In this issue:
by Marc Katz, PA-C
It is hard to believe that my presidential term is nearing its end. Last month, I highlighted the Academy’s accomplishments in 2015. I am happy to report that at a meeting in November, the Board reaffirmed and tweaked some goals in the three-year strategic plan and I feel confident that the NCAPA will continue moving forward to better serve you, our members.
This year would not have been successful without the support and dedication of NCAPA volunteers. To all committee members, thank you for your time and input into making this Academy move forward. To my committee chairs, thank you for your vision and expertise. To my Board, a special thank you for allowing me to push you harder and further than we have in the past. A few of you will be rotating off the Board and off committees; thank you for your service and it is my hope you will remain involved and dedicated to the NCAPA. To our staff, you are the best!! Thank you so much for your dedication to PAs across the state.
As I reflect on my 36 years as a PA, I have seen great changes in our profession. I no longer need to spend half an office visit explaining to patients who I am. The battles to allowing PAs even access into a hospital and getting privileges on staff are battles of the past. There are multiple employment opportunities across the state (and across the country). We now have a full seat on our regulatory board and acceptance by our other health care partners.
So what does the future hold? There are people clamoring for changing our name, our way of practice, and educational degree. The recertification process continues to be examined and critiqued. Other practitioners want what we have fought so hard to obtain. Personally, I will continue to remain active on a national and state level. Since my last Presidential outing, I have sat for 19 years, not only at NCAPA Board meetings, but other meetings to hold our leaders accountable. If change is needed, we need to be at the table to present the pros and cons. I challenge each of you to do the same. Join a committee, come to meetings, and stay involved. Though the battles of the past are over, new ones continue to emerge. The changing landscape of healthcare will bring new challenges and opportunities. I look back at my years of involvement and feel grateful to have been able to help steer this great profession that has helped define my life. Hopefully, you will be able to do the same.
Marc Katz, PA-C
by Kat Nicholas, Director of Membership and Marketing
At the November 14th meeting of the NCAPA Board of Directors, current President Marc Katz turned over the gavel to incoming President, Wanda Hancock. Wanda will begin her term on January 1st, 2016.
Wanda then presented Marc with a plaque in appreciation of his service. NCAPA has had a very productive year under Marc’s leadership and we look forward to another exciting year in 2016. Thank you for all you’ve done Marc and Congratulations Wanda!
by Sarah Wolfe, Assistant Vice-President, McGuire Woods Consulting
House, Senate Announce Interim Committee Assignments
In November, Speaker Tim Moore and President Pro Tempore Phil Berger announced their respective chambers’ interim committee assignments for the 2015-2017 legislative biennium. The purpose of interim committees is to ensure the legislative intent is being carried out by the executive branch government agencies and programs. Of the 20+ committees that will be meeting throughout the interim, two will focus specifically on health care issues and policies.
The Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Health and Human Services (JLOC on HHS) is responsible for examining the system-wide issues affecting the development, budgeting, financing, administration, and quality and delivery of health and human services to the citizens of North Carolina. The JLOC on HHS will be chaired by Rep. Josh Dobson (R-McDowell), Rep. Marilyn Avila (R-Wake), and Sen. Louis Pate (R-Wayne).
Established within this year’s Medicaid reform legislation, the Joint Legislative Oversight Committee on Medicaid and Health Choice will examine the budgeting, financing, administrative, and operational issues related to the Medicaid and NC Health Choice programs administered by the NC Department of Health and Human Services. Further, as the Medicaid transformation and reorganization progresses in the coming months and years, the Department will be responsible for reporting their progress to the committee. The committee will be chaired by Rep. Nelson Dollar (R-Wake), Rep. Donny Lambeth (R-Forsyth) and Sen. Ralph Hise (R-Mitchell). All three chairs have been involved with the Medicaid reform debate since it began in 2012.
Neither oversight committee has met yet, but it is expected that they will meet once a month until the legislature convenes for the short session on April 25, 2016. Any recommendations that result from the committees’ work are eligible for consideration during the 2016 session.
Candidates Begin Filing for Office
The filing period for the 2016 elections began on December 1, and will stay open until noon on December 21. On the state level, the following offices are up for election on the 2016 ballot: the 50 seats of the state Senate, the 120 seats of the state House of Representatives, one U.S. Senate seat, the 13 seats of the U.S. House of Representatives, the Governor, Lt. Governor, Secretary of State, State Auditor, State Treasurer, Superintendent of Public Instruction, Attorney General, Commissioner of Agriculture, Commissioner of Labor, Commissioner of Insurance, one Justice of the Supreme Court, and three Judges of the Court of Appeals.
Additionally, at the time of publication, five state Senators and 13 state Representatives have announced their intentions to retire from public office at the end of their term, or to run for a different public office.
Click here to read additional details and the most updated information on the 2016 elections.
Qualified PAs are encouraged to apply for the newly created PA seat on the NC Medical Board. As a result of the passage of HB724 in August, there are now designated seats for a PA and an NP on the Medical Board. Due to this, the Governor asked the Medical Board Review Panel to reopen the application period for candidates for these seats. Applications are due by December 22, 2015. The Review Panel will interview candidates on January 30, 2016. For more information about qualifications and how to apply, click here.
Peggy R. Robinson, MS, MHS, PA-C, is Associate Professor, Department of Community & Family Medicine, at Duke University. NCAPA had an opportunity to talk to her about her service on the NC Medical Board.
NCAPA: When did you serve on the NC Medical Board?
Robinson: I served on the Board from November 2006-October 2012.
NCAPA: What kind of issues came before the Medical Board during your terms?
Robinson: The process for appointment to the Board was changed with the institution of the Review Panel. The Board also began posting malpractice payments; this was a “hot” issue and involved much discussion and deliberation but done in the spirit of creating transparency. It was in the same spirit that the Licensee Information “pages” on the Board website were developed.
I was on the Board when random site audits were instituted to ensure compliance with PA practice rules; I helped to refine the site visit form that is currently used. Also during my term we passed the rule that allowed physician assistants to use “PA” on their identification badges; prior to this physician assistant had to be spelled out. Lastly, telemedicine and maintenance of certification were becoming (and still are) big issues.
NCAPA: How much time do you think you spent preparing before each Board meeting?
Robinson: Board materials are sent electronically approximately two weeks before the meeting. I would typically preview the amount/number of pages and then divide it so I would have a few hours each day to prepare. The amount of reading can vary depending on committee responsibilities.
NCAPA: What kinds of qualities and/or knowledge do you think are important to have to be a successful Board member?
Robinson: Many of the qualities that make a good clinician also make a good Board member: compassion, thoughtfulness, being fair and non-judgmental.
NCAPA: What was the most rewarding aspect of serving on the Medical Board?
Robinson: It is difficult to put into words the rewards of Board service. I wish every PA practicing in this state could have the opportunity to serve. No matter how competent and caring a clinician may perceive himself/herself to be, serving on a medical board reinforces the need for thoughtful care, clear communication, compassion, and attention to detail. It was both humbling and challenging and I will be forever grateful for having had the opportunity. As an educator of PA students, I am always sharing with them my stories and experiences from the NCMB. I know it will make them better clinicians in the future.
NCAPA: What advice would you give to a PA considering applying for the PA seat on the Medical Board?
Robinson: Go for it! If you feel you may have something to offer, you should apply. The Board (and the citizens of North Carolina) benefits from diversity of all types: experience, perspective, scope of practice, geographic location in the state, etc. For those of us who have served, I know it is an experience that we will always treasure.
by Katharine D. Kovacs, PA-C, Assistant Medical Director,
Office of the Medical Director, North Carolina Medical Board
Thirty PAs were randomly selected for a Compliance Review in 2015 by the North Carolina Medical Board (Board). Overall, PAs did very well, with two thirds (19) in full compliance with all rules and regulations. One review was not conducted because the PA was not practicing in a clinical setting, but rather coordinating a PA program. Nine had minor discrepancies or deficiencies which were brought to their attention and corrected without further Board action. One PA and physician team had worked together for eight years with onsite supervision, but never had a signed supervisory agreement or documented regular meetings. After further investigation, the deficiencies were addressed and the PA and physician both received private letters of concern from the Board.
To help other PAs stay in compliance, here are the deficiencies found by the Board’s team of investigators this year:
- Lack of full compliance with certain aspects of Quality Improvement: meetings did not include relevant clinical issues; initial monthly or at least bi-annual meeting(s) were not documented; and/or QI documentation was not signed/dated by the providers.
- PA prescription blanks did not document the primary supervising physician’s name and phone number.
- No periodic review by the physician of the prescriptive authority policy which includes prescribing, ordering, and administering drugs and medical devices. (Hint: Add this to the scope of practice document and review annually.)
It is the hope of the Board to find 100 percent compliance! PAs might consider a review of the rules and regulations at least yearly when you are on the Board’s website to renew your license. That should help remind each of us to review appropriate documents and stay in compliance.
Good work, PAs!
by Kat Nicholas, Director of Membership and Marketing
Be sure to renew your membership so that we can continue offering the advocacy, continuing education, and networking opportunities you value.
NCAPA is the only organization devoted exclusively to promoting and representing all PAs in North Carolina, and we work hard to make sure the public and our legislators fully understand the value of PAs. We strive to offer the best CME there is through our annual conferences, workshops, and soon-to-be online educational offerings. And we work to keep you connected with your fellow PAs so that you can take full advantage of the support and guidance your colleagues have to offer.
Our profession is stronger when PAs work together toward shared goals of quality service and optimal health care. Make sure your voice is heard when important issues arise affecting your profession.
Go to ncapa.org and activate your 2016 membership today!
30th Annual NCAPA Recertification Exam Review Conference
Sheraton Imperial Hotel & Convention Center
February 20-23, 2016
Join us for the 30th Annual NCAPA Recertification Exam Review Conference. All registrations received and paid for by December 31 are eligible to win an iPad! The drawing will take place on Monday, January 4, 2016 and will be announced on NCAPA’s Facebook page.
The conference agenda is based on the NCCPA PANRE exam blueprint and will be 100% focused on a review of all organ systems. Even if you are not up for recertification or don’t take the PANRE, this conference is an excellent review of all organ systems for any health care provider.
NEW for 2016! The conference begins on a Saturday this year and runs through Tuesday afternoon. That means less time away from the office and more time to study for the PANRE!
This program has been reviewed and is approved for 30 hours of AAPA Category 1 CME credit for the general sessions and 22 hours in workshops by the Physician Assistant Review Panel. Physician Assistants should claim only those hours actually spent participating in the CME activity.
Credits awarded by the AAPA are accepted by the ANCC Certification Program and the AANP as Continuing Education (CE) credits for nurses and nurse practitioners.
The Sheraton Imperial Hotel and Convention Center has reserved a block of rooms for NCAPA conference attendees. Conference rates are available for all reservations booked for the conference before January 22, 2016, or while availability lasts. For hotel reservations, click here or call (919) 941-5050.
The NCAPA is offering a PANRE/PANCE Board Review workshop at the February 2016 conference. This 2 evening workshop consists of PANRE/PANCE test questions that are administered live with John Bielinski, MS, PA-C. Attendees will be given handouts of all questions and answers that will be reviewed in the workshop. There is also a 200 question take-home exam provided to all attendees.
The workshop will be held at the Sheraton Imperial Hotel in Durham, NC and is being offered to NCAPA Student Members free of charge. It is scheduled for Saturday, February 20 from 6-9pm and Sunday, February 21, from 6-8pm.
To register, please RSVP to Carin Head via email: email@example.com.
Join us for networking with fellow PAs. Our first social event of 2016 will be held the Friday night prior to our Recertification Conference (details above) in Durham, NC. You do not have to be attending the conference to attend the social event.
Friday, February 19th
The Stead Center
1121 Slater Road
Heavy appetizers, wine, and beer. And it’s free! PA students welcome to attend. If you think you might join us, please email Kat Nicholas at firstname.lastname@example.org and state that you will be joining us for the social on February 19th. Hope you can make it!
Embassy Suites, Kingston Plantation
August 21-26, 2016
Myrtle Beach, SC
NCAPA has reserved a block of rooms at the Kingston Plantation in Myrtle Beach. Rooms in our block fill up very early, so we recommend you book your room ASAP! Click here to reserve your room or call (843)449-0006 and use the group code AOP.
from Bob Barwick, PA-S, East Carolina University
To learn more and/or donate to the Endowment, please go here.
by NCAPA Endowment Trustees
Do you want to let someone close to you know how much you care about them? Or to honor someone who is or was special to you?
Consider a tribute gift to the NCAPA Endowment Fund in honor of, in memory of, or in celebration of someone important to you. What better way to acknowledge how much your supervising physician, other colleagues, a trusted mentor, family, or friends have meant to you throughout the year, during your life, or in your career?
A donation to the NCAPA Endowment Fund will provide perpetual income for PA student scholarships and other charitable projects including the Joyce Nichols Community-Based Projects, NCAPA Regional Chapters CME, Lanny Parker Leadership and Advocacy, Kober Provider Treatment, or PA Student Emergency grants.
It’s easy to make an online donation. Just log-in to the NCAPA website at www.NCAPA.org, click on the “Endowment” drop down, and then the “Make a Gift” drop down. Follow directions for online donations.
Upon receipt of your tribute donation, we will send an honor/memorial notification card to the honoree you have indicated. The amount of your gift will not be disclosed.
Your gift will be truly appreciated by the recipient and it will provide support for the Endowment initiative of your choice.
Wanda Hancock, PA-C, is the incoming 2016 NCAPA Board President. She grew up on a farm outside of Oxford, NC and currently lives in Farmville, NC. Wanda’s first career was as a Radiation Therapist. She then evolved into an educator and eventually an academic administrator. She then realized that patient care was her forte so, at age 42, she decided to go to PA school and completed her PA studies in 1999, graduating from Medical University of South Carolina. Wanda works as an Urology PA in specialty clinics and is an Administrative Officer for Special Procedures at the new VA Clinic in Greenville, NC.
What do you like best about being a PA?
The value I can offer to the patients who want and need focused care and need more understanding of their illness.
How did you get involved with NCAPA?
It was a natural thing for me as I was actively involved in the SCAPA organization as well as UAPA and AAPA since graduating from school.
Why do you think it is important to be involved in NCAPA?
As PAs we are blessed daily with patients who seek our care and attention. As members of the health care industry, we must be proactive to move the profession forward. The only way we can possibly be able to do this is as active advocates. NCAPA is the best source of advocacy for the PAs of this state. It brings us together so that we can make the most impact as a group. It gives so much to me as a PA that I feel obliged to give back in return.
Any other personal information you would like to share?
I am married to a wonderful man who was my high school sweetheart. After a 25 year separation, we were reunited and married in 1997. He has a daughter with two children. I now enjoy two grandchildren who are bright and beautiful. They complete the circle of life for me and I did not even have to suffer labor pains. I have no two legged children, but I am a lover of animals and have a dog and two cats.
My true passions are gardening and the ocean. Many years of living in the Charleston, SC area gave me a true love for for fishing, scuba diving, and golf.
from Rachel Stanfield, National Health Service
The National Physician Associate Expansion Programme (NPAEP) in England is seeking 200 Physician Assistants/Associates (PAs) to work in the English National Health Service (NHS) for a period of one to two years. Positions are available in a range of clinical specialties in over 40 host organisations across North West England, East Midlands, Yorkshire, Humber and Newcastle, and North West London.
If you are a PA with significant clinical experience, this is an exciting opportunity to live and work in the UK and to use and develop your skills in clinical excellence and leadership in an internationally acclaimed healthcare system. PAs are seen as a crucial part of England’s future healthcare workforce and the NHS will benefit from the input of experienced PAs to help embed the profession.
- Salary: approx. $76,000 annual salary
- Up to $1,500 towards relocation
- 33 days of paid vacation leave in addition to 8 public bank holiday days which do not count towards vacation entitlement
- Generous time for professional development, including leadership development
For further information about the Program and the opportunity, please go to here.
Welcome to our renewing and our brand new members!
The following members have joined or renewed their membership since our last issue. Thank you all for your support of NCAPA and all PAs in North Carolina!
Allison Adams, Wilmington
Julia Alexander, Charlotte
Lovest Alexander Jr., Durham
D. Allred, Greensboro
Dena Anderson, Providence
Eileen Andres, Cary
Mary Anton, Greensboro
Stacy Bachmann, Winston-Salem
John Bass, Goldsboro
Brian Belfi, Jamestown
Lauren Bennett, Charlotte
Barbara Bennett, Winston Salem
Sarah Blake, Wilmington
Janet Britt, West End
Allen Brown, Florence, SC
Reamer Bushardt, Winston Salem
Patrick Cacchio, Rougemont
Jill Calhoun, Mooresville
Jeffery Chance, Locust
Jonathan Choe, Chapel Hill
Jay Clarke, Arden
Tom Colletti, Pittsboro
Julia Constant, Durham
William Davis, St. Pauls
Danielle DePierro, Denver
John Dewar, Greensboro
Anastasia Dolgovskij, Raleigh
Julie Dubuisson, Winston-Salem
Clyde Edwards, Raleigh
Katina Eley-Hardy, Colerain
Farmer Elissa, Concord
Gerald Erickson, Hickory
Amy Esterwood, Greensboro
Jessica Fowler, Charlotte
Elaine Fox, Greensboro
Wayne Freas, Leland
Erica Friedman, Durham
Mark Frieze, Jamestown
Virginia Fulbright, High Point
Linda Gale, Nebo
Erin Garris, Durham
John Goldfield, Raleigh
Karen Goodale, Tryon
James Gordon, Concord
Lee Gray, Greensboro
Samuel Grossinger, Durham
Michael Gulledge, Huntersville
Jesse Gustafson, Asheville
Pete Gutierrez, Miami, FL
Catherine Haggart, Fletcher
Aaron Hewitt, Charlotte
Newton High, Chesapeake, VA
Karen Hills, Chapel Hill
Carole Holt, Winston-Salem
Krysta Holterman, Wake Forest
Kenna Holtzclaw, Charlotte
Anita Hoyt, Cornelius
Elizabeth Hreha, White Haven, PA
Bill Hull, Mills River
Angela Jackson, Autryville
William Jarrett, Elkin
Larry Jensen, Pinetops
Charles Jones, Jr, Jefferson
Jeffrey Katz, Hickory
Michael Keene, Durham
Michael Knott, Clayton
Melinda Lackore, Charlotte
Joe Largay, Mebane
Samantha Levering, Charlotte
Chris Lillie, Carrboro
Kathryn Little, Waxhaw
Ashley Locklear, Maxton
Caline Long, Fayetteville
David Lowe, Raleigh
Deborah Martin, Pilot Mountain
Todd McVeigh, Chapel Hill
Donald Metzger, Lumberton
Wallace Moncrief, Morganton
Joy Moretz, Apex
David Myers, Fayetteville
Stefanie Neel, Winston Salem
Stacy Nelson, Raeford
Gary Nichols, Wilkesboro
John Nielsen, Wilmington
Greta O’Buch, Jamestown
Madhavi Parikh, Charlotte
Julia Parkhurst, Stanley
Randal Parks, Clemmons
Brock Phillips, Winston-Salem
Alicia Pielow Krol, Charlotte
Robert Pope, Sylva
Allison Porter, Winston- Salem
Elmira Powell, Greensboro
Patricia Ragan, Burlington
Neeraja Rao, Winterville
Wendy Readling, Davidson
Noelle Redmon, Summerfield
Courtney Reed, Winston Salem
Samantha Rogers, Winston Salem
Carla Rohena, Winnabow
Elena Ruppe, Fayetteville
Mara Sanchez, Morrisville
Daniel Shapiro, Wilmington
Glenn Sikes, New Bern
Kimberly Smith, Raleigh
Joshua Smith, Durham
Rebekah Smyth, Winston Salem
Elizabeth Soto, Winston Salem
Chris Stavenger, Concord
Michele Stavovy, Wilmington
Carolyn Steinhauser, Willow Spring
Sarah Stephens, Concord
Christine Strader, Reidsville
Kaliyann Te, Lexington
Tom Coppley, Lexington
Richard Troyon, Hampstead
Audrey Tuttle, Winston-Salem
Ryan Vann, Winston Salem
Johnnie Waataja, Charlotte
Michelle Wall, Mt. Airy
Deborah Warner, Wilmington
Meghan Weltman, Swansboro
Kaisha West, Charlotte
James Westbrook, Elkin
Nancy White, Winston Salem
D.Terry Whitney, Fayetteville
Kathryn Whittington, Durham
Tiffany Wightman, Hickory
Jeffrey Williams, Winston Salem
Catherine Williams, Wilmington