• TMA's Legislative Victories Build on Past Successes

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    In a 2015 legislative session marked by new state leadership, new money, and big shifts in how Texas' major health care agencies oversee care delivery, the House of Medicine remained as steady as ever in its mission to ensure physicians can give their patients the best care possible. 

    Significant Victories  
  • Sunset Review of TMB Fails to Address Disciplinary Process Improvements
    In comments to the Sunset Advisory Commission on its 2016–17 review of the Texas Medical Board (TMB), TMA says one important matter is disappointingly absent from the agency's thorough and detailed report: improving TMB's disciplinary process. While TMA generally supports the sunset staff's report, the association says more could be done to ensure effective operations at the medical board.
    TDI Proposes HMO Rule Rewrite
    Whenever a state agency undertakes a wholesale overhaul of a set of regulations important to physicians and patients, TMA examines the proposal extremely carefully. That's why a TMA staff team spent weeks studying the Texas Department of Insurance's (TDI's) Oct. 7 proposed repeal and rewrite of the entire regulatory chapter on HMOs.
    PQRS: CMS Extends Informal Review Deadline to Dec. 7
    If you submitted data to Medicare's Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS) for the 2015 program year, make sure you review your quality reports. The reports include information about your quality and cost performance and whether you'll get hit with penalties or receive bonus payments. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services extended the deadline to appeal errors in your report to 10:59 pm CT, Wednesday, Dec. 7, 2016. The original deadline was Nov. 30.
    Year-End Checklist for Meaningful Use
    The Medicare and Medicaid electronic health record incentive programs' 90-day reporting period for 2016 ends on Dec. 31. Now is a good time to review your meaningful use data and the program requirements to make sure you're on track.
    Pay It Forward and Be an MD Mentor
    You probably remember what first motivated you to become a doctor: a family legacy, an aptitude for biology, or the desire to help those in need. But do you remember who had the biggest influence on how you practice medicine? Chances are it was a physician mentor.
    Texas Announces Local Zika Virus Case in Rio Grande Valley
    The Texas Department of State Health Services (DSHS) and Cameron County Department of Health and Human Services announced the first case of Zika virus disease likely transmitted by a mosquito in Texas. DSHS is supporting Cameron County's response to the case and to the ongoing risk of Zika in the community.
    Navigate Health Care’s Rocky Future as a TMA Accountable Care Leader
    Accountable care made big strides this year, and TMA has set the stage for members to get ahead of the curve while demystifying the paradigm shift. Applications are now open for TMA's 2017 Accountable Care Leadership Program. Participants will earn more than 95 hours of continuing medical education.
    Don't Miss First Tuesdays at the Capitol in 2017
    Your patients and your profession need you to be a lobbyist for a day. Mark your calendar now to join the Party of Medicine in Austin for First Tuesdays at the Capitol during the 85th Texas Legislature on Feb. 7, March 7, April 4, and/or May 2, 2017. The March 7 event is designated the official TMA Alliance First Tuesday, and the April 4 event is dedicated to medical students and residents. Registration is now open.
    2017 TMA Winter Conference: Physician Leaders Unite
    Reconnect with colleagues while earning continuing medical education credit at the 2017 TMA Winter Conference at the Hyatt Regency Austin downtown, Jan. 27–28. Whether facing local or national health care challenges, physicians unite under the TMA umbrella to improve the health of all Texans. Join the conversation and your colleagues for collaboration and education.
    'Tis the Season to Share Advancements in Medicine
    Have you or your colleagues implemented a recent clinical success or compiled innovative research that could improve the practice of medicine in Texas? The TexMed 2017 Poster Session is the perfect stage to share your insights and analysis with a large audience of Texas doctors while getting the kudos your work deserves.
    Texas Doctors See Post-Election Opportunity to Reshape Health Care
    The 2016 elections brought physicians an excellent opportunity to rebuild America's health care systems, TMA officials say.
    TMB-Teladoc Lawsuit on Hold
    The Texas Medical Board (TMB) and Teladoc are in "negotiations," as both have filed motions to put Teladoc v. TMB on hold until April 19, 2017. The previous trial date was set for February.
    TMA Fights Medicaid Anesthesia Proposal
    The Texas Society of Anesthesiologists (TSA) and TMA sent a formal letter and testified in person against a Texas Health and Human Services Commission (HHSC) plan to eliminate the "Physician-Led Anesthesia Care Team Model Billing" for Texas Medicaid. The change would cut payments to anesthesiologists who supervise certified registered nurse anesthetists and anesthesia assistants.
    Feds Cut Meaningful Use Reporting Period to 90 Days
    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has reduced the meaningful use electronic health record (EHR) incentive program reporting period from a full year to 90 days in 2016. In 2017, physicians participating in the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) will have several reporting options, including reporting on one patient to prevent a penalty, 90 days for a potential incentive, and a full year to receive an incentive. Physicians participating in the Medicaid meaningful use program will continue reporting the meaningful use measures for 2017 and will have a 90-day reporting period.
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    TMA is helping to strengthen your practice by offering personal advice and creating a climate of medical success across the state. 

  • What could a TMA membership mean for you, your practice, and your patients?