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  • August 04, 2021 9:39 AM | Anonymous

    On April 5, 2021, a requirement of the 21st Century Cures Act went into effect: Patients must be able to access information in their EHRs “without delay.” (This requirement does not apply to paper records.) The Cures Act prohibition against information blocking, often referred to as an “open notes” provision, provides patients with transparency in the outcomes of their healthcare via convenient access to information in their EHR, which can positively or negatively impact the patient-doctor relationship.

    The good news: Many patients feel better about their provider after reading a note. Positive effects on the patient-provider relationship may be most significant among vulnerable patients, such as those with fewer years of formal education. 

    The bad news: Concerns about open notes mainly revolve around the potential for conflicts with patients and potential time conflicts. 

    Concerns include:

    • Timing: The originally planned implementation date for the open notes provisions in the Cures Act was November 2020. Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, this was pushed back to April 2021. 

    • Uncertainty about the documentation process:Most patients will not understand clinical shorthand, and providers may need added time for explanation. 

    • Technology: Some EHR vendors are still racing to provide services that allow practices to remain in compliance with the Cures Act. 

    The ugly news: More frequent requests for records changes from patients could increase already weighty administrative burdens on providers. Worse, some of these requests will be for changes providers cannot support, and making time for careful conversations with patients and providing written responses for requests that are rejected will be a challenge. 

    When composing notes, certain simple strategies will raise the odds that notes will be well understood and well received. Beyond being clear and succinct, strategies for success include composing at least a portion of the note as instructions directly addressed to the patient and providing a list of commonly used medical terms and abbreviations. 

    For an in-depth review of strategies for success when composing notes, see 12 Strategies for Success With Open Notes in Healthcare: The Cures Act

    Unless an exception applies, clinical notes must not be blocked, but the Cures Act allows for a fairly long list of specific, well-delineated exceptions. 

    For information regarding exceptions to open notes, please see What Open Notes Exceptions Does the Cures Act Allow?

    Chad Anguilm, MBA, is Vice President, In-Practice Technology Services, Medical Advantage, part of TDC Group. Richard F. Cahill, JD, is Vice President and Associate General Counsel, The Doctors Company, part of TDC Group. Kathleen Stillwell, MPA/HSA, RN, is Senior Patient Safety Risk Manager, The Doctors Company, part of TDC Group.

  • July 08, 2021 12:13 PM | Anonymous

    reposted from: MSSNY eNews July 7, 2021 edition

    The latest emergency regulation from DFS, released on Wednesday, July 7th, continues coverage for Telehealth services delivered via audio-only until at least October 1st. However, it is unclear if DFS will renew come October, making clarifying legislation potentially necessary.

    Please note that last year a statute was enacted that requires Medicaid to cover audio-only Telehealth. The New York State Department of Health (DOH) recently issued a guidance document for how Medicaid will continue to cover Telehealth services, including audio-only services.

    To view the latest extending regulation, click here.


  • June 24, 2021 12:28 PM | Anonymous

    On June 10, 2021, OSHA issued an Emergency Temporary Standard (the “Standard”) specific to COVID-19, including health screening mandates and COVID-specific protocols, and paid leave requirements for certain healthcare providers. The Standard generally enforces CDC protocols that have been recommended during the pandemic. On the same day, OSHA also issued “Guidance on Mitigating and Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace” for all other employers (the “Guidance”). The Guidance focuses on protections for unvaccinated or otherwise “atrisk” workers, who are described as those that “cannot be protected through vaccination, cannot get vaccinated, or cannot use face coverings.” The Guidance notes that, unless otherwise required, most employers no longer need to take steps to protect fully vaccinated workers who are not otherwise at-risk from exposure to COVID-19 in the workplace, or well-defined portions of the workplace, where all employees are fully vaccinated. 

    Click here to download the complete article

  • June 23, 2021 5:30 PM | Anonymous

    Governor Andrew M. Cuomo today announced that New York will end the state disaster emergency declared on March 7, 2020 to fight COVID-19. Given New York's dramatic progress against COVID-19, with the vaccination rates, and declining hospitalization and positivity statewide the state of emergency will expire after Thursday, June 24.

    Federal CDC guidance will remain in effect, which includes masks for unvaccinated individuals, as well as all riders on public transit and in certain settings, such as health care, nursing homes, correctional facilities, and homeless shelters.

    We will keep you abreast of any guidance coming out of the New York State Department of Health.

    To see the governor’s complete release visit: https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-announces-new-york-ending-covid-19-state-disaster-emergency-june-24


  • June 16, 2021 10:36 AM | Anonymous

    Featured Highlights for This Year's Meeting

    • View Resident Research on Quality, Advocacy and Public Policy Issues
    • Engage in Discussions on Emphasizing Innovation within Plastic Surgery and Maintaining a Competitive Advantage
    • Network with Industry Partners
    • Participate in the Annual Membership Business Meeting

    Register today!

  • June 07, 2021 2:00 PM | Anonymous



    Supporters of the New York Health Act staged a march and die-in on the streets of Albany today, blocking traffic outside the State Capitol.

    It was their final attempt to pressure Legislators to pass the Single Payer bill during this Legislative Session.

    The Realities of Single Payer Coalition (in which NYSSPS is a member) released a statement in response to the rally.  In its current format, the NYSSPS is still opposed to the bill. 

    Assembly Health Committee Chair Richard Gottfried during an interview on Friday admitted that there are a number of Legislators who are signed on to the bill but are expressing serious concerns behind the scenes.

  • June 04, 2021 9:24 AM | Anonymous

    The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a notice on June 3, 2021 advising that Medicare Administrative Contractors (MACs) may now begin conducting post-payment medical reviews of items and services for dates of service March 2020 and after.

    > Read the complete alert

  • April 26, 2021 11:05 AM | Anonymous

    Earlier today, the United States Health and Human Services Office for Civil Rights (“OCR”) issued an alert concerning fraudulent postcards sent to health care organizations claiming to be official communications from OCR. The post cards inform recipients that they are required to participate in a “Required Security Risk Assessment” and directs providers to submit their risk assessment to hsaudit.org, a link that diverts individuals to a non-government website offering consulting services. You should disregard such correspondence and not provide the specified information.

    As a reminder, all communications from OCR will come from either an official office or an email address ending with @hhs.gov. You can find a complete list of OCR’s headquarters and regional offices here: https://www.hhs.gov/ocr/about-us/contact-us/index.html.

    Read complete alert


  • April 21, 2021 10:35 AM | Anonymous


    Non-physician providers are an important part of a health care team in a plastic surgeon's medical practice. Nurse practitioners, physician assistants and aestheticians provide a variety of healthcare services to patients. Understanding their roles along with the potential risks and liabilities are the responsibility of the physician. 

    Learn about the risks, laws, and liabilities as well as mitigation strategies with a patient safety professional and an attorney through discussion and case examples.

    OBJECTIVES:

    • Evaluate my potential exposure with my non-physician providers related to laws of practice and liability.

    • Utilize the closed claims examples in this program to educate his/her/their peers and team as opportunities to improve failure points to risk in patient care.

    • Implement two risk mitigation strategies in working non-physician providers that can reduce patient injuries and improve the quality of care.

    Register today!

  • April 13, 2021 11:12 AM | Anonymous

    NYS Department of Health Commissioner Dr. Howard Zucker released the following statement regarding the Johnson & Johnson vaccine:

    "Today the CDC and FDA issued a statement recommending a pause in the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine out of an abundance of caution. New York State will follow the CDC and FDA recommendation and pause the use of the Johnson & Johnson vaccine statewide immediately today while these health and safety agencies evaluate next steps. All appointments for Johnson & Johnson vaccines today at New York State mass vaccination sites will be honored with the Pfizer vaccine.

    "As the CDC and FDA have said, any adverse events related to the Johnson &  Johnson vaccine 'appear to be extremely rare' and, 'People who have received the J&J vaccine who develop severe headache, abdominal pain, leg pain, or shortness of breath within three weeks after vaccination should contact their health care provider.'

    "I am in constant contact with the federal government and we will update New Yorkers as more information becomes available."

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The New York State Society of Plastic Surgeons, Inc (NYSSPS) was founded in 2008 on the guiding principle that New York’s plastic surgeons need an entity focused directly on representing its member's interests at the state / federal legislative and regulatory levels.

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