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Utah Governor's Newsletter October 2019

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Mary H. Parsons, MD, FACP, ACP Governor

Mary H. Parsons, MD, FACP, ACP Governor



As fall is finally getting started I am returning from the fall Board of Governor's meeting which was held in Tucson, Arizona. We had a vigorous and interesting debate on the 16 resolutions brought before the board.

We also saw presentations on ACP's “New Vision for Health Care”. Many of you helped shape this vision when you replied to a questionnaire soliciting your views on our health care system. I look forward to sharing the details of the vision once it is finalized in the next few months. As always, it is inspiring to see the depth and breadth of activities that the college is engaged in and humbling to be your representative to the national leaders. One large issue has been reform of the Maintenance of Certification process with which the ACP has been heavily engaged. We are pleased to announce that the ABMS which is the governing body for ABIM has agreed to implement or study all the vision recommendations made by ACP. The ABIM has agreed to support a longitudinal assessment option following the principles of adult learning, key tenets that ACP has advocated for. The details of the process should be announced soon. ACP has also been front and center in the response to the proposed CMS coding changes. The new guidelines will simplify documentation without the reduction in reimbursement initially proposed when the 99212-4 codes would have been paid at the same rate.

As always, I look forward to any questions you have and hope to see many of you at our Chapter Meeting in March.


Mary Parsons, MD, FACP





It's already time to vote for your next Chapter Governor. Those eligible to vote include Masters, Fellows, Members, and Resident/Fellow Members with an election date of 9/1/2017 or earlier. The Governor serves as the official representative of the College for the chapter, providing a link between members at the local level and leadership at the national level.

This year we have two superb candidates who are running for Governor-elect, Kencee K. Graves, MD, FACP and Scott C. Woller, MD, FACP. I wanted to acknowledge and thank them both for their enthusiastic work on behalf of our Chapter over the years. To learn more about their background and experience, see their biographies and candidate statements available on our Chapter's Website.

The election is taking place between September 20 and November 8. Members can vote online or by mail-in ballot. The ballot will be mailed to you with your ACP Member Number and Election Passcode and is required in order to cast a vote.

For replacement ballots and election customer service, e-mail or call 866-909-3549, Monday - Friday, 8:00 a.m. - 5:00 p.m. Central. For general election information, contact Julie Sinkoff, Coordinator, BOG Relations, via email or telephone at 215-351-2699.


UMA House of Delegates

The annual Utah Medical Association House of Delegates Meeting was held in Midway, Utah from September 13th- 14th. I want to thank those ACP members who volunteered their time to deliberate and vote on important health policies that will be enacted by the UMA. To quote a musical number by Hamilton this meeting is “the room where it happens,” and helps decide the positions and policies for the UMA to bring forward to the legislature.

I wanted to highlight a couple of the resolutions that passed in the House of Delegates this year. I am excited that our chapters' resolution that directed the UMA to oppose work requirements for Medicaid eligibility passed without any amendments! I wanted to thank our colleagues at Utah Academy of Family Physicians for their resolution to study primary care spending and institute evidence based policies to support a robust primary care workforce. Last but certainly not least I am excited that the Women's Physicians Section of the UMA had a resolution accepted to support and promote gender equality in physician pay.

As always we are looking for additional members who are interested in health policy, have issues they want to discuss, and/or want to get involved in this important process. Please contact us if you want to talk more.

Matt Mulligan, MD

Health and Public Policy Committee Chair




October 10, 2019 | Salt Lake City, UT | U of U School of Medicine, Classroom A

Please join us at our Annual Clinical Vignette Competition that will be held at U of U Internal Medicine Grand Rounds on Thursday, October 10, 2019 from 12:00 PM – 01:00 PM. This live activity will offer a maximum of 1 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s).



SAVE THE DATE: 2020 Utah Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting

March 5-6, 2020| Salt Lake City, UT | Guest House

Mark your calendars for the 2020 Utah Chapter Annual Scientific Meeting, Thursday, March 5 through Friday, March 6, 2020. Exact schedule and details will be released soon.




Last April, I underwent training to become an ACP Well-being Champion. My interest in this topic stemmed from my own personal experience as well as witnessing too many colleagues suffer from burnout during training and early careers. The chances are that every single one of us practicing has experienced burnout at some point during training or our careers. Burnout is pervasive, a thriving physician is rare. Many factors contribute to this conundrum, but at the root of the problem are systems that do not take physician wellness into account. It will take many years and a lot of difficult work to address systematic change, but the ACP has already started on this task. From the individual to the clinic and even to the institutional level they offer ideas and solutions to further physician wellness. Take a moment to check out the resources available online.

If you're interested in discussing how our chapter can further support individual and institutional wellness, please reach out to me.

Sonja Raaum, MD FACP

Utah ACP Well-being Champion




The College has partnered with the American Academy of Addiction Psychiatry (AAAP) and a coalition of national professional organizations on two SAMHSA-funded initiatives, the Provider Clinical Support System (PCSS) and Opioid Response Network programs, to combat the opioid crisis. As a part of these programs, ACP hosted a virtual quality improvement chronic pain leadership-training program in May of 2019, due to the success of this event, we have decided to offer a second round of training, details of which are below:

  • A 2 hour webinar providing an overview on how to apply ACP's QI methodology to improve chronic pain management and safe opioid prescribing on November 20, 2019.
  • A series of 4 coaching calls with expert QI faculty to support implementation of a QI project focused on chronic pain management through January 2019.
  • Participants will be asked to submit a summary report of program outcomes to ACP no later than January 31, 2019.

Interested participants should apply through the following link:

  • Program Application Criteria: New participants may apply (participation in the May virtual training disqualifies you from applying again)
  • A $500 honorarium will be provided to selected participants

For more information about this opportunity, please contact Julia Thayer.

* Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant no. 6H79TI080816 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services; nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

*Funding for this initiative was made possible (in part) by grant no. 5U79TI026556 from SAMHSA. The views expressed in written conference materials or publications and by speakers and moderators do not necessarily reflect the official policies of the Department of Health and Human Services, nor does mention of trade names, commercial practices, or organizations imply endorsement by the U.S. Government.

ACP Health Policy Internship Application


ACP is now accepting applications from medical students and residents for the Health Policy Internship Program.  The ACP Health Policy Internship provides a multifaceted opportunity to learn about the legislative process, health policy, and advocacy in organized medicine. 

For four weeks, one resident/fellow intern and one medical student intern will work in ACP’s Washington, DC office with governmental affairs and public policy staff.  Interns will be responsible for researching and analyzing current issues in health and medical education policy, assisting with on-going advocacy initiatives, and the development of advocacy materials. Interns will also have the opportunity to attend Congressional hearings, coalition meetings, and accompany government affairs staff on lobby visits to members of congress and their staff and to events. The interns will be responsible for hosting and assisting in leading a panel discussion on issues of interest to medical students and residents at ACP's Leadership Day and assisting with resident/fellow and medical student related events during the two-day meeting. 

We encourage you to share this information and encourage students and residents to apply. The application closes on October 31, 2019. For more information about the program, please visit at Health Policy Internship Program or contact Matt Mulligan at with any questions.