WPA News, September 2017 

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President's Message, September 2017
Justin Schoen, MD, FAPA

I always enjoy autumn as the leaves change and the landscape turns into beautiful kaleidoscope of color. It is also the time when the WPA fall conference occurs. We are fortunate to have an slate of excellent speakers on a variety of topics that are critical to the practice of Psychiatry. 

Along with the educational portion comes the quarterly in-person meeting of the executive council and the social components, which not only provides a brief reprieve from the routine, but also decreases burnout.  We have so many amazing members and getting to hear their stories is one of the main reasons why I attend.

I look forward to seeing you, and hearing how you have been, during the conference at the InterContinental in Milwaukee on Oct. 5th and 6th.


Legislative Update - Medical Liability Award Caps

In July a State Court of Appeals decision in the Mayo v. WIPFCF case ruled unconstitutional Wisconsin’s $750,000 cap on non-economic damages for medical malpractice cases (passed by the Legislature in the late 1990’s).  The case has been appealed to the Wisconsin Supreme Court and awaits the Court’s decision (which is anticipated to occur in the next couple of weeks) on whether they will take the case; most court watchers believe they will do so. The case has great significance for Wisconsin’s medical liability climate.

Building from Doctor Day partnerships, WPA has joined a coalition of eight specialty medical societies to petition the Court to be named Amici (“friends of the court”) -- non-parties to the original case who may be affected by, or who can offer unique insight into the impact of the Court’s ultimate decision.  

If granted Amici status, the coalition will work together to submit a brief explaining to the Court the potential impact on specialty physicians and their patients. No doubt many similar briefs will be offered in a case of this significance, and it is anticipated the Court will set a briefing schedule later this fall.

Last Chance to Register for WPA Fall Conference, Oct. 5-6 in Milwaukee

It's not too late to register! Next week, WPA will explore Ethics, Integrated Care and Complex Patient Interactions during the 2017 Fall Conference. Join us October 5 & 6 at the InterContinental Hotel in Milwaukee.

The program has been approved by the APA for 8.25 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Learn more and register online

UW Students Learn about WPA Mentor Program

Last month, WPA's Immediate Past President Jeff Marcus, MD was invited to attend the fall kick-off meeting of the Psychiatry Student Interest Group at the University of Wisconsin-Madison School of Medicine and Public Health.

Doctor Marcus introduced medical students to WPA, and had an opportunity to promote the WPA mentor program. As a result, more students are now signing up to participate in the program.

Over the past few years, more than 40 WPA members have expressed interest in serving as a mentor through this program, which offers students an opportunity to meet either formally or informally with practicing psychiatrists to learn more about the field of psychiatry. The program is intended to be flexible to accommodate busy schedules. Some student/mentor pairs meet regularly for coffee and discussion, while others are involved in a more formal clinical shadowing experience.  

If you are interested in serving as a mentor and are not yet signed up, please complete this brief online form. We'll notify you when we have a student to pair with you.

Thanks to all members who are taking the time to connect with medical students, either through this program or elsewhere, and helping them navigate the many factors that go into making career decisions. 

State Receives Additional Funding for Opioid Epidemic
September 7, Wisconsin Health News

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention awarded Wisconsin additional funding to beef up its efforts to curb opioid abuse.

Wisconsin received roughly $752,000 in supplemental funding that can be used to scale up prevention efforts, like increasing the use of prescription drug monitoring programs and expanding the reach of messages about opioid risks. Wisconsin is now receiving $2.6 million from the same program.

The state also received an additional $131,000 to better track and prevent opioid-involved overdoses. The state is now receiving $460,000 through the program.

CDC announced $28.6 million in funding to 44 states and the District of Columbia.

Other News

Read latest news online.

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