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Colorado Physician Voices Heard in DC

Denver Medical Society President Alan Kimura, MD attended the annual AMA National Advocacy Conference and accompanying visits to Colorado’s congressional delegation February 10-12. He joined a leadership group from Colorado organized medicine that included DMS Executive Director Kathy Lindquist-Kleissler, CMS CEO Bryan Campbell and leaders from three other Colorado county medical societies, President  Edward Norman, MD and Executive Director John Ward (Northern  Colorado Medical Society), President Trish Weber, MD (Mesa County Medical Society), and President Chris Linares, MD (Arapahoe-Elbert-Douglas Medical Society).

In addition to attending conference sessions offering interaction with several key health care legislative leaders such as Senator Bill Cassidy, MD of Louisiana, Centers for Medicare/Medicaid Services Director Seema Verma, and  Admiral Brett Giroir, MD, Assistant Secretary of Health, Dr. Kimura also participated in briefings on current legislative efforts impacting physicians and patients.

Key issues currently active in Congress, which were a focus of the Colorado group’s discussions with Colorado’s senators and representatives in meetings on Capitol Hill, were federal efforts to address out-of-network or surprise bills (3 House and 2 Senate bills under consideration), proposals such as H.R. 3107 which would reduce prior authorization burdens, MACRA refinements, and efforts to provide funding and regulatory pathways to conduct research on medical impacts of marijuana use. The group was able to provide real-world examples and explanations of how these issues impact patients and their physicians on a daily basis.

DMS has been participating in this annual event for a number of years because it is important to bring the voice of practicing physicians to our legislative leaders and to let them know that we are engaged and committed to making positive change. This is made possible because we not only have leaders like Dr. Kimura who are willing to take the time to participate directly but also because our members support the Denver Medical Society and it’s continued mission to advance the practice of medicine in our community. 

The group met with principles and staff for every Colorado district and both Senate offices

Dr. Trish Weber of Grand Junction explains the details of surprise bills to HD 6 Rep. Jason Crow

Cultural Diversity Creates Language Barriers: Reducing Claims with Multilingual Patients
Rich Cahill, JD, Vice President and Associate General Counsel, and Susan Shepard, MSN, RN, Senior Director, Patient Safety Education, The Doctors Company

Clear and unambiguous communication constitutes the key component of the physician-patient relationship. Misunderstandings often create frustration and distrust, especially when an adverse event occurs, and can result in professional liability litigation or reports to state medical boards and third-party payers by disgruntled patients and family members. Proactively implementing office procedures to promote optimum communication reduces the risk of disputes.

With our culturally diverse national population language barriers raise the risk for an adverse event. The Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) Revised Guidance Regarding Title VI Prohibition Against National Origin Discrimination Affecting Limited English Proficient (LEP) Persons outlines the requirements for recipients of federal financial assistance from HHS to take reasonable steps to ensure LEP persons have access to language services. (These recipients do not include providers who only receive Medicare Part B payments. However, providers that receive funding from any government program such as Medicaid or Medicare Advantage are subject to the requirements.) 

To determine the extent of the obligation to provide language assistance, analyze the following four factors: 

  • The greater the number or proportion of LEP persons served or encountered by your clinic, the more likely language services will be needed.
  • Even if unpredictable or infrequent, there must be a plan for providing language assistance for LEP persons.
  • Determine whether a delay in accessing your services could have serious or life-threatening implications. 
  • Consider the resources available and the cost to provide them. As a solo practitioner, you are not expected to provide the same level of service as a large, multispecialty group. Investigate technological services or sharing resources with other providers.

Avoid using family members as interpreters. Lay personnel rarely understand medical terminology. A patient may not want a family member to hear private medical information.

Read the full article here.
Coronavirus Resources
The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment is tracking up to date guidance for health care professionals on identifying, reporting and treating patients suspected of having 2019 novel coronavirus (COVID-19). Current Colorado data and resources are available here.
Colorado QPP Coalition
MIPS Eligible Clinicians Can Start Submitting Data for 2019 through March 31

The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has opened the data submission period for Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) eligible clinicians who participated in the 2019 performance period of the Quality Payment Program. Data can be submitted and updated from 10:00 a.m. EST on January 2, 2020 until 8:00 p.m. EDT on March 31, 2020. Please note, the data submission period through the CMS Web Interface for ACOs and pre-registered groups and virtual groups also opens on January 2, 2020 and closes on March 31, 2020. Quality measures reported via Medicare Part B claims have been submitted throughout the 2019 performance period. Sign in to for your preliminary feedback on Part B claims measure data processed to date. We’ll update this feedback at the end of the submission period with claims processed by your Medicare Administrative Contractor within the 60 day run out period.

2020 QPP Fast Facts
Medical Spanish and Cultural Competency Class

Friday, April 24- Monday, April 27, 2020
8:00 AM to 5:00 PM

Colorado has one of the highest proportions of Hispanic and Latino populations in the country.  Denver counts over 31% of its population in this category!  To enhance physician communication capabilities, Denver Medical Society in conjunction with the Community Health Association of Mountain/Plains States (CHAMPS) is offering a 4 day intensive, total-immersion learning experience in conversational and medical Spanish for physicians, nurses, PAs, NPs and other medical staff.  Class levels are targeted to each student’s needs and abilities.  This is the 21st offering of this lively, rewarding, and highly popular class conducted by Rios Associates.

Four day class offers a ton of CMEs!
Plan Now to Attend.

The cost of the class, including text book:

• $799
• $649 for DMS members 

Morning and afternoon snacks are provided. 

45 prescribed hours
by the American Academy of Family Physicians (AAFP)

43 hours of Category 1 CME from the American College of Emergency Physicians (ACEP)

45 contact hours of continuing education by the American Academy of Nurse Practitioners (AANP)

43 hours of Category 1 CME from the American Medical Association (AMA)

To register, or for more information, email Tamara at or call at (520) 907-3318.
New 2-day Course this Spring

This course is targeted for nurses, medical assistants, care coordinators, patient navigators, and other clinical support personnel who work in primary care and specialty departments who speak some Spanish and want the opportunity to increase their Spanish fluency and enhance interpersonal skills to effectively care for Spanish speaking patients and their families.  This two-day course is an intensive, conversational and medical Spanish workshop consisting of medical dialogues, role-plays, visual aids, cross-cultural discussions, and daily practice.  The course curriculum provides an experience of immersion learning, an approach that is highly suitable for those with limited time, and who must use their new language skills immediately with their Spanish-speaking patients.

Date/Time: Two days: Tuesday, April 28-Wednesday, April 29, 2020, in Denver, CO.  Class will be held from 8:00 AM to 5:00 PM MT Tuesday and 8:00 AM to 3:00 PM MT on Wednesday.

Location: Denver Medical Society, 1850 Williams Street, Denver, Colorado, 80218

The Cost of the Class:
• $349 non-member practice
• $299 DMS member practice 

Target Audience:
The course is targeted for nurses, medical assistants, care coordinators, patient navigators, and other clinical support personnel who already speak intermediate to advanced Spanish.

Course Objectives: 
Participants who complete the two-day course will:

• Strengthen their ability to communicate with patients in professional and correct Spanish by utilizing medical vocabulary, medical terminology, and idiomatic expressions.

• Strengthen their interpersonal connection with patients by using verbal and non-verbal cues.

CME: 16 hours of Category 1 CME from the American Medical Association (AMA).

Two day class offers a ton of CMEs! Plan now to attend!
Telligen Launches New Year of Free QI Support
Telligen is very excited to announce we have been re-awarded the CMS Quality Innovation Network-Quality Improvement Organization (QIN-QIO) contract for Colorado! We’re back and hope you will  join us in our mission to provide quality improvement support and education to all of you, at no cost. As we kick off the new year, we are excited to share our goals that align with what we know is important to you! We welcome the opportunity to speak with you and share the exciting details around the strategic aims we’ve set forth by developing Telligen QI Connect™, a comprehensive quality improvement program that places healthcare providers and consumers at its center. If your organization would benefit from no cost technical assistance, coaching, and evidence-based resources to accelerate  your improvement efforts, please reach out to Courtnay Ryan at to help you get started and learn more about the technical assistance you will receive. Together, we can
  • Reduce opioid-related harms
  • Increase access to behavioral health services
  • Prevent health care-related infections
  • Prevent and manage diabetes, heart disease and chronic kidney disease
  • Reduce hospital readmissions and avoidable emergency room visits
  • Improve the quality of nursing home care.
If you’re ready to join now, please click Join QI Connect™ to sign up, it takes less than 5 minutes! We look forward to working with you in 2020!
Mark your Calendar
3:00-6:00 pm Free Tour and Reception 
Physician Networking and social event
Breckenridge Brewery 
2920 Brewery Lane, Littleton 
Rsvp by April 10th here

Medical Spanish and Cultural Competency Class
April 24-27, 2020
8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
4 day total immersion experience in medical Spanish
Denver Medical Society
1850 Williams St, Denver Co
Register here

New 2 day Medical Spanish Course
Targeted for clinical support personnel
April 28th from 8:00 AM - 5:00 PM
April 29th from 8:00 AM - 3:00 PM
Denver Medical Society
1850 Williams St, Denver Co
Register here


AMA President Dr. Patrice Harris
A psychiatrist from Atlanta, Ga., and the first African-American woman to serve as AMA president, Dr. Harris will share her personal leadership journey in medicine, including the obstacles she's overcome and lessons learned along the way.  She will also share the AMA's strategic and advocacy priorities with a particular focus on behavioral health priorities and achieving greater equity within the health system.  She will discuss her experiences integrating health care and social supports, and the importance of all specialties working together on issues of common concern.  

Hilton Denver Inverness
200 Inverness Drive West, Englewood
6:00 PM Cocktails, Dinner and Presentation
Register here

Denver Medical Bulletin: Alan E. Kimura, MD-President/Publisher / Elizabeth L. Lowdermilk, MD-Chair of the Board / Michael L. Moore, MD, President Elect / Jeremy L. Weiss, DO, Treasurer / Kathy Lindquist-Kleissler, Executive Director. The Bulletin is the official publication of the Denver Medical Society, established April 11, 1871, as the first medical society in the Rocky Mountain West. Published articles represent the opinions of the authors and do not necessarily represent the official policy of the Denver Medical Society. All correspondence concerning editorial content, news items, advertising and subscriptions should be sent to: The Editor, Denver Medical Bulletin, 1850 Williams Street, Denver, CO 80218.
Phone (303) 377-1850.
Copyright © *2020* *Denver Medical Society*, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:
*1850 Williams Street Denver, CO 80218*

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