Position Statements (300.00 – 325.999)

300.000           TOBACCO USE AND SMOKING:
(See also Health Insurance Coverage, 120.000Health Screening  Programs, 125.000)

300.937           Vaping in New York State

The Medical Society of the State of New York commends NY Governor Andrew Cuomo and Commissioner Howard Zucker, MD of the NYS Department of Health for their prompt action to protect patients by banning the sale of flavored e-cigarettes and for their advice to consumers to avoid vaporization of medical marijuana available under the NYS medical marijuana program.  MSSNY recommends to Governor Cuomo, Commissioner Zucker and our NYS Legislature that they take further action to protect consumers from exposure to vaporized products with a moratorium on dispensing of vaporized products to new certificate holders for medical marijuana until data on the long term safety of vaporized marijuana is available. MSSNY recommends that our state and federal representatives work to reschedule marijuana and its’ component substances to Schedule II controlled substance to reduce barriers to further study on the efficacy and harms of various marijuana products and further that defined funding for the study of efficacy and harms of the current medical marijuana program be included in the New York State 2020-2021 budget to guide physicians and patients in the best and safest way to employ these agents and delivery systems in patient care. (Adopted Council, September 19, 2019)

300.938           Addressing the Vaping Crisis

The Medical Society the State of New York will urge the American Medical Association to advocate to the Food and Drug Administration that vaping devices should be available by prescription only for smokers who are trying to quit smoking.  (HOD 2019-155) 

300.939           Regulating Nicotine and E-Cigarettes

MSSNY will request that the American Medical Association (AMA) seek legislation or regulation that would limit higher concentration nicotine salts (greater than 10mg) in nicotine vaping pods and restrict bulk sale of vaping products and associated paraphernalia.  MSSNY will continue to partner with appropriate organizations to inform and educate the community on the harms of liquid nicotine and e-cigarettes. (HOD 2019-154)

300.940           Smoke-Free Multi-Unit Housing

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports the implementation of policies which incentivizes tenants and landlords to seek smoke free multi-unit housing. (HOD 2017-151)

300.941           Tobacco Products in Pharmacies and Healthcare Facilities

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports the prohibition of the sale of any tobacco or vaporized nicotine products where healthcare is delivered or where prescriptions are filled.  The New York Delegation will submit a copy of this resolution to the American Medical Association for its consideration. (HOD 2016-150)

300.942            e-Cigarettes to Be Treated the Same as Tobacco Products

The Medical Society of the State of New York will urge the American Medical Association to seek federal legislation that would place “e-cigarettes” and all nicotine delivery devices under the purview of the US Food and Drug Administration.   (HOD 2014-160)

300.943           Electronic Cigarettes:

With regard to “e-cigarettes,” MSSNY supports prohibition of (1) the sale to individuals under the age of 21 years of age; (2) the sale in any facility where health care is delivered or where prescriptions are filled; and (3) their use in public places in accordance with New York State’s Clean Indoor Air Act. (HOD 2010-161; Amended and reaffirmed HOD 2020)

300.944           Eliminating Tobacco Products from Pharmacies and Grocery Stores:

MSSNY will publicly commend those pharmacies, grocery and retail chains which do not sell tobacco products and/or do not accept tobacco product advertising.  (HOD 2010-158; Reaffirmed HOD 2020)

300.945           Oppose Sale of Tobacco Where Patients Receive Health Care:

MSSNY opposes the sale of tobacco at any facility where health care is delivered or where prescriptions are filled.  (HOD 2008-172; Reaffirmed HOD 2010-158; Reaffirmed HOD 2020)

300.946           Second-Hand Smoke Policies to Apply to the Pediatric Population:

MSSNY supports policies that eliminate exposure to second-hand smoke in the pediatric population.  (HOD 2008-158; Reaffirmed HOD in lieu of 2017-150)

300.947        Support Federal Drug Administraton Authority to Regulate Tobacco Products:

MSSNY supports the authority of the Food and Drug Administration to regulate all tobacco products.  (HOD 2007-163; Modified with title change and Reaffirmed HOD 2017)

309.948        Tobacco Use and Smoking:

MSSNY encourages its members to maintain a tobacco-free environment and prohibit all forms of tobacco use on their property and, supports efforts to educate physicians in tobacco cessation techniques based on the most recent treatment guidelines for tobacco use and dependence.  (HOD 2007-162; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2017)

MSSNY encourages its members to maintain a tobacco-free environment and prohibit all forms of tobacco use on their property and, also, continue to educate physicians in tobacco cessation techniques based on the most recent treatment guidelines for tobacco use and dependence.  (HOD 2007-162)

300.949         Amend NYS Clean Indoor Air Act:

MSSNY will take a leadership role in seeking passage of amendments to New York State’s Clean Indoor Air Act which further limits smoking in public places.  (HOD 2002-151; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

300.950        Funding of the U.S. Tobacco Suit: Sunset HOD 2011

300.951           Proposals Against the Promotion of Tobacco to Children in New York State:

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports legislation to:

  1. a) limit the promotion of tobacco and cigar products, smokeless tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or other unregulated nicotine delivery devices in the state;

(b) prohibit the sale of tobacco and cigar products, smokeless tobacco products, electronic cigarettes or other unregulated nicotine delivery devices to anyone under 21 years of age;

(c) increase the penalties for the sale of any of these products to persons under 21 years of age;

and will introduce a similar resolution to the American Medical Association at its next meeting of the House of Delegates.  (HOD 2000-169; Modified HOD 2014-158; Reaffirmed HOD in lieu of 2017-150)

300.952           More Nicotine-Replacement Therapy for Hospitalized Smokers:

300.953           Study on the Possible Use of Pneumococcal Vaccine for Chronic Smokers:

300.954          Tobacco Settlement Funds

MSSNY will work with state legislators, the Attorney General and other appropriate elected officials to seek passage of legislation that will devote a significant portion of tobacco settlement funds to:  a comprehensive tobacco use prevention and cessation program similar to those now in place in Massachusetts, California, and Florida; and the expansion of access to medical care for the uninsured.   MSSNY will immediately to monitor and comment on plans emerging within the State on the proposed uses of the tobacco settlement monies and report back to the House periodically and not less than at each annual meeting.  (HOD 99-58; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.955           Tobacco Tax Use: 

MSSNY will support legislation that would increase the state tax on the sale of tobacco products, with the proceeds to be used for a comprehensive anti-tobacco campaign, expanded access to clinical care for uninsured New Yorkers, including care provided by private physicians, and other appropriate purposes.  Included in the anti-tobacco effort would be an anti-tobacco advertising campaign, similar to those that were implemented as a result of “Question 1” legislation in Massachusetts.  (HOD 1999-56; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.956            Prohibition of Smoking on Hospital Grounds:

300.957            Tobacco Ads on New York City Taxi Cabs:

300.958            Smoking in Bars and Nightclubs:

300.959            Doubling the New York State Excise Tax on Cigarettes:

300.960            Smoking Ban in Public Areas:

300.961            Ban Cigarette Vending Machines:

300.962           Increase State Excise Tax On Cigarettes:

300.963           Local Tobacco Ordinances, State Preemption of

MSSNY supports the right of local jurisdictions to enact tobacco control regulations that are stricter than those contained in state statutes and strongly opposes efforts to preempt this right through state legislation.  (HOD 1996-158; Modifed and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.964           Advertising in Mass Transit Systems:
                             SUNSET HOD 2014

300.965           Advertising as a Business Deduction

MSSNY supports state and federal legislation that would reduce the amount that the tobacco industry claims as a business deduction for costs related to advertising and promotion.  (HOD 1993-83; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.966           Tobacco Subsidies

MSSNY supports efforts to enact federal legislation which would discontinue the subsidies to tobacco farmers.  (HOD 1993-86; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.967           Sales Tax Increase on Alcohol and Cigarettes
                            SUNSET HOD 2014

300.968           Pharmacies – Commendation for Not Selling Tobacco Products:

MSSNY publicly commends pharmacies that do not sell tobacco products and asks its members and patients to patronize pharmacies that do not sell tobacco products.  (Council 10/29/92; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.969           Tobacco Industry “Health Education”

MSSNY continues to reject the tobacco industry as a credible source of health education material, and encourages state and local medical societies to actively advise municipalities and school districts against use of health education material sponsored or distributed by the tobacco industry. (Council 10/29/92; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.970           Advertising on Billboards, at Sporting Events, in Stores and Restaurants: SUNSET HOD 2014

300.971           Adolescent Tobacco Prevention Act – Support of:   SUNSET HOD 2014

300.972           Smoking Ban in Sports StadiaSUNSET HOD 2014

300.973           Warning Labels on Cigarette Packs

MSSNY supports having:  (1)  Warning labels on cigarette packs which appear on the front and the back and occupy at least twenty-five percent of the total surface area on each side; and  (2)  In the case of cigarette advertisements, labels of cigarette packs should be moved to the top of the ad and should be enlarged to twenty-five percent of total ad space; and  (3)  Warning labels following these specifications should be included on cigarette packs of U.S. companies being distributed for sale in foreign markets.  (Council 5/14/92; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.974           Advertising within the Metropolitan Transit Authority System:        SUNSET HOD 2014

300.975           Governor’s Program Bill – 1991:       SUNSET HOD 2014

300.976           Advertising at Sporting Events:        SUNSET HOD 2014

300.977           Cigarette Vending Machine Ban:      SUNSET HOD 2014

300.978           Advertising Near Public Schools and Public Housing:       SUNSET HOD 2014

300.979           Tobacco Marketing Aimed at Women, Children and Minorities

MSSNY denounces marketing of tobacco products specifically aimed at woman, children and minorities.  (HOD 1990-31; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

300.980           Smoking on U.S. Domestic Commercial Flights:           SUNSET HOD 2014

300.981           Magazine Advertisements:                      SUNSET HOD 2014

300.982          Tobacco Use As a Contributory Cause of Demise on Death Certificates:   SUNSET HOD 2013

300.983           Anti-Smoking Information in Primary School Curriculum and Restriction of  Sale of Tobacco Products to Minors

MSSNY urges the New York State Education Department to continue an anti-tobacco program that is evidence based as part of the already mandated substance abuse curriculum.  It is the Society’s position that the New York State law which prohibits the sale of tobacco products to minors be more strictly enforced.    (HOD 1989-13; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

300.984           Advertising Targeting Minorities

MSSNY recognizes that the targeting of advertisements for cigarette and other tobacco products toward minorities is unethical and should be opposed.  (HOD 1989-9; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

300.985           “Smokeless” Cigarettes

MSSNY strongly objects to the introduction of “smokeless” tobacco in New York State and supports efforts to place the same restrictions on these products as presently exists on all other tobacco products.  (HOD 1988-23; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

300.986           Smoking In Public Places:        SUNSET HOD 2013

300.987           Smoking Ban in Public Places and in Work Places:          SUNSET HOD 2014

300.988           Advertising and Distribution, Ban on the Sale of all Tobacco Products:     SUNSET HOD 2013

300.989           Hospitals’ Smoking Ban:                   SUNSET HOD 2013

300.990           Smoking in Airplanes: SUNSET HOD 2013

300.991           Minimum Allowable Age to  Purchase Tobacco Products:                        SUNSET HOD 2013

300.992           Advertising Against Cigarette and Other Tobacco Products

The Medical Society supports an allocation from the Tobacco Control Program  to be used specifically to purchase space in the mass media as a means of countering the current youth-oriented advertising campaigns of cigarettes and tobacco products.   (HOD 1985-6; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

300.993           Advertising in the Leading Prestigious Newspapers and Periodicals:            SUNSET HOD 2013

300.994           Restaurants, Non-Smoking Areas:                        SUNSET HOD 2013

300.995           “No Smoking” Signs in Physicians’ Offices:    SUNSET HOD 2013

300.996           Hospitals’ Cigarette Vending Machines:            SUNSET HOD 2013

300.997           Designated Smoking Areas:                                      SUNSET HOD 2013

300.998           National Effort to Reduce Smoking, Support of:  SUNSET HOD 2013

300.999           Smoking Cessation Programs

MSSNY supports smoking cessation programs organized and publicized through appropriate voluntary health agencies, and which have public health support and participation of physicians and health professionals.  (Council 5/24/73; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2013)


305.991           CPT Codes for Preauthorization Denials and Fair Compensation

MSSNY will advocate that the AMA include fair compensation based on CPT codes for appeal of wrongfully denied services in any Model Legislation and as a basis for all advocacy, including those for prior authorization reforms and that CPT codes must fully reflect the aggregated time and effort expanded by physician practices.

MSSNY will urge the AMA to have the AMA CPT Editorial Panel establish a CPT code which would account for administrative work involved in prior authorizations and that reflects the actual time expended by physician practices advocating on behalf of patients and complying with insurer requirements.

MSSNY will urge the AMA to have the AMA CPT Editorial Panel establish a CPT code which would account for administrative work that reflects the actual time expended by physician practices and their billing vendors in successfully appealing wrongful pre- and post-service denials. (HOD 2021-254 and 255

305.992           Obsolete ICD and CPT Codes

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will seek legislation and regulation that would:

  • Provide a grace period where new ICD and CPT codes could be phased in, and
  • Prevent insurers from denying those portions of a claim coded with an obsolete or  superseded ICD or CPT code, and
  • Require that the period for ICD and CPT revisions are instituted be concurrent (e.g. January 1).

MSSNY will send this resolution to the AMA HOD.  (HOD 2020-261)

305.993           ECG/Stress Test Billing Bundle

The MSSNY will seek legislation and regulation to prevent insurers from being permitted to bundle an ECG (CPT cod 93000) with a stress test (code 93015) when these separate procedures are medically necessary to be performed on the same day.  (HOD 2019-258) 

305.994           ECG/Office Visit Billing Bundle

The MSSNY will seek legislation and regulation to prevent insurers from being allowed to bundle an ECG (CPT code 93000) with a visit, when medically necessary.  (HOD 2019-259)

305.995           Violation of HIPAA Electronic Transaction Standards by Insurer Failure to Upload ICD-10 Revisions

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will survey its members asking whether they have experienced claim denials, claims resubmission, or appeals because the insurer (federal, state or commercial) failed to upload the October 1, 2016, version of ICD-10 in a timely fashion.

Additionally, the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will urge the American Medical Association (AMA) to present information on ICD-10 improper claim denials to the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) and its Office of E-Health Standards & Services, to determine whether the insurers’ failure to properly update their claims processing systems has constituted a violation of the HIPAA Electronic Transaction Standards and should trigger disciplinary or corrective actions to prevent these occurrences in the future.  (HOD 2017-253)

305.996           Unknown Diagnosis Coding Under ICD-10

The Medical Society for the State of New York (MSSNY) will ask the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to enforce Unknown Diagnosis Coding and ICD-10 Policy with private insurers and managed care organizations, in that such policy is mandatory for all entities covered by the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability (HIPAA) law, but is being ignored by private insurers and managed care organizations.

MSSNY will urge the Centers for  Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to require all private and managed care insurers to  formally adopt the longstanding policy of CMS (reflected in ICD-10), that if a physician (1) does not  know the diagnosis at the start of an encounter; (2) has not established a definitive diagnosis by  the end of the encounter; and (3) is facing a “probable,” “suspected,” “questionable,” “rule-out,” or “working diagnosis” scenario, then it is acceptable for him or her to report codes for signs, symptoms, abnormal test results, exposure to communicable disease, or other reason for the visit.

MSSNY will urge CMS to require private and managed care insurers to adopt the policy of CMS (reflected in ICD-10) that when the physician does not have enough clinical information about a particular health condition to assign a more specific code (e.g. if he or she suspects a diagnosis of pneumonia but by the end of the encounter has not determined the underlying cause of the pneumonia — bacterial, et al), it is acceptable to report the appropriate “unspecified” code. (HOD 2016-252)

305.997           ICD-10

The Medical Society of the State of New York will continue to work with the AMA and the federation of medicine to advocate for legislation, regulation or other policy mechanism that would prevent implementation of the ICD-10 code sets. (Amended and adopted Council 11/20/2014.  From HOD 2014-263)

 305.998           HCFA Provision of Coding Information Free of Charge:                          SUNSET HOD 2014

305.999           Universal Code for Reporting Medical Services and Procedures Performed by New York State Physicians: SUNSET HOD 2013

310.000             UTILIZATION REVIEW:

310.992           Utilization Review

The Medical Society of the State of New York will seek legislation/regulation that requires insurance companies, peer review organizations, Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, and others to use the review criteria that existed at the time that services were provided when making their determinations.  This resolution will be forwarded to the AMA.  (HOD 2018-60)

310.993           Low Cost Arbitration:  SUNSET HOD 2019

310.994           Use of Binding Arbitration:

MSSNY will seek a change to the law to permit binding arbitration clauses in contracts between physicians and patients.  (HOD 2006-61; Reaffirmed HOD 2016) 

310.995           Independent Medical Examiners:

MSSNY will legislation to create a pool of physicians in each specialty to act as Independent Medical Examiners (IMEs) for all third party payers doing business in New York State who request such a service in order to determine the need for further or continued medical treatment.

MSSNY will urge the Office of the Insurance Commissioner assign IMEs from the pool to conduct physical examinations and review medical records on a purely rotating basis so there is no bias in the selection of the IMEs; or, alternatively, select an independent organization, such as the Empire Foundation, to administer such an IME program with fees to be paid by the insurers.  (HOD 2000-280; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

310.996           Third-Party Payer Use of Unsubstantiated Demand and Refund Letters:

MSSNY will seek amendment to the New York State Insurance Law to address the issue of payer demand letters, and to reflect the following provisions:  1) the physician should have the right to due process, should have access to all pertinent carrier documents, and should have the right to review the post-payment audit sample with appropriate carrier personnel; 2)  in post-payment reviews, carriers should not retroactively apply new policy to old claims; 3)  where the amount in dispute exceeds $1,000, physicians should have the right to have an independent entity not employed by the third-party payer (such as a Peer Review Organization or the American Arbitration Association) review the results of the carrier’s post-payment review; and 4) third-party payers should not seek repayment through the claims offset process until the physician has exhausted all appeals, and until an accurate overpayment amount has been established.  (HOD 2000-279; Reaffirmed HOD 2010-259; Reaffirmed HOD 2020)

310.997           Arbitration in Cases of Third-Party Audits:

MSSNY will seek legislation or regulation for the development of an independent arbitration panel to handle requests for refunds by third-party payers arising from audits of physicians’ practices.  (HOD 1998-265; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

310.998           Third Party Audits of Physicians with Subsequent Billing of Physicians for Tests Deemed Inappropriate:

MSSNY will urge the appropriate state and federal regulatory agencies to regulate third party payers’ medical practice audits such that these audits focus on providing education and improving the quality of care, and not be used for financial or punitive activities.  MSSNY will work to ensure outcomes of all medical practice audit processes would be governed by rules of due process which will be available for all physicians who participate in third party audits. (HOD 1998-255; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

310.999           Medical Director to be Required for all Third Party Payors

The Medical Society of the State of New York will seek whatever legislative or regulatory action is necessary to insure that all health insurance companies that are licensed in the State of New York and performing utilization review have a physician medical director who is licensed by the State of New York, who is accessible and identifiable to the treating physician; and will seek regulatory action which assures that plan medical directors are held accountable for their medical review determinations.  (HOD 1997-58; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

312.000          VACCINES: (See also Medicare, 195.000; Health Screening Programs, 125.000)

312.962           Minors Consent to Vaccination

The Medical Society of the State of New York will seek legislation to allow all adolescents aged 12 or older to independently consent to any FDA approved vaccination without parental or guardian consent. (HOD 2022-163)

312.963           Updating the NYS Vaccination Requirements for College/University Students

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports a COVID-19 vaccine requirement for students attending colleges and universities in New York State. (HOD 2022-162)

312.964           Requirements for COVID-19 Vaccination at NY Public Schools

The New York State Delegation to the American Medical Association will introduce a resolution at the AMA encouraging states to make COVID-19 vaccination a requirement for school attendance for children and college/university students once the FDA grants full approval for COVID-19 vaccination for all relevant age groups. (HOD 2022-160)

312.965           Incentive to Receive COVID-19 Vaccine

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will support policy and seek legislation and regulation to enable health and life insurance plans to offer financial incentives to vaccine eligible individuals who do receive the COVID-19 vaccination. (HOD 2022-159)

312.966           Ensuring Affordability and Equity in COVID-19 Vaccine Boosters

MSSNY supports the public purchase and cost-free distribution of COVID-19 booster vaccine doses.  (Adopted Council 6/3/21)

312.967           Influenza Vaccination for School-Aged Children

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports a requirement for administration of the influenza vaccine for all school-age children who attend childcare, pre-kindergarten, K-12 and college and universities in New York State, unless medically contraindicated.  (Adopted by Council, 9/17/20)

312.968           Strategies to Improve NYS Immunizations Rates in Children

The Medical Society of the State of New York will urge that New York State provide incentives to parents/guardians who vaccinate their children as a strategy to improve vaccine uptake in school-aged children. MSSNY will advocate that New York State develop programs to pay stipends to community health workers as a strategy to improve vaccine uptake in school aged children. (HOD 2019-166, referred to Council.  Amended and adopted 11/2019)

312.969           On Call Requirements for Pharmacies Administering Vaccines

MSSNY will advocate to the NYS Department and Health and the State Education Department (SED) that pharmacists be required to post information regarding a 24 hour toll free number to answer questions about any vaccine, provide information on a pharmacist’s immunization training, and post instructions to call the physician or 911 in the event of an adverse reaction to a vaccine.  MSSNY will advocate to DOH and SED that pharmacists should also post that they are required to report either by fax or electronically the immunization to the individual’s physician and the importance of having a primary health care provider.  (HOD 2019-169) 

312.970           Universal Reporting of Adult Immunization into NYSIIS

The Medical Society of the State of New York will advocate for universal reporting of adult vaccine doses to the New York State Immunization Information System (NYSIIS), either directly or via health information exchanges, and for removal of the requirement for patient permission to report adult vaccines, as is now the case for reporting of all patient data to health information exchanges.  (HOD 2019-167)

312.971           Preserving Vaccine Policy in the United States

The Medical Society of the State of New York will continue to support evidence that vaccines are an effective mechanism for controlling communicable disease and protecting public health.  MSSNY supports vaccine guidance that is evidence-based and opposes the creation of a new federal commission on vaccine safety whose task is to study an association between autism and vaccines.  A copy of this resolution will be sent to the AMA for its consideration.  (HOD 2017-162)

312.972           MSSNY Promotion of Adult Immunization

The Medical Society of the State of New York will continue its efforts to educate physicians about the importance of immunizing adults for infection prevention and public health preparedness.  MSSNY will also continue its advocacy for immunizations and work toward strengthening the adult immunization infrastructure, improving access to adult vaccines, increasing community demand for adult immunizations and continuing to foster innovations in adult vaccine development and technologies.  (HOD 2016-164; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 265)

312.973           Childhood Vaccinations

The Medical Society of the State of New York supports the repeal of all non-medical exemptions for childhood vaccinations prior to attending school in New York State.  (Adopted Council 11/5/2015; Reaffirmed HOD 2016-163)

312.974           New HPV Vaccine Offers Protection Against Nine Types of Cancer

The Medical Society of the State of New York will advocate for the use of the new HPV vaccine as a form of cancer protection for all individuals.  MSSNY will urge the New York State Department of Health to educate the public about the recommendations on HPV (which include the new HPV vaccine and its enhanced cancer prevention capabilities) made by the Advisory Committee on Immunizations Practices (ACIP) and it will take steps to ensure that commercial insurance coverage is provided for all patients. (HOD 2015-161) 

312.975:          Immunization in Hamilton County Children

MSSNY shall work with the New York State Department of Health to seek a federal waiver to the Vaccines For Children (VFC) program in order to authorize use of immunization supplies for all insured and uninsured children in Hamilton County. (HOD 2013-153)

312.976:          Pharmacists to Notify PCP of Immunization

MSSNY will seek legislation requiring pharmacists to directly report to a patient’s primary care physician on the same day that a vaccine is administered. (HOD 2013-108; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 265)

312.977           Immunization Contracts, Reimbursement and Coverage

MSSNY will support legislation mandating that health insurance companies in New York State pay for vaccines recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for every individual. Those insurance companies not reimbursing for ACIP-recommended vaccines should clearly state so in a notice to patients and businesses; and health insurance companies should reimburse providers for the vaccines at fees sufficient to cover the procurement, shipping, handling, supplies, data entry, vaccine counseling, inventory management, routine nursing activities and storage cost of the vaccine. A resolution seeking similar appropriate reimbursement through federally funded programs for all ACIP-recommended vaccines is to be transmitted to the American Medical Association. (HOD 2012-168; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 265)

312.978           Immunizations

MSSNY will support the Urban Institute’s call for Universal Purchasing of Childhood Vaccine in New York State (HOD 2011-158 referred to & adopted by Council 9/20/11; Reaffirmed HOD 2021)

312.979           Healthcare Workers and Influenza Vaccination:

MSSNY policy states that influenza vaccination is:

  • the best protection for public health;
  • effective at reducing infections with influenza virus and subsequent person-to-person transmission;
  • an important infection prevention measure to reduce transmission of influenza from health care workers to patients and vice versa.

In addition, MSSNY supports educational efforts to ensure that the public understands the need for influenza immunization.  (HOD 2010-166; Reaffirmed HOD 2020)

312.980           Influenza Vaccine:  SUNSET HOD 2020

312.981           Insurance Companies and the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP)

MSSNY supports legislation mandating that health insurance companies in New York State pay for vaccines recommended by the Advisory Committee on Immunization Practices (ACIP) for every individual.  Also, those insurance companies not reimbursing for ACIP-recommended vaccines should clearly state so in a notice to patients and businesses; and health insurance companies should reimburse providers for the vaccines at fees sufficient to cover the procurement and storage cost of the vaccine.  (HOD 2009-167; Reaffirmed with amendment HOD 2019)

312.982           Herpes Zoster Vaccine and Medicare Payment for the Vaccine and for Physician Administration of the Vaccine: HOD 2008-169; SUNSET HOD 2018)

312.983           Immunization Registry:  HOD 2008-153; SUNSET HOD 2018)

312.984           Immunization Access to Parents of High-Risk Infants Younger Than Six Months of Age: 

MSSNY – (1) endorses the use of the neonatal intensive care unit and hospital newborn nursery as practical and legitimate venues for parents and first-person contacts of vulnerable infants (those less than six months of age and/or premature) to obtain vaccines against communicable respiratory pathogens such as influenza and pertussis; (2) recommends that hospitals with neonatal intensive care units and newborn nurseries consider making vaccine against these pathogens available; and (3) supports local and state governments in efforts to make available vaccinations to parents and first-person contacts of those infants under the hospital’s care. (HOD 2008-152; Reaffirmed HOD 2018)

312.985           Education as to the Benefits of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine:

MSSNY supports educational efforts aimed at the general public regarding the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine and its benefits; and supports appropriate reimbursement rates associated with the administration, storage, and counseling of families regarding the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) vaccine. (HOD 2007-167; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2017)

 312.986           Antiviral Medication During Catastrophic Epidemics:

MSSNY will:  (1) collaborate with all parties of interest, national and local, to assure that supplies of antiviral medication are sufficient and available; (2) urge state and local regulators to ensure that adequate anti-flu viral drugs will be available for distribution, not only to hospitals, health departments, and other such public agencies, but also to private pharmacies and physicians directly; and (3) through collaboration with the appropriate organizations and agencies, seek to eliminate barriers to patients receiving appropriate medications for treatment and/or prevention of potential catastrophic influenza epidemics.  (HOD 2007-166; amended and reaffirmed HOD 2018)

312.987           Flu Vaccine Distribution:

MSSNY will: (1) support the policy that physicians’ offices and/or clinics are the most appropriate sites for vaccinations; (2) support legislation or regulation that will ensure an adequate and timely supply of vaccines to physician offices and clinics; and (3) support legislation or regulation to ensure sufficient reimbursement to cover the cost of purchase, storage and administration of vaccinations.  (HOD 2007-165; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2017)

312.988           Administration of the Human Papillomavirus (HPV) Vaccine as a Means of Preventing the Transmission of the HPV, Cervical Cancer and HPV-Associated Diseases in Individuals

MSSNY support the recommendation of the HPV vaccine as a means of preventing the transmission of the virus and as a means of preventing cervical cancer and other HPV-associated diseases in individuals.  (Council 1/25/07; Reaffirmed HOD 2007-167; Revised with Title Change, Council 1/20/11; Reaffirmed HOD 2021)

312.989           Assurance that Practicing Physicians Obtain Influenza Vaccine:

Physicians, hospitals, nursing homes and local public health agencies should receive first priority in the distribution of the influenza vaccine to allow for the timely immunization of patients; thereby allowing patients to maintain their medical home; MSSNY urges the American Medical Association (AMA) to support federal legislation to enact provisions to ensure that physicians, hospitals, nursing homes and local public health agencies be the first priority in the distribution of the influenza vaccine and work together to effectuate this change in national vaccine policy.  (HOD 2006-156; Amended HOD 2016)

312.990           Flu Vaccine Distribution

MSSNY urges the New York State Department of Health to control the disbursement of flu vaccine should another shortage occur and that the flu vaccine be preferentially routed to physicians’ offices, medical clinics, hospitals and public health departments for distribution to the stratified population at the greatest risk first.  MSSNY urge the New York State Health Department to take appropriate action so that in the event of another influenza vaccine shortage that vaccine lots can be easily located and recovered for redistribution as necessary.  MSSNY support the concept that the high risk population, as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, be immunized first.  (HOD 2005-158; Reaffirmed HOD 2015)

312.991           Availability and Distribution of Flu Vaccine:

MSSNY will take all means necessary to ensure that New York State physicians have adequate influenza vaccine supplies.  (HOD 2002-159; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

312.992           Vaccine Shortages:

312.993           Impact of Vaccine Pricing on a Medical Indication:

312.994           Drug-Resistant Streptococcus Pneumoniae:
                       SUNSET HOD 2014

312.995           National Vaccine Authority, Establishment of:
                       SUNSET HOD 2014

312.996           Hepatitis B Immunization of Infants:
                       SUNSET HOD 2014

312.997           Vaccines – Bulk Purchase for Medicaid Eligible Children and
                         Free of
Charge DistributionSUNSET HOD 2014

312.998           Vaccine – CDC Pamphlets:  SUNSET HOD 2014

312.999           Vaccines:  SUNSET HOD 2014

315.000           VIOLENCE AND ABUSE:

315.984           Ban the Gay/Trans (LGBTQ+) Panic Defense

MSSNY will support state legislation or regulation banning the use of the so-called “gay or trans (LGBTQ+) panic” defense in homicide, manslaughter, physical or sexual assault cases; and will send a resolution to the AMA with the following two resolves:

RESOLVED, Our AMA will seek a federal law banning the use of the so-called gay or trans (LGBTQ+) panic” defense in homicide, manslaughter, physical or sexual assault cases, and be it further 

RESOLVED, Our AMA will publish an issue brief and talking points on the topic of so called gay or trans (LGBTQ+)  panic” defense, that can be used by the AMA in seeking federal legislation, and can be used and adapted by state and specialty medical societies, other allies, and stakeholders as model legislation when seeking state legislation to ban the use of so-called gay or trans (LGBTQ+) panic” defense to mitigate personal responsibility for violent crimes such as assault, rape, manslaughter, or homicide. (HOD 2021-AMA #3; referred to Council, adopted 4/15/21)

315.985           Comprehensive Minimal Facility Security Standards

The Medical Society of the State of New York will advocate for development of appropriate minimal facility security standards for all New York State licensed hospitals by a broad based professional advisory panel.  (HOD 2018-109)

315.986           A Resolution on Gun Violence

The Medical Society of the State of New York will continue its efforts to seek amendments to the New York SAFE Act which would ensure that only those who present a “serious and imminent danger to self or others” are reported under the act. (HOD 2014-156)

315.987:          Physicians and the Public Health Issue of Gun Safety

MSSNY will adopt the goal of reducing gun-related deaths by one half by 2020, and will work with the appropriate local, state and federal agencies to accomplish this goal. MSSNY will forward a resolution to the June 2013 AMA annual meeting requesting that the US Surgeon General develop a report and campaign aimed at reducing gun-related deaths by one half by the year 2020, such report and campaign to be completed and presented at the 2013 Interim Meeting.  (HOD 2013-215)

315.988:          Violent Acts of Youth and Violent Acts Upon Youth

MSSNY will continue its efforts to create awareness of violence and acts of violence against children and adolescents by revising and updating the 2006 House of Delegates white paper entitled, “Protecting New York State’s Children in the 21st Century”; and will continue to educate and work with members of the medical and substance abuse community, members of the New York State Legislature, and the various state agencies associated with young children and adolescents to develop protective factors that will benefit New York State’s youth. (HOD 2013-152; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 153))

315.989           Elder MistreatmentSUNSET HOD 2019)

315.990           Sexually Violent Predators Civil Commitment Law:

MSSNY completely recognizes and supports the state’s obligation to protect the citizens of New York State from sexually violent predators, and opposes legislation or regulation which attempts to create new definitions of mental illness to misuse existing psychiatric medical diagnoses or require psychiatric physicians and/or psychiatric treatment facilities to accept such diagnostic categories.  Any sexually violent predator program should be placed under the auspices of another, non-medical department, such as the Department of Corrections, not under the Office of Mental Health and that funding for any sexually violent predator program should not come at the expense of the Office of Mental Health.  (HOD 2006-169; Reaffirmed HOD 2016)

315.991           Troubled Youth and Violence:

MSSNY supports legislation that children who take guns or other weapons to school should receive an evaluation by a psychiatrist and that those children who are determined by such evaluation to have a mental illness should receive appropriate treatment.

MSSNY supports teacher and parental educational initiatives to better enable them (a) to identify children with severe mental illness/emotional disturbance at risk for psychiatric illness, substance abuse, and potentially dangerous behaviors, and (b) to be aware of available treatments to assist these children and their families.

MSSNY reaffirms its support for parity of health insurance coverage for mental illness including children.

MSSNY will encourage the New York State Education Department to develop and implement a comprehensive unit in every grade, pre-school through grade 12, on anger management, peer mediation, and non-violent conflict resolution.

MSSNY will encourage the New York State Education Department to support adequate ratios of supervising adults to students, both during the school day and during off-school hours, and advocate for increased resources within the school, including before- and after-school (“wrap-around”) activities and increased personnel such as school nurse-teachers, counselors, and similar staff, to assist in educating children and their families about mental illness/emotional problems and to serve as resources to other school personnel.

MSSNY will support funding for not-for-profit community organizations that work with normal, troubled and/or addicted youth and their families to develop and promote safe, enriching, out of school alcohol and drug free activities for families, as well as parent education classes including, but not limited to, parenting skills, anger management, identifying early warning signs of substance use, gang involvement, deviant behavior, and community resources for management of the same.

MSSNY will support the establishment of guidelines by the New York State Education Department and funding for their implementation to help schools to deal effectively and safely with children whose violent or potentially-violent behavior constitutes a risk to self or others, and to find immediate screening, prevention, alternate programming and treatment in those instances where a bona fide mental health emergency has been demonstrated.

MSSNY will support funding to school districts, not-for-profit agencies, and communities to develop high quality, effective alternate programming, emergency evaluation and intervention, and short-, medium- and long-term treatment for children across the spectrum of mental illness.

MSSNY will continue to support efforts by the Legislature and the Governor to address media influence on youth violence.  (HOD 1999-175, referred to &, adopted by Council 12/00; Reaffirmed HOD 2014 Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 153)

315.992           Violence Against Physicians, Health Care Workers and Others:

MSSNY will work with the New York State Society of Internal Medicine and other recognized specialty societies, to formulate, within current budgetary constraints, a public and professional awareness campaign in response to the recent trends towards violence against physicians and other health care workers in the performance of their duties.  MSSNY shall condemn, without exception, the violence or threat of violence to physicians, health care workers and other individuals who are practicing according to their conscience, and in compliance with the law.  (HOD 1999-202; Reaffirmed Council 11/13/03; Reaffirmed HOD 2013; Reaffirmed HOD 2018-109)

315.993           Development of Programs Focused on Identification and Treatment of Troubled Youths:  SUNSET HOD 2014

315.994           Need for Adequate Training of Teachers to Identify Potentially Dangerous Children and the Provision of Adequate Insurance Coverage to Provide for Their Treatment:  SUNSET HOD 2014

315.995           Violence and Abuse – Addition of Anti-Violence Statements to Birth and Marriage Certificates: SUNSET HOD 2014

315.996           Identification and Reporting – Licensure Mandated CME:

MSSNY has reiterated its opposition to all mandated courses tied to licensure.  Inasmuch as there is a mandated course of identification and reporting of child abuse and maltreatment for physicians and other medical personnel, it is the Society’s position that all other professionals and personnel possibly involved in child abuse cases, including all judges, attorneys, court personnel, social service workers and others be mandated to complete course work or training in child abuse and family violence as a licensure or job requirement.  (HOD 1993-62; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

315.997           Dissemination of Information on Violence and Abuse:
                           SUNSET HOD 2014

315.998           Educational Programs:

In 1985, the House of Delegates of the Medical Society of the State of New York adopted a resolution to encourage and/or cooperate with the New York State Bar Association and/or its component branches in developing educational programs for physicians and attorneys on:  (1) Child abuse identification, treatment, and prevention;  (2) Representation strategies for attorneys who are appointed as law guardians in the State of New York.  (HOD 1985-16; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

315.999           Physicians’ Responsibility to Report Suspected Child Abuse

MSSNY, to combat the increasing abuse of children, has approached this problem and has notified all physicians in the State of their moral, medical, and legal responsibility to report all suspected cases of child abuse.

MSSNY encourages the development of educational programs that would enable a better coordination at the local level between police, judiciary, social services and medical resources to provide help for the victims, as well as the perpetrators, of sexual crimes against children.  (HOD 1983-38; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)


317.991:          Retention of Retired Physicians

MSSNY will work with the AMA to define the best way to capture the time, talent and resources of retired and semi-retired physicians. (HOD 2013-207 and 208)

317.992           Volunteers in Times of Public Health Emergencies: (Council 1/25/07; SUNSET HOD 2018)

317.993           Incentives for Physicians who Volunteer Without Remuneration:

MSSNY to support legislation that will provide physicians who volunteer without remuneration with a tax credit on their state income tax; urge the American Medical Association to seek these liability protections and legislation for a federal tax credit for those physicians who volunteer without remuneration; and that a copy of this resolution be transmitted to the AMA for its consideration.  (HOD 2006-164; Reaffirmed HOD 2016)

317.994           Physician Volunteers:

MSSNY support endorsement of a community based free clinic program, staffed by physician volunteers to provide interim health care on an out-patient basis, with the appropriate attention to quality of care; and reaffirm Policy 320.996, which calls for liability protections for those physicians who volunteer within the free clinic setting.  (HOD 2005-173; Reaffirmed HOD 2015)

317.995           Amendment to the Good Samaritan Law, Section 6527, Subdivision 2 of the NYS Education Law

MSSNY pursue legislation which would expand the definition of the Good Samaritan Law to include physicians in a hospital setting who may voluntarily respond to emergent situations, thereby protecting the physicians from malpractice suits.  (HOD 2005-61; Reaffirmed HOD 2015)

317.996           Volunteer Physicians:SUNSET HOD 2013

317.997           Immunity For Physicians Serving Volunteer Ambulance Corps:

MSSNY will seek passage of state legislation that would extend the “Good Samaritan” protection to physicians working on volunteer ambulance corps.  (HOD 1997-116; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

317.998           Volunteer Physician Services:

MSSNY strongly encourages who wish to use the services on a voluntary basis to cover the cost of medical liability insurance as a part of their arrangement with the volunteering physician.  (HOD 1996-53; Reaffirmed HOD 1998-65 & 98-69; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

317.999           Volunteer Services Provided at Community Based Clinics

On behalf of physicians who volunteer their services at community-based clinics and other organizations, MSSNY will seek legislation that such physicians be held harmless in a medical malpractice lawsuit.  (HOD 1995-83; Reaffirmed HOD 1998-65 and HOD 2006-164; Reaffirmed HOD 2016; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 54)

320.000         WEIGHT MANAGEMENT & PROMOTION OF HEALTHY LIFESTYLES: (See also Education 85.000; Health Screening Programs, 125.000)

320.988        Supporting Efforts to Reduce Sodium Intake

MSSNY supports efforts to reduce sodium intake by New York State consumers.  (HOD 2011-150; Reaffirmed HOD 2021)

320.989        Decreasing the Incidence of Obesity and Negative Sequelae by Reducing the Cost Disparity Between Calorie-Dense, Nutrition-Poor Foods and Nutrition-Dense Foods:

MSSNY supports:

  • efforts which seek to decrease the price gap between calorie-dense, nutrition-poor (CDNP) foods and naturally nutrition-dense (ND) foods to improve health in economically disadvantaged populations by encouraging the expansion, through increased funds and increased enrollment, of existing programs that seek to improve nutrition and reduce obesity such as the Farmer’s Market Nutrition Program (FMNP) as a part of the Women, Infants, and Children (WIC) program;
  • novel application of FMNP to existing programs such as the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP) and apply program models that incentivize the consumption of ND foods in wider food distribution venues than solely in farmer’s markets as part of WIC. (HOD 2010-168; Amended and reaffirmed HOD 2020)

320.990        Financing Obesity Programs in New York State:

MSSNY is to:

-support initiatives to reduce the incidence of obesity in New York State;

-assume a leadership role in collaborating with other interested organizations, including state medical specialty societies, to discuss ways to finance a comprehensive state program for the study, prevention and treatment of obesity in New York State; and

-continue monitoring and supporting state and national policies and regulations that encourage healthy life styles and promote obesity prevention. (HOD 2009-162; Reaffirmed HOD 2019)

320.991        Promoting Healthy Foods:

MSSNY will (1) continue to advocate for a healthy diet for all; (2) support legislative efforts to establish New York State nutritional standards within the educational system; (3) recommend to hospitals, schools, nursing homes, patients and its physician members that foods should meet the accepted nutritional standards; and, (4) together with the American Medical Association, promote and advocate legislation that promotes the availability of fruits, vegetables and whole grain foods.  (HOD 2008-150; Reaffirmed HOD 2018)

320.992         Reduction of Trans Fats in Food Preparation in Restaurants on Statewide Basis

MSSNY will support and encourage the reduction of trans fats in food preparation in restaurants on a statewide basis.  (Council 1/25/07; Reaffirmed HOD 2017)

320.993           Obesity Reaching Epidemic Proportions in Children and  Adolescents:
                        SUNSET HOD 2015

320.994           2005 USDA Dietary Guidelines

MSSNY supports the wide use of the USDA Dietary Guidelines by a broad spectrum of providers and their patients, and see it as a complement to the MSSNY White Paper on “Weight Management: Promotion of a Healthy Lifestyle”, and that these guidelines be made available on the MSSNY website for use by medical and public health education providers in an effort to focus on weight management and obesity and that MSSNY supports the use of the Body Mass Index (BMI) because it can be compared with previous visits.  (Council 3/14/05; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2015)

320.995        Weight Management Guidelines

Physician Education

The Medical Society will work towards educating its physician members and will work with its various county medical and specialty societies to bring weight management before them.  The Medical Society will educate physicians via its website, through continuing medical education courses, and through other media outlets the Medical Society may have available to them.  Additionally, the Medical Society will enter into a discussion with medical schools regarding the training of medical students with great emphasis on nutrition, weight management and healthy lifestyles.

Community Awareness

The Medical Society will work with state agencies, particularly the Department of Health, in creating awareness for the general public on weight issues.  The Medical Society will also contact representatives within the business community and will work with the New York State Community Health Partnership to promote physical activity and lifestyles within communities.  The Medical Society will also attempt to enlist the support of the fast food industry to “down size” the portions and to increase the availability of nutrition information for food purchase within a fast food restaurant.

Educational Institutions

The Medical Society recommends that increased physical activity be incorporated into the daily schedule at all schools in accordance with the recommendations of “Healthy People 2010”.  (34)  Additionally, the Medical Society will seek to preserve “recess” for all schools to help ensure that children receive physical activity.  Furthermore, the Medical Society will work towards the goal of advocating proper nutrition within the schools and will support legislative efforts to afford good nutritional choices, especially in vending machines and in the lunchroom or cafeteria.

Legislative Initiatives

While some insurance plans and managed care organizations pay for programs related to weight, many in New York State do not.  Therefore, the Medical Society will seek legislation requiring insurance and managed care plans for paying for nutritional visits, bariatric programs, and certain medications.  The Medical Society will also seek coverage for surgical management, including bariatric surgery and reconstructive surgery, related to weight loss and management.  The Medical Society will also support efforts to require the Medicaid program to pay for medications related to weight loss.  Furthermore, weight management problems have both medical and psychological disease origins.  Serious mental illnesses can exacerbate the obesity condition and the conditions related to bulimia and anorexia nervosa.  Therefore, the Medical Society of the State of New York will support legislative efforts to assure that there is coverage for a full continuum of services to treat these illnesses.  Additionally, the Medical Society supports legislation that will eliminate the outpatient and inpatient limits and equalize co-payments and deductibles for mental health coverage.

Position Paper:

Weight Management: Promotion of Healthy Lifestyles

Public Health and Education Report 1   Presented by Sheila Bushkin, MD and the members of the Rural and Preventive Medicine Committee

(HOD 2003; Reaffirmed HOD 04-170; Reaffirmed HOD 2005-165; Reaffirmed HOD 2015; Reaffirmed HOD 2019 in lieu of res 257)

320.996           Overweight and Obesity Control as a Major Public Health Program:


  1. urge physicians as well as managed care organizations and other third-party payors to recognize obesity as a complex disorder involving appetite regulation and energy metabolism that is associated with a variety of co-morbid conditions;
  2. work with appropriate state and federal agencies, medical specialty societies, and public health organizations to educate physicians about the prevention and management of overweight and obesity in children and adults, including education in basic principles and practices of physical activity and nutrition counseling; such training should be included in undergraduate and graduate medical education and through accredited continuing medical education programs;
  3. urge state and federal support of research to determine: (a) the causes and mechanisms of overweight and obesity, including biological, social, and epidemiological influences on weight gain, weight loss, and weight maintenance; (b) the long-term safety and efficacy of voluntary weight maintenance and weight loss practices and therapies, including surgery; (c) effective interventions to prevent obesity in children and adults; and (d) the effectiveness of weight loss counseling by physicians;
  4. encourage state and national efforts to educate the public about the health risks of being overweight, and obese and provide information about how to achieve and maintain a preferred healthy weight;
  5. urge physicians to assess their patients for overweight and obesity during routine medical examinations and discuss with at-risk patients the health consequences of further weight gain; if treatment is indicated, physicians should encourage and facilitate weight maintenance or reduction efforts in their patients or refer them to a physician with special interest and expertise in the clinical management of obesity;
  6. urge all physicians and patients to maintain a desired weight and prevent inappropriate weight gain;
  7. encourage physicians to become knowledgeable of community resources and referral services that can assist with the management of overweight and obese patients; and
  8. urge the appropriate state and federal agencies to work with organized medicine and the health insurance industry to develop coding and payment mechanisms for the evaluation and management of obesity. (HOD 2003-152; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

320.997            Promotion of Healthy Lifestyles:

320.998            Medical Treatment and Prevention of Obesity:

320.999            Physical Activity Increase for US Adults and Children:

MSSNY supports The US Department of Health and Human Services recommendation for every adult to have 150 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity a week and for children to have 60 minutes in the course of each day.   (HOD 1995-172; Reaffirmed HOD 1999-151; Modified and reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.000         WORKERS’ COMPENSATION: (See also Reimbursement, 65.000; Utilization Review 310.000)

325.951        Improving Workers’ Compensation Medical Treatment Guidelines Compliance by Insurers

The Medical Society of the State of New York will urge the Workers’ Compensation Board to ensure that insurance carriers are covering injured workers’ medical care consistent with the Board’s medical treatment guidelines and that various health care providers authorized to provide services under the Workers’ Compensation law are familiar with the Board’s medical treatment guidelines.  (HOD 2021-256)

325.952        Education on Worker’s Compensation Manual and Protocol

The Medical Society of the State of New York will advocate for the Chair of Worker’s Compensation to partner with the MSSNY Worker’s Compensation Committee in the development of a program that would educate physicians on the laws, regulations, documentation and salient portions of the NY Worker’s Compensation protocol so that better care for injured patients can be provided, assisting them in fair and just outcomes.  The Worker’s Compensation insurers should provide funding for the development of a comprehensive multimodality educational program for physicians.  (HOD 2018-268) 

325.953        NYS Worker’s Compensation PPOs

The Medical Society of the State of New York will seek legislative and regulatory changes to eradicate the practice of silent PPOs operating in New York State and require adherence with the accepted fee schedule.  MSSNY will seek amendments to the Worker’s Compensation Law that if the carrier reduces the approved and accepted Worker’s Compensation fee schedule, it must pay punitive damages to the Board and to the physician per day in an amount to support just enforcement.  (HOD 2018-267) 

325.954        Prompt Payment of Worker’s Compensation Testimony Fees

The Medical Society of the State of New York should petition the Chair of the Worker’s Compensation Board to require reimbursement to the physician within 30 days of testimony.  (HOD 2018-266)

325.955        Correcting Workers’ Compensation Board Policy

The Medical Society of the State of New York will seek legislation to allow that payment for services be made by the patient or the patient’s private insurance when the patient and physician agree that additional treatment is necessary to improve impairment beyond the services for which the Carrier’s independent medical exam and the Workers’ Compensation administrative law judge are willing to pay under the Workers’ Compensation Program.

MSSNY will seek legislation to ensure that the decision to deny coverage of care recommended by the treating physician may not be made by non-physician personnel under the Workers’ Compensation Program. (HOD 2017-260) 

325.956        Amendments to Workers’ Compensation Law Section 110-a (Confidentiality of Workers’ Compensation Records)

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will seek appropriate legislation or regulation to modify the Workers’ Compensation Law, Section 110-a, Subsection 1(a), which would allow a physician, or his legal representative, the ability to communicate with a member of the Workers’ Compensation Board in instances when there is apparent fraud committed by a Workers’ Compensation claimant or other important information or irregularities relevant to the case.

The MSSNY will seek legislation or regulation to strengthen NYS Workers’ Compensation Law and reduce potential fraud and abuse by amending Workers’ Compensation Law 110-a Part (h) to enable physicians to report alleged discrepancies or apparent fraudulent activities by patients and allow the Workers’ Compensation Board staff to annotate the WC Case file and alert the Workers’ Compensation Fraud Inspector General. (HOD 2017-258) 

325.957        Arbitrary Deadlines for New York State Workers’ Compensation Peer Review Response

The Medical Society State of New York shall require that if a Workers’ Compensation peer review is requested by either party that the peer review be scheduled at a mutually acceptable time. (HOD 2017-256)

325.958        Physician of Choice in Workers’ Compensation Cases

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will seek a change to Section 13-b of the New York State Workers’ Compensation Law to allow an employee with a Workers’ Compensation related illness or injury, who is requesting a second opinion and/or medically necessary services, the right to obtain an independent evaluation and/or treatment from a physician who does not participate or accept Workers’ Compensation, provided that the patient understands and acknowledges that he/she will not seek reimbursement from the Workers’ Compensation program, or other health insurance plans they may have, and that such understanding between patient and physician is documented appropriately.

The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) will seek an additional change to the Workers’ Compensation Law to allow a Workers’ Compensation claimant to sign an approved document, such as an Advanced Beneficiary Notification (ABN), which clearly explains that the physician providing the second medical opinion and/or medically necessary services is not a Workers’ Compensation authorized physician, and that the patient has agreed to pay the physician directly, without the expectation of reimbursement or the filing of a Workers’ Compensation or other health insurance claim related to the care provided, and that a physician who evaluates a patient under such an arrangement may not be reported to OPMC for alleged violation of state law and that the recommendation generated from this opinion may not be used in a Workers’ Compensation proceeding. (HOD 2012-266, referred, amended, adopted by Council 1/30/2014)

325.959           New York State Workers’ Compensation Board Fee Schedule On Line

MSSNY will petition the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board to study the feasibility of placing the “Official New York Workers’ Compensation Board – Medical Fee Schedule” and associated policies in an on-line environment, accessible to authorized physicians without charge, in order to save costs by helping physicians submit proper fee schedule amounts, and by reducing the number of claims/physician fees that are not deemed to be in accordance with the Workers Compensation fee schedule.  (HOD 2011-260; Reaffirmed HOD 2021)

325.960           Timely Payment for Workers’ Compensation Depositions

MSSNY will seek legislation to ensure timely payment for any physician required to provide a deposition relative to a Workers’ Compensation (WC) case.  This timely payment is to be made within thirty (30) days from the date the deposition is given, regardless of the outcome or the time needed to conclude the WC case with interest due and owing as appropriate.  (HOD 2011-259; Reaffirmed HOD 2021)

325.961           American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine  GuidelinesSUNSET HOD 2019 

325.962           Definition of Insurance NetworkSUNSET HOD 2019 

325.963           Elimination of the Workers’ Compensation Fee Schedule:                                      SUNSET HOD 2019 

325.964           Workers’ Compensation Claims Reviews by Qualified Physicians:  MSSNY to seek regulation and/or legislation requiring that claims review for Workers’ Compensation claims be performed only by physicians licensed in the State of New York and engaged in the active practice of medicine in a similar scope of practice in the State of New York.  (HOD 2008-261; Reaffirmed HOD 2018)

325.965           Arbitration Fees:

MSSNY will seek a change in legislation or regulation requiring the carrier to pay for the cost of each arbitration in cases where the arbitration committee increases the reimbursement fees paid to the physician.  (HOD 2008-260; Reaffirmed HOD 2018)

325.966           Workers’ Compensation Coding ManualSUNSET HOD 2015

325.967           Increase to Workers’ Compensation Fee Schedule

In recognizing Workers’ Compensation regional conversion factors have not been increased for at least 10 years, that the Medical Society of the State of New York will aggressively pursue the Chairman of the Workers’ Compensation Board to grant an increase of the conversion factors to compensate for the increase in the costs associated with medical practice; and that MSSNY aggressively pursue increases to the Workers’ Compensation regional conversion factors, on an annual basis, so as to bring Workers’ Compensation reimbursements up to current acceptable levels.  (HOD 2005-267; Modified and Reaffirmed HOD 2015)

325.968           Workers’ Compensation Panels

MSSNY continue to work with the Workers’ Compensation Board to encourage the enlistment of physicians to serve on arbitration panels.  (HOD 2004-258; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.969           Amendment of the Workers’ Compensation HP-1 Requests for Administrative Award Process:

MSSNY will seek an amendment to the Workers’ Compensation Law stating that for every day on which a carrier ignores or refuses to acknowledge a properly tendered HP-1 Request for Administrative Award, that carrier must pay punitive damages to the Board and to the physician per day in an amount to support significant, productive and viable enforcement.  (HOD 2002-258; Reaffirmed HOD 2003-268 & 278; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)

325.970           Workers’ Compensation Law New Sections 300.37 and 325-1.25Sunset HOD 2011

325.971           Reducing the Costs of Submitting Workers’ Compensation ClaimsSunset HOD 2011

325.972           Workers’ Compensation C-4 Form:Sunset HOD 2011

325.973           “C” Rated Physicians Performing IMEs:
Sunset HOD 2011

325.974           Modification of Workers’ Compensation Law Sections 110A and 32:

MSSNY will seek through legislation, regulation, or whatever means necessary, amendments to the NYS WC Law Sections 110A and 32 regarding the physician’s ability to be listed as a Party in Interest.  (Council 11/2/00; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.975           Surgical Ground Rule Number 5:

325.976           Clarification in Workers’ Compensation Board Regulations Pertaining to the Performance of Independent Medical Examinations NYS:

325.977           Caps for Maximum Medical Improvement Exams (MMIEs)(i.e. AMA-CPT Codes 99455 and 99456:

325.978           Timely Processing of Claims:

325.979           Additional Workers’ Compensation Billing Codes:

325.980           Role of a Physical Therapist in Electrodiagnostic Medicine:
                        SUNSET HOD 2014

325.981           Workers’ Compensation Claims Reimbursement:

325.982           Augmentation of Damages in Workers’ Compensation Arbitration Cases:

MSSNY will urge the Workers’ Compensation Board to amend its new streamlined appeals process, requiring that:  (1) If a carrier makes misrepresentations to the Board concerning timely and proper receipt of bills, such misrepresentation be considered an act of bad faith, subjecting the carrier to judgment of treble damages; and  (2) If a carrier fails to comply with a decision of the Board, such failure likewise be considered an act of bad faith, subjecting the carrier to judgment of treble damages(HOD 2000-275; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.983           Timely Authorizations of Procedures:

MSSNY will work with the appropriate agencies to require health care plans to provide adequate staffing/personnel to support the volume of incoming requests for authorizations via telephone in a timely fashion so that the waiting time for answering said calls does not exceed 5 to 10 minutes; MSSNY will work with the appropriate state agencies to require health care plans to accept requests for authorizations by electronic transmission in lieu of telephone requests, and MSSNY will work with the appropriate agencies to ensure that the response time to requests for authorization submitted via FAX not exceed 1 (one) business day.  (HOD 2000-259; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.984           Increase in Workers’ Compensation Arbitration Fees:
                         SUNSET HOD 2014

325.985            Timely Authorizations:

MSSNY will urge the New York State Department of Insurance and the New York State Workers Compensation Board to require insurance companies to provide a mechanism for authorizing requests for medical or surgical services in a timely fashion and that such an approval mechanism be available 24 hours a day, seven days a week.  A response to a requested authorization will be returned within 24 hours for in-hospital care and 7 days for outpatient care.  (HOD 1999-272; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.986           Hearing Outcomes in Workers’ Compensation Cases:

MSSNY will urge the New York State Workers’ Compensation Board to enforce its current regulation that deems the physician as “an interested party,” and requires the concurrent provision of notices of dates and time of pending hearings to physicians, claimants and representatives, as well as outcomes of any hearing of the Board within 15 days.  (HOD 1999-270; Reaffirmed HOD 2014)

325.987           Receipt of Bill in Workers’ Compensation Cases:

325.988           Repeal Of Increased Fees For Workers’ Compensation Arbitration:
                        SUNSET HOD 2014

325.989           Treating Physician Is A Party At Interest:

325.990           Payment Of Interest To Physicians By Health Insurers For Claims Exceeding 30 Days:

325.991           AMA Guide to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment:
(Sunset HOD 2016)

325.992           Work Hardening Program Ground Rules and Medical Fee Schedule:
                            SUNSET HOD 2014

325.993           Prescription of Lenses:

325.994           Billing for Interpretation of Plain Film X-Ray Examinations Performed on Emergency Department Patients Covered by Worker’s Compensation During “Off Hours
                           SUNSET HOD 2014

325.995           Uniform Fee Schedule in Workers’ Compensation/No-Fault Cases:
                           SUNSET HOD 2014

325.996           Medical Equipment and Supplies, Payment for:
                           Sunset HOD 2011

325.997           Differential Payment Based on Specialty Board Certification and Scope of Practice:
                           SUNSET HOD 2014

325.998           Physician Assistants, Payments for Services Under the Workers’ Compensation Program:
                            SUNSET HOD 2014

325.999           Fee Negotiations

At the request of the Chairman of the Workers Compensation Board, representatives of the Medical Society of the State of New York are authorized to provide input where feasible and when the situation arises, into the establishment of fees under Workers’ Compensation Law and to negotiate a fixed fee schedule.  MSSNY representatives are not restricted to the usual and customary concept. (HOD 1983-13; Reaffirmed HOD 2013)