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Showing 9 reactions

  • commented 2017-05-30 10:43:26 -0400
    Please oppose H.441 livestock bill that would create an unaccountable board for Ma. farm animals. Thank you
  • commented 2017-05-22 13:28:46 -0400
    Hello Senator Fattman. My name is Andre Markarian, I am a resident of Sutton and an ER doctor in Massachusetts. I am contacting you to urge you to reject EHS #527, a very poorly drafted amendment that would establish a complicated system for reimbursement of Out of Network physicians based on non-transparent contracted rates. In addition, it would require patients to receive an “Acknowledgment of network status effect” which would be completely unworkable in ER’s, and would empower the Health Policy Commission to set rates for non-contracted emergency and non-emergency services every five years. As an ER doc, I am part of the only specialty that can never turn away or refuse to see any patient (because of legislation referred to as EMTLA), regardless of insurance status or ability to pay for services. This important role as the state’s health safety net separates Emergency Medicine from all other specialties in terms of negotiating with health insurers and leaves carriers with little incentive to offer fair reimbursement to emergency providers, resulting in even further narrowing of networks and jeopardizing patient access to emergency care. My job is a very difficult job, as you can probably imagine, and uniquely different from other health care providers. I feel ER doctors should not be subject to the same “cookie cutter” reimbursement rules. This amendment would strip negotiating power from ER physicians and allow the insurers and the Health Policy Commission to determine “appropriate” reimbursement. Medicare rates (which also forms part of the basis of reimbursement in EHS#527) were never intended to become the foundation for “fair” reimbursement. Medicare rates have no relationship to fair market value or the actual cost required to provide emergency medical care. To implement Medicare reimbursement, or even a system based on a modicum reimbursement factor above Medicare rates, would bankrupt many emergency practices and departments across Massachusetts, potentially including my own at Milford Regional Medical Center. It would be especially harmful to community and critical access hospitals, which would be forced to decide between reducing emergency medical staff and resources, subsidizing their emergency departments despite already razor thin margins or closing emergency departments all-together.

    Emergency physicians support implementing the Connecticut model for reimbursement of out-of-network providers, which requires the use of an independent and transparent charge database, such as the Fair Health Database to determine usual, customary and reasonable rates, and which would eliminate high charge outliers by setting the rate at the 80th percentile. Although EHS#527 does make reference to the 80th percentile of a benchmarking database maintained by the Division of Insurance working in conjunction with the HPC and CHIA, it does NOT specify that the database be independent, transparent, and non-affiliated with any Insurance Carrier.

    Please be very sensitive to this issue and protect me and my Emergency Medicine colleagues by voting against EHS#527. Thank you for your kind attention in this matter.
  • commented 2017-05-10 10:41:05 -0400
    Hi Ryan. A couple of months ago at the Oxford, Ma. public library I met with one of your aides and brought up my ongoing concern with a public highway safety problem here in Webster. As you know from having lived in Webster, the intersection of Route#16 (Gore Road), Sutton Road (adjacent to Mapre Ins.) and the off ramp from Route#395-North is an extremely dangerous area. There are no traffic lights to control traffic. Attempting to make a turn against the flow of traffic, especially during AM and PM commutes is risky.


    I asked your aide to check with the Webster Police Dept. and the Mass. State Police for a history of accidents occurring at this intersection. Has anyone looked into this situation or done a traffic study as yet? There is another problem situation right near this one at the end of the exit#2 ramp for 395-South where it meets Gore Road, Route#16. There is no light there and you cannot make a left hand turn there against oncoming traffic without difficulty. This spot has a long history of accidents as well.


    Your response to this public safety issue will be appreciated.


    Thank You,


    Bob Beaumont
  • followed this page 2017-03-20 08:28:02 -0400
  • commented 2017-03-20 08:23:09 -0400
    Hi Ryan,


    I am writing you to ask you to support the recently filed bill under the title Docket 2047 (Docket 3432 in the House). This bill will remove Roxbury Community College from control of the Reggie Lewis Track and Field Athletic Center. The Center will then be and independent state facility, with a new board of trustees controlling it. We need a group that has a vision that this facility is a state wide facility for use by the high school track and field community during the Winter season. This was one of the reasons that the Center was created. The present governing group seems to have lost that vision. They have also seemed to lose the vision that the local community should be involved in the center throughout the year. Please support this effort. Thank you for your time and and consideration.
  • commented 2017-03-15 18:26:23 -0400
    Dear Senator Fattman,


    I appreciate the work you are doing on issues for the Blackstone Valley. I understand you are a member of the Committee that is reviewing S. 482 on large scale soil importation projects. I wanted to find out more about the purpose of this bill. It seems to be designed to reduce the ability of local governments to protect the health and safety of their residents from projects located in other parts of the state who wish to reduce their costs in moving construction soils. As you know, the Blackstone Valley shares a single water source in its aquifer. If chemical plumes begin to impact the aquifer there is no other water source available to our towns. The current projects there have failed their last two inspections with loads returned for materials that were not supposed to have been moved to those sites. The developers have also been unable to meet their statutory responsibilities to show those materials are within the legal limits, where those apply, because of inadequate laboratory facilities. I understand the strong desire of Boston-based developers to reduce their constructions costs and accelerate large-scale projects. I believe they can find adequate low-risk locations to dump their waste products outside of areas directly over critical water supplies that cannot be replaced.


    I would appreciate any feedback you can provide on these issues and any clarifications you can provide on this proposal.


    Kind regards,


    Susan Franz

    Uxbridge, MA
  • commented 2017-01-17 13:36:55 -0500
    Senator Fattman, I’ll be brief because I know your time is valuable. We have only met once and you have no reason to remember me. I recently served as Michael Cowett’s campaign treasurer in his recent run for state representative. At any rate, I am a 50-year-old business professional who recently began working on my second Masters degree at Johns Hopkins (in Government). This term I have a class entitled “State Politics: A Year in the Life.” I do not know if this is at all possible but I would love the opportunity to spend a day visiting you and shadowing you in your work. I have no other motive than to learn. I realize this request is probably impossible (not to mention inconvenient for you) but I thought I would ask. Keep up the good work there. Proud of you and all you do for the people of our state.
  • commented 2017-01-10 12:52:48 -0500
  • commented 2017-01-10 12:52:48 -0500