Colorado Governor's Newsletter April 2021

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Alwinn Steinmann, MD, FACP, ACP Governor

Alwinn Steinmann, MD, FACP, ACP Governor


Governor's Corner

Well, another three months have passed. The COVID surge we were experiencing at the time of our last newsletter has waned and people are being vaccinated. Restrictions are gradually being lifted and it seems that life might get back to something approximating normal soon. Of course, there is the threat of multiple variants that might set us back, so some caution and vigilance is still necessary. As for the ACP, all our Spring events will be virtual, including the national scientific meeting and our Leadership Day (see below). Our Chapter activities are also virtual, including our resident poster competition that will happen in May. Hoping that this will be the last exclusively virtual event we will need to have!

Here's some Chapter news and updates:

Annual Chapter Meeting - As most of you know, we had our first virtual annual meeting in February, and although we all missed getting together at the lovely Broadmoor, the meeting did go very smoothly. As usual, we had an outstanding line-up of speakers. Registered attendance exceeded our expectations! Many thanks to our outstanding Meeting Planning Committee and to our Executive Director Christine Westbrook and her husband Brian for making it all work!

Doctors' Dilemma Competition - Our annual residents Doctors' Dilemma competition was held virtually on March 3rd. Teams from all 4 Colorado IM residency programs competed (Parkview, Saint Joseph, Sky Ridge, and University of Colorado) for a chance to represent Colorado at the national meeting. It was a great event and the University of Colorado was victorious.

Best of luck in the national competition! Many thanks to Dr. Rick Miranda who organized the event - quite a challenge this year, given the virtual format! Thanks also to the residents and resident program faculty who helped, and again, to our Executive Director Christine Westbrook.

As mentioned above, we are planning on a virtual resident poster competition in May.

Student Shadowing Opportunity - Medical students from Rocky Vista have asked for our help in identifying metro area internal medicine physicians who would be willing to have a student shadow them for brief periods. This would not involve a long-term commitment, nor would there be formal teaching / evaluations involved. Interested parties can contact me, and I will help get you in touch with the right folks at Rocky Vista.

High Value Journal Club - Drs. Marianne Novelli and Mugabe Walker have proposed starting a virtual chapter journal club. Thanks to those of you who responded to our survey about this in February. Based on those responses, Drs. Novelli and Walker will move ahead with plans to start this up sometime later in the spring or early summer (look for e-mail notices!). The idea is to review 2 or 3 recent articles in a 30-minute format.

Leadership Day - As mentioned above, the ACP Leadership Day will be virtual this year, and will be held on May 25th and 26th. It will have the same general format of an introduction to advocacy on the morning of the first day followed by briefings on the legislative landscape in the afternoon. The second day will involve virtual meetings with members of Congress and / or their staff. The cost is only $25, and no travel is required! Please consider participating.

Please click here for more information or to register.

Hoping that you all stay well -

Al Steinmann, MD, FACP



Resident/Fellow Update:

We were fortunate that the Colorado Chapter Meeting Committee allowed residents to participate in the virtual program. Three oral discussion were presented during the meeting, representing residents from Parkview, St Joes and the University. These oral presentations were well received. Also, as a result of the virtual forum, we were able to expand the number of posters to 25 that were available for viewing at the meeting. We appreciate the work of the Meeting Committee to allow this participation and accommodating the posters to be viewed during the event.

The ever popular Doctor's Dilemma, created challenges to figure out how to perform virtually. The contest was delayed this year, but eventually we were able to have the 4 residency teams compete on March 3, 2021. Congratulations to the University of Colorado team for their win, as they will now progress to the virtual National Doctor's Dilemma competition!

Plans for the Spring Resident/Fellow meeting are ongoing but will likely consist of a virtual poster competition. Details of this opportunity will be forthcoming.



Health and Public Policy Update:

The Health and Public Policy Committee is making up for lost time. COVID-19 cut the legislative session short in 2020. 2021 is a different story. Our committee has met multiple times to discuss upcoming legislation with health care implications.

The marijuana industry is trying to take advantage of the pandemic with a bill called “Promoting Social Distancing in the MJ industry” and seeks the ability to prescribe medical marijuana via telehealth visits. They are also lobbying to market and distribute their products on-line. Both the HPPC and The House of Medicine strongly oppose this legislation.

We have reviewed sunset provisions for different provider groups including midwives, Physician Assistants, and Athletic Trainers. The only group trying to advance their scope is the Physician Assistants. The HPPC generally opposes scope creep.

The anti-vaxxers are pushing a bill that would prevent employers from requiring employees to have the COVID-19 vaccine. This has been opposed by our committee as well as the House of Medicine.

The most important bill of the session, just released this week, is the Public Option bill. The governor's office has made health insurance affordability a priority. The Public Option bill is a key to this plan. This bill will be discussed in detail by the House of Medicine this week.

In the next few months, we will provide more information on the outcome of many of these bills. HPPC continues to support ACP policy and advocate for ACP members.



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