State Health Plan aims to cut $300M in provider rates.
August 2, 2018 |
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NCDA Online

In this edition:

NC dermatologists and allied providers are invited to join our NCDA Facebook group, @NCDermatologists. The closed group is open to NC-based dermatologists,  dermatopathologists and allied providers to help keep our vibrant community connected.

2018 NCDA Summer Meeting Wrap Up

NCDA President Dr. Donna Culton and Family.

Live entertainment with the Unspoken Tradition band.

Families are always welcome at NCDA.

NCDA President-Elect Dr. Dan Zedek and paper winner Dr. Sam Wu.

Dr. Zedek with poster winners Drs. Diana Norton, Katharine Kenyon and John Murray.

The NCDA welcomed more than 150 dermatologists, dermatopathologists and allied providers, along with their families, to its 2018 Summer Meeting, held over the weekend of July 13-15, at the Omni Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC – one of the most attended NCDA Summer Meetings ever! Participants took in exceptional mountain views while enjoying over nine hours of educational programming, networking and social events, and organized recreational opportunities. The meeting program featured Dr. Suzanne Olbricht, President of the American Academy of Dermatology, and Dr. Greg Murphy, a Greenville urologist and the only physician currently serving in the NC General Assembly.

The meeting program also featured resident and fellow paper presentations and a poster competition. Residents and fellows from Wake Forest, ECU, Campbell and UNC presented papers at the conference. Congratulations to Dr. Sam Wu (UNC) on his first place paper, “A Case of Pediatric Pemphigus Herpetiformis.” Six posters were presented. Congratulations to Dr. Katharine Kenyon (UNC) and Dr. Diana Norton (Duke) on their first and second place recognitions, respectively.

The NCDA extends its appreciation for the generous support and participation of our 2018 Summer Meeting Sponsors and Exhibitors, without which this meeting would not be possible. Thank you!

Future NCDA Meetings

The topics are always pertinent and practical and the lecturers are entertaining and engaging. It is a great setting in which to learn as well as earn CME. But, just as importantly, it is a wonderful opportunity to visit with and socialize with fellow dermatologists.” Chip Hoover, MD (Concord)

NCDA meetings are an excellent opportunity to learn the latest medical research, stay current on state-level advocacy issues, socialize with colleagues and make new friends. The NCDA hosts two educational conferences each year; the Annual Meeting and the Summer Meeting. Please note the dates below and start planning now to attend upcoming NCDA meetings in 2019 – We look forward to seeing you!

  • 2019 Annual Meeting, January 11-13 at the Pinehurst Resort (Village of Pinehurst, NC)
  • 2019 Summer Meeting, July 26-28 at the Hilton Head Marriott Resort (Hilton Head Island, SC)
  • 2020 Annual Meeting, January 24-26 at the Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley (Raleigh, NC)

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Seeking Candidates for MF and Alopecia Studies

NCDA Member Dr. Elise Olsen at Duke University is the Principle Investigator on a multicenter trial sponsored by Galderma of a new topical imidazoquinoline called resiquimod (CD11301). This is a randomized, double-blind, placebo-controlled, phase 2 trial to assess the safety, efficacy and pharmacokinetics of CD11301 0.03% and 0.06% gel in the treatment of Cutaneous T-Cell Lymphoma (CTCL), stages IA, IB and IIA. Patients must have a firm diagnosis of mycosis fungoides (MF) type of CTCL and must be willing to wash out of any treatment they are currently on for MF prior to receiving study drug. Not all lesions will be treated since there is data to suggest a remote effect on lesions: however, the % of lesions treated with study drug will be increased after 14 weeks and those on placebo initially will receive active drug beginning at 12 weeks as well. If you have a patient that may be a good candidate for the study or any questions about the study, please contact the Duke Dermatopharmacology research office directly at 919-668-5610.


Dr. Elise Olsen is the Principle Investigator on a multicenter trial sponsored by Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc. of a new topical JAK inhibitor for alopecia areata. The study aims to assess the safety, tolerability, and efficacy of two different doses of the topical study drug ATI-50002 compared to vehicle in subjects with stable patchy alopecia areata. We are seeking subjects 18 years of age or older who have a clinical diagnosis of alopecia areata with 15% to 95% total scalp hair loss and a current episode of continued hair loss for greater than 6 months but less than 12 years. This is a second notice since the study has been amended to allow a greater number of patients to enter. If you have a patient that may be a good candidate for the study, please either contact the Duke Dermatopharmacology research office directly or have your patient contact the research office at 919-668-5610.

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State Health Plan Takes Aim at Provider Rates

In a meeting on July 18, 2018 with State Treasurer Dale Folwell and key staff of the State Health Plan, NC Medical Society President-Elect Dr. Timothy Reeder (Greenville) encouraged the State to give physicians access to clinical and claims data to help drive down medical costs for the Plan. Citing quality improvements and cost reductions that have been achieved through value-based payment models, Dr. Reeder noted that physicians’ access into patient data is critical to eliminating waste in health care and improving health care quality.

The meeting was held by Treasurer Folwell to allow provider groups an opportunity to share their ideas on how best to reduce the Plan’s medical costs. On May 14, 2018, Treasurer Folwell and the Plan announced their intention to cut provider rates by at least 15 percent in contract negotiations this year with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of NC, the Plan’s third-party administrator. Meeting participants included NCDA Lobbyist Rob Lamme, representatives from the NC Medical Society, state specialty societies, and hospitals. You can read the NCMS’s coverage of this meeting and a follow-up letter sent to Treasurer Folwell on the NCMS website.

For the most part, participants urged the Plan to consider value-based incentives that will lead to improvements in patient health, not just cost reductions. Robin Huffman, executive director of the NC Psychiatric Association, noted the importance of treating the whole patient and added that savings can be achieved through behavioral health integration. This sentiment was echoed by several stakeholders. Speaking on behalf of the NC Ob/Gyn Society, Rob Lamme noted the steps that ob/gyns have taken - such as reducing primary cesarean section, improving birth rates through increased access to progesterone therapy, eliminating elective deliveries before 39 weeks, and care coordination for at-risk mothers – which have led to improved health outcomes while also achieving reductions in health care costs. Cody Hand, on behalf of the NC Health Care Association, provided specific examples of patient-centered programs that have led to health improvements and cost reductions. NCMS’s Senior Vice President Chip Baggett reaffirmed the importance of access to clinical and claims data so that physicians can improve health care quality and he emphasized the valuable role that care coordination plays in achieving long-term health improvements.

In response, Treasurer Folwell and the Plan’s executive director Dee Jones indicated that the ideas presented by the provider groups did not produce the immediate savings the Plan needs to be sustainable.

In 2017, the plan spent $2.5 billion providing medical services. The 15 percent cut is expected to generate $300 million in savings per year, for a total savings of $1 billion over the next three years. The Plan provides health care coverage to more than 720,000 teachers, state employees, current and former lawmakers, state university and community college personnel and their dependents, including non-Medicare and Medicare retirees.

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Dr. Sarah Cash is Helping to Build a Healthier Asheville Through Her Participation in an NCMS Leadership Development Program

NCDA Member Dr. Sarah Cash (Asheville) is participating in 2017-2018 class of the NC Medical Society's Healthcare Leadership and Management Program (HCLM). The HCLM is a year-long, project-based program that provides a critical framework for physicians based on economics, finance and leadership development. With this framework, graduates are provided the necessary vocabulary for the business realm and are equipped to take on greater leadership positions in their career.

Dr. Cash collaborated with a multi-specialty team of fellow participants which included Dr. Doug Jaffe (anesthesiologist, Winston-Salem) and Dr. Timothy Lietz (emergency medicine, Charlotte) on a project to promote healthy eating and reduce obesity:


The Asheville Zone non-profit organization will change the way Asheville sources and consumes food and culturally change the attitude of its citizens to embrace a healthier lifestyle. The first in the state, The Asheville Zone will be a model for the rest of the state to change the way obesity is approached. Partnership with the Blue Zone Project, a proven model for transforming the health of large populations, will provide the structure. Other communities who have successfully integrated Blue Zone principles have seen reduction in obesity rates by 15%, decreased obesity related health care claims by 50%, and increased life expectancy by four years. Asheville Zone team members will interface with local and governmental organizations to create the Zone and establish enduring relationships to further the mission. We intend to build a healthier Asheville and encourage the community to live longer better.

The NCMS is currently accepting applications for the 2018-2019 class of the Healthcare Leadership and Management Program. The application deadline August 31, 2018. For additional details and application instructions, please visit the HCLM webpage.

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2018 AADA Legislative Conference Wrap Up

A 5-person delegation of dermatology providers and patient-advocates from North Carolina participated in the 2018 AADA Legislative Conference July 15-17 in Washington, DC. The AADA Legislative Conference offers dermatologists from around the country the unique opportunity to receive advocacy training taught by health policy experts and to spend a day meeting with their members of Congress and their staff on Capitol Hill to talk about the most pressing issues facing the specialty and dermatology patients. The key issues addressed at this year’s meeting included:

Thank you, 2018 Legislative Conference Participants!

  • Robin Inabinet, RN-BC, Dermatology Nurses' Association (Clemmons)
  • Jodie Ohr, International Topical Steroid Addiction Network (Huntersville)
  • Jeffrey W. Weisgerber, International Pemphigus & Pemphigoid Foundation (Nags Head)
  • Linda Markham, RN, Dermatology Nurses' Association (Vass)
  • W. Alan Skipper, CAE, NC Dermatology Association (Raleigh)

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2019 Legislative Conference Info: The 2019 Legislative Conference will take place on Sunday, September 8, through Tuesday, September 10, 2019, at the Willard InterContinental Hotel in Washington, D.C. The program is set to begin on Sunday afternoon at 3:30pm and will conclude following a day of meeeting on Capitol Hill on Tuesday. Registration for the 2019 Legislative Conference will open May 13, 2019.

Funding Opportunity for Residents: The AADA awards several scholarships to residents who commit to year-long involvement in AADA grassroots advocacy. Past award-winners have stayed active by participating in grassroots email campaigns, meeting with their district Congressional offices, and actively participating in AADA advocacy-focused teleconferences. Following the Legislative Conference, AADA staff will follow up with award-winners to discuss a checklist of grassroots activities. For more information, please visit the AAD website.

Welcome New NCDA Members!

The NCDA is delighted to welcome 21 new members since January 1, 2018.

Zeynep M. Akkurt, MD / Winston-Salem
Kristen E. Bush, PA-C / Matthews
Chelsea M. Gough, PA-C / Charlotte
Adam A. Ingraffea, MD / Cary
Catherine H. Kitchens, PA / Pinehurst
Justin P. Loucks, PA-C / Emerald Isle
Lesslie A. Marquez Durst, PA-C / Charlotte
Austin J. Newsome, MD / Chapel Hill
Jigar Patel, MD / Durham
Rita Pichardo-Geisinger, MD / Winston-Salem
Laura B. Rosenzweig, MD / Charlotte

Katherine C. B. Roy, MD / Charlotte
Michael E. Sabol, PA-C / Wilson
Kylee N. Sacksteder, MD / Gastonia
Lynne Saffo, FNP-C / Wilmington
Joyce S. Smith, FNP / Goldsboro
Keri Squittieri, PA-C / Charlotte
Lindsay C. Strowd, MD / Winston-Salem
Sarah L. Taylor, MD / Winston-Salem
Jake E. Turrentine, MD / Hickory
Jaime J. Vanourny, MD / Gastonia 

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NCMS LEAD Health Care Conference: Scientific Poster Session

The North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) is pleased to announce its new and not-to-be-missed annual event – the LEAD Health Care Conference. Mark your calendar now for Oct. 18-19, 2018 to be part of this innovative conference focused on Leadership, Education, Advocacy and Discovery – LEAD. For more details, visit the LEAD Conference website.


Due to the great success of the previous events, the North Carolina Medical Society (NCMS) is issuing a Call for Scientific Posters for its LEAD Health Care Conference, scheduled for October 18-19, 2018, at the Raleigh Marriott Crabtree Valley. The NCMS’s objective for the poster presentations is to offer medical students, residents and fellows an opportunity to share significant research and clinical work of interest with other fellow clinicians. We encourage all of our up-and-coming physicians to participate in this educational program by submission of a formal application for scientific presentation. The Poster Session will be divided into two categories: Clinical Research and Clinical Vignette.

Prizes will be awarded to the top three students, residents and fellows (first authors) in both categories.

  • 1st prize=$200 per student/resident/fellow author in both categories, for a total of six awards
  • 2nd prize=$100 per student/resident/fellow author in both categories, for a total of six awards
  • 3rd prize=$50 per student/resident/fellow author in both categories, for a total of six awards

Learn more and apply today (PDF).

Applications and abstracts due by August 30, 2018. Questions? Please contact Nancy Lowe, CMP, or (919) 833-3836 ext. 111.

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Thank You, Summer Meeting Sponsors and Exhibitors!

Platinum Sponsors:

Mayne Pharma
Sun Pharmaceuticals

Gold Sponsors:

Ball Dermpath, PA
Janssen Biotech, Inc.

SkinPath Solutions

Exhibitors: Aclaris Therapeutics, Inc. | Aurora Diagnostics/GPA Laboratories | Biofrontera Inc. | Carpe | Celgene | Cutanea Life Sciences, Inc | EPI Health | Galderma Laboratories, L.P. | Help Hair INC | Helsinn Oncology | Integrated Dermatology | Kroger Specialty Pharmacy | LaRoche Posay/CeraVe | LEO Pharma Inc. | Longs Specialty Pharmacy | Mylan | North Carolina Medical Society | Novartis | Parkway Pharmacy Rx | Pfizer | Phyzdata | Promius Pharma | PruGen Pharmaceuticals | QualDerm Partners, LLC | Ra Medical Systems, Inc. | Realo Specialty Care Pharmacy | Sanofi Genzyme | Syneron Candela | Taro Pharmaceuticals | Topix Pharmaceuticals, Inc. | Tripoint Diagnostics, PLLC | Valeant Pharmaceuticals North America LLC (Ortho Dermatologics)

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