Stories written by Sean Price

Physicians Key to Improving Texas’ COVID-19 Vaccine Rates - 05/06/2021

Recent drops in COVID-19 vaccination rates have several causes, but taken together they signal that the effort to immunize Texans has entered a tough new phase – one that will rely more heavily than ever on physicians to distribute the vaccines, says David Lakey, MD, who is vice chancellor for health affairs and chief medical officer at The University of Texas System.


Talk to Patients About: Vaccines and Additives - 05/05/2021

Many additives sound toxic, like aluminum and formaldehyde. Others sound strange, like squalene, which is made mostly from shark liver oil. But vaccine additives pose little threat of harm.


In Defense of Public Health: Peter Hotez, MD, on the Comeback of Preventable Diseases - 05/05/2021

Preventable diseases are back on the map, and Peter Hotez, MD, Texas’ most outspoken vaccine researcher, says physicians need to think globally to help stop the trend.


Trouble With COVID-19 Data Entry? The Texas Military Department Can Help - 05/04/2021

Many physicians offering COVID-19 vaccines face unfamiliar administrative chores, including reporting vaccinations to ImmTrac2, the state’s vaccine registry.


Buprenorphine Prescriptions Easier Under HHS Rule Change - 05/03/2021

Buprenorphine is widely seen as one of the most effective medications for treating opioid use disorder. But physicians trying to prescribe it have faced a big obstacle: The U.S. government required they first take a special eight-hour training course.


A Healthy Knowledge: Improving Patients' Health Literacy - 05/01/2021

The more literate patients are about health matters, the easier it is for physicians to treat them.


The ABCs of Health: Physician Leadership on School Health Advisory Councils (SHACs) - 05/01/2021

Physician leadership on school health advisory councils, or SHACs, can improve local policies.


LGBTQ Health: New TMA Section Helps Physicians Treat a Misunderstood Population - 05/01/2021

TMA’s newest section on LGBTQ Health helps Texas physicians treat a widely misunderstood population.


GME Momentum: Preserving Texas' Steady Progress in Building Residency Positions - 04/29/2021

TMA fights state budget cuts to preserve Texas’ steady progress in building residency positions.


CME on CPAN in Bastrop: Learn about Texas’ New Child Psychiatric Access Network - 04/22/2021

The 2019 Texas Legislature set up a statewide network to increase physicians’ access to mental health services via tele-consulting, and now you can learn about it at an upcoming CME event on Thursday, March 12 at Ascension Seton Bastrop Hospital from 6:30-7:45 pm.


Proposed Mental Health Payment Parity Rules Could Restrict Treatments, TMA Tells TDI - 04/15/2021

Proposed rules that would require insurers to cover mental health and substance use disorders at the same rate as other medical procedures could actually exclude or restrict all benefits for certain treatments.


Accelerating RPM: COVID-19 Speeds Adoption of Remote Patient Monitoring - 04/14/2021

Before March 2020, remote patient monitoring (RPM) was a tool endocrinologist Thomas Blevins, MD, used to help patients with diabetes track and regulate blood sugar levels and report the results back to him. But when the COVID-19 pandemic forced many doctors to turn to telemedicine, Dr. Blevins and the nine other physicians on staff at Austin Diabetes and Endocrinology had to rev up their RPM use.


Talk to Patients About: Vaccines and Cancer - 04/01/2021

Vaccines are one of medicine’s best tools against cancer. The shots for human papillomavirus (HPV) and hepatitis B prevent a range of cancers and save thousands of lives each year. But anti-vaccine advocates have tried – incorrectly – to paint just the opposite picture in several ways.


Keeping Children Safe: Prevention a More Prevalent Approach to Address Child Abuse, Neglect - 04/01/2021

Physicians, especially pediatricians and family doctors, are trained to recognize signs of abuse and neglect and are legally obligated to report them. That is a vital approach for combatting the problem. However, physicians and other child abuse experts are turning more and more toward prevention.


Routine Screen: Regular Testing Needed to End HIV Epidemic - 04/01/2021

Testing is one of the best ways to combat HIV infection. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) recommends routine testing for patients between the ages of 13 to 64. Yet, fewer than 40% of eligible people have ever had an HIV test, according to a 2019 CDC study.


New Rules Could Make It Harder to Enroll in Healthy Texas Women - 04/01/2021

Healthy Texas Women (HTW) has changed how it determines eligibility for low-income women who use the program, which could put a greater burden on physicians and other health care professionals who help patients get and stay with these services, TMA says.  


Another Great Match: Most Texas Medical Graduates Matched With Residency Positions - 04/01/2021

Texas medical students have enjoyed some highly successful Match Weeks in recent years, but 2020 was the best since the Texas Medical Association Council of Medical School Deans began tracking match data in 2014.


Tired of Paying Fees for Electronic Payments? Take This Survey - 03/24/2021

Are you among the many physicians who are forced to pay fees to receive electronic payments? A new survey is your place to explain how those fees affect your practice.


TMA Supports Evidence-Based Care for LGBTQ Youth - 03/22/2021

The Texas Medical Association aggressively opposes any "potentially harmful, unproven therapies," such as conversion therapy, that are designed to change the sexual orientation of LGBTQ young people, TMA President David Fleeger, MD, said in prepared testimony to the Texas Medical Board on Friday.


Another Poll Shows Texans Overwhelmingly Support Medicaid Expansion - 03/18/2021

Almost 70% of Texans say the state should expand Medicaid to provide health insurance to low-income people who are uninsured, according to a recently released state survey, up from 64% in a similar 2019 poll.


Work to Improve Maternal Health for All Texans, Physician Tells TMA Members - 03/10/2021

Physicians can do a lot to improve maternal health – one of the Texas Medical Association’s top priorities – by personally contacting their state legislators, a physician leader from TMA’s Women Physicians Section on Tuesday.


Mental Health Care for New Moms Costs Texas $2.2 billion Each Year, Report Says - 03/04/2021

Texas spends about $2.2 billion each year helping young mothers and their children deal with maternal mental health condition, according to a report released today.


Leading Innovation: Physician Entrepreneur Develops App to Engage Patients - 02/27/2021

In 2015, Austin cardiologist Manish Chauhan, MD, decided to finally act on an idea he’d been knocking around for a while – something to fill a void he’d witnessed when it came to engaging patients in their care.


Spotlight on Vaccines: Pandemic May Open Gateway to Improve Vaccination Rates in Texas - 02/27/2021

The uneven rollout of COVID-19 vaccines in December created at least one bright spot for Texas physicians: It highlighted how the state could make vaccination more efficient.


USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills Exam Eliminated - 02/02/2021

In a move long called for by the Texas Medical Association, the two organizations that run the United States Medical Licensing Examination (USMLE) announced last week that they have ended the USMLE Step 2 Clinical Skills (CS) portion of the USMLE examination.