Marin Medical Society

MMS News Briefs


February 2016

Download PDF Here


Feedback sought on health insurance mergers by Feb. 12

Aetna has reached a $37 billion deal to purchase Humana, and Anthem has agreed to purchase Cigna for $48.4 billion. Regulators want to know the prospective effects of these possible mergers on your practice and patient care. The survey should take about 8-9 minutes to complete. Please take the survey by Friday, Feb. 12. Click here to take the survey.

Help needed to collect signatures for Tobacco Tax initiative

MMS is helping CMA collect signatures to qualify an initiative for the Nov. 8 ballot. The initiative, "California Healthcare, Research and Prevention Tobacco Tax Act of 2016," will increase California's cigarette tax (one of the lowest in the nation) by $2.00. To help collect signatures:

  1. Email your name and mailing address to, and we'll mail you a petition and instructions.
  2. Collect the signatures of eight registered Sonoma County voters.
  3. By March 31, mail your completed petition(s) to California Medical Association Attn: Molly Weedn, 1201 J Street, Suite 200, Sacramento, CA 95816.

The initiative will help to reduce smoking, save lives, and fund critical health care programs in California. For more information, visit

Zika virus resources

Information and guidance regarding Zika virus disease continues to evolve. An updated Health Advisory from CDPH was issued on Feb. 8, 2016, and is posted along with additional materials on the CDPH website. Additional resources are listed below.

Centers for Disease Control Zika virus website
WHO emergency committee outcomes summary
Pan American Health Organization Zika virus resources

Sign up now for April 13 Legislative Advocacy Day at the Capitol

Want to make your voice heard in state government? If so, you're invited to attend CMA's free Legislative Leadership Conference in Sacramento on Tuesday, April 13. Hundreds of physicians from all over California attend this annual event, which includes speeches from key legislative leaders and meetings with local legislators on health care issues. Speakers haven't been confirmed, but last year Gov. Brown addressed the conference. To RSVP for the conference, contact Rachel Pandolfi at 707-525-4375 or Click here for more information.


Welcome, new MMS/CMA members!

Robert Newbury, MD, Critical Care Medicine, 75 Rowland Way #100, Novato, Med Coll Wisconsin 1988
Lisa Santora, MD, Family Medicine* 3240 Kerner Blvd., San Rafael, New Jersey Med Sch 1999

TPMG - 99 Montecillo Rd., San Rafael
Phong Nguyen, MD, Family Medicine*, Ross Univ 2002

* Board certified

- Advertisement -


Novato urologist Dr. Peter Bretan led one of the largest medical missions ever to the Philippine Islands Jan. 17-22. This annual mission, organized by the Philippine Medical Society of Northern California, brought together 50 physicians (including GYN, urology, plastic surgery, general surgery, ENT, ophthalmology, optometry, dermatology, dentistry, pediatrics, internal medicine, anesthesiology, and pharmacy), 125 support staff, and 25 pre-med students from all over the United States. The mission saw 7,500 patients, distributed thousands of prescription eyeglasses, and performed 1,200 surgeries (including hysterectomies; thyroidectomies; tumor, cataract and glaucoma surgeries; incarcerated hernia repairs; and more). Dr. Bretan also practices in Sonoma (Sebastopol) and Mendocino (Willits) counties. He is serving his first term as PMSNC president, and his fourth term as Marin Medical Society president.


PFMC grant proposals due April 2

Nonprofit health organizations in Sonoma County are encouraged to apply for Community Grants from the Pacific Foundation for Medical Care. The grants, generally in the $10,000 range, are awarded twice a year by the nonprofit foundation to support local projects that enhance health services. The application deadline for the next round of grants is April 2. For application materials, contact Kathy Pass at 707-525-4281 or For more information, visit


CMA endorses marijuana ballot initiative to regulate and monitor substance
The California Medical Association has formally endorsed the ballot measure known as the Control, Regulate and Tax Adult Use of Marijuana Act. Click here for details.

CMA publishes the biweekly e-newsletter, CMA Alert, to keep its members up-to-date on critical issues affecting the practice of medicine in California. Click here to view the current issue.


IMQ surveyors needed

Are you looking for a new activity? The Institute for Medical Quality is looking for physicians who may be interested in becoming surveyors for the Ambulatory Care, Corrections, or CME Review programs. The Ambulatory Program accredits surgery centers, offices, and medical groups in California. The Corrections Program reviews the health care in jails and juvenile facilities, and the CME Program reviews providers of CME. Click here for more information or contact Jill Silverman at 415-882-5151 or, or visit


End of Life Option Act
On Oct. 5, 2015, California became the fifth state in the nation to allow physicians to prescribe terminally ill patients medication to end their lives. Click here to access CMA's ON-CALL document #3459 "California End of Life Option Act." This document discusses the requirements of the End of Life Option Act.

POLST in 2016
NPs and PAs are now allowed to sign Physician Orders for Life-Sustaining Treatment (POLST) forms and make them actionable medical orders. Visit the Coalition for Compassionate Care of California website for more information for health care providers, for patients and loved ones, for 24/7 online POLST training, and to download POLST forms.

CMA Webinars (Click here for full list)
Feb. 24 - HIPAA Compliance: Key Risks All Physicians Should Know. 12:15 p.m.
March 9 - Closing a Medical Practice. 12:15 p.m.

Archived webinars are free to SCMA-CMA members and staff. Non-member fee: $99. For more information, contact CMA's member-help center, 800-786-4262 or

Western Health Care Leadership Academy May 13-15, 2016
Save the date for the 2016 Western Health Care Leadership Academy, which will be held at the Hilton San Francisco Union Square from Friday, May 13, through Sunday, May 15.

Free online CME: Child Abuse Prevention, Recognition, and Reporting
When is a child's bruise from an accident or something more? Do you know what, when, and how to report? Take this complimentary course to learn essential signs that should be reported. Free CMEs available. Pre-register for this free course on the IMQ website.


Sublet Mill Valley medical office
535 Miller Ave. office available on Mondays. 2 exam rooms, adequate parking, beautiful space. Call Dr. Binstock, 415-383-5475.

For sale: well-established medical weight loss practice in Marin County, CA
Fall in love with practicing medicine again. Create work-life balance and achieve financial freedom. Work with highly motivated, capable people, excelling in many facets of their lives, who have struggled with their weight and know clearly that they cannot do it alone.

This all-cash practice offers a flexible schedule and provides other income streams besides doctor visits. A motivated doctor can take advantage of a significant opportunity to continue to grow this referral-based practice. This is and will continue to be an active, ongoing practice. The seller will enable a smooth transition. Email now

Medical condo for sale
Located on South Eliseo Drive in Greenbrae. 415-435-8589.

MMS members get free classifieds!
MMS members can place free classified ads in News Briefs or Marin Medicine. Cost for nonmember physicians and the general public is $1 per word. To place a classified ad, contact Susan Gumucio at or 707-525-0102.


The Marin Medical Society, a 501(c)(6) nonprofit association, supports local physicians and their efforts to enhance the health of the community. Founded in 1898, MMS is affiliated with the California Medical Association and the American Medical Association.

© 2016 MMS, 2312 Bethards Dr. #6, Santa Rosa, CA 95405