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  • 22 Mar 2024 7:04 AM | Anonymous

    George Lange, MD

    In 1914 the case of Schloendorff v Society of New York Hospital was the first landmark case that legally established the principle of patient autonomy.  Mary Schloendorff, the plaintiff, explicitly stated her wish not to undergo surgery yet was subjected to a hysterectomy to remove a fibroid tumor without her consent. 

    In 1983 the case of Nancy Cruzan led to the patient self-determination act of 1990 that became effective on December 1, 1991.  These legal precedents led to NHDD.

    What is NHDD you ask?  NHDD is National Healthcare Decisions Day is that day to raise awareness so people know they have the right to do advance care planning and create an advance directive (ACP &  AD) document.  This Day serves as reminder to those that have created an advance directive to make sure their wishes and goals of care have not changed.  If YOU have not yet completed an advance directive, now is a great time to do ACP and complete an AD.

    This Day was founded by Nathan Kottkamp a healthcare attorney in 2008.  Before there was NHDD there was “Virginia Advance Directive Day” in 2006 & 2007.  Then there was 100% hospital participation in Virginia.  Then in 2012 this effort was joined by The Conversation Project, TCP.  This is the 16th year of TCP.  This is to encourage the conversation.

    Why are advance care planning and advance directives important?  First and foremost, to get the care YOU want should YOU be unable to speak for yourself.  Next to reduce the burden to those that care about YOU.  This prevents them from guessing from what you would want done to following your goals of care.  To appoint someone who understands YOUR wishes and goals of treatment to be YOUR advocate for the care YOU want.  This person is known as your healthcare power of attorney.  This informed person should advocate for the care YOU want.  You then complete your advance directive, sign it and get it properly witnessed.  This can be completed with or without an attorney.  You keep the original, give a copy to your healthcare agent, a copy to your doctor or healthcare provider and anyone else you feel should have a copy.  Please keep a list of everyone you gave a copy to.  Your physician should have the AD put it in your electronic record.    It is also suggested YOU share this information with your family and friends so they know who YOU chose to be your healthcare agent.  By doing so it will spread the idea that ACP and AD is the adult thing to do.

    Key questions you should ask yourself and discuss before doing ACP & AD:

    • ·        What makes your life most meaningful?
    • ·        What does being “healthy” mean to you?
    • ·        What scares you most about being sick?
    • ·        What scares you most about dying?
    • ·        Have you had any experiences that have shaped the way you think about disability and/or death?

    All Americans are encouraged to ensure that their future healthcare choices are known and protected.  The process does not take long and it is free.  This is something I have done for myself and hope you will, too.

    For additional information please contact Advance Care Planning and Advance Directives by the Wisconsin Medical Society.  By going to “Wisconsin Medical Society” website which is:   www.wismed.org/advancedcareplanning.  There you can download free advance directive forms.  You can complete these forms and have them witnessed by non-family members.  The forms available at this website meet all the Wisconsin law requirements, are reported to be easier to read, many translations are available and are free.  This document does NOT need an attorney or to be notarized by a Notary in the State of Wisconsin. You may also access the websites for The Conversation Project and National Healthcare Decision Day from this website.

  • 22 Mar 2024 6:52 AM | Anonymous

    District 1 members met March 13 at the Iron Horse Hotel.  The meeting was led by D1 Co-Chairs, Drs Tracy McCall and Michelle Graham. Wisconsin Medical Society CEO, Mike Flesher, provided opening remarks regarding the Society and then turned the WMS update to Dr. Don Lee, the current WMS President.

    Mark Grapentine then provided an overview of advocacy efforts on behalf of WMS and then an overview of PolicyLink ensuring everyone can be familiar with the process for all members to provide feedback regarding policies being vetted by the Society on behalf of our members.  Check it out on our website HERE.

    Drs. Graham and McCall then awarded Dr. Lee a commemorative plaque on behalf of District 1 for representing the District within WMS leadership as the President of the Society.

    A huge congratulations was offered to Dr. Michelle Graham for being elected as our next President-Elect. That opened her seat as District 1 co-chair. Dr. David Galbis-Reig was nominated to fill her spot. Both Dr. David Galbis-Reig and Dr. Tracy McCall were unanimously elected as Co-chairs of District 1 for the upcoming year.

    Mark Ziety, on behalf of WisMed Financial, then provided an excellent review of taxes and ways physicians may be able to save, especially looking toward retirement. Check out his slides HERE.

    Elections for the WMS Board of Directors ensued.  Dr. McCall was voted to continue in her seat for another 3 years along with all of the other incumbents. There were 2 positions with 2-year open terms to be filled. Dr. Stephanie Strohbeen and Dr. David Galbis-Reig were both nominated and elected to fill those open terms.  We would like to congratulate the full D1 representation to the Board.

    Jim Lorence and Kelley Deibert provided a high-level membership update and reflected on the positive impact Marvin is having and how it can help support our physicians. Check out some information on Marvin HERE.

    Final announcements were provided including a reminder to sign up and join us at the Health & Harmony event on April 5-6th to celebrate the Wisconsin Medical Society Foundation as well as the inauguration of the next President of the Society, Dr. Cindy Hart, who was able to offer her support for the D1 meeting as well. For more information on the event and to sign up, click HERE.

  • 7 Mar 2024 8:39 AM | Anonymous

    Medical Society of Milwaukee members enjoyed a night out to watch the Milwaukee Admirals.  The night started with a pre-game meal at the MECCA Sports Bar before  watching the Admirals take on the Manitoba Moose at Panther Arena.  Although the game ended in 4-5 loss for the home team, a good time was had by all.  Watch for future member socials throughout the year.

  • 6 Feb 2024 9:03 AM | Anonymous

    Congratulations to Dr Clarence Chou for his recent re-appointment to the Wisconsin Medical Examining Board, and for his election to serve as the board’s Chairperson.  Dr Chou will serve on the Board through July 1, 2027.

  • 21 Nov 2023 8:43 AM | Anonymous

    Beyond The Bullet is a special report that sheds light on the bigger impact of gun violence in Milwaukee and introduces you to people working to disrupt the cycle of youth violence. This special report sheds light on the bigger impact of gun violence in Milwaukee and introduces you to people working to disrupt the cycle of youth violence.  The report first aired on TMJ4 News on November 16, 2023. Click here to see 'Beyond The Bullet'

  • 31 Oct 2023 10:15 AM | Anonymous

    Guest article by: George M. Lange, MD, FACP, Chair ACP & AD by the Wisconsin Medical Society

    National Injury Prevention Day (NIPD) was designated as November 18 in 2020. NIPD is designed to raise awareness about the burden of injury and violence and the need for change. It is dedicated to educating and empowering communities to make a difference in reducing injuries, deaths, and disabilities. Did you know that injuries and violence are the leading cause of death and disability for people ages one to 44? NIPD tries to reduce the burden you or others may encounter.

    What can you do for NIPD?

    • You can get or stay fit with regular exercise like walking for 30 minutes 3 to 5 times per week at a pace you’re comfortable with.

    • Use your seatbelt when you’re traveling in a motor vehicle. Drive safely. No distracted driving. Don’t drink or use drugs and drive.
    • When you ride a bike, wear a bike helmet.
    • If you own a gun, store it safely. Store the ammunition safely. Guns are the number one cause of death in people under 25 years of age.
    • Reduce your risk of falls with grab bars, no throw rugs or electric cords across walking areas and practice balance exercises available from your physician or on the internet. Good shoes and avoid slippery or cluttered surfaces.
    • Make sure your immunizations are all up to date.
    • Wash your hands after using the bathroom and before meals.
    • Don’t smoke.
    • Regular visits to your physician to screen for high blood pressure, high fats in your blood, obesity, chronic lung disease and diabetes. All of these, if untreated, will increase your risk of stroke, heart attack and premature death or disability. All of these are treatable with lifestyle changes and/or medications.
    • Drowning is the number one cause of death in children ages 1-4. Drowning can happen to anyone, anytime there is access to water. You can prevent or reduce this risk by having children get swimming lessons at an early age. Drowning happens in seconds and is often silent. Children need close and constant supervision when in or around water. Build fences that fully encloses the pool with self-closing and self-latching gates. Wear a life jacket. Learn CPR. Know the risks of natural waters. Avoid alcohol or drugs before or during swimming. Use the buddy system. Take additional precautions for medical conditions like seizures.

    It is strongly recommended you have a health care power of attorney.

    What’s that, you ask? This is a document you create with the help of a facilitator, trusted person, and witnesses. You may want to enlist the help of an attorney, but that’s optional. Health care power of attorney (POA) enables you to direct your health care even if the doctors can’t communicate with you. With this document you choose an adult person who is aware of your health care goals and wishes to speak for you. How does this relate to NIPD? Have you or someone you know had to make decisions concerning a loved one’s health care when they had to guess what the patient would want?

    Wisconsin is not a next of kin state, so the spouse is not automatically the one to make decisions about their spouse’s health care. Maybe your spouse has parents or siblings who would vie to be the health care agent. This happened with a patient suffering dementia who was under my care. The patient’s dementia was severe enough that she could not make her own medical decisions and never completed a health care POA. The husband and daughter both applied to be her guardian. The Judge requested their plans to provide for this patient who now needed a nursing home. The husband and daughter both submitted plans, and the Judge felt both parties had great plans for the patient. The Judge couldn’t decide who had the best plan and appointed a guardian ad litem. This person didn’t know the patient, her husband or daughter. The moral of this story is, “It’s never too early until it’s too late to complete a health care power of attorney.” This did cause strife between the patient’s husband and her daughter.

    NIPD also has recommendations for infant and child safety.

    NIPD advises that an infant sleeps alone on their back and is in a car seat when in a car. Toddlers should be in car seat and, when older, a booster seat. You should never leave a toddler or infant alone in the bath, bathroom or around a body of water. When the child is older, they should wear a bike helmet when riding a bike. All children should receive their immunizations at appropriate ages. If there is a gun in the house, it should be safely stored, and the ammunition stored separately. The above advice is not a complete list of what can be done to prevent injuries and death, contact your physician for additional suggestions.

    You can visit the NIPD website, sign your organization up as supporter, put a green light on your organization logo, take a picture and send it to National Injury Prevention Day. May you reduce your risk of injury, disability or death.

    Stay safe.

  • 21 Sep 2023 3:00 PM | Anonymous

    Ann Christiansen has been selected to serve as the Executive Director of the Milwaukee Health Care Partnership (MHCP), effective September 18, 2023.  In this capacity, Christiansen will assume responsibility as the chief strategist and operations manager for the MHCP, a public-private consortium dedicated to improving health care access and health equity for low-income and vulnerable populations in Milwaukee County.

    “Christiansen’s passion for the health and well-being of underserved populations and her extensive knowledge of health care and community health will further our collective mission to improve health care for low-income and vulnerable populations in Milwaukee County,” said Carrie Killoran, MHCP Board Chair and President – Greater Milwaukee PSA & Aurora St. Luke’s Medical Center. “We are confident her unique skillset, existing relationships, and demonstrated success in leading cross-sector collaboration will take the 16-year consortium to the next level.”

    With more than 20 years of leadership experience in public health and health care, Christiansen previously served as Vice President, Community Health-Wisconsin at Advocate Health. She also held earlier roles as Director/Health Officer at the North Shore Health Department and Assistant Director of the Medical College of Wisconsin Comprehensive Injury Center.

    “I am proud to be chosen to lead the Milwaukee Health Care Partnership and the dedicated, mission-driven members whose commitment has created a culture of success for over 15 years,” said Christiansen. “I am excited about what we can do collaboratively into the future to address the most pressing health care needs in our community.”

    Christiansen succeeds Joy Tapper, who served as Executive Director since 2007.

    More information about Ann Christiansen and the Milwaukee Health Care Partnership is available on the MHCP website at https://mkehcp.org.

    Established in 2007, the Milwaukee County Health Care Partnership is a public / private consortium dedicated to improving health care for low-income, underserved populations in Milwaukee County with the aim of improving health outcomes, advancing health equity and lowering the total cost of care. 


  • 20 Sep 2023 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Milwaukee County Executive David Crowley, Chief Health Policy Advisor Dr. Ben Weston, Department of Health & Human Services (DHHS) Executive Director Shakita LaGrant-McClain, and Behavioral Health Services (BHS) are announcing the placement of 11 Harm Reduction Vending Machines to reduce injury and death from overdose, at locations across the county, informed by data and need. The machines provide free access to harm reduction and prevention supplies, including fentanyl test strips, nasal naloxone, medication deactivation pouches, medication lock bags, and gun locks. According to the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA), harm reduction is an evidence-based practice to prevent death for people who use drugs. In 2022, there were 667 drug overdose deaths in Milwaukee County.

    “The opioid epidemic reaches communities in all parts of the county. It crosses all socio-economic, demographic and age ranges – there is no ‘type’ of person who succumbs to opioid addiction. Last year’s opioid settlement allow us to get to work right away funding projects that will help save lives and mitigate continued suffering for residents and their loved ones,” said County Executive Crowley. “Milwaukee County has been on the frontlines of this battle for years in the court system, and now we take the next step in bringing crucial resources to the doorstep of the communities that need them the most. By following the data and investing in the communities with the highest need, I am optimistic we will make our communities safer and healthier and help residents begin or continue their road to recovery.”

    Click Here for Vending Machine Locations

    Click Here to Read More

  • 10 Jul 2023 6:13 PM | Anonymous

    The Despesna pantry is holding a Health Fair on August 5 from 8:30am to 12:00pm.  Attendees will be able to check their blood pressure, blood sugar, cholesterol, along with receiving lead testing, family resources and naloxone training.  The pantry is located at 1615 S 22nd Street Milwaukee, Wisconsin 53204.

    Between 80 and 120 families are supported at the pantry, which is 90% Spanish speaking.  Volunteers are invited to help out.  The more we recruit, the more we can serve.  Looking for 20 volunteers for each Saturday. There is orientation information available for those who sign up.

    This is the link for people to sign up.

  • 28 Jun 2023 9:12 AM | Anonymous

    Doctor Day 2023 was a success with over 300 registered physicians, residents, and medical students!

    The group began their day at the beautiful Monona Terrace for a light breakfast and presentations on First Attendee Orientation, Communications/Media Training 101, Physician Wellness, and  a Legal Update. AMA President, Dr. Jesse Ehrenfeld, then joined as the keynote presenter. Following his presentation was a State Agency Roundtable and a Physicians Priority Issues Briefing. The group had a brief lunch and then headed down the street to the Capitol where physicians met with their legislators to discuss Doctor Day's priority issues: APRN Legislation and Extended Medicaid Coverage for New Moms. 

    The group reconvened at Madison's for some appetizers and drinks and to discuss how their visits went. Everyone was in good spirits and already looking forward to the next Wisconsin Doctor Day!

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