October 18, 2022


Thank You to VMS Members for Attending the Chittenden Cty. Candidate Meet & Greet and Join Us Tonight for the Rutland Cty. Candidate Meet & Greet!

Thank you to all of the VMS members who attended our Chittenden County Candidate Meet & Greet last Thursday at the ECHO, Leahy Center in Burlington. 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 Chittenden County. 

If you live or practice in Rutland county, you are invited to the upcoming Candidate Meet & Greet tonight, where you can meet the candidates who could be representing you after the general election in November.

Today, Tuesday, October 18th from 6-8pm, Rutland County members can join us at the Rutland Country Club. 

Register for the Rutland event below (the event is free to members but a head count is needed) :

For questions please email Jill Sudhoff-Guerin at jsudhoffguerin@vtmd.org.

Vermont MD License Renewals Due by Nov 30 – CME Credit Available from VMS

As a reminder to our members, all Vermont physician licenses issued by the Vermont Board of Medical Practice will expire November 30, 2022.  For more information on license renewal, see the details on the Vermont Board of Medical Practice website here or contact Tracy Hayes, Board Licensing Specialist at 802-657-4223 or tracy.hayes@vermont.gov.

Vermont law requires physicians licensed by the Board of Medical Practice to complete continuing medical education training in each two-year license period. For the 2022 physician license renewal, the requirement is 15 hours of AMA PRA Category 1. There are two subjects that must be part of the required CME:

  • prescribing of controlled substances (2 credits required only for licensees who have or have applied for DEA registration) and
  • hospice/palliative care/end-of-life care/pain management (1 credit required for all licensees).

See more information on 2022 CME requirements from the Board of Medical Practice here.

VMS has information about courses that meet the required credit hours hereVMS is also offering two sessions at our annual meeting on November 5th (in-person or virtual) that help fulfill the required credit hours.  See more details here.

Feedback Needed: Does Your Practice Use Standing Orders?

Standing orders and protocols allow practitioners to direct clinical staff (nurses, medical assistants) to initiate patient care interventions in the future based on an individual patient’s future clinical needs. The Vermont Medical Society along with other health care associations are in conversation with the Vermont Office of Professional Regulation regarding whether health care practitioners and facilities need more guidance, education and/or regulatory clarity regarding standing orders and how to balance the potential benefits of practice efficiency with patient safety and federal and state law.  At this point, we are looking to gather information from health care facilities and practices regarding what types of standing orders are currently in use in Vermont.  If you have knowledge of your organization’s use of standing orders and/or clinical operations, your assistance in filling out a brief survey by Tuesday, Nov 1. is much appreciated.  This information is being collected anonymously and will not be linked to specific practice locations. Please click here for the survey and feel free to share with others in your practices who are best able to respond.

Applications Still Open for 2023 VMS ERF Leadership Course – A Few Spots Remaining!

The Vermont Medical Society Education & Research Foundation is open for enrollment 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.  Rolling applications now being accepted through December 9th (new extended deadline). View the full 2023 brochure, schedule and application information here.

Bivalent COVID-19 Boosters Authorized for Children 5-11

On October 12th, the CDC recommended updated (bivalent) COVID-19 boosters for anyone five years and up, at least two months following the completion of primary or booster vaccination. Check the VDH COVID-19 vaccine website to find updates on timing and locations where the vaccine will be available.  It is expected boosters will be available soon at EMS walk in clinics, pharmacies, and medical offices.  Initial Vermont of pediatric bivalent Pfizer allocation is higher than expected and allows for distribution to pediatric primary care practices – 20 primary care practices in Vermont have already placed pre-orders and expect delivery early this week, with routine ordering beginning next week.  Moderna bivalent booster was also available for practices to order on Monday.   EUAs no longer allow the monovalent vaccines to be used for booster doses in this age range.  The assumption is that the bivalent products will become the primary series beginning sometime in 2023. Manufacturers are still gathering data on bivalent boosters for children under 5, with possible availability at the end of 2022 or first quarter 2023.

Learn more about pediatric bivalent ordering, distribution and administration from the Vermont Immunization Program – slides from an October 13th Immunization Program Provider Training are now available. 

The American Academy of Pediatrics Vermont Chapter, in collaboration with the VDH Immunization Program, is providing funding to support expanded influenza and/or COVID vaccination by healthcare practitioners or organizations. Practices can apply for up to $5000 in funding.  Learn more here.

On October 20th from 4-5pm, GoTruthNH is hosting a webinar to discuss the upcoming Flu and COVID season. Speakers for this webinar are Dr. Benjamin Chan, MD, State Epidemiologist for NH, DHHS; Dr. Elizabeth Talbot, MD, Infectious Diseases and International Health at Geisel School of Medicines at Dartmouth; and Steven Roche, RN, and Clinical Coordinator with White Mountain Community Health Center. Learn more here


Register Today for the Vermont Medical Society Annual and Collaborative Meeting

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.

Educational content topics include:

  • Addressing Pediatric Mental Health Needs
  • Social Determinants of Health
  • Diagnostic Technology Resources for Primary Care
  • Reproductive Justice and Access to Gender Affirming Care
  • End of Life (Designed to meet the 1 hour licensing requirement for addressing palliative care, hospice care or pain management)
  • Updates in Medication for Opioid Disorder MOUD (Designed to meet 1 out of 2 hours of required credits for addressing prescribing controlled substances for prescribers with DEA registrations**)

View more meeting details, including the presenters, award winners and more here.

Register here.

Please Share: Why Do You Support the Passage of Article 22?

Vermonters have the opportunity to enshrine our right to personal reproductive liberty into the Vermont State Constitution by voting to adopt Article 22 on our November ballot. The Vermont Medical Society supports Prop 5: the Reproductive Liberty Amendment, as this proposed amendment to the Vermont Constitution would protect the legal right of Vermont patients to the full range of evidence-based, reproductive health care in alignment with a patient’s needs and goals. 

Please send us a picture and a brief statement of why you support Article 22, the Reproductive Liberty Amendment the initiative on Vermont's November ballot. We will share on social media and encourage you to share too!

Open Enrollment in Medicare, Vermont Health Exchange

Medicare Open Enrollment began Saturday, October 15, and will remain open through December 7, 2022. Medicare’s Open Enrollment period gives people with Medicare the opportunity to make changes to their health plan or prescription drug plan, pick a Medicare Advantage plan, or return to Original Medicare (also referred to as Medicare Part A and Part B). Last month the Biden-Harris Administration announced that people with Medicare will see lower average premiums for Medicare Part B, Medicare Advantage, and Medicare Part D prescription drug plans in 2023. Also, due to the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022, Medicare enrollees will also see lower costs for insulin and vaccines beginning in 2023.

Open Enrollment for 2023 health insurance plans offered though Vermont’s Health Insurance Exchange – Vermont Health Connect -  begins on November 1 and goes until January 15, 2023. The 2023 Plan Comparison Tool is now live. The Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 extended expanded premium assistance for the next three years, continuing to make plans more affordable for Vermonters. 

Important Changes to Medicaid Coverage for Naloxone Nasal Spray

Effective 10/7/22, generic formulations of naloxone HCl nasal spray (4mg/0.1mL) will be moving to a non-preferred status on the Department of Vermont Health Access (DVHA) (Vermont Medicaid) Preferred Drug List (PDL). Brand Narcan® has a significantly lower net cost to Vermont Medicaid compared to currently available generics and will remain preferred on the PDL. DVHA continually monitors the net costs of these medications and periodically adjusts the PDL if new cost-effective products become available. If the preferred product, Narcan®, is on backorder and unavailable from the manufacturer, generic substitution may be allowed. If you feel it is medically necessary for your patient to use a nonpreferred product, a prior authorization will be required. For questions, please contact the Change Healthcare Pharmacy Help Desk at 1-844-679- 5362. Vermont providers can also send inquiries via email to PBA_VTHelpdesk@changehealthcare.com.

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.



    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

    Webinar: Rapid Treatment Access for Alcohol Use Disorder

    November 16th and November 18th, 11:30am to 1 pm EST

    Join the Vermont Department of Health for a webinar that will have topics including:

    • Walk through of Clinical Protocol including the Use of Medication to treat Alcohol Use Disorder and withdrawal management
    • Epidemiology of Alcohol Use Disorder, recognizing signs and symptoms
    • Organizing Systems of Care Within a Community

    For more information and to register for either the November 16th or 18th session, click 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.

    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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