TMA News Releases

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Physicians Warn: New Drug Overdose Threat Contains Veterinary Tranquilizer Xylazine
Xylazine, a tranquilizer used in veterinary medicine, is appearing in illicit street drugs with fentanyl, compounding the dangers of the opioid overdose epidemic. Xylazine, also called “tranq” according to the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration, is used to tranquilize animals. It is not approved for human use and has killed people who have taken the drug.

Physicians Alarmed by Sharp Spike in Accidental Overdose Deaths Fueled by Illegal Drugs
A surge in accidental opioid overdose deaths in Texas is showing no signs of slowing down, and Texas physicians warn the rise in illegally produced drugs laced with fentanyl are to blame. They also say increasing the availability of life-saving, overdose-reversing drugs like naloxone, as well as addiction treatment programs, can help.

Access to Care Improves After 20 Years of Medical Liability Reform
This week marks two decades since Texas voters approved a constitutional amendment to stop what some physicians and patients called a crisis situation. They say the effort ensured patients have greater access to doctors’ care.

TMA Welcomes New Court Ruling in NSA Lawsuit
Statement by Rick W. Snyder II, MD, Texas Medical Association (TMA) president, in response to the ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas regarding TMA’s third No Surprises Act (NSA) lawsuit.

TMA Pleased Court Strikes Down Steep Fee Hike and Batching Rules in NSA Cases
Statement by Rick W. Snyder II, MD, Texas Medical Association (TMA) president, in response to the ruling by the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas on TMA's fourth No Surprises Act lawsuit. TMA challenged a 600% hike in administrative fees and batching rules used in arbitration cases governed by the federal law.

TMA Installs Dallas Cardiologist as 158th President
TMA on Saturday installed Richard W. “Rick” Snyder II, MD, a Dallas cardiologist, as its 158th president.

TMA Elects Beaumont Anesthesiologist President-Elect
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) Saturday elected Beaumont anesthesiologist G. Ray Callas, MD, president-elect during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held in Fort Worth this year. Dr. Callas will serve in this role for one year, after which he will be installed as president.

Parents, Act Now: Pneumococcal Vaccines Protect Kids From Dangerous Diseases
Texas physicians have a message for parents getting ready to send their kids to daycare or school – make sure your children are up to date on their pneumococcal vaccine. The vaccine prevents infectious diseases that spread easily through a cough or sneeze in crowded settings.

New TMA Lawsuit Challenges Big Fee Hike in “No Surprises Act” Arbitration
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) is challenging a 600% hike in administrative fees for seeking federal dispute resolution in No Surprises Act (NSA) situations. TMA seeks relief by filing a fourth lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas.

TMA Pleased by U.S. District Court Ruling Granting Summary Judgment Motion
Statement by Gary W. Floyd, MD, Texas Medical Association president, in response to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas granting TMA’s motion for summary judgment in its lawsuit opposing certain components of federal regulatory agencies’ final rules regarding dispute resolution under the No Surprises Act.

TMA Board Elects Officers From Houston, Denton, San Antonio, Keller
The TMA Board of Trustees has elected 2023-24 officers to lead the board. Members of the TMA governing body elected Houston ophthalmologist Keith A. Bourgeois, MD, as chair; Denton obstetrician-gynecologist Joseph S. Valenti, MD, as vice chair; and San Antonio internist and undersea and hyperbaric medicine specialist Jayesh B. Shah, MD, as secretary. The TMA House of Delegates also elected Keller family physician Greg Fuller, MD, as TMA secretary/treasurer.

TMA Foundation Board Adds New Trustees
Two physicians and a medical student have joined the Texas Medical Association Foundation (TMAF) Board of Trustees. Each began serving on the board leading the philanthropic arm of the Texas Medical Association (TMA) at TMA Fall Conference meetings.

Texas Physicians Explain Herd Immunity Needed to Fight Contagious-Disease Hotspots
A community with enough vaccinated people can protect each other from the spread of contagious disease. Herd immunity – also known as community immunity – protects those who are not immune and those who cannot or choose not to get vaccinated.

What’s Better, Immunity From a Shot, or From the Disease?
Although suffering through a disease sometimes gives you immunity from catching that same disease later in life, vaccinating against diseases instead is the safest way to protect yourself and your loved ones.

I Got My Shot; Why Am I Sick? Physicians Explain
The bottom line: Vaccines are our best protection against disease, but in some situations vaccinated people can still get sick. In the case of influenza, several factors can cause this. Nonetheless, physicians stress vaccines are the best form of protection, shielding many individuals from the disease or at least reducing the severity of symptoms, and preventing hospitalization or death.

TMA Recognizes Houston, El Paso Physicians With Highest Honors
For just the fourth time in its history, the Texas Medical Association (TMA) today honored not one but two revered TMA physician leaders with its 2023 Distinguished Service Award. TMA presented Diana L. Fite, MD, and Gilbert A. Handal, MD, its highest honor during TexMed, the association’s annual conference in Fort Worth.

Removing Texas Physicians From the Health Care Team Would be Harmful, Costly
Op-ed by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President Gary W. Floyd, MD, and Board of Trustees Chair G. Ray Callas, MD, about legislation proposing to give advanced practice registered nurses and other providers independent practice authority without physician supervision.

TMA to Congress: Support Increased Competition, Transparency in Health Care
Statement by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President-Elect Rick Snyder, MD, in response to the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee’s Health Subcommittee hearing Wednesday on transparency and competition in health care.

Gather Medical Information Now, in Case You Can’t Access it Later
Recent severe storms hitting Texas remind Texans to prepare by gathering personal medical information now in case of displacement by a disaster later, as hurricane season begins June 1. The Texas Medical Association (TMA) recommends everyone get a copy of their vital personal medical information, including current prescriptions.

TMA Seeks to Protect Patients’ Access to Care in New “No Surprises Act” Rules Lawsuit
Amid concerns about threats to patients’ access to physicians’ care, the Texas Medical Association has filed a new lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, challenging certain portions of the July 2021 interim final rules implementing the federal No Surprises Act. This is the third lawsuit TMA has filed against federal agencies related to rulemaking under the law.

TMA Welcomes U.S. District Court Decision to Grant Its Summary Judgment Motion
Statement by Diana L. Fite, MD, Texas Medical Association (TMA) immediate past president, in response to the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas’ ruling on TMA’s motion for summary judgment in its lawsuit opposing federal regulatory agencies’ dispute resolution approach under the No Surprises Act.

TMA Awards 2022 Scholarships to 15 Minority Medical Students
Fifteen minority students entering Texas medical schools this fall each will receive a $10,000 scholarship from the Texas Medical Association (TMA). Physicians selected the students for their academic achievement, commitment to community service, and desire to care for Texas’ increasingly diverse population.

Federal District Court to Hear TMA “No Surprises Act” Rules Lawsuit
On Tuesday, Dec. 20, 2022 the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas will hear arguments in the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) second lawsuit challenging certain portions of the Aug. 26, 2022, final rules implementing the federal No Surprises Act (NSA). This hearing addresses the second of three TMA lawsuits against federal agencies related to rulemaking under the surprise-billing arbitration law.

TMA Urges District Court AGAIN to Protect Patient Access in “No Surprises Act” Final Rules
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) today announced it has filed a new lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas, challenging certain portions of the Aug. 26, 2022 final rules implementing the federal No Surprises Act (NSA). This is the second time in less than a year TMA has filed a lawsuit against federal agencies related to rulemaking under the law.

Walk With a Doc Texas Celebrates 10 Years of Exercise, Good Health
A decade ago, two Texas physicians laced up their walking shoes to become the first in the state to adopt a new program to build healthier communities. Today that program, Walk With a Doc Texas, has an impressive footprint – more than 140,000 miles of walks among 135 doctor-led chapters in Texas communities.

Texas Physicians Offer Solutions to Address Increasing Overdose Deaths
As an alarming number of Texans die from overdosing on illicit opioids laced with fentanyl, physicians advise lawmakers to consider new approaches to tackle the problem. These include easing barriers to medical treatment for patients suffering from chronic pain, improving access to the overdose-countering drug naloxone, and legalizing fentanyl test strips.

Doctors to Unveil Fun Dispenser of Books for Little Patients
Tyler physicians and alliance volunteers will unveil their new Texas BookShare program and special “vending machine” to give books to young patients in a fun way, at a clinic for underserved child patients.

TMA Statement Regarding Roe V. Wade Opinion
Statement by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President Gary W. Floyd, MD, in response to the U.S. Supreme Court’s ruling regarding Roe v. Wade.

TMA Selects Austin Surgeon for Highest Honor
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) today awarded David C. Fleeger, MD, its highest honor – the 2022 TMA Distinguished Service Award – at TexMed, TMA’s annual conference.

Keller Pediatrician Assumes TMA Presidency
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) today installed Gary W. Floyd, MD, a Keller pediatrician, as its 157th president. TMA’s House of Delegates policymaking body installed Dr. Floyd during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, in Houston this year.

Dallas Cardiologist Voted TMA President-Elect
Richard W. “Rick” Snyder II, MD, a Dallas cardiologist in practice for nearly three decades, was elected president-elect of the Texas Medical Association. Dr. Snyder will serve in this role for one year before assuming the presidency of America’s largest state medical society in 2023.

TMA Board Elects Beaumont, Houston, Austin Physician Leaders
TMA Board of Trustees has elected 2022-23 officers to lead the board. Members of the TMA governing body elected Beaumont anesthesiologist G. Ray Callas, MD, as chair; Houston ophthalmologist Keith A. Bourgeois, MD, as vice chair; and Austin ophthalmologist Michelle A. Berger, MD, as secretary/treasurer.

El Paso Medical Student Elected to TMA Board of Trustees
Abhishek Dharan, a student at Texas Tech University Health Sciences Center Paul L. Foster School of Medicine, was elected to serve on the Texas Medical Association Board of Trustees, the association’s governing body. Mr. Dharan will serve a one-year term representing the TMA Medical Student Section on the board.

Lubbock Physician Reelected to TMA Board of Trustees
Cynthia Jumper, MD, a Lubbock physician specializing for 28 years in internal medicine and pulmonary diseases, was reelected to the Texas Medical Association Board of Trustees governing body. TMA’s House of Delegates policymaking body elected Dr. Jumper during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held this year in Houston.

San Antonio Resident Physician Joins TMA Board of Trustees
The Texas Medical Association elected to its Board of Trustees Alixandria Pfeiffer, DO, a physician specializing in obstetrics and gynecology undergoing residency training at The University of Texas Health Science Center at San Antonio. Dr. Pfeiffer will serve a one-year term on the board representing the TMA Resident and Fellow Section.

Houston Physician Elected to TMA’s Board of Trustees
Houston otolaryngologist and facial plastic and reconstructive surgeon Bradford S. Patt, MD, has been elected to the Texas Medical Association Board of Trustees. TMA’s House of Delegates elected Dr. Patt during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held in Houston this year.

Dallas Physician Elected to TMA's Board of Trustees
John T. Carlo, MD, a Dallas physician specializing in public health and general preventive medicine for 18 years, was elected to the Texas Medical Association Board of Trustees. TMA’s House of Delegates policymaking body elected Dr. Carlo during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held in Houston.

Galveston Physician Elected to TMA Board of Trustees
Galveston family physician Samuel E. Mathis, MD, has been elected to the Texas Medical Association Board of Trustees to represent TMA’s Young Physician Section. TMA’s House of Delegates policymaking body elected Dr. Mathis during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, in Houston.

Lubbock Community Leader Elected TMA Alliance President
The Texas Medical Association Alliance (TMAA) has installed Lubbock community leader Libby White as its president. She will serve as president for one year, having served the past year as TMAA president-elect.

Texas Physicians Reflect on Two Years of Battling COVID-19
Texans physicians reflect on two years of battling COVID-19, the immense challenges they faced and lessons learnt along the way.

TMA Continues Fight for Fair Process in Federal Surprise Billing Law
The Texas Medical Association Monday reiterated its strong opposition to a part of a federal rule that unfairly favors health insurers when directing arbiters to resolve payment disputes between insurers and physicians under the No Surprises Act. A brief filed by TMA late Monday opposes the federal agencies’ motion for summary judgment in TMA’s legal challenge to the federal rule.

TMA Moves for Victory in Challenge to Unfair Arbitration Rule
The Texas Medical Association today announced it has filed a motion for summary judgment in its lawsuit in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Texas. The motion asks the court to decide, without a trial, that the U.S. departments of Health and Human Services, Labor, and Treasury, and the Office of Personnel Management failed to follow clear direction from Congress about how to implement the physician-insurance company dispute resolution process set forth in the No Surprises Act, legislation passed in 2020 to address surprise medical bills.

TMA: Thanks for Saving Medicare; More Work Ahead
Statement by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President E. Linda Villarreal, MD, in reaction to Congress passing legislation Thursday averting most of a 9.75% Medicare cut to physician payments, which was scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2022.

TMA Sues Feds Over Unfair Rule for Surprise Billing Law
The Texas Medical Association filed a lawsuit in federal district court in Tyler, Texas, after the Biden administration failed to follow clear direction from Congress about how to implement the dispute resolution process set forth in the No Surprises Act, legislation that was passed in 2020 to protect patients from surprise medical bills.

Governor Approves Bill to Reduce Prior Authorization Hassles
Care for countless Texas patients will happen more quickly by reducing health insurers’ bureaucratic delays, thanks to a bill Gov. Greg Abbott allowed to become law this weekend. The Texas Medical Association  prioritized curbing health insurers’ onerous prior authorization practices this legislative session, resulting in passage of House Bill 3459 by Rep. Greg Bonnen, MD (R-Friendswood), and Sen. Dawn Buckingham, MD (R-Lakeway), with considerable support by Sen. Jane Nelson (R-Flower Mound).

Racism: A Very Important Health Problem
“Americans should not be surprised that it took the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, under the knee of a white police officer to take the COVID-19 pandemic off the lead of every newscast, off the top of every mind, and off the tip of every tongue. Our great country was born with a big problem with racism. Today – 155 years after the end of the Civil War, 65 years after Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala., bus, 28 years after Rodney King implored us to “all get along” – our great country still has a big problem with racism..."

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Last Updated On

August 04, 2023

Originally Published On

March 22, 2016