Practice Management

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Free Smoking Cessation Learning Module Available Online!

Tobacco use is leading cause of preventable death in the U.S., and as health care professionals we are in a prime position to help our patients successfully quit tobacco, while simultaneously lowering their risk of heart disease, stroke, COPD and other diseases.

Recently, the NYC Health Department has developed an excellent and free online learning module to assist physicians by enhancing your knowledge on how to effectively assess, counsel, and treat tobacco use, greatly improving patients’ chances of successfully quitting. For medical residents, this module meets five of the six Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education core competencies and is able to be placed in your learning management system. For attending physicians, this module provides 1 CME credit.

Highlights of the module include:

  • The “5 A’s” model of treating tobacco use
  • Provider/Patient communication techniques
  • Treatment options and guidance, including combination therapy
  • New York State Medicaid Benefits
  • Billing information for smoking cessation counseling

Click here to access the online module and here to access additional provider resources.

NYSDOH Outreach To Physicians On Ebola Virus Disease:

Update On Management, Prevention, and Containment

A Free Conference Call Hosted By The New York State Department Of Health

In recent weeks, there has been a growing concern over the potential spread of Ebola Virus disease (EVD) from its native locus of Western Africa to the United States and other parts of North America. The Centers for Disease Control and New York State Department of Health have both released guidelines for proper care and handling of patients with potential cases of EVD along with any laboratory material with suspected EVD exposure.

Ebola Virus is transmitted via bodily fluids of those infected with Ebola and through the handling of rodents and primates infected with the virus; it is NOT transmitted through the air or respiratory droplets. Clinical criteria includes pyrexia along with severe headache and generalized muscle pain and malaise, GI upset including vomiting and diarrhea along with potential hemorrhage. It is important to note that while there have been a total of 1,323 cases of EVD as of July 27th, 2014; there have been no reported cases of the virus in North America. However, it is prudent to understand the guidelines and regulations in handling suspected cases of the virus as international spread is always a possibility.

For any patient with suspected features of EVD with recent travel to known areas of primary EVD disease, the attending physician should take extreme caution when examining patient, place patient in private room with a closed door, instruct patient on how to use rubber gloves and surgical mask and to abstain from touching items in the exam room. All medical staff should be alerted of the potential EVD case on premises, the amount of staff that come in contact with said case should be limited and those who do should use the proper personal protective equipment (gloves, fluid impermeable gown, eye protection, facemasks, leg and shoe coverings) in cases with open wounds or bodily fluid, clean room suits should be used.
Once patient is sequestered and safely kept, the attending physician should call the Local Health Department with the following information:

  • The patient's risk factors and travel history, including dates, destinations and other potential contact including contact with animals and other people.

  • The patient's current status including physical and mental along with pressing concerns for the patient's immediate health.

The Local Health Department will then confer with the attending physician regarding the testing procedures (as outlined below) and any further information regarding a potential transfer to another medical facility.

Laboratory guidelines are as follows:

  • When possible, tests should be done in patient's isolation room using Point-Of-Care (POC) instruments and testing methods. Transferring specimen from isolated room to other rooms should be done as minimally as possible and should be done with extreme caution using Clean Room Suits and hand carried in a container that has been thoroughly wiped down with 10% bleach. All specimen manipulation must be done in a Class 2 biosafety cabinet (BSC2)

  • Guidelines for specific laboratory procedures can be viewed in the attached NYSDOH Brief.

Member Benefit Highlight:  ACP Smart Medicine

A free benefit of your ACP membership, Smart Medicine is a new clinical decision support tool that allows you to browse evidence-based recommendations on diagnosis, therapy and more.  Content can be searched alphabetically or by specialty and covers categories including prevention, screening, diagnosis, therapy, patient education and follow-up.  The program is accessible through PC and mobile units, and integrates with the Annals of Internal Medicine, ACP Journal Wise, clinical guidelines and high-value care recommendations.  Why not browse what's here for you and take advantage of this free clinical decision support resource:

Virtual Patients

Did you know…That the Annals of Internal Medicine released a new interactive medical education tool designed to test physicians' decision-making skills? The Annals “Virtual Patients” is a complex clinical simulation which covers the examination, diagnosis, and treatment of a virtual patient. Selecting a response prompts a detailed explanation of the medical consequences based on the answer chosen. At the end of each case, the physician is presented with a complete summary of the clinical problem and solution. Upon completion of each case, physicians may earn Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Maintenance of Certification (MOC) credits (2 CME credits and 2 MOC credits per case).

The first sample case is free.  Additional cases can be purchased by members at a discount.  To learn more go to:

Open Payments Sunshine Program Increases Transparency in Health Care

As part of the Open Payments program, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will soon make data about the financial relationships between the health care industry and physicians (e.g. including medical doctors, doctors of osteopathy, dentists, chiropractors, and others) and teaching hospitals available to the public. Open Payments, previously known as the Sunshine Act, is a federal transparency program enacted by Congress in 2010. Under this program, CMS collects and publicly reports data about payments (“transfers of value”), ownership, or investment interests between drug and device manufacturers and physicians and teaching hospitals. Beginning with the last five months of 2013, CMS will collect this data annually from industry and make it publicly available, downloadable, and searchable. Every year CMS will continue to release this financial information as it becomes available about the prior year (e.g. by June 30, 2015 for 2014 data).

These financial interactions can happen for many reasons: research, conference travel and lodging, gifts, and consulting. They can foster collaboration among physicians, teaching hospitals, and industry manufacturers that may contribute to the design and delivery of life-saving drugs and devices. However, they also can potentially lead to conflicts of interest in how health care providers prescribe medications or give medical care.

While CMS doesn’t make assumptions or draw conclusions about the reported information, the Agency will take steps to ensure that only accurate information is made public. For example, as part of this initial data collection process, CMS has engaged stakeholders as pilot users to ensure that reporting systems are user-friendly and performing properly. In addition, CMS will give physicians and teaching hospitals an opportunity to be sure that information reported about them is accurate. In order to review the data and make corrections if necessary, physicians and teaching hospitals must first register in CMS’ Enterprise Portal starting on June 1, 2014. Then, starting in July, they must register in the Open Payments system (via CMS’ Enterprise Portal). This voluntary review and dispute period is open for 45 days. CMS strongly encourages physicians and teaching hospitals to register in our Enterprise Portal and Open Payments systems so they can review their specific data. Any data that physicians or teaching hospital dispute, but is not corrected by industry within the dispute resolution period, will be included when the data is made public and marked as disputed.

It is important that physicians or teaching hospitals know about this program, how and what financial relationships are reported, and how to answer questions from patients. Visit: to get more information about Open Payments (the Sunshine Act) and the resources available to understand the program. Health care providers and others with questions and concerns can be emailed to

This information is provided by the United States Department of Health and Human Services.

New York State Dept. of Health - Measels Advisory Alert

A total of 477 confirmed measles cases have been reported to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) nationwide as of 6/13/2014, surpassing the highest reported yearly total of measles cases since measles was eliminated in the U.S. Sixteen outbreaks throughout the U.S. have accounted for 84% of the cases reported. This includes an outbreak in Ohio with 316 cases to date, the largest single outbreak reported in the U.S. since 2000. The large number of cases this year emphasizes the need for health-care providers to have a heightened awareness of the potential for measles in their communities and the importance of vaccination to prevent measles.
Read Alert Here!

Prescribe Opioid's Safely
Access this FREE online educational program to help you safely prescribe opioids and manage patients with chronic pain.
Online CME is available.
Find out more.


Counsel's Forum
Laurie Cohen, Esq., Partner at Wilson, Elser, Moskowitz, Edelman, and Dicker LLP and the Chapter's attorney provides members with support and direction through articles and answering questions relevant to general practice.

Managing Your Patients With Diabetes - Tools & Resources
Useful Links:

Public Health
An overview of the Chapter's public health initiatives.

Health Information Technology
Learn about NY's information network, Meaningful Use, e-Prescribing, privacy and security and best practices.

Running a Practice
ACP has a broad array of products, services and expertise to help you run and grow your practice.

Patient Centered Medical Home - ACP has gathered a comprehensive collection of information, resources and demonstration projects to assist you in planning for a complete Patient-Centered Medical Home.

Physician Quality Reporting System - tools and resources to help guide you through collecting and reporting quality measure data.

Patient Care and Education
The following patient-related resources provide guidance in effectively maintaining and enhancing the doctor-patient relationship.

Last updated:9.17.14

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