Report from the CMS Board of Directors - Dec. 8, 2023

Dear Colleague:  


As we conclude the final board meeting of 2023 – marking my inaugural session as President and Chair – I am eager to share pivotal decisions made on your behalf by the Colorado Medical Society Board of Directors. Here are the crucial highlights from our meeting:

Doc2Doc Wellbeing Consulting

The Board received an insightful progress report on Doc2Doc Wellbeing Consulting, a joint initiative launched by CMS and the Colorado Physician Health Program (CPHP) in March 2023. The program's growth over the last nine months underscores its vital role in meeting a distinct need among physicians. Stressing the confidential nature of the program, our Board members conveyed compelling stories reinforcing the importance of physicians supporting each other. Remember: "If you wonder if it's time to call, it's time to call." I encourage all members to explore and share the Doc2Doc Wellbeing Consulting Program.


Threats to Colorado’s stable liability climate

The Board received an update on Colorado Trial Lawyers Association efforts to sponsor ballot initiatives in November 2024 that would remove or radically change non-economic damage caps in Colorado. This risky move would threaten access to care and spike health care costs. Over the past 20 years since medical non-economic damage caps were last changed, CMS has prioritized patient safety and the defense of the stable liability climate. The board has committed to partnering with longtime allies Coloradans Protecting Patient Access, COPIC, the Colorado Hospital Association, and others to execute an aggressive advocacy strategy at the legislature and the ballot box. Together we will protect Colorado’s tort reforms, ensuring medical non-economic damage caps are preserved and reasonably updated.


2024 legislative session preview

The Chair of the CMS Council on Legislation, Darlene Tad-y, MD, and Vice-chair Ramnik Dhaliwal, MD, JD, summarized the council's months-long effort to develop one- and three-year policy goals, along with detailed action strategies. Key issues include protecting the stable liability climate, reducing administrative burdens through prior authorization reform, addressing workforce issues (such as unacceptable violence against health care workers), fighting against unsafe non-physician provider scope-of-practice expansions, and preserving physician clinical decision-making autonomy. The upcoming legislative session is shaping up to be one of the most high-stakes sessions in years. Drs. Tad-y and Dhaliwal emphasized that active engagement by CMS members in advocacy efforts will be critical.


Additionally, the Board reviewed members' duties and responsibilities, approved financial matters, assessed the final outcomes of the 2023 CMS work plan, and learned about initiatives from each district's Board member.


Warm holiday wishes to you and your loved ones. I look forward to our continued work in 2024. Thank you for your steadfast membership and dedication to the profession of medicine.


Sincerely,

Omar Mubarak, MD, MBA 

CMS President