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January 2017
Hardenbergh Updated June 2016
Greeley_December 2016

A Word from the President


Welcome to the first 2017 issue of NAMSS Gateway. As we ring in the new year and I take on the role of President of the Board of Directors, I’m excited for the many opportunities we have to impact the medical services profession this year! In 2016, Bonnie Gutierrez made great strides as President of the Board. Under her leadership, NAMSS had its best year yet and was able to launch two continuing education programs, release a report highlighting the importance Medical Services Professionals (MSPs) play in healthcare delivery, and bring together more MSPs than ever before at the 40th Educational Conference & Exhibition. I want to give special thanks to Bonnie, not just for her accomplishments this past year, but also for her unwavering dedication.

With a new leadership team in place and a community of engaged members like yourself, I know that 2017 will be another record year. I look forward to working with you. From all of us at NAMSS, happy new year!


(Click here to see all of the accomplishments NAMSS made in 2016)


Susan DuBois, CPCS, CPMSM
NAMSS President
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Headlines

News From NAMSS

NAMSS Welcomes New Committee Chairs and Members
2017 Membership Renewal
Education Summit Early Bird Deadline is February 3
NAMSS Live Webinars
Social Corner

Industry News

"Healthcare Drives Yearly Job Growth"
"Two San Diego County Hospitals Fined for Severe Errors"
"Staffing Agency Nurse Is 'Employee' for Insurance Purposes"
"Arizona Medical Boards Can Take Years to Penalize Doctors Who Overprescribe Pills"
"Idaho Hospitals and Health Care Entities Peer Review Privilege"
"Summa Health Bringing in New Doctor Group to Staff Its ERs Starting New Year's Day"
"Texas Judge Halts Federal Transgender Health Protections"
"Oklahoma Court Tosses Abortion Law On Hospital Privileges"


News From NAMSS


NAMSS Welcomes New Committee Chairs and Members

NAMSS is excited to welcome new and current individuals to their committee roles in 2017. Each of these individuals embody traits and skill-sets of integrity, responsibility, respect, and a positive attitude that moves and guides NAMSS forward to best serve you and our industry.

Click here to meet your volunteer leaders for 2017!
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2017 Membership Renewal

NAMSS Members – Did you remember to renew your NAMSS membership for 2017? Your membership officially expired December 31, 2016, but don't worry - we’ve got you covered. We’ll keep your benefits intact until March 31st. Renew your NAMSS membership today before you lose access to all of the discounts, resources, and networking opportunities that come with your membership! IMPORTANT – Renew by the end of January and receive a gift from NAMSS – a coupon to use for a complimentary session recording from the 40th Educational Conference, worth 1.5 CE credits!

Log in to your account and then click on “My Profile” under the Membership tab to view, print, or pay your renewal invoice (you will see it listed on the right hand side).

Contact the Executive Office at info@namss.org should you need further assistance.
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Education Summit Early Bird Deadline is February 3

Forget the worm, get the savings! Register for the NAMSS Education Summit by February 3 to save $50 on registration. Taking place March 10 - 11, 2017 at the Hyatt Regency Orlando in Orlando, Florida, the Summit is the perfect venue to learn, network, and have fun with MSPs from all over the country. Four high-quality educational workshops related to credentialing and leadership will be offered in 2017, including the Leadership Certificate Program In-Person Course.
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NAMSS Live Webinars

The Anatomy of a Credential File: Understanding the Regulatory and Legal Implications of the Credentialing Process

Thursday, January 19, 2:00 – 3:00 pm ET

The webinar has been approved for 1.0 CE Credits.

This session will provide you with the understanding of the legal and regulatory basis for each element of the credential file. You will gain the specific knowledge of the rationale for each element and the ramifications of missing or incomplete information.
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Social Corner

Have a social media question? Ask a NAMSS genius! You may have met our social media experts in the Genius Booth at the 40th Educational Conference & Exhibition, but if you find yourself still curious about how to make the most of your social networks, email the experts at info@namss.org.
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Industry News


Healthcare Drives Yearly Job Growth
Modern Healthcare (01/06/17) Livingston, Shelby

Healthcare created more jobs than any other sector last year, helping to drive total annual job growth to 2.2 million, reports the Bureau of Labor Statistics. In December alone, healthcare added 43,200 jobs. On a year over year basis, the sector added 406,600 jobs. As of Dec. 31, the industry accounted for 15.8 million jobs. Much of the growth occurred in ambulatory healthcare services, which added 29,700 jobs. It was followed by hospitals, which added 10,700. While healthcare has continuously been a leading job-producer, that may change with the incoming Trump administration and Republican-controlled Congress that has vowed to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. A recent report by the Commonwealth Fund and George Washington University's Milken Institute School of Public Health found that repealing key provisions of the ACA could lead to 2.6 million people losing their jobs in 2019.
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Two San Diego County Hospitals Fined for Severe Errors
San Diego Union-Tribune (01/06/17) Sisson, Paul

The California Department of Public Health has fined two San Diego County hospitals nearly $150,000 for serious medical errors. Scripps Mercy Hospital's Hillcrest campus was fined $100,000 after a suicidal patient in 2014 jumped from a window lacking safety features and died. Investigators found that nurses didn't inform the patient’s doctor that he was hearing voices after being transferred from the trauma ward. The hospital has since implemented additional environmental safety measures and improved staff training. Tri-City Medical Center in Oceanside also received a $47,025 fine when one of its surgical teams forgot to remove two sponges from the abdomen of a female patient in 2014. The sponges caused an infection in the patient's reproductive system, forcing surgeons to perform a hysterectomy. Following the incident, two staff members were placed on administrative leave, a nurse was fired, and a technician was suspended for three days without pay. Staff underwent additional training, and a new monitoring process was implemented.
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Staffing Agency Nurse Is 'Employee' for Insurance Purposes
Reuters (12/07/16) Pierson, Brendan

Last month, a federal appeals court ruled that a nurse employed by a staffing agency who worked at a Maryland hospital counts as an employee of the hospital for the purpose of that facility's malpractice insurance. A unanimous panel of the 4th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals vacated a lower court decision dismissing a lawsuit brought by Interstate Fire and Casualty Co., Favorite Healthcare Staffing's insurer, against Dimensions Assurance Ltd., the captive insurer of Maryland's Dimensions Healthcare System.
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Arizona Medical Boards Can Take Years to Penalize Doctors Who Overprescribe Pills
Arizona Republic (01/06/17) Philip, Agnel; Mahoney, Emily

It can take years for a physician practicing in Arizona to be penalized for overprescribing opioids, reports a Cronkite News examination of disciplinary records from the Arizona Medical Board, the Arizona Board of Physician Assistants, and the Arizona Board of Osteopathic Examiners. Out of the 19,000 medical professionals licensed to prescribe controlled substances, just 250 were sanctioned for overprescribing opiates during the past 16 years. However, the boards' records show over 1,000 instances of overprescribing, sometimes by doctors who had received multiple reprimands. Since 2010, more than 3,600 people have overdosed and died from opioids statewide. Researchers found that doctors continue to prescribe opioids for 91 percent of patients who've suffered a non-fatal overdose, with 63 percent continuing to receive high doses. The Arizona State Board of Pharmacy maintains a database of physicians, patients, and prescriptions that can assist in physician disciplinary investigations. However, state law prevents its use without an open investigation.
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Idaho Hospitals and Health Care Entities Peer Review Privilege
National Law Review (12/28/16)

Idaho recently enacted a broad privilege that protects the confidentiality of credentialing, quality improvement, and similar peer review activities by Idaho hospitals and other health care entities in the state. The statute encourages participation and safeguards the integrity of such peer review activities by ensuring that peer review communications and proceedings stay confidential. In addition, participants are immune from liability.
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Summa Health Bringing in New Doctor Group to Staff Its ERs Starting New Year's Day
Akron Beacon Journal (12/30/16) Garrett, Amanda

Summa Health System is replacing the physicians who staff its five emergency rooms in Ohio with a new group of doctors from U.S. Acute Care Solutions (USACS). Summa Emergency Associations (SEA), which held a contract with Summa for decades, had more than 60 emergency medicine physicians who staffed Summa’s emergency departments. SEA doctors were notified of the change less than 36 hours before Summa’s contract with SEA expired Dec. 31. USACS contacted each of the SEA emergency medicine doctors to offer them a position with USACS. None accepted. USACS Chief Executive Dr. Dominic Bagnoli is the husband of Dr. Vivian von Gruenigen, Summa's chief medical officer. Summa officials say von Gruenigen was not involved in negotiating the contract with her husband's company.
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Texas Judge Halts Federal Transgender Health Protections
ABC News (12/31/16) Weber, Paul J.

A Dec. 31 ruling by U.S. District Judge Reed O'Connor of Texas invalidates Affordable Care Act (ACA) regulations that bar insurers, doctors, or hospitals from discriminating against transgender patients or women with an abortion in their medical history. This latest injunction signed by O'Connor comes four months after he blocked a federal directive that required public schools to let transgender students use bathrooms consistent with their gender identity. Several GOP-controlled states that brought that lawsuit also sued over the health regulations that were finalized in May. A coalition of religious medical organizations said the rules could force doctors to help with gender transition contrary to their religious beliefs or medical judgment. O'Connor agreed in his 46-page ruling, saying the rules place "substantial pressure on Plaintiffs to perform and cover transition and abortion procedures."
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Oklahoma Court Tosses Abortion Law On Hospital Privileges
KMUW Wichita Public Radio (12/14/16) LeBlanc, Aileen

An Oklahoma court has blocked a law that would have required abortion providers to have hospital admitting privileges. Under the measure, doctors who performed abortions would have to be able to admit patients to local hospitals. Doctors without the privileges would have to go through a credentialing process. The court ruling has been applauded by abortion rights supporters.
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