October 11, 2022


Seeking Member Feedback: Survey on Proposed Policy Resolutions

Earlier today, VMS members were sent a survey soliciting comments on four proposed VMS Policy Resolutions. The resolutions propose action-oriented solutions to address protections for receiving/providing cross-state health care, coverage for preventive screenings, access to health care while in police custody and increasing Vermont’s Workers’ Compensation Fee Schedule. All members are encouraged to provide feedback and non-binding comments on the resolutions between October 11th and November 8th, 2022. Each VMS member should have received an email with a unique link to submit comments via SurveyMonkey. If you did not receive a link, please reach out to Birdie Pauley at bpauley@vtmd.org.  The resolutions will be then discussed together with the feedback received from members by the VMS Board for potential action at its November 16th Board Meeting.  Resolutions are now considered by the VMS Board on a year-round basis and members can submit resolution topics for consideration at any time.  For more information on the resolution adoption process see: https://vtmd.org/vms-resolutions/  

Thank You to VMS Members for Attending the Washington Cty. Candidate Meet & Greet! 

Thank you to all of the VMS members who attended our Washington County Candidate Meet & Greet last Thursday at the Barr Hill Distillery in Montpelier and thanks to Jessie Leyse, MD, and Ryan Sexton, MD, for hosting the event. It was an enjoyable evening, full of casual conversation and great company as we got to know the legislative candidates running for House and Senate seats from Washington County. 

If you live or practice in Chittenden or Rutland counties, you are invited to the upcoming Candidate Meet & Greets in these districts, where you can meet the candidates who could be representing you after the general election in November. This Thursday, October 13th from 6-8pm, Chittenden County members can join us at the ECHO Leahy Center. Next Tuesday, October 18th from 6-8pm, Rutland County members can join us at the Rutland Country Club. For questions please email Jill Sudhoff-Guerin at jsudhoffguerin@vtmd.org.

Register for each event below (events are free to members but a head count is needed) :

VMS Public Health Updates from the Commissioner of Health       

VMS held its regular call last Thursday with Commissioner of Health Mark Levine, MD.  Commissioner Levine provided an update on a number of infectious disease and public health topics including COVID-19, Human Monkeypox Virus and other respiratory illnesses.   On COVID-19, Dr. Levine stated that Vermont is still seeing low community transmission and that although the percent positivity of tests is increasing, that is not a useful metric as PCR testing decreases.  State EMS sites are currently providing about 50% of bivalent boosters, with 30% being provided by pharmacies and approximately 10% by medical practices.  Full notes from the call can be found hereThe next call with Commissioner Levine will take place on Thursday, October 20th from 12:30-1pm.  Find the call-in information here.

VDH's Launches COVID After Action Survey

The Vermont Department of Health is ready for your COVID feedback! Here is the link to the COVID response survey: https://www.surveymonkey.com/r/C9XLMDR

  • The survey closes next Friday, 10/14/22.
  • There are several sections in the survey; you can mark “Did Not Observe” for any sections that don’t apply.
  • Feel free to share this with any healthcare partners who collaborated with VDH during the COVID response; there is only one survey so you may receive the link from other sources but only one response is requested.
  • Please help identify best practices and challenges around VDH’s COVID health and medical response.

Thank you in advance for your participation.

Deadline this Friday, Oct 14: 2023 VMS ERF Leadership Course

The Vermont Medical Society Education & Research Foundation is accepting applications through this Friday, October 14th for a 4th statewide Physician Executive Leadership Institute Foundational Course beginning in January 2023.

This course is offered in partnership with the Daniel Hanley Center for Health Leadership and Lumunos and is supported by funding from the Physicians Foundation.  Perhaps more than ever before physicians and PAs are being asked to step up and skillfully lead rapid change. Every clinician is being called upon to bring their leadership and management styles and skills to the forefront to ensure the best outcomes for Vermont patients. VMSERF is pleased to continue to offer an experiential learning opportunity that will enhance and fine-tune leadership skills and concepts for a statewide cohort of Vermont physicians and PAs.

The course will run from January through November 2023.  It is aimed at individuals with 5 or more years of clinical experience but minimal formal leadership training, with a goal of enrolling 15-20 physicians and PAs from across Vermont.  To apply, submit a CV and brief description of interest to swinters@vtmd.org by October 14th. View the full 2023 brochure, schedule and application information here.


Now Accepting Applications: VPHP Medical Director Position

The Vermont Practitioner Health Program (VPHP), a program of the Vermont Medical Society, is seeking a psychiatrist or other appropriately experienced physician or clinician for a part-time Medical Director position.  The purpose of VPHP is to identify, evaluate and ensure effective treatment for clinicians whose ability to practice medicine is impaired, or is at the risk of becoming impaired. The Medical Director is responsible for assessing and developing evaluation and treatment plans for all referred health professionals and managing the clinical operations of the program.  The Medical Director does not provide direct treatment services.   It is an excellent opportunity to work with a statewide program to further its mission of assisting health professionals in the state of Vermont.  This is a part-time independent contractor position, approximately 1/4 FTE, with specific hours to vary weekly based on the needs to the program and as determined by the Medical Director.  To apply, submit a cover letter, resume and references to VPHP Program Administrator Colleen Magne, cmagne@vtmd.org.  Applications will be accepted through Monday, October 17th.  For full details on the position including qualifications and duties, click here. For more information about VPHP, click here.

AAPVT Chapter Application for Flu and COVID-19 Vaccines

The American Academy of Pediatrics Vermont Chapter, in collaboration with the Department of Health’s Immunization Program, is providing funding to support expanded influenza and/or COVID vaccination by healthcare practitioners or organizations. 

This new round of funding allows practices that have applied/received funding previously or new practices to apply for a maximum grant award of $5,000 (pending availability of funds).

It is the intent of the State to provide financial support for health care practices/organizations activities that:

  • assess barriers to pediatric COVID-19 and/or seasonal influenza vaccinations in the communities served by the recipient and in collaboration with community organizations.
  • properly manage vaccines and off-site by ensuring vaccine storage equipment meets or exceeds CDC Storage and Handling Toolkit recommendations
  • implement COVID-19 and/or seasonal influenza vaccination clinics in communities to address identified barriers. Emphasis should be placed on offering vaccination clinics specifically to high-risk populations or those with limited access (e.g. assisting living communities, senior housing, schools, children under the age of 18 and their care givers).
  • expand access to COVID-19 and/or seasonal influenza vaccination at primary care practices through patient outreach, vaccine promotion, and expansion of vaccination services.
  • offer off-site, weekend, and after-hours COVID-19 and/or seasonal influenza vaccination clinics at selected locations to meet the need(s) of the community served (e.g. schools, shelters, meal sites, etc.)

Health Care Practices/Organizations may apply online here OR complete the application via word here and email back to Birdie Pauley at BPauley@vtmd.org by October 31, 2022.

Applications will be reviewed on receipt and funds will be distributed upon receipt of final project report. Reporting will be due by April 1, 2023 here.

    Vermont Retirement Systems Seek Chair for Medical Review Board

    Vermont’s three public retirement systems seek a licensed physician to Chair the State’s Medical Review Board (MRB).  The MRB is a State Board comprised of three physicians that reviews and makes recommendations on applications for disability retirement benefits.  The Board is staffed by employees of the Retirement Division, which is housed in the State Treasurer’s Office.  The position involves a limited commitment of approximate 10 hours/month.  For more information about the position, please see the full position description here. Interested candidates should send a resume and statement of interest to briana.howard@vermont.gov.

    Reminder - Information Blocking Rule Expansions Effective Oct. 6th

    In April 2021, the Office of the National Coordinator for Health Information Technology’s (ONC) rules on information blocking went into effect. Information blocking is defined as practices that are likely to interfere with, prevent, or materially discourage the access, exchange, or use of electronic health information (EHI). Physicians, hospitals, electronic health record vendors, health information exchanges, and health information networks are all subject to ONC's regulations. Since April 2021, information blocking requirements have been focused on a narrow subset all EHI. However, starting October 6, 2022, ONC’s information blocking requirements shifted to the entire set of EHI. After October 6, physicians and other actors are now responsible for the access, exchange, or use of the full EHI requirement. The linked document provides an overview from the American Medical Association of the information blocking regulations, EHI definition, and recommendations for physicians to address the October 6th changes.

    Community Resources Available: One Pill Can Kill Campaign

    The DEA has launched a One Pill Can Kill Campaign offering an opportunity for the media, parents, teachers, educators, and community organizations to raise awareness about counterfeit prescription drugs and about the dangers of fentanyl pills being disguised and sold as prescription medications, despite these pills not containing any of the actual medications advertised.  DEA has created materials to help you participate in bringing awareness, including press releases, graphics and social media.  Drug traffickers have more recently expanded their inventory to sell fentanyl in a variety of bright colors, shapes, and sizes. Rainbow fentanyl was first reported to DEA in February 2022, and it has now been seized in 21 states.  For more information and available resources see: https://www.dea.gov/onepill.  

    WIC National Enrollment Week is October 10-14, 2022

    WIC believes every family deserves a healthy start. WIC provides healthy foods, nutrition education, breastfeeding/chestfeeding support, and referrals to health and social services. Their staff are passionate about their work, care about WIC families, and want to build a healthier community.

    They invite you to learn more about WIC, their virtual and in-person appointment options, and how their work can help your patients.

    Refer your patients to Vermont WIC using their online provider referral form, or your patients can start their application online.

    Find out more at www.healthvermont.gov/wic
    and www.healthvermont.gov/media/newsroom/Vermont-WIC-Program-Celebrates-WIC-National-Enrollment-Week-October-10-2022



    No Cost Well-Being Workshops

    VMS is continuing our partnership with Doug Wysockey-Johnson of LumunosWellBeing to offer no-cost clinician wellbeing workshops at up to 10 Vermont medical staffs/practices over 2022. There are 3 remaining slots available this summer.  New topics for 2022 include A Clinician’s Guide to Recovering from the COVID Marathon and A Realistic Look at ‘Work-Home Balance’ for Clinicians. See the full list and additional details here.  Members can contact jbarnard@vtmd.org or doug@lumunos.org for more information or to schedule a workshop. 

    Fall 2022 Virtual Ethics Education Series

    October 19th, 12:00pm to 1:15pm EST

    The Vermont Ethics Network presents the last installment of their Fall 2022 Virtual Ethics Education Series:

    • October 19th - Ethical Management of Clinician-Patient Conflict in the Hospital, presented by Tim Lahey. 
      • Learn more and register here

    Vermont ACP Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting

    October 14, 2022

    Trapp Family Lodge, Stowe, VT

    The Vermont ACP Chapter's Annual Scientific Meeting will occur on Friday, October 14, 2022. The ACP is optimistically planning for an in-person meeting. The ACP will host a virtual poster competition for resident and student members.

    Update your medical knowledge, engage with colleagues, and receive CME credits and MOC points.

    For meeting details and to register, click here.

    Private Practice Simple Solutions: Team Documentation

    October 18, 2022, 10:00 am CDT

    The AMA’s newly launched Private Practice Simple Solutions series is designed to help implement actionable changes that can improve efficiencies within a physician’s practice.

    Each FREE multi-week session focuses on a single topic. This Team Documentation session will be a panel with subject matter expert on common obstacles  in a clinical vignette.

    Register here.

    Neurology for the Non-Neurology

    October 21, 2022, The Essex in Essex, VT

    Back at The Essex, this course is designed to update the non-neurologist on how to diagnose common neurological disorders, order appropriate diagnostic studies, and provide appropriate patient care. Topics include: Headache, Epilepsy, MS, Office Neuro Exam, Neuro-Oncology, Long COVID and more. 

    For more information about speakers, sessions, accreditation and to register please visit here.

    Northern New England Neurological Society Annual Meeting

    October 21-22, 2022, The Essex in Essex, VT

    The NNENS Annual Meeting will present an update on latest treatments and therapeutic options across the field. The meeting is open to neurologists and other medical professionals with an interest in neurology. You do not need to be a NNENS member to attend!

    For more information about speakers, sessions, accreditation and to register please visit here.

    Osteoporosis Update for Primary Care 2022

    November 4, 2022, The Hampton Inn Conference Center in Colchester, VT

    Designed to improve the skills of the primary care healthcare team as they are often the first to encounter patients who have, or who are at risk of developing, osteoporosis. Topics include: Osteo in men, treatment medications, proper use of calcium and vitamin D, fractures from an orthopedic standpoint, and more!

    For more information about our speakers, sessions, accreditation and to register please visit here.

    Vermont Medical Society Annual and Collaborative Meeting

    November 4th and 5th, 2022

    The 209th VMS Annual Meeting will be held on November 4th and 5th in person at Topnotch Resort, Stowe, VT, with virtual options. The weekend will be filled with educational content, time to spend with colleagues, policy-setting meetings, and the opportunity to honor physicians and other health care leaders across the state. VMS’ Annual Meeting, hosted in collaboration with the American Academy of Pediatrics Vermont Chapter, the Vermont Academy of Family Physicians and the Vermont Psychiatric Association, is a celebration of the unwavering commitment Vermont clinicians have to their practice and to the deep connection VMS members have with each other.

    To view more information or submit nominees for 2022 leadership awards, please click here.

    Register here.

    UVM will have conferences for Emergency Medicine, Hospital Medicine, Dermatology and Anesthesia this Winter 2023. Sign-up to get updates via email for topics that are of interest here.


    Vermont Medical Society

    134 Main Street

    Montpelier, VT 05602

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