You are using an outdated browser. Please upgrade your browser to improve your experience.

You are using an outdated browser.

To ensure optimal security, this website will soon be unavailable on this browser. Please upgrade your browser to allow continued use of ACP websites.

You are here

Greetings and Notes from Your Governor February 2014

newsletter banner

February 2014 Daniel B. Kimball, Jr., MD, FACP, ACP Governor





Dr. Kimball

Greetings Colleagues,

I have just returned from a five week trip to accomplish one of my bucket list items, a trip to Australia and New Zealand. It was a fabulous experience and one I would recommend to anyone. We spent about two weeks in each country with a tour group and had a wonderful experience in addition to seeing how medical care is provided in those two countries. No system is perfect, but they do a great job of providing universal health care, a goal we are still struggling to achieve. They too are struggling to curb the ever increasing costs of providing care.

I hope the beginning of your New Year has been safe and fulfilling and that you still view the practice of medicine as the calling it was intended to be. These are challenging times, particularly for those of you in private practice, which according to ACP survey data is still the style of practice for about 1/3 of our members. I thank each and every one of you for the care and caring you provide to your patients and their families, every day.

As you know we are looking forward to another SEP/MOC program in Hershey on 15 March and I hope that many of you will be able to be with us for that one-day event. The MOC process in clearly in an evolutionary phase, and we are trying to help our members meet those requirements in any way that we can. Internal Medicine 2014 will be in Orlando FL in April (10-12) and we hope you will be able to attend and join us for the Chapter reception on Friday evening.

Again, my profound thanks and appreciation for what you do every day and your continuing support of ACP.

Best regards,
Dan Kimball
Governor, Eastern Region, PA-ACP


Have You Heard?

  • The Pennsylvania Chapter is now on FACEBOOK. Learn more about Chapter activities as well as the accomplishments of friends and colleagues. Most importantly, please remember to "like" our page!
  • You can now connect by region on LinkedIn. The Chapter has created a LinkedIn page for each of the three regions. These are private groups that are only open to ACP members of each specific region. This will allow members to more fully engage in a variety of discussions. When on, search for your region - PA ACP East, West or Southeast - and submit a request to join. If you do not know your region, click here to review regional assignments by zip code.
  • The ACP is offering another FREE membership benefit. JournalWise is a mobile-optimized service that screens over 120 internal medicine journals for the highest-quality, clinically relevant and newsworthy articles with custom criteria that you determine so that only the articles you want are delivered. Go to the website for more information and to sign-up.
  • The Annals for Educator Teaching Tools from Annals of Internal Medicine provides content and resources in formats that will assist you in your teaching activities.
  • The PA-ACP and the Temple University School of Medicine will co-sponsor the third annual Health and Public Policy Forum on Saturday, March 8, 2014. This year's program is titled Reforming Health Care: Present Challenges and Visions for the Future. The focus will be on how health care professionals of all levels can become involved in shaping health policy and taking an in depth look at the implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and some promising alternatives. Here is more information.
  • We proudly announce that two chapter members will receive national ACP Awards during IM 2014 in Orlando. They are: Charles P. O'Brien, MD, PhD and Steven J. Peitzman, MD, FACP. Read about their outstanding achievements.
  • Congratulations to two of our PA-ACP leaders! Jaan Sidorov, MD, FACP was elected by the Pennsylvania Medical Society's House of Delegates to the Board of Trustees to represent primary care and internal medicine for a four year term and Evan Pollack, MD, FACP was elected as an Alternate Delegate to the AMA House of Delegates for 2014-2015. More can be read on Facebook.
  • Congratulations, Charles Cutler, MD, FACP, Arnold R. Eiser, MD, FACP and Ezekiel J. Emanuel, MD, FACP who were selected to become Masters of the College (MACP).
  • We were proud to present three Laureates this year. Congratulations to Herb Reynolds (East), Rick Eisenstaedt (SE), and Paul Bialas (West) who were recognized at the Chapter's Annual Awards Dinner in December. Here are photos of the 2013 chapter awardees from the Awards Dinner and read about this outstanding group of physicians. Other honorees were: Anuradha Paranjape (SE) and Melissa McNeil (West), for Clinical Practice Awards; Peg Atwell (East) and Evan Pollack (SE), for the Pressman award; and Special Recognition was given to Renee Cassidy (SE), Deepak Pahuja (SE), Ted Bollard (East) and Marc Shalaby (SE).
  • Arnold M. Eiser, MD, FACP, Vice President Medical Education, Mercy Health Systems, Associate Dean, Mercy Programs, and Professor of Medicine at Drexel University College of Medicine has a new book, "Ethos in Medicine in Postmodern America: Philosophical, Cultural, and Social Considerations," published by Lexington Books. The book is available through Lexington Books and in eBook form. More can be learned by visiting our Facebook page.
  • A fellow Southeast member, Gary Dorshimer, MD, FACP, was featured in an article in the January 2013 issue of Impact.
  • There are two sessions left of the Leadership Webinars for Early Career Physicians. The Illinois Downstate and Pennsylvania Chapters host these webinars. You may download the flyer with all webinar listings.
  • ACP Leadership Day 2014 is set for May 21 - 22, 2014. This event presents the opportunity for our voices to be heard on Capitol Hill. Last year we visited with all 18 Pennsylvania Congressional offices and both Senators.
  • The Eastern Region's 2014 Abstract Competition is moves to PinnacleHealth in Harrisburg this November. Drs. Rajinder Sahi, Venkata Subhash Gorrepati and Bilal Chaudhry will chair this year's Poster and Medical Jeopardy Competition.
  • The Pennsylvania Chapter sponsors three regional abstract competitions. In collaboration with the program directors, residents and medical students may write an abstract on research, case study, or quality improvement based on their experience. The abstracts are evaluated and the authors of the best are invited to present a poster at the annual Residents Day. Residents and students who want to submit an abstract must be a member of the ACP. All residents who have provided the ACP with an email address will receive emails about the 2014 abstract competition.


Congratulations to our Governor-elect Designee!

David L. George, MD, FACP is our new Governor-elect Designee. After a year of orientation, he will begin his four-year term as Governor and serve as the official representative of the College for the Pennsylvania Eastern region. He will be working closely with Dr. Kimball and college staff to learn more about the ACP and his duties of Governor. You may read Dr. George's bio.


Capitol Update by John Nikoloff

John Nikoloff, ERG Partners

John Nikoloff, ERG Partners

Election Year

The General Assembly is hoping to make headway on several major issue and policy areas this year. But from now until November 4, state government officials will have one eye on policies and the other on the politics of the state's general election. Governor Corbett is running for re-election, and at least eight Democrats are competing in the primary to oppose him this fall. One half of all State Senate seats will be decided, and all 203 State House and 18 Congressional districts will be on the ballot.

Five State Senators have announced they will not seek re-election, and twelve state House members have announced the same to date. Another eight House members find themselves pitted against colleagues as a result of legislative reapportionment and more find themselves opposed in the primary election.

The state legislative schedule reflects the election calendar. The legislature is in recess for Appropriations hearings on the budget from early February to early March, when candidates can circulate nominating petitions. The Primary Election is scheduled for May 20, and the legislature is in recess from May 7 through June 1.

The single largest issue facing the state is finding a way to fill the $1.4 billion budget gap in crafting a state budget. With the formal presentation of the Governor's budget proposal on February 4, getting an on-time balanced budget should dominate all other legislative activities through June. Funding for Medicaid is a major piece of that puzzle, as is solving the state's pension funds deficit.

Healthy Pennsylvania/MA Expansion and Innovation

PA-ACP continues to push for Medicaid expansion in the state under the Affordable Care Act, working with all four legislative caucuses, the Insurance Department, DPW and Governor's Office. According to DPW, an additional 643,000 Pennsylvania adults would qualify for Medicaid under expansion. In addition, the Governor's Healthy Pennsylvania initiative has been a focus of policy discussions, with the Chapter meeting repeatedly with legislative and Administration officials to insure that internists' and patients' needs are recognized with any prospective changes

The Chapter participated in stakeholder meetings which led to a series of proposals under an innovation grant from CMMI that includes shifting state payment systems to one that rewards efficiency and quality, with a strong commitment to the medical home concept. Other changes which the Chapter worked on were advances in information technology, workforce development, additional GME support and expansion of public health programs.

The Commonwealth continues to seek waivers from the Department of Health and Human Services over issues with Medicaid expansion and its costs. PA-ACP has provided input and comments to the Corbett Administration on these issues and will continue to work with other health care organizations as advocates for patients as the state Medicaid program develops.


The state budget will be very important to internists, with issues including Graduate Medical Education, primary care physician loan programs, Medicaid funding, MCare and Tobacco Settlement funds, and public health issues all impacted directly. PA-ACP will be working with the General Assembly to maintain or increase funding for these items.

The legislature is considering many other health related bills, several the result of ACA implementation, and others that are state specific. The PA-ACP is engaged on those impacting your practices and hospitals, with policies established through our chapter's Health and Public Policy Committee and our statewide Governing Council.

One priority bill is HB 1655, which would establish a Patient Centered Medical Home Advisory Committee to work with the state in developing payment and patient care reforms under state funded programs. PA-ACP has supported the bill since it was in planning stages.

We are supporting legislation that would require prompt credentialing by payers, and mandate that credentialing decisions be made within 60 days of application. We also support legislation that would allow a tax credit for physicians for their MCARE assessments.

PA-ACP is working for passage of legislation (HB 777) that would allow seniors who would be bumped from eligibility by Social Security COLAs to stay on the PACE and PACENET programs, and removes Medicare Part B premiums as income to increase eligibility for PACE and PACENET. The bill would allow nearly 40,000 Pennsylvania senior citizens to maintain access and allow 10,000 seniors access to affordable prescription medications through the PACE and PACENET programs.

Sometimes we must oppose bills that we feel do not protect patients or ensure quality health care. PA-ACP currently opposes several bills that would significantly increase the scope of practice, without adequate physician supervision or collaborative agreements pharmacists and Advanced Practice Nurses

The contract battle between UPMC and Highmark in the Pittsburgh area has spilled over into legislation being introduced that would impact providers, insurers and hospitals across the state. Legislators are concerned about protecting constituents' access to care and hospitals. At the same time, the very public confrontation, along with the Affordable Care Act implementation, has some legislators reevaluating the hospital systems and Blues' nonprofit status. Our Chapter will continue monitoring these issues, and will work to prevent unintended consequences for physicians and patients from occurring.


Eastern Region's 2013 Poster Competition

The 2013 Poster Competition held at Commonwealth Medical College in Scranton was another great event. We congratulate the poster winners and thank all who participated. Here are the winning posters of the Eastern Region.

A special thank you to our 2013 Co-Chairs Sandhya Samavedam, MD and Robert Paulino, MD and our many abstract reviewers and judges. They did a fantastic job! We could not hold the annual poster competition without the spirit of volunteerism that exists in the Eastern Region. Visit our facebook page to see photos from our fall activities.


They Did It Again!

Einstein's Team Wins PA Medical Jeopardy Championship

Einstein's Team Wins PA Medical Jeopardy Championship

Congratulations to the Einstein Medical Jeopardy Team, for winning the 2013 Southeast competition and the Pennsylvania State Championship. They will defend their National Title at IM 2014 in Orlando. Will this be another national win for Einstein!

We also congratulate the teams from Easton Hospital, Guthrie Robert Packer Hospital, Lehigh Valley Hospital, PSU/Hershey Medical Center, Pinnacle Health System, Reading Hospital and Medical Center, The Wright Center, and York Hospital. All competed in the East's tournament. They are all champions in our eyes and we look forward to seeing them at the 2014 competition in the fall.


Congratulations New Fellows!

The following members were elected to Fellowship in the College during the past six months.

Sandhya K Adusumilli, MD, FACP
Saeed I. Bajwa, MD, FACP
Neeti Bhardwaj, MD, FACP
Charles U. Gbadouwey, MD, FACP
Virginia E. Hall, MD, FACP
Sean P. Harvey, DO, FACP
Glenn A. Hyatt, MD, FACP
Kasim M. Kasim, MD, FACP
Chatargy S. Kaza, MBBS, FACP
Naeem Latif, MD, FACP
Gerald V. Maloney, DO, FACP
Bohdan Martynec, MD, FACP
Colleen Matejicka, DO, FACP
Fariba Modares, MD, FACP
Dipti S. Pancholy, MD, FACP
Julio A. Ramos, MD, FACP
Sandhya Samavedam, MD, FACP
Stefan T. Tachev, MD, FACP
Rupashree Vinay, MD, FACP
Kevin C. Westra, DO, FACP


Welcome Aboard!

The Eastern Region welcomes new Members! We look forward to meeting you and we extend an invitation to join us at our various activities planned for the year.

Meena Agarwala, MD
Christopher S. Alia, MD
Subhra Banerjee, MD
Arabinda Behura, MD
Fazal R. Bhatti, MD
Archana Chaudhari, MD
Bradley K. Davidson
Mohamed Azkar Jamaldeen, MD
Kevin W. Maguire, DO
Melissa E. Martenis, DO
Dharmesh Patel, MD
Vipul Patel, MD
Jason M. Shackelford, MD
Lauren Kelley Smith, DO
Rohit Varghese, MD


PA Chapter Calendar of Events

Date Event Location
Feb 1 SEP/MOC at Jefferson Philadelphia
Feb 27 WPMS dinner Philadelphia
March 4 IMIG Dinner Hershey
Mar 6 Temple-PCOM IMIG Dinner Philadelphia
March 11 FACP Orientation dinner King of Prussia
Mar 12 Jefferson Dinner Philadelphia
Mar 15 SEP/MOC at Penn State Hershey
Mar 29 Council Meeting Harrisburg
April 1 CECP Dinner Philadelphia
Apr 1 Council of Residents and Fellows Dinner Philadelphia
Apr 11 Pennsylvania Reception Orlando
May 21-22 Leadership Day Washington, DC
June 16 Council Webinar Internet n/a