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The California End of Life Option Act

On October 5, 2015, California became the fifth state in the nation to allow physicians to prescribe terminally ill patients medication to end their lives. ABX2-15, the "End of Life Option Act," permits terminally ill adult patients with capacity to make medical decisions to be prescribed an aid-in-dying medication if certain conditions are met. (ABX2-15, Stats. 2015, Ch.1; Health & Safety Code §§443 et seq.) This document discusses the requirements of the End of Life Option Act.

Why it’s important to verify your patients' eligibility and benefits for 2016

With the new year soon upon us, physicians are urged to be diligent in verifying patients' eligibility and benefits to ensure they will be paid for services rendered. The beginning of a new year means calendar year deductibles and visit frequency limitations reset. With open enrollment there may also be changes to patients’ benefit plans, or patients may even be covered by a new payor.

2015 Legislative Wrap Up

It is difficult to imagine, but the 2015 legislative year was even more challenging than the 2014 legislative year, which included the diversion of staff resources to defeat Proposition 46. With a third of legislators (40 out of 120) serving freshman terms, the California Medical Association’s (CMA) Government Relations staff spent a considerable amount of time during the first quarter educating new legislators and their staff about the mission and policies of CMA. Through our educational efforts, we successfully stopped the introduction of a number of harmful legislative proposals and shifted focus to the passage of CMA’s sponsored bill package.

Significant New California Laws of Interest to Physicians for 2016

The California Legislature had an active year, passing many new laws affecting health care. In particular, bills making major changes to state immunization requirements and end-of-life options were enacted. There was also a strong focus on new legislation related to allied health professionals, mental health, medical records and privacy, and reproductive issues.

Becoming the Practice of the Future Today: 10 Steps to Transform Your Practice and Provide Individualized Care

Current business and care delivery models, even if combined with innovative or sustainable technologies, will not lead to future success. Practices must create new care delivery and business models while incorporating technological advances to effectively compete today and in the future. New payment models, disruptive technology, and care delivery vehicles (e.g., e-visits, home monitoring, retail clinics), along with changing consumer demands for immediate access and transparency, require medical practice transformation. Here are the top 10 steps you should be taking now to transform your medical practice in order to succeed now and in the future.

Call For Nominations: 2015 RCMA Annual Outstanding Contribution Awards

The RCMA is soliciting nominations to recognize and honor deserving individuals for the 2015 Annual Outstanding Contribution Awards. Nominations will be screened by the Awards Committee, with final selection determined by the Board of Councilors. The awards will be presented at the RCMA Installation of Officers Dinner on Friday, January 29, 2016.

RCMA/CMA Works with CMS to Mitigate Medicare ICD-10 Disruptions

With implementation of the ICD-10 code set just around the corner, many physicians have been understandably wary about the transition and the potential for payment disruptions and claims processing errors that could interfere with patient care. Fortunately, the California Medical Association (CMA) – working closely with the American Medical Association (AMA) and other medical associations – has secured provisions that will ease this transition, particularly for physicians in practices with limited resources.

California State Budget Update

Today, the Governor and legislative leaders announced an agreement on the 2015-16 State Budget Act and have settled the major issues and spending priority differences between the administration and the Legislative branch. One key point is that the budget includes $40 million to expand Medi-Cal to cover all low-income undocumented children effective May 1, 2016 ($132 million when fully implemented).

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