October 4, 2022


Register for the October 6th VMS Hosted Fall Candidate Meet and Greet

This free reception is for VMS members who live or practice in Washington County, Vermont. Get to know the 2022 candidates for the Vermont House and Senate in your district and learn more about the health care policies that impact your practice and profession! 

Light fare and drink will be served at this informal, social event. 

Register Here

Register for the other in-person meet and greets, in which we are inviting Vermont State House and Senate legislative candidates from Chittenden and Rutland counties to member-led receptions in their respective districts below (events are free to members but a head count is needed) :

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

Room Block Closing Today for VMS Annual and Collaborative Meeting!  

The 209th VMS Annual Meeting will be held on November 4th and 5th in person at Topnotch Resort in Stowe, VT, with virtual options. The Vermont Medical Society has secured a room block of a limited number of rooms at Topnotch Resort for Friday, November 4th. Today is the last day to book your room for the event to secure the discount.

To secure this discounted rate you can:

  1. Call (800)451-8686 and reserve under the VMS Annual and Collaborative Meeting
  2. Visit here and have the discount code (VMED22) automatically applied to your reservation

The weekend will be filled with educational topics including: addressing pediatric mental health needs, reproductive justice, the future of health care reform in Vermont and more. To view more information on the agenda, event details and to register, please click here.

Apply Today: Applications Now Open for 2023 VMS ERF Leadership Course

The Vermont Medical Society Education & Research Foundation is proud to open applications 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.

COVID-19 and HMPXV Updates

VMS will next host a COVID-19 and infectious disease update with Commissioner of Health Mark Levine, MD, this Thursday, October 6th from 12:30 -1 pm.  Please join Commissioner Levine and bring your questions. 

Other COVID-19 and HMPXV updates from the week include:

  • According to the September Kaiser Family Foundation COVID-19 Vaccine Monitor, awareness of the new boosters is modest, with about half of adults saying they have heard “a lot” (17%) or “some” (33%) about updated booster, 31% saying they have heard “a little,” and one in five saying they have heard “nothing at all” about the new booster doses. Older adults and Democrats are somewhat more likely than their counterparts to say they have heard at least “some” about the new boosters, but fewer than a quarter across these groups report hearing “a lot” about the new shots.
  • The CDC last week issued updated COVID-19 Infection Prevention and Control Recommendations for Healthcare Personnel.  The recommendations dropped universal masking recommendations for healthcare settings, except in areas of high COVID-19 transmission and other special circumstances, and many facilities in the region are continuing with their masking requirements according to VTDigger.
  • The U.S. Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge by Missouri and nine other states to President Joe Biden's COVID-19 vaccine mandate for workers in healthcare facilities that receive federal funds.  Read more.
  • A recent CDC Technical Report assessed the future trajectory of the Monkeypox outbreak.  The report finds a slowing growth of the outbreak likely due to a combination of many factors, including vaccination, behavior change, and possibly increases in infection-acquired immunity among a segment of the sexual networks at highest risk.  The report states that daily cases in the United States will most likely continue to decline or plateau over the next two to four weeks.  The current assessment for the most likely longer-term scenario is that the outbreak will remain concentrated in MSM, with cases slowing over the coming weeks, and falling significantly over the next several months, however low-level transmission could continue indefinitely.

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.

Tell Congress to Stop Medicare Payment Cuts

Unless Congress acts by the end of the year, physician Medicare payments are planned to be cut by 8.42% in 2023 which would severely impede patient access to care due to the forced closure of physician practices and put further strain on those that remained open during the pandemic.  Find out how to contact Vermont’s delegation and read more here.  More than 120 state medical associations and national medical specialty societies, including VMS, have joined the AMA in urging Congress to institute Medicare payment reforms in order to maintain patients’ access to care. Read more here.


VMS Submits Comments on Federal Non-Discrimination Rules

This summer, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) announced a proposed rule implementing Section 1557 of the Affordable Care Act that prohibits discrimination on the basis of race, color, national origin, sex, age, and disability in certain health programs and activities.  Rule comments were due on Monday, and VMS submitted comments supporting expanded definitions of protections from discrimination in certain health programs and activities.  However, VMS voiced concern with the proposal for a number of the new and/or reinstated administrative requirements contained in the rule and stated that the administrative burden on practices of several of these requirements will outweigh the benefits to patients.  For example, HHS proposes that covered entities must provide notice of the availability of language assistance services and auxiliary aids and services in English and at least the 15 most common languages spoken by LEP individuals of the relevant state or states: on an annual basis, on a website, in clear and prominent physical locations, and, on an ongoing basis on a list of 10 categories of documents such as HIPAA Notice of Privacy Practices, intake forms, notifications of benefits, consent forms and complaint forms.  VMS urged HHS to simplify the notice requirements and require distribution on the same frequency as the HIPAA Notice of Private Practices.  See the full comments here. Learn more about the proposed rule here.

VPQHC to Support a Vermont Emergency Telepsychiatry Network

The Vermont Program for Quality in Health Care, Inc. (VPQHC) has received a $901,123 Congressionally Directed Spending grant from Senator Patrick Leahy to support coordination of a Vermont Emergency Telepsychiatry Network. The project will support Vermont Emergency Departments in caring for people seeking emergency mental health services.  The Telepsychiatry Network will be a statewide system to help people with acute mental health crises waiting in EDs access timely psychiatric assessment via telehealth.  All hospital EDs in the state will have the opportunity to purchase appropriate equipment and services, share best practices, and participate in training. Two hospitals (to be determined) will be selected for projects to demonstrate the feasibility and effectiveness of contracting for telepsychiatry services.  For more information contact Ali Johnson, Quality Improvement Specialist at VPQHC, alij@vpqhc.org

Severe Manifestations of Monkeypox among People who are Immunocompromised Due to HIV or Other Conditions

The purpose of this Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) Health Alert Network (HAN) Health Advisory is to inform healthcare providers that

  1. Severe manifestations of monkeypox have been observed in the United States in the current outbreak.
  2. People who are immunocompromised due to HIV or other conditions are at higher risk for severe manifestations of monkeypox than people who are immunocompetent.
  3. Because people with HIV-associated immunocompromise are at risk for severe manifestations of monkeypox, the HIV status of all sexually active adults and adolescents with suspected or confirmed monkeypox should be determined.
  4. There are diagnostic and clinical management strategies that may help address severe manifestations of monkeypox.

To read the full HAN advisory, click here

    Big Win for California Patients: Optometry Surgery Bill Defeated

    California Governor Newsom vetoed A.B. 2236, a bill that would have allowed optometrists to perform advanced eye procedures, including surgery, after completing additional training. Vermont physicians over several legislative sessions have also prevented similar legislation from passing in Vermont. Read more here 

      Leading Health Care Organizations Urge Action to Against Violence

      On Monday, the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), American Medical Association (AMA) and Children’s Hospital Association (CHA) united in support of physicians and hospitals who have been threatened and attacked in recent months.  The groups sent a letter to Attorney General Merrick Garland urging the Department of Justice to investigate the increasing threats of violence against physicians, hospitals and families of children for providing and seeking evidence-based gender-affirming care. The organizations also call on technology platforms to do more to stop the rhetoric that often incites threats or acts of violence and has led to harassment campaigns across the country, much of it directed at children’s hospitals and the physicians and staff who work there.



      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. 

      Supporting FAMILIES Impacted by Substance Use/Mental Illness

      October 8, 2022, 1:30pm to 3pm EDT

      In-person at Jenna's House


      October 9, 2022, 4pm to 5:30pm EDT

      In-person at Rock Point Center

      Dr. Libby Stuyt, the Vermont Psychiatric Association 2022 Keynote Speaker will lead the conference.

      This training will educate providers on the needs of families impacted by a loved one's substance use disorder or severe mental illness. The aim is to both increase awareness of the needs of this group of individuals' for support and provide tools such as traditional CBT as well as acupuncture and mindfulness training that can decrease the family member's stress, anxiety or PTSD. Resilient families help create healthy communities where recovery is possible and supported.

      Evidence based tools such as mindfulness practice, acupuncture, acupressure, biofeedback and emotional freedom technics will be introduced. Providers, including EMTs and first responders, will also learn non-pharmacological methods to decrease patient's anxiety, stress and PTSD while helping to cultivate coherence, self calming and emotional regulation .

      Register here.

      Fall 2022 Virtual Ethics Education Series

      October 11th and October 19th, 12:00pm to 1:15pm EST

      The Vermont Ethics Network presents their Fall 2022 Virtual Ethics Education Series, which has topics including:

      • October 11th - Can Long Term Care Facilities Really say NO to Taking Patients Back? presented by Zail S. Berry
        • Learn more and register here
      • 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.

      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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