Dear FCACC Chapter Members:
Each year the ACC asks chapters to publish a 'year in review' called the State of the State Report. I will admit that I would have never thought we would be submitting a document that addressed a pandemic…that happened in our backyard. I hope you read our accomplishments from this past year below and can reflect on what we’ve been through this last year and the hope that we have today - roughly one year later. Thank you for being a part of the chapter, the CV community, and coming together in this past tumultuous year. Let’s remain diligent, but it is invigorating to start to see the light at the end of the tunnel.
David Perloff, MD, FCACC
President, Florida Chapter ACC
2020 State of the State Report
In July, the Florida Board of Pharmacy’s (BOP) rule workshop discussed two rules for implementing HB 389 which expands the way pharmacists treat patients based upon “collaborative agreements” with physicians. The chapter had successfully educated lawmakers during the session to remove passages in the proposed law specifically indicating cardiac conditions, but an overall clause in the final bill allowed several members of BOP to propose including “heart failure” and “heart disease” to the list of chronic conditions that can be treated by pharmacists under the agreements.
The chapter opposed this inclusion and took steps to prevent it including hiring additional lawyers, speaking at four BOP meetings and mounting an all-out effort to explain and educate the BOP about the complex nature of cardiac disease. With FCACC in the lead, we sought support from our CVTeam members (and included them in the leadership of this effort) and other FL physician groups by explaining the exact politics and clinical reasoning (or lack of clinical reasoning) behind the efforts of others.
The BOP has not included cardiac disease in the current rules to date. FCACC continues vigilance on this issue and will be present at all rule making sessions of the BOP and is educating our new lawmakers on the complexity of care. The number of hours members took to do research, strategize and think through the implication on patients was staggering. It was an all-out effort from all parts of the chapter.
1. Increase Relevance as the CV Professional Home (in particular, highlight any activity/ies that advance diversity and inclusivity, and/or member wellness)
During the first wave of COVID the chapter increased communications to members about the COVID hub and other resources available. Continual updates to the website were made to make information up-to-date.
Prior to March, the chapter held a Fly-in to Tallahassee to meet our lawmakers and educate them on cardiac care. Fourteen members from all over the state were in attendance, including CVTeam members. These meetings turned out to be pivotal when in July the aforementioned BOP issue came up. FCACC members and leaders met also with regulators, hosted a dinner for the Florida Medical Association and had a tour of the Governor’s mansion.
The FCACC is a sponsoring chapter of the WIC SE Region Zoom Education as it pivoted from in-person to online networking and education.
The next year will offer a new set of educational for inclusion and diversity topics.
2. Generate and Deliver Actionable Knowledge
The Flagship Annual Meeting was transformed into a “Week of FCACC Education” with each day of the business week presenting a plenary session in the morning and pre-recorded material available to increase CEU credits. Our CVTeam attended in record numbers, and the poster presentations included residents and, for the first time, PhD and post-doctoral fellows with cardiac research.
Back in the before times, the chapter held an in-person meeting to specifically address the educational and networking needs of different sections of the chapter. CVTeam, WIC, Cardio-oncology and FITs all received a day of programming and time to rejuvenate and connect in January 2020.
Online platforms have opened up quick, targeted opportunities for education and non-clinical learning topics.
3. Advance Quality, Equity, and Value of CV Care
The Chapter’s Cardio-oncology Committee had their research on the impact of COVID-19 on cardio-oncology care published in the peer-reviewed journal Cardio-Oncology.
Florida Quality Improvement in Cardiology, (FL-QUIC) is an initiative of the chapter to recognize efforts of cardiovascular teams around the state who are working hard to improve the quality of care they deliver. We accept nominations for projects that include care coordination, to process improvements, to reducing unnecessary tests. A panel of independent judges selects the best projects; in 2020 a record number were submitted and $5000 in prizes was awarded.
The Board of the Chapter put out a call for funding for projects that needed seed money to be launched and choose two projects from members that will focus on non-traditional studies: nutritional impacts on CV disease and the impact on caregivers after TAVR.
FCACC leaders in the cardio-oncology arena have the opportunity to assist other states to build a network of leaders in this emerging field.
FL-QUIC can grow its impact by having winners of the award apply their abstracts for inclusion in the ACC CV Summit and other areas for dissemination.
4. Ensure Organizational Growth and Sustainability
The Board went through an election cycle adding new members with an eye to inclusion.
The number of positions in the FIT committee were increased as was the frequency of regularly scheduled calls.
In light of upcoming discouraging information about member renewals the chapter is in a positive place with its investment accounts to perform at a high level and continue to educate the BOP about including cardiac care in the final rule.
OpportunitiesWe have the opportunity in 2021 to prove to the membership we are more relevant than ever in light of the COVID-19 pandemic by being nimble and filling niches that are needed in education, sharing of information and connecting them to each other.