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Monday Rx | March 11, 2019 | Budgetpalooza is Here

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Budgetpalooza is Here

The Trump administration unveils its fiscal 2020 budget request today. The spending blueprint was delayed by nearly a month thanks to the partial government shutdown and it’s the first Trump budget during divided government.

HHS Secretary Alex Azar will have a busy week dissecting the document. He treks up to Capitol Hill tomorrow as he engages with the House Energy and Commerce Subcommittee on Health. Next, he’ll have to defend the budget before a House Appropriations subcommittee on Wednesday. And on Thursday, he crosses the Hill for what should be a warmer reception before the Senate Finance Committee.

Gender Bias in Medicine

Last week we celebrated International Women’s Day. This week I pose the question: How deep is gender bias in medicine?  Historically, bias and discrimination have kept women in medicine from leading organizations, departments, functions or being promoted. Studies show that women are often paid less than men for the same or similar work—even when accounting for variables such as age, experience, specialty, faculty rank, measures of research productivity and clinical revenue.

Hospital CEOs and other executives are also guilty of not fully directing their resources and business acumen toward solving disparities for women in medicine. One study found that nearly 40% of U.S. medical schools reported no special programs for recruiting, promoting or retaining women, often describing such programming as unnecessary.
Each year during the Harvard Medical School women’s leadership course, a strategic initiative is introduced that combines evidence-based medicine with advocacy. This year’s initiative, the Be Ethical Campaign, calls on leaders in key gatekeeper groups to use a comprehensive approach to analyze and address workforce gender disparities.  I’d like to hear from our female leaders and members to see what LACMA can do better to address this issue through dialogue and information sharing.

Members Aren’t Aware of LACMA Benefits

Last week we unveiled the 2019 membership survey and the results are telling.  A significant percentage of respondents said they are not fully aware of the 20+ benefits available to them through membership. Next week, I will share a comprehensive summary of the survey results.

If you have yet to fill out the survey, please do so to help us improve the member experience.

Complete the survey and be entered to win one of four $100 Target gift cards!

Lack of knowledge about our membership benefits is one of the main reasons we are currently working on revamping our web site to clearly illustrate what is available.

This week we begin site redesign conversations with our new vendor, Mayaco Marketing and Internet, and I’m confident our member benefits will be easy to find, access and use.

While we wait for the website update, here are three examples of partners who are ready to help our members.

Did you know we have a partnership with South Bay BMW?  One call could yield thousands of dollars in discounts.  Let me know if you would like more information.

Are you reaching the right patients?  Growing volume?  What about unfavorable online reviews? Are healthcare customers finding you or are they seeking other providers?  Through our partnership with PatientPop, physicians attract patients who desire a long-term partnership with their physician.  PatientPop also solves many online challenges for physicians, namely reputation management.

When it comes to legal help, LACMA has another partner that can help.  In fact, California is one of the country’s most regulated and complex legal environments for physicians. California physicians who have to deal with a legal issue – whether it’s a medical board hearing, reimbursement dispute or the sale of a medical practice – often don’t know where to turn. Carlson & Jayakumar LLP is a full-service, boutique law firm offering professional legal support to practitioners in all aspects of healthcare law.

The firm’s experience includes representing licensees before professional boards; defending physicians against Medicare/insurance audits, reimbursement disputes, and overpayment demands; reviewing contracts; negotiating and structuring the sale of healthcare practices; and HIPAA, Stark and fraud-and-abuse counseling. I encourage our members who have legal needs to contact me or call (949) 222-2008 to speak directly with Kathy W. Nichols at Carlson & Jayakumar LLP.

Contact me directly if you need assistance with any of these partners!

Visit The Polar Regions with Town & Country Travel

Town & Country Travel is planning two trips: the Arctic for Northern Lights & Polar Bears, or Antarctica for Glaciers & Penguins. Learn more about these two adventures at the next informational meeting where a Quark rep and an expedition leader will be presenting.
WHEN: Thursday, March 21, 2019, from 5:30p – 7p.
(Refreshments will be served.)
WHERE: Town & Country Travel
195 E Hillcrest Dr.
Thousand Oaks, CA 91360
(Space is limited to 20 guests so please contact me if interested!)
See the polar bears, penguins, and glaciers before it’s too late.  Quark offers highly specialized programs that feature unique itineraries and experiences, and also off a Fly-Over-the-Drake-Passage program.
Gustavo Friederichsen
Chief Executive Officer
Los Angeles County Medical Association
“If it matters to our LACMA members, it matters to me.”


CME Programs


WHEN: March 21 to 23, 2019
WHERE: Waldorf Astoria, Las Vegas
3752 S. Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Click here for more information. This two-and-a-half-day symposium has been designed by experts in the field of hematologic malignancies and affords the conference attendee specialized educational tracks for both physicians and nurses, providing an opportunity to learn about the most recent advances in the treatment of bone marrow transplant, multiple myeloma, lymphoma, and leukemia.

For questions contact: cme@coh.org or 626-218-5622.

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