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Message from the CMS President

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AS PAYERS and hospitals continue to drive consolidation across the healthcare system, it is becoming more and more difficult for physicians to maintain an independent practice. As noted in this month’s lead feature article, physicians who don’t join a larger medical group or related professional corporation essentially become employees of hospitals or their parent corporations. Over the years, and as described in a second feature piece, some physician-employees and groups have formed unions and engage in collective bargaining, with mixed success. But as employment overtakes medicine, will a stronger union movement emerge for physicians?

These topics are apropos of our June 7-9, 2018, Physician Legal Issues Conference, which will delve into today’s evolving practice world. Physicians can earn up to 21.5 CME credit hours. Each year the Chicago Medical Society teams up with the American Bar Association’s Health Law Section to cohost this wide-ranging program. It is conveniently held on Chicago’s Magnificent Mile, at the InterContinental Hotel. CMS members enjoy a discounted rate.

In addition to contract negotiation, sessions will cover employer and hospital relationships; physician and hospital collaboration; formation of physician super groups; healthcare dispute and conflict resolution; payer-provider contracting; private equity and physician investment; and communication in medicine. Some of our own physician members will serve as speakers during sessions. You’ll also learn more about new payment models and regulatory changes. We have arranged for networking events where you’ll mingle with physician colleagues and health law attorneys.

Last year’s Physician Legal Issues Conference saw attendance nearly triple among CMS members. This interest confirms that physicians want help navigating a rapidly changing practice environment. CMS and ABA answer that need. All medical specialties will find the content useful and informative. Topics include:

• Physician burnout and physician health.
• Clinical integration and physician leadership.
• False Claims Act trends and practical ideas to address and prevent exposure.
• Minimizing the risks in prescribing controlled substances.
• Treating patients who struggle with addiction.
• Current and proposed public policy on addiction issues.
• The Quality Payment Program, MIPS and Advanced APMs.
• How physicians can avoid a payment penalty in 2019.
• Commercial reasonableness of physician compensation.
• Key issues when facing an audit and successful appeals strategies.
• Revisions and clarifications to Stark regulations.
• Advances in technology and professional responsibility concerns.

This is my final call to you urging your attendance. Please check for more details and register by calling 312-670-2550 or visiting:  I look forward to seeing you there.

Vemuri S. Murthy, MD
President, Chicago Medical Society

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