Related Stories

Texas Strong Toolkit - 12/03/2020

The Texas Medical Association and four other members of the Texas Health Care Industry Strike Force on COVID 19 are reinforcing the call to wear masks through a new public service announcement campaign entitled “Texas Strong.” Below are several downloadable


Sample Social Media Posts – Texas Strong Campaign - Launch: Wednesday, Dec. 2, 2020 - 12/03/2020

Facebook A simple piece of cloth can protect the health of all Texans. #MaskUpYall This is Texas. What makes us strong – and keeps us healthy – is us. #MaskUpYall Texans know we’re stronger


Provide Meaningful Health Care Coverage for Uninsured Texans - 12/03/2020

Texas can no longer ignore the human, social, and economic impact of having more than 20% of our people uninsured. Health care coverage matters, resulting in healthier constituents and more economically prosperous communities.


Operation Distribution: Physicians Key in COVID-19 Vaccines Distribution - 12/02/2020

Even though COVID-19 vaccines are closer than ever to use by the general public, many questions remain about how they will be distributed to Texas physicians – and how they’ll be received by Texans. That’s why TMA in October weighed in on the state’s distribution plan with recommendations to help ensure COVID-19 vaccines are not only distributed effectively and efficiently, but also seen as trusted tools in the fight against the illness.


“Texas Strong” Mask Campaign Calls on Texans to Come Together to Fight COVID-19 - 12/02/2020

As cases spike again throughout the state, the Texas Medical Association and four other members of the Texas Health Care Industry Strike Force on COVID-19 are reinforcing the call to wear masks through a new public service announcement campaign entitled “Texas Strong.”


Send TMA Your Prior Auth Nightmare Stories - 12/02/2020

Arbitrary. Confusing. Frustrating. Never-ending. Maddening. Those are some of the terms we can actually print that describe physicians’ perceptions of insurance companies’ prior authorization requirements and approval processes. Your personal stories of patient harm due to prior authorization request delays or denials can give the Texas Medical Association the ammunition it needs to fight this problem. Please submit your stories via email to the TMA Payment Advocacy Department.


Comprehensive Prior Authorization Reforms Needed, Medicine Tells Feds - 12/02/2020

As the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) seeks ways to relieve the burdens of prior authorization on health care, it should not rely solely on automation of electronic health records. Instead, CMS should seek comprehensive reforms that include transparent PA requirements and protections of continuity of care as well as automation, the Texas Medical Association, American Medical Association, and a host of other medical societies wrote in a letter to CMS Administrator Seema Verma last week.


TMA COVID-19 Experts Urge Testing for Schoolchildren - 12/01/2020

Texas physicians recommend schools use rapid antigen testing along with other on-campus safety measures to detect early signs of coronavirus infection among students and staff. The recommendation comes from the Texas Medical Association (TMA) School Reopening Workgroup, which includes physician members of the TMA COVID-19 Task Force, Committee on Infectious Diseases, and Committee on Child and Adolescent Health, and local health authorities from throughout the state.


Talk to Patients About: Why COVID-19 “Parties” Are a Bad Idea - 11/30/2020

Most people have gradually adjusted to the day-to-day changes caused by COVID-19, such as washing hands frequently, wearing masks, and social distancing. But others have looked for strategies to get around the hassles caused by the pandemic. In some cases, this has included deliberately trying to contract the potentially deadly illness through “COVID parties,” events designed to expose people to someone with COVID-19.


Which is Riskier: Building a Snowman or Celebrating New Year’s Eve at a Bar? - 11/25/2020

Because of the COVID-19 pandemic – and the social distancing recommended to stop its spread – this holiday season will be anything but normal. The Texas Medical Association has created a chart that ranks various holiday traditions and activities based on how risky they are.


Texas Medicaid, CHIP Changes Extended Through 2020 - 11/25/2020

Some Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) flexibilities put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic have been extended through Dec. 31, state health officials announced.


Federal Agencies Adopt Rule Mandating Health Plan Price Transparency - 11/24/2020

A number of health plans will be required to be more transparent about coverage pricing starting in early 2021 after the recent adoption of a rule by three federal agencies.


Staff Holiday Party on Hold? Consider Other Morale-Boosting Options - 11/24/2020

As we all know, the COVID-19 pandemic has made 2020 anything but normal. So, instead of hosting an in-person get-together, what can you do to lift your staff’s spirits to thank them for their hard work this year?


What’s More Risky, Going to a Bar or Opening the Mail? - 11/23/2020

The Texas Medical Association COVID-19 Task Force and Committee on Infectious Diseases have created a chart that ranks activities on their risk level for COVID-19. The levels are based on input from the physician members of the task force and the committee, who worked from the assumption that – no matter the activity – participants were taking as many safety precautions as they can.


Delegates Support Expanding Telemedicine, Financial Relief Programs - 11/19/2020

As telemedicine expands because of the COVID-19 pandemic, physicians at the American Medical Association’s Special Meeting of the House of Delegates approved a measure on Tuesday that called for telemedicine’s use to continue beyond the national public health emergency.


Deadline Extended: Didn’t Get Your 5% APM Incentive Payment? Take Action by Dec. 13 - 11/19/2020

If you participated in an advanced alternative payment model (APM) under the 2018 Quality Payment Program (QPP), the Texas Medical Association encourages you to take action now to verify that you have received your 5% APM incentive payment for 2020.


AMA House Addresses COVID-19 Vaccine Skepticism, Future Pandemics - 11/18/2020

The COVID-19 pandemic permeated activities at a Special Meeting of the American Medical Association House of Delegates, culminating in passage of two public health measures designed to help contain the disease.


New TMA Chart, Podcast Assess the COVID Risks of Various Holiday Activities - 11/17/2020

How risky is traveling over the river and through the woods to grandmother’s house during a pandemic? Physicians of the Texas Medical Association (TMA) COVID-19 Task Force and TMA Committee on Infectious Diseases announce two new tools to help Texans enjoy holiday activities while avoiding things that pose the greatest risk of spreading COVID-19: A new infographic and podcast.


Blue Cross Bundles Payment for Some Diagnostic Services - 11/16/2020

Effective July 1, Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Texas will cut payments for certain diagnostic procedures. The cut will apply to diagnostic cardiovascular and ophthalmology procedures that are billed for the same patient on the same day.


Blue Cross HMO Emergency Payment Review Policy Begins - 11/16/2020

Beginning today, Blue Cross Blue and Shield of Texas will require some members to pay 100 percent of their medical bills if they go to an out-of-network emergency room for certain non-life-threatening conditions, company officials have confirmed.


Health Professionals to State Leaders: Protect Texas’ PPE Supply - 11/13/2020

Gov. Greg Abbott and state lawmakers must do everything possible to ensure that Texas physicians and other health care professionals have adequate supplies of personal protective equipment during the global COVID-19 pandemic. That is the message the Texas Medical Association and other health care organizations sent to Governor Abbott and lawmakers in a letter Friday.


New Distribution System Will Ship PPE to Physicians, Clinics in Desperate Need - 11/13/2020

Texas physicians in desperate need of personal protective equipment (PPE) will soon get the supplies they’ve been asking for. The Texas Medical Association (TMA), in collaboration with state agencies, county medical societies, and other statewide health organizations, is establishing an online portal where health professionals can apply for shipments of PPE.


County Society Exec “Literally Meeting With People in Parking Lots” to Get PPE for Physicians - 11/13/2020

The COVID-19 pandemic has thrown the international market for personal protective equipment (PPE) into chaos. So physicians across Texas have found they have to go big or go home when it comes to obtaining those critical supplies.


Persons Under Investigation (PUIs) & Specimen Collection and Testing Resources COVID-19 - 11/13/2020

Health care personnel should immediately notify both infection control personnel at their health care facility and their local or state health department in the event of a PUI. COVID-19 is a notifiable condition that should be reported to your local health department immediately if either suspected or confirmed. Testing and specimen submission to the DSHS laboratory requires pre-approval from your local health authority. Commercial and drive through laboratory testing is also available. Please consider these as testing options for yourself and your patients due to their larger capacity to test compared to public health laboratories.


COVID-19 Vaccine, Treatment Drug Offer Hope for Treating Patients - 11/12/2020

A COVID-19 vaccine candidate and an investigational drug treatment took major steps this week in the fight against the ilness.