TMA News Releases

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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.

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 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.

Waco Physician to Host First-Anniversary Walk With a Doc Texas Event
Waco residents of all ages are encouraged to lace up their walking shoes and join Iliana Neumann, MD, of Waco Family Medicine for her first- anniversary Walk With a Doc Texas event.

TMA Physicians’ Advice: Get Your Medical Information Now, in Case of Emergency
As flooding hit parts of Texas last week and new tropical systems churn, physicians have advice for all Texas patients: Obtain a copy of your relevant medical information now, in case of an emergency later.

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.

State of Public Health in Texas Focus of Distinguished Speaker Event
John W. Hellerstedt, MD, Texas Department of State Health Services commissioner, will address the state’s public health priorities at a Distinguished Speaker Series event hosted by the Texas Public Health Coalition (TPHC) and the Texas Medical Association (TMA).

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.

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.

TMA Insurance Trust Names New Executive Director
The American Medical Association (AMA) honored Houston scientist and physician Peter J. Hotez, MD, with the Scientific Achievement Award for his work on promoting vaccines and combating vaccine misinformation.

Dallas Neurosurgeon Receives TMA Award
Dallas neurosurgeon Bradley Lega, MD, has received the 2022 J.T. “Lamar” McNew, MD, Award for his service to physicians-in-training. The Texas Medical Association Resident and Fellow Section recognized Dr. Lega during TexMed, TMA’s annual conference, in Houston.

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.

TCOM Student Named TMA Student of Year
The Texas Medical Association Medical Student Section recognized Kate Russell, a second-year medical student at the University of North Texas Health Science Center Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine, with its 2022 Student of the Year award.

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.

UT Southwestern Medical School Chapter Earns TMA Chapter of Year Honors
The Texas Medical Association Medical Student Section has named the TMA Chapter at UT Southwestern Medical School its 2022 Chapter of the Year. The annual award recognizes the chapter that excels in upholding the Medical Student Section’s goals and policies for a better Texas.

Texas Medical Students Honor Houston Physician
Texas medical students recognized Houston emergency physician Arlo F. Weltge, MD, with the 2022 C. Frank Webber, MD, Award, for his commitment to mentoring medical students. The Texas Medical Association Medical Student Section presented the award to the physician during TexMed, TMA’s annual conference, in Houston.

TMA Names New General Counsel
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) has named Kelly M. Walla, JD, LLM, as its next general counsel beginning July 1.

Local Blood Centers Ensure Supply Is Meeting Need
Texas physicians are calling for the public to donate blood to shore up supply and ensure blood and blood product needs here are met, even though Texas is faring better than other parts of the country in terms of meeting demand.

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 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.

Explainer: COVID-19 Testing Options
You think you might have COVID-19. What testing options exist to help you verify that? Texas Medical Association (TMA) physicians have answers, as Texas sees a surge in new COVID-19 cases with the highly contagious omicron variant spreading.

Houston Doctor Presented with Award for Leadership in Medical Ethics and Professionalism
The American Medical Association Foundation (AMAF) honored Ellen M. Friedman, MD, FACS, FAAP, with the 2021 AMA Foundation Award for Leadership in Medical Ethics and Professionalism. This award recognizes physicians who are dedicated to the principles of medical ethics and highest standards of medical practice, and who have made an outstanding contribution through active service in medical ethics activities.

David L. Lakey, MD, Presented National Health Education Award
The American Medical Association Foundation (AMAF) honored David L. Lakey, MD, with the 2021 AMA Foundation Award for Health Education. This award recognizes the professional or public health education activities of practicing physicians.

AMA Honors Texas Physician with Medal of Valor
The American Medical Association (AMA) honored Lubbock, Texas, critical care specialist Victor J. Test, MD, with the AMA Medal of Valor for his work on behalf of patients and his community in the COVID-19 epidemic. The award recognizes physicians who demonstrate courage under extraordinary circumstances in non-wartime situations.

AMA Honors Houston Physician with Scientific Achievement Award
The American Medical Association (AMA) honored Houston scientist and physician Peter J. Hotez, MD, with the Scientific Achievement Award for his work on promoting vaccines and combating vaccine misinformation.

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.

So-Called “Mild” Omicron Still a Serious Threat, Physicians Warn
As the massive spike of COVID-19 cases continues, Texas Medical Association physicians urge vigilance against the threat the omicron variant poses in Texas. The degree of infectiousness and lack of best and most available treatment worries Texas physicians about what the next few weeks will bring, and they say important medical advice bears repeating.

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.

Stewart Named New Leader of TMA Lobby Team
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) has named lobbyist Clayton K. Stewart as its new vice president of public affairs-chief lobbyist. Mr. Stewart begins his new position leading TMA’s lobby team immediately. His predecessor, Dan Finch, is retiring at the end of 2021 after serving two years in the role and capping a decades-long career of service to Texas physicians and patients.

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.

“Turn It Off” to Help Mental Health, Physicians Suggest
Physicians are concerned about more people suffering mental and behavioral health problems, especially as the pandemic lags on. Doctors see connections between people’s suffering and overuse of electronic devices, especially among young people who seem addicted to their phones and other screens. To combat these issues, the Texas Medical Association (TMA) is launching a new initiative, Turn It Off Today, to encourage families to pledge to take a break from electronic devices.

Your Pertussis Shot Protects Newborns at Holiday Gatherings
As people plan holiday get-togethers again given eased COVID-19 restrictions, physicians urge everyone to take precautions to protect the newest family members - infants - from a different disease: pertussis. Texas Medical Association physicians urge people meeting a newborn family member this holiday season to first get vaccinated against pertussis, or whooping cough.

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.

Physicians Encourage Masking and Vaccination of Students
Statement by Texas Medical Association (TMA) President E. Linda Villarreal, MD; Texas Pediatric Society (TPS) President Seth D. Kaplan, MD; and Texas Public Health Coalition (TPHC) Chair Jason V. Terk, MD, as Texans plan for kids to return to school. The physician and health care groups are calling for children to be protected from COVID-19 due to spikes in cases and hospitalizations from the COVID-19 delta variant. They recommend parents and families follow new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and American Academy of Pediatrics guidelines for masking everyone in schools, grades K-12 – regardless of vaccination status – and to vaccinate all children aged 12 and up who can receive the COVID-19 vaccine, to protect them and their families.

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).

Kids 12 and Up: Get a COVID Shot, Physicians Urge
As Texans return to work, school, and play thanks to more people getting the COVID-19 vaccine, physicians are now urging vaccination for children 12 years old and older. Texas Medical Association (TMA) COVID-19 Outpatient Workgroup physicians created a new infographic flyer urging parents to protect their adolescents and children against a disease that’s killed hundreds of thousands of Americans and millions of people worldwide.

Houston Neurologist Bestowed TMA’s Highest Honor
AUSTIN – About 70 years after he first had the inkling to become a physician, the Texas Medical Association (TMA) has honored 75-year-old William H. Fleming III, MD, with its Distinguished Service Award.

TMA Installs Valley Physician as 156th President
The Texas Medical Association (TMA) today installed Edinburg internist E. Linda Villarreal, MD, as president. She will lead the association for one year, after having served the past year as president-elect.

Fort Worth Pediatrician Voted TMA President-Elect
Gary W. Floyd, MD, a Fort Worth pediatrician, was elected president-elect of the Texas Medical Association (TMA) today. TMA’s House of Delegates governing body announced elections during TexMed, the association’s annual conference, held virtually this year due to the pandemic. He will serve in this role for one year before assuming the presidency of America’s largest state medical society in 2022.

The Doctor Is In: Parents, Don’t Miss Kids’ Routine Care, Vaccinations
Across Texas and the nation, many parents are anxious about taking their children to the doctor for fear of exposing them to COVID-19, but physicians are here to offer reassurance and a reminder. While the fear is justifiable, Texas doctors advise parents that routine well visits are safe and important for their child’s health, and assure them “the doctor is in.”

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..."

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.

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.

Galveston Physician Appointed to TMA Leadership Position
Kristene Gugliuzza, MD, a Galveston transplant surgeon in practice for 31 years, was appointed to the Texas Medical Association’s (TMA’s) Committee on Continuing Education. TMA held elections and appointments in conjunction with its TexMed conference and expo, held this year in Houston. Dr. Gugliuzza will begin her term of service at TMA’s Fall Conference in September.

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Last Updated On

January 26, 2022

Originally Published On

March 22, 2016