June 4, 2020


Vermont Medical Society Seeks 2020 Resolutions and Award Nominations

The VMS Executive Committee has decided to transform the 2020 VMS Annual Meeting to a virtual-only format, which will be held on Saturday, November 7th. Although we will miss the in-person time with our colleagues, our meeting will still include a combination of policy, education and fun, including:

  • Awards (submit nominations below)
  • Business Meeting & Resolutions (submit ideas below)
  • Interactive CME – focus on COVID 19-related lessons and future planning

VMS is currently soliciting 2020 VMS Policy Resolutions for consideration by the membership at the Annual Meeting on November 7th. The VMS Council will be accepting resolutions until June 23rdand the resolution topics will be reviewed at the June 25th VMS Council meeting. Resolutions will then be circulated to all VMS members for feedback during August and early September. The VMS Council will review resolutions together with member feedback during the September 16th VMS Council Meeting. Because this year will be a pilot all virtual meeting, the number of resolutions will be limited. The Council will focus on resolutions that are time-sensitive or add new/substantially updated policies. Existing VMS policies can be found here:http://www.vtmd.org/advocacy-and-policy/vms-resolutions. Click HERE to submit a resolution idea.

VMS is also seeking Award Nominations, as this year more than ever, is the time to recognize those heroes who are making a difference in the lives of Vermont patients and for the health of our State.  Please consider nominating individuals for:

  • Distinguished Service Award
  • Physician of the Year Award
  • Physician Award for Community Service
  • Citizen of the Year Award
  • Founders’ Award

The VMS Committee on Awards will be accepting nominations for these awards until June 23rd. The awards will be presented during the day long Virtual Annual Meeting on November 7th. Click HERE to complete an awards nomination. Please let Stephanie Winters know if you have any questions or suggestions by emailing swinters@vtmd.org.


Action: Please Urge Health Care Committee to Fund Health Care Stabilization Relief Package

Please urge the House Health Care Committee to approve the Scott Administration's proposed $375 million funding package in order to stabilize Vermont’s health care system and provide immediate relief to help practices keep their doors open. The House Health Care Committee has been told they must make CRF funding recommendations by June 10th and that they have $150 million to allocate towards health care relief. This is despite the Administration's proposal that would provide $375 million to health care practitioners through an application process based on need. CRF funds must be spent by December 30, 2020, can only be used on necessary COVID-related expenses and losses, and cannot be used to backfill state revenue. The Committee received a joint letter from VMS and the broader Health Care Coalition urging them to approve this essential funding. Please email the members of the House Health Care Committee to let them know why this funding is of critical importance to maintaining your practice and stabilizing Vermont's health care system: wlippert@leg.state.vt.us; adonahue@leg.state.vt.us; LHoughton@leg.state.vt.us; AChristensen@leg.state.vt.us; BCina@leg.state.vt.us; BSmith@leg.state.vt.us; lrogers@leg.state.vt.us; MCordes@leg.state.vt.us; preed@leg.state.vt.us; ddurfee@leg.state.vt.us; wpage@leg.state.vt.us


Primary Care Scholarship Bill Approved in Appropriations Committee

The House Appropriations Committee voted unanimously this morning to approve an amendment to H. 607, a bill aimed at increasing the supply of primary care providers in Vermont. The bill requires the Vermont Department of Health, in collaboration with the Area Health Education Centers at the University of Vermont College of Medicine (AHEC), to establish a rural primary care physician scholarship program. This scholarship would provide medical school tuition for up to five third-year and up to five fourth-year medical students who commit to practicing primary care in a rural, health professional shortage or medically under-served area of Vermont. Recipients must incur two-years of full-time service or four-years of half-time service for each academic year of tuition covered by the scholarship. The bill also appropriates funding for additional scholarships for nursing students. The Committee’s amendment pulls $1 million from the Substance Use Disorder fund to match Global Commitment dollars to fund the scholarships.  VMS has been advocating for this proposal through the legislative session. The bill now advances to the House floor.


PPP Extension Bill Passes U.S. Senate

The U.S. Senate passed H.R.7010, the Paycheck Protection Program Flexibility Act of 2020, today with unanimous consent. This bill amends the PPP and provides small business recipients with necessary flexibility to receive the forgivable loans they need to keep their businesses open and their employees on their payrolls. Specifically, the bill would:

  1. Increases the loan forgiveness period from eight weeks to 24 weeks;
  2. Changes the 75/25 payroll / non-payroll requirement for loan forgiveness to 60/40
  3. Increases the loan repayment period from two to five years;
  4. Allows payroll tax deferral for PPP recipients; and
  5. Extends the June 30 rehiring deadline to December 31, 2020.

The bill was sent to President Trump for his signature. Following its enactment, the SBA will be required to update its loan forgiveness application and process.


Recently Updated COVID-19 Helpful Links:


    Questions for VDH? VMS Hosts Weekly COVID-19 CALLS With VDH

    Tuesdays 12:15-12:45 pm

    Please join VMS, for a Weekly COVID-19 update from 12:15-12:45 pm hosted by Vermont Department of Health (VDH) Commissioner Mark Levine to update Vermont's clinicians on the latest state information and protocols.

    Join Skype Meeting

    Join by phone: Dial-in number: +1 (802) 552-8456

    Conference ID: 993815551


    Medicaid Proposed Rule Would Expand Store and Forward Reimbursement for Interprofessional Consultations

    The Agency of Human Services has released proposed rule GCR 20-075: Provider to Provider Store and Forward Coverage Expansion: Interprofessional Consultations, which would continue to provide reimbursement for remote evaluation of stored images and video (HCPCS G2010) and starting July 1, 2020 would expand coverage and reimbursement for interprofessional consultations (CPT codes 99451 & 99452). Please send comments or concerns to Jill Sudhoff Guerin at jsudhoffguerin@vtmd.org by June 26, 2021 to inform VMS comments on this proposal.


    American Public Health Assoc. Webinar:“The Road to Immunity During COVID-19: Developing & Distributing a Vaccine" Wednesday, June 10, 2020 

    5pm EST

    Click here to register.

    Webinar: COVID-19 Medicare Part B Advanced Payment, Repayment and Recoupment Process

    Thursday, June 11, 2020 

    10:30-11:30 AM

    For clinicians who requested and received accelerated or advanced payments from Medicare due to the COVID-19 public health emergency, this webinar will review the repayment and recoupment process. Click here to register.

    OneCare Vermont: Words MATTER: Using Person Centered Language

    June 24 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

    Join Robyn Skiff, MSA, Care Coordinator Implementation Specialist to better understand and person-centered language in care coordination. Register by emailing Honey Resto at honey.resto@onecarevt.org

    Click here for all upcoming events

    VPQHC Upcoming Telehealth Events Click here for all upcoming events

    Telehealth Virtual Office Hours on Wednesdays from 12 pm - 1 pm and Thursdays from 8-9 am. The Wednesday office hour session will be supported by Dr. Mark McGee, current President of Alpine Telehealth. Contact telehealth@vpqhc.org  


    Vermont Medical Society

    134 Main Street

    PO Box 1457

    Montpelier, VT 05601

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