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Welcome to MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society.  
As the statewide professional association for licensed 
physicians, we are dedicated to our mission to serve as 
Maryland's foremost advocate and resource for physicians, 
their patients, and 
the
public health.

Saturday, September 19, 2020
You are here : Your Resource  >  Public Health  >  Coronavirus Resource Center  >  What We're Doing
What We're Doing to Help

Last Updated 9/16/2020

COVID Update Emails

MedChi One-Pagers


MedChi Informational Videos

  • July 22, 2020 - Healthcare Heroes need liability protections
    Our hospitals, primary care practices, and urgent care centers need liability protections in order to fully serve. Healthcare facilities—despite their already stringent cleanliness standards—worry that they will be unable to treat patients who need “elective” surgeries (which are often for serious conditions such as cancer or heart disease) without liability protections. Doctors and Nurses who follow the strict health guidelines and operate in good faith should not be inhibited during work with the fear of legal action. 
     
    There is bipartisan consensus that federal liability protections should only apply to responsible entities.  A practice that fails to act reasonably and prohibits its employees from wearing masks, for example, would not be protected from liability if a customer contracted COVID-19.  However, healthcare centers that take safety precautions— such as mandating that employees wear masks, and adjusting their operations to help their patients stay at least six feet apart—should not be liable for exposure to COVID-19.  
     
    Experts predict that COVID-19 will continue to be a public health threat for at least the next year.  Health facilities cannot afford to operate in uncertainty for so long, and they need Congress to pass long-term solutions to help them stay open.  As Congress negotiates the COVID-19 Phase IV relief bill the video urges members to work across the aisle to pass narrowly tailored protections against liability for COVID-19 exposure.  Health workers should be able to operate safely without the fear of being sued.

  • July 12, 2020 - Contact Tracing and COVID Testing Info For Maryland Health Workers
    A review of what health workers in the State of Maryland need to know about contact tracing.  Sample patient instructions and what to except is covered. Items covered include: COVID-19 testing is no longer restricted to patients with specific signs and symptoms.  Health workers should advise tested patients to monitor their telephones closely for 72 hours after specimen collection, as they will receive a contact tracing call from MD COVID (240-466-4488) if positive.

  • June 27, 2020 - Can a Health Practice Charge an Extra Fee For Personal Injury Protective Equipment in Maryland?
    Can a health practice charge an extra fee for personal injury protective equipment in Maryland?  A short video by Gene M. Ransom, III, on the law around extra fees for PPE in health offices.  Goes thru codes and rules that may prohibit these extra fees.  This is not legal advice and is created for information purposes only.

  • June 19, 2020 - MedChi CEO Gene Ransom interview on WBAL Radio
    A short interview with Gene Ransom, CEO of MedChi, on WBAL Radio on hospitals, doctors facing financial challenges during outbreak of covid.  The interview focuses on the Care Act and next steps to improve the economics of health care. Date of interview was June 19, 2020.

  • June 15, 2020 - Cares Act - Medicaid help for Practitioners
    Health and Human Services has just announced it will distribute $15 billion to eligible Medicaid and CHIP practitioners.  This video tells you who can get the money and how to apply. 

       - More info from HHS

  • June 10, 2020 - Maryland Health Disparity Data
    A short video on Maryland Health Racial disparity data.  Quick look at data for COVID, Diabetes and Maternal Mortality.

    - COVID Data taken from https://coronavirus.maryland.gov/
       - MD Department of Health MMR Report

  • May 31, 2020 - Working Remotely, Process, and A/R Considerations for Health Practices Reopening During COVID19
    Working Remotely, Process, and A/R Considerations for Health Practices Reopening During COVID19 - Tips with Gene Ransom and Amy Thomas.  Volumes will be down.  This is a good time to review policies, processes, and systems around accounts receivable.

  • May 15, 2020 - Keeping Your Practice Viable During COVID-19
    MedChi CEO, Gene Ransom, interviews Julia Konovalov of Medical Business Partners about how to reopen a medical practice in Maryland.  Great ideas to make your practice viable as you reopen.  Discusses Governor Hogan's executive order, telehealth.

  • May 9, 2020 - You got Payroll Protection Money - Now What? Video
    This is a super short video showing how businesses that got Payroll Protection Money under the Federal CARES ACT can get the funds forgiven. It goes through the three main tests. It is not legal advice and you should always consult your lawyer, banker and accountant on these complex matters.

  • May 8, 2020 - Can a doctor charge for COVID19 testing or treatment? Video
    A short video explaining that the cost of COVID-19 testing for insured patients is to be billed only to the patient’s public or private insurance.  Also gives info on how a doctor gets paid from the government for uninsured patients.

  • May 7, 2020 - Gov Larry Hogan Reopens Medical Offices in Maryland Video
    Governor Larry Hogan Order May 6, 2020: Resumption of Elective and Non-Urgent Medical Procedures - All licensed healthcare facilities and healthcare providers may resume elective and non-urgent medical procedures and appointments at 7:00 A.M., May 7, 2020 with certain provisions. This video helps practitioners follow guidelines to reopen.

  • May 3, 2020 - What is the game plan for reopening Maryland healthcare offices after COVID19? Video
    A short video on the game plan for reopening Maryland healthcare offices after COVID19 for elective procedures and general office visits. Please consider this video informational and not legal advice.

  • May 2, 2020 - Maryland Tort and Immunity issues During COVID-19 Pandemic Video 
    This is a short summary of Maryland Tort and Immunity issues for Maryland Physicians During COVID-19 Pandemic - DISCLAIMER: FOR INFORMATION PURPOSES ONLY - NOT LEGAL ADVICE

  • April 26, 2020 - Covid19 - Emergency order temporarily allows Maryland Cannabis Telehealth Video
    Medical Cannabis: CHANGES TO MARYLAND LAW UNDER COVID19 TELEHEALTH for Maryland Physicians

  • April 25, 2020 - Maryland Telehealth Grants released to respond to COVID-19 Video 
    This is a short video that gives an overview of two telehealth grants offered in Maryland for Maryland physicians in response to COVID-19.


News from MedChi


MedChi is the foremost advocate and resources for physicians, patients, and the public health during the COVID-19 public health crisis.  We have been working around the clock to provide:

Economic / Business Support to Physicians

  • Telemedicine Support
    • Assisting hundreds of practices with rapid implementation of telehealth by answering calls, providing targeted and informative resources, and advocating for physician-friendly policies.
    • Developed a comprehensive, up-to-date summary of coding guidelines to help answer billing questions on telehealth.
    • Implemented grant programs with CareFirst and the Maryland Health Care Commission to ensure physician access to affordable HIPAA-compliant telehealth platforms.

  • MedChi is providing assistance with applying for State or Federal programs.  We have helped thousands of doctors apply for PPP, State grants, State loans, and EIDL, and we are helping practitioners who did not get CARES Act money.  We have extended this support to nonmembers and even those who are not physicians (including dentists and other health care practitioners).  MedChi’s component medical societies deployed several staff members to quickly learn federal and state grants and loans in order to assist physicians.
  • Montgomery County Medical Society has held several webinars on topics such as human resources law and practice reopening guidelines.  More webinars are being developed by MedChi.
  • MedChi is advocating locally and nationally on advance loan repayment forgiveness and to provide clarity on business relief processes.

Public Health Advocacy in Maryland

  • We have positioned eight MedChi employees to schedule tests at several VEIP sites and the state fairgrounds in cooperation with CRISP and MDH.
  • We worked with Johns Hopkins and University of Maryland Medical Center on staffing for the surge and the convention center post-acute care site.  We assisted the State of Maryland, Howard General, FutureCare and other practices and community hospitals with surge employment.  We extended this support to any health care facility that requests it.
  • We are supporting community-based initiatives to provide support to physicians on the front lines.

Education and Resources


  • Secured access to and complimentary CME accreditation for informative webinars with the Maryland Department of Health, three times a week.  MedChi accredited the calls for CME credit at no charge.  Each call is joined by 300-700 physicians.
  • MedChi has done two clinical CMEs with a speaker from the University of Maryland Medical School, including the first coronavirus CME program in the nation in January.
  • We developed a comprehensive resource webpage to share local and national updates, clinical guidelines, billing and coding updates, telehealth resources, human resources materials, and much more.
  • MedChi initiated regular (3-5 times per week) email updates, sent to all physicians (not just members) to highlight the latest news and resources in a format that is quick to read, easy to understand, and ensure that physicians don’t miss critical developments and resources.

Advocacy on Policy Issues

  • Tort Policy – Several years ago, we supported a strong public emergency immunity bill.  We are working with the governor to secure additional protections through executive orders.
  • Scope Policy – We are working closely with anesthesiology, ophthalmology, and orthopedic groups to advocate that scope of practice encroachments are not initiated in ways that are unnecessary to addressing the public health crisis and potentially adverse for patient care.
  • Telehealth Policy – We worked with the Governor on his executive order to expand telehealth.  We are working closely with the Maryland Health Care Commission and CareFirst to administer telehealth grant programs.
  • Economic Policy – We have been working closely with the American Medical Association, the State of Maryland, and federal officials to advocate for additional economic support for physicians.

Leadership


  • MedChi has convened regular meetings with medical society presidents from neighboring states to ensure that we are sharing ideas, concerns, resources, and support.
  • MedChi President Michele Manahan, MD, has participated in many roundtable discussions, lectures, panels, and workgroups to advocate for the best care and resources for Maryland’s physicians.
  •  MedChi CEO Gene Ransom has served as an advocate for physicians in many media outlets, ensuring that the public understands the needs, concerns, and sacrifices of physicians on the front lines.  He has created several short videos to answer frequently asked questions on telehealth grants, immunity protections, and more.
  •   MedChi has shared resources and services with state medical specialty societies and component medical societies.