hour, so don't miss this chance to connect with your peers across the state while enjoying your favorite beverage.

Personal finance classes for Resident programs
Improving personal financial health and knowledge among physicians is a core mission of both WisMed Assure and WisMed Financial, both part of the Wisconsin Medical Society. To provide a solid foundation before even entering practice, we have developed personal finance classes specifically for residents.

Register for virtual Advance Care Planning learning series
The Fox Valley Advance Care Planning Partnership is launching a monthly series of virtual learning events featuring trusted experts from a variety of backgrounds to discuss aspects of Advance Care Planning. The free sessions are held via Zoom and are also recorded for on-demand viewing.

July 1, 2021

State budget heads to Governor’s desk
The 2021-22 Wisconsin state biennial budget has moved to Governor Tony Evers’s desk for final action after passing through the full State Assembly on Tuesday and the State Senate on Wednesday. The $87.5 billion spending package passed the Assembly following hours of debate on a bipartisan 64-34 late-night vote, while the full Senate passed the measure on a similarly-bipartisan 23-9 vote Wednesday evening.

Meet WISMedPAC Board Member Sherry Clarke
Sherry Clarke is a Registered Nurse, wife of an Ophthalmologist in the Fox Valley and a member of the WISMedPAC board. She was born and raised on a large dairy farm in Wisconsin and has lived most of her life in Wisconsin.

Small but mighty, Taste of the Foundation raising funds for critical community health programs
The June 24 Taste of the Foundation was a fun and delicious time with an important purpose – raising funds for critical community health programs in Wisconsin. Participants sipped wine from Chehalem Vineyards and sampled cheeses from Fromagination while bidding on the silent auction and learning more about past grant recipient Vivent Health.

COVID-19 Task Force recommends “summering safely” podcast
The Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force continues to meet regularly to help advance sound health care policy to help physicians and the public combat the COVID-19 pandemic, including staying abreast of safe behaviors and strategies while monitoring the latest thinking of medical experts around the country.

June 24, 2021

New webinar How to Talk to Patients about Opioids meets MEB prescribing requirement
The Wisconsin Medical Society is pleased to announce a new course to its catalogue of courses approved by the Medical Examining Board (MEB) to count towards the two-credit CME requirement for its Opioid Prescribing Guideline. How to Talk to Patients About Opioids was presented by Michael McNett, MD.

Foundation auction closes noon Friday
The Foundation Mini Auction ends at noon on Friday, June 25 so check it out and bid now! A handmade wool and cashmere wrap, culinary dinner theater, deluxe paella kit and several hotel stays are among the great items available.

Wisconsin physicians receive Society awards
Each year the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) presents several awards to outstanding physicians who go above and beyond for their profession, patients and communities. This year Michelle Clark-Forsting, MD, was presented with the Physician Citizen of the Year Award, Michael Miller, MD, received the Director’s Award and Ryan Westergaard, MD, PhD, MPH, was awarded the Presidential Citation.

Emily Jewell, DO, presented Foundation’s Superhero of Medicine Award
The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation presented Emily Jewell, DO, with the Superhero of Medicine Award at the Community Connections Free Clinic in Dodgeville on Monday, June 21, 2021.

Avoid target-date funds near retirement
A popular and great investment choice for many investors during their working years are target-date funds. These funds simplify aspects of investing including diversification and asset allocation. But as you near retirement, target-date funds have a few problems.

Free WISAM Buprenorphine training
The Wisconsin Society of Addiction Medicine (WISAM) will host the last Buprenorphine X-Waiver Training on Wednesday, July 14 from 12:30 – 5:00 p.m. This virtual training is free to all Wisconsin providers eligible to prescribe buprenorphine.

June 17, 2021

Legislature’s Budget Committee approves WisMed-supported Medicaid increase for emergency docs
As part of wide-ranging action taken Tuesday evening, the State Legislature’s powerful budget-writing committee approved a significant increase in Medicaid reimbursement rates for emergency physicians starting in 2022. Addressing worst-in-the-nation Medicaid reimbursement levels, the legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance (JCF) allocated more than $6.6 million over the next two years to raise base reimbursement rates by 15 percent.

Foundation auction now live!
Check out the great items in the Foundation Mini Auction in conjunction with the Taste of the Foundation Series and bid now! The beginning of summer is a great time for a new bike, some rounds of golf, new lawn care equipment or lawn art to make your time outside more enjoyable.

Medical Examining Board to weigh in on Cosmetology Board proposal
At its monthly meeting on Wednesday, the state of Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) began discussion on another professional board’s potential rule change that would include microdermabrasion, dermaplaning and microblading under the practice of aesthetics. The state’s Board of Cosmetology requested the MEB’s opinion on the potential rule which would remove microdermabrasion from its list of delegated medical procedures, meaning a licensed cosmetologist or aesthetician would no longer need physician supervision to perform that procedure under certain circumstances.

Free MEB-approved opioid CME for Milwaukee County physicians
Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) members practicing in Milwaukee County are eligible for free registration for the highly rated on-demand webinar, Alternatives to Opioids in Treating Acute and Chronic Pain. This limited number of free registrations are available through a collaboration with Community Advocates Public Policy Institute and the Society.

Show your WisMed pride during virtual meetings
The Wisconsin Medical Society is excited to announce that a free digital background is now available for members to use during virtual meetings.

Free loss prevention webinar for WisMed members
Wisconsin Medical Society members are invited to a complimentary one-hour loss prevention webinar on June 30 at 7 a.m. presented by Laurette Salzman, Senior Risk Resource Advisor for ProAssurance.

June 10, 2021

Advocacy Alert: Budget Committee scheduled to act on Medicaid package next Tuesday
The Wisconsin State Legislature’s powerful Joint Committee on Finance is scheduled to vote on the Medicaid portion of the 2021-23 biennial state budget next Tuesday, June 15. The Wisconsin Medical Society and physician specialty organizations have been advocating for a variety of Medicaid budget items that would enhance access to our state’s high quality, physician-led care.

PPE offer ending June 15; closeout discount
Thank you for supporting the Wisconsin Medical Society and the ActionPPE.org initiative. Together we delivered more than 5 million units of PPE to physicians and health care professionals across Wisconsin and America.

WisMed Meet Up Happy Hour - by popular demand
Enjoy a fun happy hour from the comfort of your couch! Join your fellow Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) members for the next virtual WisMed Meet Up. Feedback from previous Meet Ups have requested a happy hour, so don't miss this chance to connect with your peers across the state while enjoying a cocktail, mocktail or favorite beverage.

State Worker’s Comp group briefed on health care success
At their most recent meeting on June 8, the state’s Worker’s Compensation Advisory Council (WCAC) heard from a think tank highlighting how Wisconsin’s work comp system continues to be a national model.

In memoriam: Jeffrey Nelson, 1948-2021
Last Wednesday, June 2, the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) lost one of its finest former staff members, Jeffrey Nelson.

Reducing tax payments
From time to time, you may wonder if there are ways to reduce your tax payments. There are ways, so let’s explore a couple options.

June 3, 2021

State budget-writing committee approves WisMed-supported improvements
In its latest actions to shape the 2021-23 biennial state budget, the state Legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance (JCF) yesterday approved funding to help make the Prescription Drug Monitoring Program (PDMP) more one-click-friendly for electronic health records systems and added funding for additional staff and IT improvements to bolster license-processing functions at the state’s Department of Safety and Professional Services (DSPS).

New WisMed member credit card
The Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) is excited to announce you can now apply for WisMed credit cards designed for professional and personal use via our relationship with Bankers Healthcare Group. You will be able to receive cash back on purchases such as medical equipment, supplies and WisMed membership dues.

Meet WISMedPAC Board Member Dr. Chou
Clarence Chou, MD, has been a staff psychiatrist at the Milwaukee County Behavioral Health Division in the Emergency Psychiatry department for the past 15 years and has worked for Milwaukee County for about 38 years. He has been on the WisMed PAC Board for approximately 17 years.

Society opposes bills interfering with clinic safety autonomy
Policy proposals related to the COVID-19 pandemic continue to roil the State Capitol, including this week’s public hearing on various bills that would bar the option of requiring proof of vaccination before a person is allowed into privately-run facilities, including physician clinics and offices.

Welcome a medical student to the profession with a white coat
The ceremony of incoming medical students getting their first white coat is a momentous occasion. The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation is proud to facilitate the state’s physicians in providing that white coat and a welcome message to all medical students in Wisconsin.

Dr. Fritz named APA Distinguished Fellow
Congratulations to Alexander Fritz, DO, FAPA, attending physician and psychiatrist at Rogers Behavioral Health in Madison and Wisconsin Medical Society member for being named a Distinguished Fellow by the American Psychiatric Association (APA).

Wood County pizza on the farm a success
Wood County Medical Society’s annual meeting was a huge success! Wood County hosted a fun pizza on the farm event which allowed members to connect with colleagues, conduct important Wood County Medical Society business and gain some financial planning tips while enjoying great food.

Latest issue of WMJ now available
The latest issue of WMJ is available online. The issue explores sudden savant syndrome, physician health policy advocacy, maternal care and more.

May 27, 2021

Advocacy alert: nurses pursuing path to independent practice
Various state nurses’ organizations are pursuing sweeping legislation in the State Capitol that would provide a path toward independent nursing practice, including the ability to diagnose and treat patients with no physician involvement – and prescribe medications as part of that treatment.

Medical Mystery Tour webinar series: diagnosis & treatment of rare or unusual diseases
Medical professionals are frequently called upon to diagnose a wide variety of disorders, initiate treatment regimens and recognize when specialist referral or emergency management and hospitalization are necessary – particularly in the diagnosis and treatment of rare or unusual clinical diseases or syndromes.

IPFCF premium holiday extended through June 30, 2022
The Injured Patients and Families Compensation Fund (IPFCF) Board of Governors has approved another premium holiday for IPFCF’s annual assessment fees for Fiscal Year 2022 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic.

Another Worker’s Comp insurance premium drop recommended
Worker’s Compensation insurance premiums for Wisconsin businesses could drop for a sixth straight year if a rate recommendation to the state’s Office of the Commissioner of Insurance (OCI) is accepted later this summer.

State COVID-19 small business relief grants now available
Wisconsin-based small businesses, including medical offices and clinics, can apply to the state for grants to help defray economic losses suffered due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The application process opened on May 24 and runs through Monday, June 7.

The importance of personal disability insurance for graduating residents
Congratulations to our graduating residents! As your journey continues onward as an attending physician, there’s lots to do but, despite everything that’s going on, right now is the time to make sure you get personal disability insurance.

Free buprenorphine X-Waiver trainings for eligible Wisconsin prescribers
The Wisconsin Society of Addiction Medicine (WISAM) Buprenorphine X-Waiver Training Series has only three remaining dates available in 2021. This opportunity is made possible through a partnership grant with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services.

Saving for college
Besides personal retirement, for most people, their second largest investing goal is their children’s college education. Let’s uncover the cost, tax breaks and right way to save for this expense.

May 20, 2021

Society launches WisMed Perks program for members
The Wisconsin Medical Society has launched WisMed Perks, a comprehensive offering of member benefits providing discounts to Society members on a wide variety of services.

COVID frontlines – from death to hope
By Wendy Molaska, MD - Wisconsin Medical Society President-elect. In the past year I have gone from the frontlines of caring for patients dying from COVID to the frontlines of administering vaccines against COVID.

Desi Physician Mom Foundation organizes to fight the COVID-19 crisis in India
The Desi Physician Mom Foundation (DPMF) is seeking donations for its Operation O2, to support oxygen, medication and beds in the fight to overcome the relentless COVID-19 crisis India is currently facing.

The leading conference for health care innovation
The OnRamp Healthcare Conference brings together corporations, investors, startups and members of the health care team. With the goals of lowering cost, increasing access and improving outcomes, OnRamp Healthcare is for anyone striving to change health care for the better.

Simons Named Chair of Federation of State Medical Boards
Wisconsin Medical Society member Kenneth B. Simons, MD, senior associate dean for graduate medical education and accreditation at the Medical College of Wisconsin (MCW), was installed as Chair of the Federation of State Medical Boards (FSMB) at the organization’s 109th annual meeting held virtually on May 1.

How to get super quick life insurance
There’s a new life insurance option for busy Residents who know they need life insurance but just can’t find the time.

May 13, 2021

Welcome Dr. Molaska as Society president-elect
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is pleased to welcome Wendy Molaska, MD, FAAFP, as president-elect. Dr. Molaska shared a bit about leadership and participating in the Society.

Complete SARS-CoV-2 CME series now available on demand
Explore emerging information on a range of topics regarding SARS-CoV-2 CME via this on-demand CME series developed in partnership with the Medical College of Wisconsin, the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force. This nine-part series is now available on demand via the Society’s education center.

“Your Health Can’t Wait” PSA wins Wisconsin Broadcaster’s Association award
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) and the Wisconsin Nurses Association (WNA) partnered over the summer of 2020 to produce a public service announcement (PSA) campaign, “Stay healthy, Wisconsin,” with the primary goal of getting Wisconsinites who have delayed care to see their health care team.

MCW Master of Science in Global Health Equity
The Medical College of Wisconsin is proud to offer a Master of Science in Global Health Equity program. This program was developed to prepare future global health leaders who will learn by engaging with diverse local and global populations.

Estate plan better than President Lincoln
President Lincoln, despite being an attorney, died without a will. Make sure your wishes are carried out and put a proper estate plan in place. In Wisconsin, here are the typical components.

May 6, 2021

Doctor Day 2021 gathers hundreds of physicians for well-timed advocacy
With deliberations over the 2021-23 biennial state budget getting underway in Madison this week, the state’s largest advocacy day for physicians and their patients resulted in dozens of successful virtual meetings between physicians and their elected officials on Wednesday.

Run for a healthier Wisconsin with the Foundation
Ease out of the pandemic isolation with the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation. Run (or Walk!) for a Healthier Wisconsin!

Meet WISMedPAC Board Member Dr. Lee
Don Lee, MD, MPH, is a hospitalist in Southeast Wisconsin and has been a very active member of the Wisconsin Medical Society. He’s been on the WISMedPAC board for more than five years, contributing both financially and with his time, by hosting political fundraisers at his home and attending countless fundraising events.

Joint Finance Committee starts biennial budget work
This afternoon, May 6, the state legislature’s Joint Committee on Finance (JCF) began its work to reshape the 2021-23 state biennial budget proposal. Its first action that passed was a party-line vote removing hundreds of items included in Governor Tony Evers’s original budget proposal and not allowing those items to be brought up for further JCF consideration.

Help increase vaccine uptake in Wisconsin
Wisconsin physicians have stepped up for their patients throughout the pandemic and the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force is asking physicians to lead in another vitally important effort: helping increase the state’s COVID-19 vaccination uptake.

COBRA and the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021
The WisMed Assure team keeps an eye on all things related to employee benefits and employers, especially those who qualify for COBRA coverage (have 20 or more employees), should be aware of the American Rescue Plan Act of 2021.

Free economic development webinar from RWHC
Rural Wisconsin Health Cooperative (RWHC) recently launched a new program focused on the idea that rural hospitals are only as economically viable as the rural communities they serve.

April 29, 2021

Welcome Dr. Arnold as new Society president
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is pleased to welcome Alicia Arnold, MD, board-certified radiologist as one of the youngest female presidents of the Society.

Learn about Vivent Health while enjoying wine and cheese with the Foundation
Register now for the June 24 Taste of the Foundation. Attendees will enjoy great wine from Stoller Family Vineyards and paired cheese from Fromagination in Madison while learning about Vivent Health.

Last chance to register for Doctor Day
Doctor Day 2021 will be held virtually on May 5 and it’s not too late to register! The event is being hosted through an event app that allows both website and mobile app access.

Movie trivia from the comfort of home!
Play movie-themed trivia from the comfort of your couch! Join your fellow Wisconsin Medical Society members for the next virtual WisMed Meet Up.

Last chance for 2020 investment contributions; prioritizing savings
Investment contributions for 2020 are not done yet. There’s still time to make health savings account, Edvest and backdoor Roth IRA contribution before filing taxes on May 17.

April 22, 2021

Miller and Westergaard honored at April Board of Directors meeting
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) honored the accomplishments and contributions of two outstanding physicians during the Board of Directors meeting held virtually on April 17. The 2021 Director’s Award and Presidential Citation were presented to honor physicians who have made a difference to the Society and the profession of medicine.

Less than two weeks to 2021 Doctor Day!
The details for the eighth annual advocacy day are set for Wednesday, May 5, 2021. This is our first virtual Wisconsin Doctor Day (hoping next year’s will be in person!), and it won’t be any less engaging and worthwhile.

Society joins pediatricians in warning about increase in kids’ COVID-19 cases
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) joined with the state’s pediatricians, the UW School of Medicine and Public Health and Children’s Hospital in raising concerns about an alarming rise in the number of youth suffering from COVID-19, including the number of kids who have needed hospitalization.

Medical Examining Board weighing chaperone requirement for physicians giving sensitive exams
The state of Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) is considering creating a regulatory requirement that a chaperone be present in an exam room whenever a physician is performing a breast, genital or rectal examination on a patient.

Term life insurance – it’s not all the same
Kelly had just suffered a life-threatening stroke at 57 years old. Her prognosis was uncertain, and she had months of recovery ahead. She took comfort in the fact that she had purchased a one-million-dollar term life insurance policy when she was 37 years old to protect her family.

April 15, 2021

Thank you to Doctor Day 2021 sponsors
Since the first Wisconsin Doctor Day in 2014, this day of advocacy has been a partnership among many specialty and member organizations with one purpose: to be a unified voice of medicine at the Wisconsin State Capitol. This day has grown every year and has stayed true to that intention.

Attend the Annual Meeting to help shape the future of the Society
Don’t miss the chance to help shape the future of the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society). Registration closes Friday for the Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing to be held on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

Residents, Fellows and Young Physicians looking to lead - nominations due April 18
Calling resident, fellow and young physician leaders! Nominations are now being accepted for a variety of leadership positions within the Resident Fellow Section (RFS) and the Young Physician Section (YPS) of the Wisconsin Medical Society.

Annual Reports posted on WisMed Community
The annual report of the President of the Wisconsin Medical Society, Erik Gundersen, MD, MA, FAAFP, and the Report of the Treasurer has been posted in the WisMed Members Community* for members’ information and review.

Retiring and low interest rates
Retirement investing used to be relatively straightforward. Retirees in the 1950s and 1960s would buy bonds, live off the interest and keep their principal intact.

Gov. Evers issues Healthcare Decisions Day proclamation
Governor Tony Evers has issued a proclamation declaring Friday, April 16 as Healthcare Decisions Day. The day is designed to encourage physicians and patients to have conversations about Advance Care Planning (ACP) as a way to help ensure treatment wishes are followed at important times of a patient’s life through Advance Directives (AD).

April 8, 2021

Doctor Day topics developing
Doctor Day 2021 is just weeks away and there are two issues that seem to be emerging as hot topics, but other topics are on the menu for discussion with your legislator visits as well.

Foundation tasting event a success!
Thanks to everyone who joined us for the first Taste of the Foundation event on March 25. Attendees tasted two great wines and two cheeses and learned about how Foundation funding is supporting the amazing work done at Health-Net of Rock County to manage diabetes in their Latinx patients.

RFS and YPS leaders - nominations due April 11
Calling resident, fellow and young physician leaders! Nominations are now being accepted for a variety of leadership positions within the Resident Fellow Section (RFS) and the Young Physician Section (YPS) of the Wisconsin Medical Society.

Attend the Annual Meeting to share your ideas
Hearing from WisMed Members is the top priority during the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. This is an opportunity to chat with fellow members in small groups, pose questions to Society leaders and share your opinions regarding the strengths and weaknesses of the Society - all in just two hours!

You’re a member! Now what? Member Benefits 101
Join WisMed President Erik Gundersen, MD, MA, FAAFP, as we explore your member benefits. Tune in on Wednesday, April 14 at 12 p.m. and find out what services, products and benefits we offer to you! Register today!

Personal finance classes for medical students and residents
Improving personal financial health and knowledge among physicians is a core purpose of both WisMed Assure and WisMed Financial, both part of the Wisconsin Medical Society. To provide a solid foundation before even entering practice, they have developed personal finance classes specifically for medical students and residents.

Encourage safe behaviors with free COVID-19 buttons
Is your outfit of the day missing something? Wisconsin Medical Society members can get free Stop the Spread buttons. To help spark conversations with patients about healthy COVID-19 behaviors and vaccine hesitancy, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force developed a button that can be worn by physicians and other members of the health care team to help cultivate those conversations.

Wisconsin Academy of Ophthalmology after hours series – Documentation: Strategies to Minimize Risk
The importance of documentation is underscored in this Wisconsin Academy of Ophthalmology Risk Management course presented on April 13 from 7 to 8 p.m.

April 1, 2021

State opening COVID-19 vaccine eligibility on April 5; Physicians can lead the way
Citing an increasing supply of COVID-19 vaccinations and success in vaccinating large percentages of those already eligible, the State of Wisconsin earlier this week announced that all Wisconsin citizens age 16 and older will be eligible to receive vaccinations as of Monday, April 5.

Your ideas needed at 2021 virtual Annual Meeting
Hearing from WisMed Members is the priority during the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. This is an opportunity to chat with fellow members in small groups, pose questions to Society leaders and share your opinions regarding the strengths and weaknesses of the Society - all in just two hours!

Doctor Day is May 5 – advocate for your profession; Vote April 6
Registration is open for a virtual 2021 Doctor Day and the agenda is set. Now we just need you to be part of this day of advocacy for physicians and patients.

RFS and YPS nominations due April 11
Nominations are now being accepted for a variety of leadership positions within the Resident Fellow Section (RFS) and the Young Physician Section (YPS) of the Wisconsin Medical Society.

CMS Blue Button - kickstart your awareness before physician scoring goes mainstream
At the push of a button, many more patients and payers will be comparing the cost of the care you provide to the cost of the same care provided by other physicians. They will also be able to ask why your quality scores are different compared to other physicians.

Know your WISMedPAC board member
Bradley Burmeister, MD, is the newest member of the WISMedPAC board, who brings a strong passion for politics to the mix. He’s an ER physician at Bellin Memorial in Green Bay.

White Coat Investor event shared keys to financial success
James Dahle, MD, founder of the White Coat Investor®, recently presented to Wisconsin Medical Society members about financial topics crucial to the success of early career physicians.

National Healthcare Decisions Day: April 16
April 16 is National Healthcare Decisions Day (NHDD). The purpose of NHDD is to inspire, educate and empower the public and physicians about Advance Care Planning (ACP).

March 25, 2021

WisMed condemns surge in anti-Asian hate crimes; offers resources
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) issued a statement condemning the increase in anti-Asian hate crimes, including the murders of six Asian women (and eight victims overall) in Atlanta on March 16.

Foundation auction closes tomorrow at noon
Bid now! Check out the great items in the Foundation Mini Auction in conjunction with the Taste of the Foundation Series. If you couldn’t attend the event you still have a chance to enjoy the wine that we will be tasting – just bid on it!

RFS and YPS nominations due April 11
Nominations are now being accepted for a variety of leadership positions within the Resident Fellow Section (RFS) and the Young Physician Section (YPS) of the Wisconsin Medical Society.

Share your ideas at 2021 virtual Annual Meeting
WisMed Members are encouraged to share their ideas during the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m. This is an opportunity to chat with fellow members in small groups, pose questions to Society leaders and share your opinions regarding the strengths and weaknesses of the Society - all in just two hours!

Survey to understand patients’ vaccine hesitancy
Vaccine misinformation is prevalent and easily accessible to parents and patients. This misinformation can impact parental attitude about vaccines.

Healing Arts: First phase of Healing Reflections Mural unveiled at Mayo Clinic Health System in Eau Claire
For close to a year, the Healing Arts committee at Mayo Clinic Health System in Northwest Wisconsin has been collecting and sharing stories of healing from employees and community members. The project pairs the stories with artists to create a Healing Reflections mural.

Income-driven repayment plans
Looking forward to residency also means looking forward to repaying student loans. There are several things to consider to make the best choice for how to repay student loans.

Free continuing education credit available through WMJ
The Wisconsin Medical Journal (WMJ) has teamed up with the UW-Madison Interprofessional Continuing Education Partnership (ICEP) to offer continuing education credit for certain original research papers published in the journal.

March 18, 2021

Doctor Day 2021 to include timely breakout sessions
Join your colleagues (virtually) for Doctor Day on May 5, 2021 to fight for your patients, profession and sound health care policy.

Are you ready for Blue Button? Kickstart your awareness before physician scoring goes mainstream
At the push of a button, many more patients and payers will be comparing the cost of the care you provide to the cost of the same care provided by other physicians. They will also be able to ask why your quality scores are different compared to other physicians.

Register now for 2021 virtual annual meeting
WisMed Members are encouraged to attend the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

MCW Master of Science in Global Health Equity
The Medical College of Wisconsin is proud to offer a Master of Science in Global Health Equity program. This program was developed to prepare future global health leaders who will learn by engaging with diverse local and global populations.

Tax season tactics
With tax season in full swing, how much longer can taxpayers enjoy the tax benefits from the 2017 Tax Cuts and Jobs Act (TCJA) and the 2019 SECURE Act? Most of the provisions expire at the end of 2025, but Congress could make changes sooner, so it’s anyone's guess. Here are three strategies to consider.

Honoring Choices Wisconsin seeks local champions
At its most recent meeting this week, members of the Wisconsin Medical Society’s Honoring Choices Wisconsin (HCW) Steering Committee discussed the opportunity to increase the number of patients expressing their future medical treatment wishes through the use of advance directives.

MEB approves prescribing CME requirement extension; begins work on potential chaperone rule
The State of Wisconsin’s Medical Examining Board (MEB) at its most recent monthly meeting advanced a proposed administrative rule that will extend for another biennium the requirement that most physicians obtain two credits of continuing education related to opioid prescribing.

Beware – false information regarding COVID-19 vaccination impacting life insurance policies
The Wisconsin Insurance Commissioner sent out a press release earlier this week alerting consumers to misinformation that getting a COVID-19 vaccination could void a policyholder’s life insurance coverage.

March 11, 2021

Register now for 2021 virtual annual meeting
WisMed Members are encouraged to attend the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

Vote now! Nominees, elections for Society offices
Wisconsin Medical Society Members can now vote for the Society President-elect and Treasurer.

SARS-CoV-2 CME series now available on demand
In partnership with the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health and the Wisconsin Medical Society COVID-19 Task Force, a SARS-CoV-2 CME series was presented over the past several weeks to a broad audience of physicians.

Member-exclusive early career finances with the White Coat Investor
There’s still time to register for the member-exclusive webinar Early Career Financial Management presented by James Dahle, MD, on March 25 from 5:00 to 6:00 p.m. This is a great opportunity to learn from one of your most respected peers in the field on this subject matter.

Info needed: What’s your experience with health care power of attorney forms?
National Healthcare Decisions Day is on April 16, and is intended to help educate the public on the benefits of advance care planning and inspiring people to “have the conversation” about preparing advance directives, making health care power of attorney designations and ensuring loved ones understand end-of-life wishes. The day also emphasizes how important it is for physicians to support their state’s advance care planning programs and opportunities.

Wisconsin Academy of Ophthalmology after hours series
During “Who, What, When, Where, How for Eye Missions,” March 16 from 7 to 8 p.m., Kevin Wienkers, MD, will share his experience in mission work. He will also speak about how to get involved and why others should, too.

Free buprenorphine X-Waiver trainings for eligible Wisconsin prescribers
The Wisconsin Society of Addiction Medicine (WISAM) will host eight virtual trainings in 2021 through a partnership grant with the Wisconsin Department of Health Services. This series is designed to increase treatment capacity for opioid use disorders by training more prescribers to be able to treat opioid use disorders with buprenorphine.

March 4, 2021

AMA President, Susan R. Bailey, MD, to Keynote 2021 Doctor Day
The Doctor Day planning committee is delighted to announce Susan R. Bailey, MD, as the keynote for this year’s Doctor Day.

Register by March 8 to enjoy wine and cheese with the Foundation
Enjoy wine and cheese with the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation while connecting with our community and raising money for our mission. A Taste of the Foundation will be held March 25, June 24 and September 23 from 7-8 p.m. Register for the first event by March 8 to ensure tasting kits are sent out on time.

You’re a member! Now what? Take Hold of Your Financial Future
Tune in to You’re a member! Now what? to get to know Mark Ziety of WisMed Financial. Created by the Wisconsin Medical Society, WisMed Financial provides financial advice physicians can trust. Join us on Wednesday, March 10 at 12 p.m.

Date change for 2021 virtual Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing
Please consider attending the Wisconsin Medical Society’s 2021 Annual Meeting and Membership Briefing on Saturday April 17, 2021 from 8:00 a.m. to 10:00 a.m.

Vote now: Nominees, elections for Society offices
Wisconsin Medical Society Members can now vote for the Society Treasurer and President-elect via the link below. According to the Society’s Constitution, Article V, the President Elect and Treasurer will be elected by the general membership.

Free COVID-19 buttons to encourage safe behaviors
Is your outfit of the day missing something? Wisconsin Medical Society members can get free Stop the Spread buttons.

When to start receiving Social Security benefits
One of the must-answer questions for anyone retiring is when to start Social Security. 

February 25, 2021

Share your white coat stories
Every year, the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation (Foundation) provides a white coat to every incoming medical student in Wisconsin. The Foundation wants to share your white coat experience with the donors who make this work possible and hopes to make it a little more fun this year!

Society-supported COVID-19 liability protections signed into law
Governor Tony Evers signed legislation into law earlier this morning that provides civil liability protection against opportunistic COVID-19 lawsuits. Under the new law, entities such as physician offices will be immune from civil liability for harm related to someone’s exposure to SARS-CoV-2, unless the entity engaged in reckless or wanton conduct or intentional misconduct.

SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Children and Adolescents and Pathophysiology of Unusual Effect of the Virus, next Wednesday
Elizabeth Ann Misch, MD, and Joseph McBride, MD, will present the last live webinar of the SARS-CoV-2 CME series* with SARS-CoV-2 Infections in Children and Adolescents and Pathophysiology of Unusual Effect of the Virus.

WisMed leaders attend AMA National Advocacy Conference
Gathering virtually rather than in Washington, D.C. this year, a group of Wisconsin Medical Society policy leaders participated in the AMA’s two-day National Advocacy Conference, held on February 23 and 24. 

Learn how to improve patient health, recruitment and manage costs via the Climate-Smart Healthcare webinar
The Climate-Smart Healthcare webinar, April 20 at noon, will explore how increasing energy and material efficiency, shifting to renewable energy and becoming resilient to natural disasters is an opportunity for organizations to make progress towards improving their patients’ health, recruiting and retaining skilled staff, managing costs and benefiting their communities. 

White Coat Investor webinar
James Dahle, MD, of The White Coat Investor will present a one-hour webinar on March 25 at 5:00 p.m. Early Career Financial Management will address issues physicians encounter at the beginning stages of their careers which are critical to their financial health and overall well-being. 

February 18, 2021

Run for a Healthier Wisconsin
The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation is planning a run/walk challenge later this year. Join friends, family and colleagues in virtually exploring the state, especially those communities where donor funding has allowed the Foundation to provide grants that address determinants of health.

Gov. Evers unveils 2021-23 biennial budget proposal; signs PPP tax bill into law
In a recorded address to a joint session of the Wisconsin State Legislature Tuesday evening (Feb. 16), Governor Tony Evers unveiled his $91 billion 2021-23 biennial state budget proposal.

Preventing SARS-CoV-2 in Systems, next in CME series on Feb. 24
On February 24, Nasia Safdar, MD, MS, will present Preventing SARS-CoV-2 in Systems as part of the SARS-CoV-2 CME Town Hall Series.* Dr. Safdar will discuss the spread of the virus in health systems, schools and other industries.

Senate passes COVID-19 liability protection as part of special session bill
The Wisconsin State Senate approved legislation this morning, February 18, that will provide important civil liability protections related to COVID-19 for health care entities and other businesses.

COVID-19 PSA
Wisconsin Medical Society President, Erik Gundersen, MD, MA, is featured in a COVID-19 PSA. In addition to reminding patients of the basic safety precautions of masking, physical distancing and handwashing, Dr. Gundersen encourages everyone to get vaccinated as soon as they are able.

COVID-19 buttons to spark patient conversations via WisMed and Pharmacy Society partnership
Wisconsin Medical Society members can get free Stop the Spread buttons. In an effort to encourage conversations with patients about healthy COVID-19 behaviors and vaccine hesitancy, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force developed a button that can be worn by physicians and other members of the health care team to help spark those conversations.

Reminder: Settlers bank to assist physicians and clinics with SBA/PPP application process
Physicians and clinics can reach out to Settlers bank for assistance with SBA/PPP loan applications. Settlers bank is a local Wisconsin business focused on serving the needs of physicians and clinics throughout the state.

Personal finance classes for medical students and residents
Improving personal financial health and knowledge among physicians is a core purpose of both WisMed Assure and WisMed Financial, both part of the Wisconsin Medical Society. To provide a solid foundation before even entering practice, they have developed personal finance classes specifically for medical students and residents.

February 11, 2021

Legislature acts on health care, PPP tax policy as February floor period nears
The State Capitol was active this week – despite the pandemic – with various legislative committees holding public hearings and votes on bills that may be placed on next week’s State Senate and State Assembly floor calendars.

Society, other physician leaders join with AG’s call for crisis mental health reform
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) and leaders from the Wisconsin Psychiatric Association (WPA) and Wisconsin Chapter of the American College of Emergency Physicians (WACEP) joined with Wisconsin Attorney General Josh Kaul, other government entities and law enforcement this afternoon to recommend reforms to the state’s emergency detention process and ways to make behavior health services more available.

Next SARS-CoV-2 CME Feb. 17: Mutations, immunity duration and transmissibility after vaccine, effect of vaccine on testing for the virus
David O’Connor, PhD, presents Mutations, immunity duration and transmissibility after vaccine, effect of vaccine on testing for the virus as the next session in the Wisconsin Medical Society’s SARS-CoV-2 CME Town Hall Series.*

Settlers bank to assist physicians and clinics with SBA/PPP application process
Settlers bank is a local Wisconsin business focused on serving the needs of physicians and clinics throughout the state. As part of that mission, Settlers bank will assist with questions regarding the SBA/PPP loan application process – and is extending that service to physicians and clinics regardless of whether they are a current client.

Medical Society of Milwaukee County-Foundation hosting Calling All Heroes event
Calling All Heroes is a special online celebration supporting the Medical Society of Milwaukee County (MSMC) Foundation’s mission of empowering physicians and promoting health for individuals, families and entire communities.

WMJ seeks reviewers
The Wisconsin Medical Journal (WMJ) received a record number of submissions in 2020 and is now seeking volunteers to add to its pool of highly qualified reviewers. Peer reviews provide helpful suggestions to authors on how to improve the quality of their manuscript and ensure that high-quality articles are published.

Employee handbook creation for WisMed Assure clients
Insurance renewals have been finalized and employees have been updated. So, what’s next? The perfect answer is to focus on Employee Handbooks for 2021.

February 4, 2021

State Legislature nullifies state masking requirement, Gov. Evers issues new order
The question of whether Governor Tony Evers can issue a statewide facial covering requirement as part of a public health emergency declaration continues to roil the State Capitol, with the State Assembly and Governor issuing dueling actions this afternoon (February 4) within minutes of one another.

Doctor Day to feature legislative panel
Two great things to look forward to this spring – warm weather and Doctor Day 2021 on May 5! This year’s advocacy day will be virtual and include all the key elements of years past including a keynote presentation, priority issue briefing, policy breakouts and, of course, legislative visits!

New SARS-CoV-2 CME series begins next week with Updates on COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Safety
The first of four sessions in the Wisconsin Medical Society’s new SARS-CoV-2 CME Town Hall Series* kicks off with Updates on COVID-19 Vaccine Distribution and Safety presented by Jonathan L. Temte, MD, PhD, Associate Dean for Public Health and Community Engagement at the University of Wisconsin School of Medicine and Public Health (UWSMPH).

What has your white coat seen?
Every year, the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation (Foundation) provides a white coat to every incoming medical student in Wisconsin. The Foundation wants to share your white coat experience with the donors who make this work possible and hopes to make it a little more fun this year!

Foundation Board welcomes new members
The Wisconsin Medical Society Board of Trustees approved a new physician member and two new student members to the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation Board on January 23.

Wisconsin Medical Society Holdings Board welcomes new members
Wisconsin Medical Society Holdings is pleased to welcome Michael Foley, MD, and Greg Dombrowski, MBA, to its board. Both new members were approved at the January 23 board meeting.

Backdoor Roth, real estate and White Coat Investor events
Please join WisMed Financial for educational events in February and March. These are complimentary and exclusive to Wisconsin Medical Society members.

January 28, 2021

Wine, cheese and community impact with A Taste of the Foundation
Without giving up hope that someday soon in-person will be safe, the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation is launching a series of virtual events this year to connect with our community and raise money for our mission.

State Assembly delays effort to nix Governor’s public health emergency; mask requirement
The Wisconsin State Assembly has delayed a vote on a measure that would cancel Governor Tony Evers’s latest public health emergency order due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The action would also nullify the statewide mask mandate that is in effect until March 20.

2021 WISMedPAC Board Members
The Wisconsin Medical Society’s (Society) Board of Directions approved the nominations of the following to the WISMedPAC board: Dan Bennett, MD, Bradley Burmeister, MD (new nominee!), Andrew Campbell, MD, Clarence Chou, MD, Sherry Clarke, Donn Dexter, MD, John Hartman, MD, Don Lee, MD, Ken Pechman, MD, and Paul Wertsch, MD.

You’re a member! Now what? Become an active advocate
Join the Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) for a dive into political advocacy. Tune in on Wednesday, February 10 at noon and learn how WisMed represents you at the capitol and the tools we provide for you to be an advocate!

UW’s virtual Operation Education a success!
On the evening of Thursday, January 21 the Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) Foundation and the Wisconsin Medical Alumni Association (WMAA) sponsored the first (and possibly not the last) virtual Operation Education for first year medical students (M1) at UW School of Medicine and Public Health.

WCMEW launches Clinical Training Hub webpage
The Clinical Training Hub is a Wisconsin resource that provides information about available health care education and training programs and sites where students can fulfill their clinical training experiences.

What to know about long-term care
When figuring out how much money to save for retirement – and how to save enough money – most Americans don’t even think about the cost of long-term care.

January 21, 2021

WisMed COVID-19 Task Force weighs in on vaccine distribution
As the State of Wisconsin continues to manage the distribution of COVID-19 vaccines it receives from the federal government, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s (Society) COVID-19 Task Force recently weighed in on a state advisory committee’s preliminary recommendations on which cohorts should be included in the next round of vaccinations.

Virtual paint night for WisMed members
Wisconsin Medical Society members are invited to a fun, virtual paint night on Thursday, February 18 from 6 to 8 p.m.

PPP loans reminder
Physicians and clinics that received PPP loans issued in the spring of 2020 should review the reminder below from Settlers bank.

COVID-19 buttons to spark conversations with patients via WisMed and Pharmacy Society partnership
In an effort to encourage conversations with patients about healthy COVID-19 behaviors and vaccine hesitancy, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force developed a button that can be worn by physicians and other members of the health care team to help spark those conversations.

Medical Examining Board elects leadership for 2021; discusses CME rule
The State of Wisconsin’s Medical Examining Board (MEB) elected leaders for the 2021 calendar year at its monthly meeting on January 20.

Help shape Medical Society policies in 2021 – join a Reference Committee
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is seeking a special group of members to help review policy proposals that are submitted for discussion and eventual action by the Board of Directors.

Deadline extended: WMJ call for artwork
The Wisconsin Medical Journal (WMJ) is seeking artwork to illustrate a special issue on the impact of race and racism on the health of people in Wisconsin.

Consider these tips to simplify and automate your finances this year
First, get organized by figuring out what you own and what you owe. This will also help with tax prep since a list of accounts will help you quickly determine if you are missing a tax form.

January 14, 2021

Society input heard in COVID-19 Response Bill Amendments
The Wisconsin State Senate took up fast-moving COVID-19 response omnibus legislation this week, with both committee and full Senate action on 2021 Assembly Bill 1 (AB 1) taking place on Monday and Tuesday.

WisMed talks COVID-19 vaccinations at Assembly info. hearing
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) was one of a handful of organizations invited to speak earlier today before the Assembly Committee on Health as part of an informational hearing on the state’s rollout of COVID-19 vaccinations.

Request for feedback – what additional PPE is needed
The Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) has been partnering with ActionPPE since April to provide much needed PPE to physician practices across the state. The Society is investigating expanding these current product offerings and would like feedback regarding what additional PPE products our members need.

Society compiling group 1a vaccination county info
Knowing how important it is to cut through the confusion many independent group 1a physicians and health care staff are facing in acquiring COVID-19 vaccinations, the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) is compiling information received from local public health departments related to group 1a access and sharing it on the Society’s COVID-19 vaccine page.

Leadership Academy – business-focused CME for physicians
Wisconsin Medical Society Members who are taking on new leadership roles or responsibilities within their practice or system or transitioning from a patient care role to an administrative role in leadership are invited to join our virtual leadership academy.

Join the reimagined Reference Committee to help shape Medical Society policies in 2021
With the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) evolving its policymaking process to a year-round schedule, the Society is seeking a special group of members to help review policy proposals that are submitted for discussion and eventual action by the Board of Directors.

WisMed and Pharmacy Society partner on distributing COVID-19 buttons to spark conversations with patients
In an effort to encourage conversations with patients about healthy COVID-19 behaviors and vaccine hesitancy, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s COVID-19 Task Force developed a button that can be worn by physicians and other members of the health care team to help spark those conversations.

Fostering Mental & Emotional Well-being in Future Leaders
OnRamp Healthcare is teaming up with American Family Insurance Institute for Corporate and Social Impact and Headstream to present "Fostering Mental & Emotional Well-being in Future Leaders," January 28, 2021, from 4-5 p.m.

Voluntary benefits can give employees more at no cost to employers
Balancing the costs of employee benefits with all other expenses can be a challenge.

January 7, 2021

Society weighs in on Assembly GOP COVID Response Bill
Signaling the importance of battling the COVID-19 pandemic, Wisconsin State Assembly Republicans and Democrats each unveiled their own COVID-19 response bills on Inauguration Day, January 4.

Society opposes VA rule allowing care without physician supervision
The Wisconsin Medical Society joined with dozens of other state- and specialty-based health care organizations on a letter opposing a U.S. Department of Veterans Affairs proposed rule that would allow virtually all non-physician providers (NPP) to practice without the clinical supervision of a physician.

You’re a member! Now what? Exploring WisMed Assure
Explore the benefits of Wisconsin Medical Society membership by joining the WisMed team for an overview of WisMed Assure, the only Wisconsin-based insurance firm exclusively serving the health care community.

Help shape Medical Society policies in 2021
With the Wisconsin Medical Society (Society) evolving its policymaking process to a year-round schedule, the Society is seeking a special group of members to help review policy proposals that are submitted for discussion and eventual action by the Board of Directors.

Physician Wellness Advisory Committee moving forward
The Physician Wellness Advisory Committee held its first meeting in December. The purpose of this committee is to design and establish the framework and operability of a Physician Wellness Program to offer help and respite when needed for the physicians of Wisconsin.

Minnesota Medical Association physician well-being conference Jan. 28
The Minnesota Medical Association’s (MMA) 5th annual physician well-being conference will be held virtually on January 28, 2021. 

Part 2 of COVID Relief Bill
As expected, the COVID Relief Bill was signed into law just before the end of 2020. The $900 billion bill was embedded in the much larger Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021.