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Louisiana State Medical Society seeking donations for disaster relief fund to help flood victims

In light of recent devastating flooding in Louisiana, the Louisiana State Medical Society (LSMS) has created a disaster relief fund. These funds will be used to assist with the needs of affected communities through their local medical societies. To make a donation, click here. If you would prefer to donate by check, you can do so payable to LSMS ERF, 6767 Perkins Road, Ste. 100, Baton Rouge, LA 70808. For more information or questions regarding the fund, please contact Kayne Daigle at kayne@lsms.org.

Nominate a local "immunization champion" for annual awards

Now is your chance to reward someone whose work in immunization deserves recognition. The California Immunization Coalition (CIC) is accepting nominations for two annual awards, given each year at the annual CIC Summit. The Natalie J. Smith Award is presented to an individual, group or organization in California that has made an outstanding contribution in the immunization arena. The Ronald P. Bangasser Award is presented to a practicing clinician who exemplifies the leadership, professionalism, and commitment that Dr. Bangasser—a past president of the California Medical Association—brought to his work in ...

San Diego flu summit to discuss strategies for maximizing flu vaccine rate

Mark your calendars for the 12th Kick the Flu Summit, on September 7, 2016, in San Diego. The summit, hosted by the San Diego Immunization Coalition, will convene medical, health and community service providers from both public and private sectors to share information, collaborate and strategize about how to promote and increase the rate of flu immunizations during the 2016-17 influenza season. The event will take place from 9 a.m. to 12:30 p.m. at the San Diego Central Library. This year’s summit features keynote speaker Bill Atkinson, M.D., MPH, Associate ...

Blue Shield to shut down for four days in September

Last week, Blue Shield of California announced that it would close its doors for the four days after Labor Day to reduce its payroll-related liabilities, citing losses in the Covered California health insurance exchange. The shutdown, lasting from September 5 to 9, will affect most of its 6,000 employees. The company claims this will save it an estimated $4 million. Some Blue Shield customer service representatives and medical services staff are still expected to be on the job during that period. The California Medical Association has also confirmed that while the ...

Big Tobacco launches dishonest ad campaign about Prop. 56

Tom Torlakson, California’s state superintendent of public instruction, has demanded that broadcasters immediately stop airing false and deceptive ads from tobacco companies about the Proposition 56 tobacco tax initiative. Big Tobacco, which has put $36 million into the opposition campaign so far, continues to assert that Prop. 56 would take money away from education — a statement Torlakson called “preposterous” and “insulting to those of us committed to the education and well being of California’s children.” “It is absolutely untrue to claim that no money from the proposed tobacco tax would ...

Pilot planned to develop electronic POLST registry in CA: ACCMA and SDCMS participate

A $3 million pilot project to build an electronic database for Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) has been approved by the board of directors of the California Health Care Foundation (CHCF). Participating in the project will be the Alameda-Contra Costa Medical Association (ACCMA) and San Diego County Medical Society (SDCMS). POLST is a legally recognized document that outlines a plan of care reflecting patients' wishes concerning medical treatment and interventions toward the end of their lives. Currently, in California most POLST information is maintained only as a pink piece ...

California State Loan Repayment Program now acccepting applications

The California State Loan Repayment Program (SLRP) application cycle for 2016 is now open. The program assists with the repayment of educational loans for health care professionals who work in underserved areas of California. The program was congressionally authorized in 1987 to increase the number of primary care physicians and other health care professionals practicing in federally designated Health Professional Shortage Areas (HPSA) in California. Grant recipients must commit to two-year, full-time or four-year, half-time service agreement to provide direct patient care in a primary, dental or mental health HPSA. Awardees ...

Medical students: Apply now for 2017 loan repayment program

Applications are now being accepted for the National Health Service Corps Students to Service Loan Repayment Program, which offers up to $120,000 to medical students (M.D. and D.O.) in their final year of medical school in return for a commitment to provide primary health care full-time for at least three years or half time for at least six years in a medically underserved area. The application deadline is October 13, 2016. For more information and to apply for the program, click here.

Chronic pain and opioid treatment guidelines for injured workers now in effect

The California State Division of Workers’ Compensation’s (DWC) new guidelines on the treatment of chronic pain and opioid prescribing for injured workers are now in effect. The guidelines include best practices and universal precautions for safe and effective prescribing of opioids for pain due to a work-related injury. According to DWC, the new guidelines encourage safer prescribing of opioid pain relievers with the primary goal of significantly reducing the rate of opioid-related adverse events and substance misuse and abuse. Since 2014, the California Medical Association (CMA) has provided input to the ...

Call for abstracts: Medical students, residents and fellows invited to submit abstracts for first annual HOD poster presentation

The California Medical Association (CMA) is hosting its first ever House of Delegates (HOD) poster session to showcase research by medical students, residents and fellows around the state on Saturday, October 15, 2016, during CMA’s annual meeting in Sacramento. Winners will be announced during the HOD General Assembly on Sunday, October 16. All medical students, residents or fellows who are members of CMA are invited to submit abstracts for their original research. Original research categories for the poster session include: Basic science, clinical research, health policy research and clinical vignette. ...