Gasline Newsletter February 2008

Volume 9, No. 8

New CSA Web Site!

The new CSA Web Site is now live. Please visit the site and vote in the survey that is in the bottom right corner of the home page. Although fine tuning is still in process, the site is basically working well. Any suggestions about the Web site are welcome. Please send them to Andrea de la Peña at andreadlp@csahq.org.

2008 CSA Annual Meeting and Clinical Anesthesia Update

Don’t miss the CSA’s 2008 Annual Meeting May 30 – June 1. It will be held at the Hilton Los Angeles Universal City, “The Hotel on the Hill,” above LA’s Entertainment District. The hotel is adjacent to Universal Studios – Hollywood and CityWalk, one of LA’s hottest shopping, entertainment and dining destinations. The conference brochure is in the mail and also on the CSA Web Site at www.csahq.org. CSA members can earn up to 18 AMA PRA Category 1™ credits, attend the CSA’s Reference Committee, House of Delegates, and more. Register today to attend this meeting and be there to help CSA celebrate its 60th anniversary!

Call for Resolutions

Any CSA member may submit a resolution to the House of Delegates (your elected representatives) on any issue that you deem important. The deliberations pursuant to these resolutions influence the course of action of the CSA during the ensuing year. For assistance in formulating a resolution, you are welcome to contact Linda B. Hertzberg, M.D., Speaker of the House of Delegates, at lhertzberg@comcast.net, Johnathan Pregler, M.D., Vice Speaker of the House of Delegates, at jpregler@mednet.ucla.edu, or Barbara Baldwin, CEO, at bbaldwin@csahq.org.

The House of Delegates will meet on Saturday, May 31, as part of the CSA Annual Meeting at the Hilton Los Angeles/Universal City, Universal City, California. A reference committee meets Friday evening to hear testimony on all matters to be considered by the House. For more information, contact the CSA office (650) 345-3020, (800) 345-3691, fax (650) 345-3269.

The deadline for submissions is April 1, 2008.

Election Ballots Are in the Mail!

Election ballots have been mailed. You may vote by mail or online.

Districts 1, 2, 3, 4, 5, 7, 8 and 11 have elections in progress for open delegate and alternate delegate positions. The elections are open until March 17, 2008, at 5 p.m.

The following CSA members are deemed elected for their positions for this year:

Jason A. Campagna, M.D., Ph.D., Director, District 10
James Moore, M.D., Director, District 11
Paul B. Yost, M.D., Director, District 13
Rima Matevosian, Director, District 14
J. Steven Edwards, M.D., Delegate for District 6
Joseph Andris, M.D., Delegate for District 9
David Vierra, M.D., Delegate for District 10
William Bode, M.D., Delegate for District 12
Brian Cross, M.D., Delegates for District 13
Arthur Levine, M.D., Delegate for District 13

If you have experienced problems voting online, please try again. CSA was alerted to a problem with the online voting, and after some research, a minor problem was found in the elections scripting. The problem now appears to be fixed.

If you should encounter a problem when you try to vote, please contact Andrea de la Peña at andreadlp@csahq.org or call 650-345-3020 so the problem can be addressed and corrected immediately.

2007 CSA Stipend and Payment Survey

The results of the CSA’s 2007 survey on stipends and payments are available on the CSA Web Site at www.csahq.org on the home page under Member News. In addition to stipend and average conversion factor rates, information on call requirements, practice locations and other practice information was collected.

Endoscopy Anesthetics

Aetna has joined Blue Cross/Wellpoint and Humana in developing a new coverage policy that steps between a physician and patient—specifically, a patient who should undergo gastrointestinal endoscopy. Aetna’s controversial new policy will eliminate coverage for anesthesiology services in gastrointestinal endoscopy procedures according to AMA News (see http://www.ama-assn.org/amednews/2008/02/04/bisb0204.htm). ASA’s President Jeffrey Apfelbaum, M.D., has been quick to respond (see http://www.asahq.org/Washington/1-11-08ApfelbaumlettertoAetnaFINAL.pdf) in his letter to Aetna administrators asking for reconsideration of the new policy. As of this moment Aetna’s policy has been pulled from their Web site. Presumably, reconsideration is being undertaken and a March 1st announcement by Aetna is anticipated. Meanwhile, the Gastroenterologists and Anesthesiologist Alliance (GA Alliance), a consortium of state anesthesiology and gastroenterologist societies along with individual physicians in both specialties, has sent a letter to elected officials in the five states it currently represents (New York, New Jersey, Georgia, Virginia and, Delaware) calling for a state-by-state regulatory and legislative review of Aetna’s action which interferes with appropriate medical practice.

Alliance for Smiles

Alliance for Smiles is looking for anesthesiologists with pediatric experience to participate in its adventure to Yichang, China, from April 12-26, 2008. Alliance for Smiles is a non-profit organization that sends medical teams to China to donate surgeries to under-served children with cleft lips and palates. For more information, see Hot Topics at www.csahq.org.

This notice is for information only and does not constitute CSA endorsement or sponsorship of this activity.

HELP for Interplast Trip—March 7-22—My Tho, Vietnam

Interplast has a trip scheduled for March 7-22, 2008, to My Tho, Vietnam. One of the anesthesiologists scheduled to participate in this experience has had to cancel. If anyone would like to volunteer to take this person's place, it would be greatly appreciated. To get more information, contact Beverly Kent.

This is a courtesy announcement for information only and does not constitute CSA endorsement or sponsorship of this activity.

Virgil Airola, MD
President