11 Days Until Patient Care Foundation Annual Los Angeles Healthcare Awards Livestream! | Each year the Patient Care Foundation, chaired by Dr. Troy Elander, honors incredible leaders in healthcare while providing scholarships for medical students in need. As we enter the final two weeks before the event, we are $30,000 below our goal of raising $100,000 for deserving medical students.
After a year of COVID-19 burnout, legislative changes, and a historic pandemic, a nice staycation, vacation or get-a-away experience is the best way to decompress and take care of yourself.
This year, we formed an alliance with Winspire so members can bid on local get-a-ways to exotic trips. I encourage our members and partners to help raise money for the future of medicine with these amazingly priced packages. The six medical students we're honoring are tributes to perseverance and unrelenting commitment to succeed and give back.
To bid on auction items click here.
LACMA Donates PPEs to AltaMed Health Services
This morning, LACMA executive committee and board member Dr. Hector Flores participated in a press conference along with Supervisor Hilda Solis, as LACMA donated over 100,000 masks, 1,000 digital thermometers, 1,000 hand sanitizers for patients receiving vaccinations, plus 4 boxes of PPE (each a 2-month supply) for medical providers. The event is part of the LACMA PPE Drive to help physicians, practices and now the public, to protect them as we enter a critical phase of the pandemic.
Over Documentation and “Work after Work” Continues to Plague Physicians
Our members continue to face documentation burdens with little relief in sight in sight. I asked one member to share a typical example of pre-authorizations and we pose two questions of members to gain a better understanding of how insidious the problem is:
"Today was another typical day in pre-authorization land. One of my patients with a pulmonary nodule had a repeat CT scan of the lungs after three months, on the advice of the radiologist. His insurance company, Cigna, refused to pay. My biller attempted to get a peer-to-peer consultation with a Cigna physician for over 45 minutes today before she simply had to give up. This is typical and it can tie up an hour of an employee's time to get someone on the phone to approve a CT scan, echocardiogram, or even a non-formulary medication. Insurers are destroying medicine under the guise of utilization management. Pre-authorizations are required even for generic medications many times (my office refuses to do those). Most of the time, if you waste enough time on the phone, you can get these studies authorized. The goal of the insurance companies is to muck up the system and make it so hard that many physicians simply give up the fight."
We created a brief three-question survey to hear your concerns and frustrations about pre-authorization requests.
Advocacy Conference is Critical Way to Inform Policy Makers
Today marks the beginning of CMA’s week-long Legislative Advocacy Conference. Plan to join your colleagues in educating legislative leaders as champions for patients and the practice of medicine.
The conference’s program is scheduled for Tuesday, April 6 at 10:00 a.m. and features keynote speakers Gavin Newsom, Governor of California, and Yolanda Richardson, California Secretary of Government Operations.
Later in the week, attendees will have the opportunity to meet with legislators on priority health care issues. Meetings are scheduled and coordinated by local county medical societies. Please contact Henry if you would like to participate in these meetings. Henry@lacmanet.org.
If you have other questions regarding the conference, please contact Alexis Rodriguez, (916) 444-5532 or email@example.com.
Violence Against the Asian American and Pacific Islander Community Must End
Thank you to LACMA President Dr. Diana Shiba and President-elect Dr. Jeffery Lee for hosting last week’s zoom call with Congresswoman Judy Chu and Sonya Logman Harris, Senior Advisor, COVID-19 Task Force on the issue of xenophobia. Thanks also to those of you who participated. I wanted to share the statement developed by the LACMA Health Equity Council members including Dr. Resa Caivano, Dr. William King and Dr. Hector Flores following the shootings in Georgia as violence against the AAPI community continues as evidenced by assaults in Los Angeles and San Francisco this past weekend.
“As we grieve the events of recent weeks, many thoughts and emotions come back to the surface—anger, frustration, disappointment, fear, disbelief, and unfortunately, lack of surprise. The shocking crime in Atlanta makes us realize that our emotions and thoughts are not isolated reactions. They are becoming frequent- they are becoming a common reaction. We are slowly recognizing that this trauma we are experiencing is not a new and situational phenomenon. The recent light shone on the racism, violence, and prejudice put on Black bodies has now spotlighted the racism, violence, and prejudice put on our Asian American and Pacific Islander (AAPI) family and friends. The abhorrent rhetoric of our last administration equating COVID-19 with China has been heavily correlated with the rise of over 3800 AAPI reported hate crimes. Again, this is unfortunately not new. Past harmful rhetoric and xenophobia resulted in federal legislation impacting AAPI civil rights and freedom as evidenced by the Chinese Exclusion Act and the internment of Japanese Americans into camps during World War II. Current harmful rhetoric and xenophobia have birthed incidents of daylight assault and battery on elderly AAPI citizens. Last week, we witnessed the brutal racially motivated murders of 6 AAPI women in Atlanta by someone, who the police spokesperson stated was “having a really bad day”.
This can no longer continue unanswered or unrecognized by the medical community. gun violence is in our lane and is a public health issue. Racism, hate crimes, microaggressions impact our health status and should also be recognized as a public health issue. As we strive to keep our patients healthy, we are reminded to deeply recognize the links between history and the present, and the connections between racism, safety, health equity, and social justice in our communities, and our own workplaces. We stand in solidarity with the AAPI community, and yet that is not enough. It is not enough to condemn the continued acts of violence that have escalated due to xenophobic, racist, sexist rhetoric.
It is not enough to treat the symptoms and sequelae of the intergenerational and repetitive trauma our Asian patients and other patients of color bear. We must act. We must create an America that is worthy of all the richness of the people who live within its borders. We must speak out in the face of these injustices and support one another. When one member of our community is hurting, we are all hurting. Racism and hate crimes harm us all.”
For more information on how you can educate yourself and help, email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Here is the link to the article in the Journal of American Medicine by Dr. James H. Lee titled “Combating Anti-Asian Sentiment — A Practical Guide for Clinicians.”
Webinar: Telehealth Series for Small and Medium Sized Practices: (Pt. 12) Telehealth Townhall
Over the past six months, CMA's telehealth webinar series has covered a wide range of topics, including selecting the right telehealth platform, policy considerations, special populations and more. For this final webinar in this 12-part series, CMA is inviting practices to bring any and all questions about the future of telehealth. There will be minimal planned presentation – just a review of some of the most commonly asked questions. Come prepared with your most pressing thoughts and questions to hear from CMA’s experts on the issue.
This webinar series is made possible through the support of the California Health Care Foundation and is open to all physician practices.
Date: April 8, 2021
Time: 12:15 p.m. - 1:15 p.m.
"One of the marvelous things about community is that it enables us to welcome and help people in a way we couldn't as individuals."
Chief Executive Officer
Los Angeles County Medical Association
“If it matters to our LACMA members, it matters to me.”