Medigram, the Wisconsin Medical Society’s electronic newsletter for physicians, features timely news, upcoming events, answers to frequently asked questions and the information you need to make your practice run more efficiently. Topics include legislative updates, legal information, practice management information, government regulations, and much more. Medigram is delivered via email on Thursdays.

If you have a Medigram story idea or would like to offer feedback, please email us or call 866.442.3800.

WisMed offering abortion law webinar September 20
With many questions surrounding the status of Wisconsin’s abortion-related law following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision in June 2022, the Wisconsin Medical Society is offering members a special webinar with legal experts to describe the current legal landscape.

Latest Med Board chaperone, CME rules open for economic impact comments
Two pending state of Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) administrative rules are open for economic impact comments, allowing individual physicians and health care entities to give feedback on the potential costs of complying with the MEB proposals.

WisMed members invited to join Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Task Force
The Wisconsin Medical Society’s (WisMed) Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Task Force is seeking new members interested in working to address justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in terms of measurable, strategic and achievable goals.

Welcome new Foundation staff
The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation is pleased to announce the addition of two new staff members. Please join us in welcoming Jaime Craig as Program Coordinator and Mikaela Powers as Director of Grants and Development.

Contribute to the upcoming election with GO PAC GO – fourth quarter begins today!
If the upcoming election is important to you, then now is the time to invest in the campaigns that matter to you.

Do you have the old or the new life insurance?
September is Life Insurance Awareness Month and is the time when I urge all our members to take a moment to reflect on the life insurance protection they have in place. Not too long ago, life insurance (especially term life), was generally viewed as a commodity.

A higher level of caring for your medical office - click here - Society Insurance

WisMed offering abortion law webinar September 20

With many questions surrounding the status of Wisconsin’s abortion-related law following the U.S. Supreme Court’s Dobbs decision in June 2022, the Wisconsin Medical Society (WisMed) is offering members a special webinar with legal experts to describe the current legal landscape. Attorneys from the Madison law firm Pines Bach will present “Providing Patient Care Post-Dobbs: A Look at Wisconsin Abortion Law” live at noon on Tuesday, September 20, including time for Q&A. The presentation will also be recorded and available on-demand for a limited time.

Register for this members-only event here. There is no cost for this WisMed member benefit. If you have questions about the current status of Wisconsin law you think should be covered in the program, please contact WisMed Chief Policy and Advocacy Officer Mark Grapentine, JD.

About the legal experts, Pines Bach attorneys Diane M. Welsh and Leslie A. Freehill:

Attorneys Diane Welsh and Leslie Freehill of Pines Bach LLP
Attorneys Diane Welsh and Leslie Freehill of Pines Bach LLP

Attorney Diane Welsh is a partner at Pines Bach LLP, where she advises clients on a variety of matters, including government and health law, and represents clients in all levels of litigation. Prior to joining Pines Bach, Diane served as Chief Legal Counsel for the Wisconsin Department of Health Services and as assistant attorney general at the Wisconsin Department of Justice. Attorney Leslie Freehill is an associate at Pines Bach, where she practices in the areas of civil litigation, administrative law and appeals. Prior to joining Pines Bach, she served as a staff attorney for the Dane County Circuit Court.

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Latest Med Board chaperone, CME rules open for economic impact comments

Two pending state of Wisconsin Medical Examining Board (MEB) administrative rules are open for economic impact comments, allowing individual physicians and health care entities to give feedback on the potential costs of complying with the MEB proposals. Instructions for submitting comments are included in the economic impact analysis documents linked below.

Posting Chaperone Policy

As detailed in the August 18, 2022 Medigram, the MEB has scaled down its original proposal aimed at promoting the use of chaperones when performing sensitive physical exams. The new rule, open for economic impact comments through September 14, creates an unprofessional conduct provision for physicians failing to follow their employer’s chaperone-related policies. If an office or clinic does not have a chaperone policy, physicians would need to establish policies (even if that policy is the office or clinic does not provide chaperones). The rule requires the policies to be posted in an area accessible to all patients.

CME: Opioids and Controlled Substances Courses

Another rule would update the current requirement that physicians include 2 credits of opioid prescribing as part of their biennial 30 credit CME responsibility. The pending proposal expands the topic of those required credits to include courses related to controlled substances generally. The MEB will also determine whether in the next reporting period (not the current one) those courses will need to be MEB-approved to qualify for the requirement. Economic impact comments are due to the state’s Department of Safety and Professional Services by September 15.

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

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WisMed Financial - Meet your advisor

WisMed members invited to join Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Task Force

The Wisconsin Medical Society’s (WisMed) Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion (JEDI) Task Force is seeking new members interested in working to address justice, equity, diversity and inclusion in terms of measurable, strategic and achievable goals. The task force was formed in response to the recognition that systemic racism affects every aspect of our lives and of our patients’ lives, and that racism is a health crisis in our state. This task force aims to identify and address the effects of racism upon our members, our profession and our patients, and we expect to expand this task force to achieve greater justice, equity, diversity and inclusion generally.

JEDI Task Force Co-chair Ridhwi Mukerji, MD, FACP, CHCQM

JEDI Task Force Co-chair Ridhwi Mukerji, MD, FACP, CHCQM, Aspirus Regional Medical Director, Central AMG, System Physician Advisor- CDI, said of participating on the task force, “I have been involved with the Wisconsin Medical Society’s JEDI Task Force over the past couple of years. This has been one of the greatest privileges of my life to serve with this amazing group of people. Having come from an underrepresented ethnic group, I have struggled at various levels of my career. This has instilled in me the drive to work on equity and justice in Medicine. I believe a healthy community starts with providers and patients who understand the challenges we face with equity, diversity, inclusion and justice in Medicine. I welcome our providers no matter where you are in your training to join the cause.”

The Wisconsin Medical Society and Foundation are committed to increasing health equity and access and supporting a strong and diverse physician workforce. For more information on the Wisconsin Medical Society’s Justice, Equity, Diversity and Inclusion Task Force, or if you are interested in joining the task force, please email membership@wismed.org.

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Welcome new Foundation staff

The Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation is pleased to announce the addition of two new staff members. Please join us in welcoming Jaime Craig as Program Coordinator and Mikaela Powers as Director of Grants and Development.

Mikaela Powers

Mikaela Powers is an experienced fundraising professional, team leader and program developer. Driven by the desire to empower others to succeed through non-profit programs, she takes pride in working with donors to connect them to their philanthropic goals. As a first-generation graduate, she understands the power that financial support, mentorship and community programs can have on one’s future. Please feel free to reach out to Mikaela by email at mikaela.powers@wismed.org.

Jaime Craig

Jaime Craig has worked as an office administrator and coordinator in busy dental offices since 2003. She has extensive experience balancing various priorities and working with multiple departments and organizations to move projects to completion. She was extremely excited about the work of the Foundation and enthusiastic to be part of improving health in Wisconsin. Jaime will be heading up programs including Scholarships, Fellowships, Student Loans and Grants. Jaime can be reached at jaime.craig@wismed.org.

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Contribute to the upcoming election with GO PAC GO – fourth quarter begins today!

GOPACGO
Scoreboard

If the upcoming election is important to you, then now is the time to invest in the campaigns that matter to you. Campaign commercials, emails and phone calls are coming at you fast and furious and yet, there’s an easy solution to make sure when the election is over, you know you got in the game and gave it your best shot.

GO PAC GO is designed to make it easy for you to make sure your contribution is impactful. Campaigns are buying airtime and dropping literature now and they need your contributions now. Click here and make a generous contribution to either WISMedPAC or WISMedDIRECT and get into the game! By contributing to WISMedPAC, your money is distributed to candidates who share physicians’ concerns and understand our advocacy positions. When you contribute to WISMedDIRECT, your contribution can go to local, state and federal candidates of your choice. We’re here to make it easy for you!

“I’m new to the WISMedPAC Board and I can testify that both sides of the political spectrum are represented well on the board, but the bottom line is we need more funds to have a bigger impact on legislation that affects the practice of medicine. Please consider supporting our political programs here at the Wisconsin Medical Society and GO PAC GO,” says Cynthia Hart, MD, and newest member to the WISMedPAC board.

The third quarter of GO PAC GO ended yesterday with Tom Joles, MD, and Joshua Balts, MD, both taking the MVP title for this quarter. Congratulations Dr. Joles and Dr. Balts and thank you to everyone who participated in the third quarter. The final quarter for this effort begins today. As a team, we can win our battles at the Capitol. We need you to do that. Please contact Heidi Green (608.358.6116) to get your name on the scoreboard, or contribute here.

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Do you have the old or the new life insurance?

umbrella drawing

September is Life Insurance Awareness Month and is the time when I urge all our members to take a moment to reflect on the life insurance protection they have in place. Not too long ago, life insurance (especially term life), was generally viewed as a commodity. All policies were generally the same, so you simply bought the desired amount of coverage for the least expensive cost. Today’s New Life Insurance contains several bells and whistles well worth consideration and begs the question whether you should keep your old life insurance or upgrade to the new and improved model.

So, what are these new improvements that may benefit you and your family or your overall estate and financial plan? The major upgrades include protection for a critical illness, long term care protection and a living benefits or accelerated death benefit rider to the policy. All provide security that goes well beyond a payment to beneficiaries upon death.

If you elect a critical illness rider on your policy, the policy will pay either a lump sum payment or periodic payments upon sustaining a serious illness among a list of health conditions. These can include things like heart attack, coronary bypass events, cancer, kidney disease, stroke and various other neurological disorders. In other words, the life insurance proceeds can potentially be paid out while you’re living.

Another critical consideration when purchasing a life policy today is inclusion of long-term care protection. A long-term care event can devastate a financial plan. The premise is that since the life insurance amount will be paid out in the future (if the policy remains in force), and the amount of the proceeds is known, so why not allow the proceeds to also be paid for long-term care? It’s never too early to purchase long-term care protection! Placing a long-term care policy while young dramatically lowers the cost. So why not incorporate it into your life insurance policies? If you’re unable to perform a respective number of “activities of daily living,” you’re qualified to receive the life insurance benefits for payment of long-term care expenses. The life insurance amount will be paid out in the form of a payment to your beneficiaries or for costs associated with long-term care. It’s a win-win!

Lastly, many policies today include an accelerated death benefit provision, where if you would be unfortunately diagnosed by a physician to have a designated timeframe to live or are unable to perform activities of daily living, you qualify to receive benefits while you are living. How fortunate to be able to direct the life insurance proceeds as you see fit while you are alive! Many times, the cost of this benefit rider is zero.

As you can see, there are substantial benefits to upgrading to a policy containing the new available options. Please reach out to Tom Strangstalien and the team at WisMed Assure at insurance@wismedassure.org, complete this online form or call 866.442.3810 to explore upgrading your life insurance to the New Life Insurance.

WisMed Assure

WisMed Assure is the Wisconsin Medical Society’s insurance agency – profits earned support the mission of the Medical Society.

Originally posted in The Antidote, August 19, 2022

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