WCMS Newsletter: January Edition

The WCMS Newsletter is a monthly, electronic publication that highlights major physician issues and various community initiatives. Distribution is a unique benefit of WCMS Membership.

To view a PDF version, please click here: January 2019 Newsletter

January Newsletter Highlights



New Controlled Substance Prescribing Rules in Effect

Revisions to the Michigan Board of Pharmacy’s Controlled Substance rules were finalized and took effect immediately upon filing with the Office of the Great Seal on January 4, 2019.

There were three important changes to the rules; perhaps most notable of which is the identification of exceptions to the “bona fide prescriber-patient relationship” requirement in MCL 333.7303a.

The MSMS Legal Counsel has prepared a Legal Alert detailing the statutory bona fide prescriber-patient relationship requirement, the administrative rule exceptions, and suggested best practices for compliance.

·     R 338.3161a – Prescribers must be in a “bona fide prescriber-patient relationship” before prescribing a controlled substance listed in schedules 2 to 5. Exceptions allowing a prescriber to prescribe a controlled substance listed in schedules 2 to 5 without first establishing a bona fide prescriber-patient relationship are recognized in the following circumstances:

·     When a prescriber is providing on-call coverage or cross-coverage for another prescriber who is not available and has established a bona fide prescriber-patient relationship with the patient, as long as the prescriber or an individual licensed under article 15 of the act, reviews the patient’s relevant medical or clinical records, medical history, and any change in medical condition, and provides documentation in the patient’s medical record.

·     When the prescriber is following or modifying the orders of a prescriber who has established a bona fide prescriber-patient relationship with a hospital in-patient, hospice patient, or nursing care facility resident and provides documentation in the patient’s medical record.

·     When the prescriber is prescribing for a patient that has been admitted to a licensed nursing care facility or a hospice and completes the tasks required in subrule (2)(a) and (2)(b) in accordance with the nursing care facility or hospice admitting rules and provides documentation in the patient’s medical record.

·     When the prescriber is prescribing for a patient, and the tasks required in subrule (2)(a) and (2)(b) are complied with by an individual licensed under article 15 of the Public Health Code and the prescriber provides documentation in the patient’s medical record.

·     When the prescriber is treating a patient in a medical emergency, as defined in the rule.

In addition, prescribers need to be aware of two other important changes as follows:

·     R 338.3125 - Gabapentin has been added to the schedule 5 drug list as a controlled substance. As a result of this change, any prescribers prescribing gabapentin must be registered with the Michigan Automated Prescription System (MAPS). Prescribers must also obtain and review the patient’s MAPS report if prescribing a quantity that exceeds a 3-day supply, unless dispensed and administered to a patient within a hospital or freestanding surgical outpatient facility.

·     R 338.3135 - Licensees applying for or holding a controlled substance license, as well as delegates who prescribe, administer, or dispense on behalf of a licensee, will be required to complete a one-time opioid and other controlled substances awareness training. This requirement does not take effect until September 1, 2019, for initial licenses and the first renewal cycle after the promulgation of this rule for controlled substance license renewals. More details will be forthcoming from the MSMS Education Department as the compliance deadline nears.

A complete copy of the new Pharmacy – Controlled Substances Rule Set is available from the Michigan Department of Licensing and Regulatory Affairs. Please contact Stacey Hettiger, MSMS Director of Medical and Regulatory Policy, at 517-336-5766 for additional guidance.


WCMS & MSMS to Host Lawmaker Welcome Reception on February 7

Join us Thursday, February 7 from 7-8 PM at the WCMS Office as we invite local lawmakers and their staff to attend our welcome reception kicking-off Michigan's 100th Legislative Session.

WCMS physicians and elected officials will be treated to hors d'oeuvres and spirits, as well as a stimulating discussion on legislative priorities and partnership opportunities. Spouses and children are welcome.

To RSVP or learn more, please click here.



Free Physician Wellness Seminar on January 24

The Jackson County Medical Society is hosting a physician wellness seminar with Speaker Roger Smith, MD on Thursday, January 24. Dr. Smith is the Assistant Dean for Graduate Medical Education and Professor of Clinical Biological Sciences at the Charles E. Schmidt College of Medicine at Florida Atlantic University. He will be addressing the physical and mental collapse caused by overwork or stress that we are all at risk of suffering.

Where: Country Club of Jackson: 3135 Horton Rd., Jackson, MI 49203

Social Hour: 6:00 PM I Dinner: 6:30 PM I Presentation: 7:00 PM




Resolution Deadline on February 6 for County Consideration

The House of Delegates (HOD) is the official policy-making body of MSMS. Resolutions are the vehicles used to debate and determine the policies, priorities, and direction of MSMS. Last year's resolutions centered on marijuana usage, opioids and pain management, Maintenance of Certification (MOC), sexual abuse, and more.

Submit your resolution(s) by Wednesday, February 6 for support and guidance from the WCMS Executive Council. WCMS will submit all county resolutions to MSMS. The deadline for individual resolution submissions to MSMS is March 1 by 5:00 PM through this online link.

To learn more about HOD and how to write a resolution, please click here.




  • House of Delegates (HOD) Resolutions Deadline for EC Review
    Wednesday, Feb. 6 by 5:00 PM to WCMS electronically
  • HOD Resolution Consideration with WCMS Executive Council
    Thursday, Feb. 7 from 6:00-7:00 PM at WCMS
  • Lawmaker Welcome Reception
    Thursday, Feb. 7 from 7:00-8:00 PM at WCMS
  • Legislative Committee Meeting with Legislators
    Monday, February 18 from 7:30-8:45 AM at WCMS
  • District #14 Delegate Meeting: Lenawee, Livingston, Monroe, and Washtenaw Counties
    Thursday, April 25 beginning at 6:30 PM at WCMS
  • MSMS House of Delegates Meeting
    Saturday, May 4-Sunday, May 5 at the Radisson Hotel and Suites in Kalamazoo


Comments are closed.