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Pulse Newsletter, Spring 2018
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Welcome to the new WAPA Pulse!
WAPA Pulse | Spring Issue
June 2018


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 A pulse is a powerful and rhythmic beat, straight from the heart. We felt that our newsletter should feel the same. We hope you like the refreshed layout and content in WAPA Pulse. Have feedback? 

Clinical Pearls

The American Heart Association (AHA) has created new tools for providers. Clinics and healthcare systems can also receive recognition for achieving at least 70% hypertension control. AHA Sr. Community Health Director Tim Nikolai said a number of clinics and systems in Wisconsin earned recognition last year, adding, “We are excited to keep that momentum going.”

Target: BP contains resources for healthcare providers related to hypertension control, including: interactive provider tools and calculators, fact sheets, podcasts, webinars, videos and handouts you can give your patients.

Check, Change, Control® focuses on self-monitoring of blood pressure and can be tool to help patients keep track of their BP readings while connecting them to resources. Providers can “host” the tool, giving caregivers access to aggregate data and/or ability to see patient readings with their consent. 

Check, Change, Control Cholesterol® is similar to Target: BP but with an emphasis on use of the ASCVD Risk Calculator and statin use for cholesterol management. Clinics/systems can receive recognition based on their use of the risk calculator and/or sharing of MIPS 438 data.

Advocacy Central

ANNOUNCEMENT: We need more PAs to meet with their representatives this summer. We want you to educate lawmakers on what PAs do here in Wisconsin and ask them to modernize state laws so you can better care for your patients. If you can help, email Melissa Graham at Pictured: Tara Streit, PA-C, and Rep. Lisa Subeck (D-78). 

WAPA Legislative Update, Spring 2018

By Paige Scobee and R.J. Pirlot, JD 
The Hamilton Consulting Group

The Wisconsin legislature has wrapped up the 2017-18 session after passing 367 new pieces of legislation. Of interest to WAPA members, Gov. Scott Walker signed into law a bill changing the statutory renewal date for physician assistant licenses from March 1 of each odd-numbered year to March 1 of each even-numbered year to align the statutes with what has been state practice; a bill allowing PAs to practice under the supervision of a podiatrist; and opioid abuse prevention legislation that enshrines in statutes the ability of a PA to prescribe buprenorphine.

With session wrapped up, legislators are shifting their focus to legislative study committees, the 2018 elections and preparation for bills and budget items for the upcoming 2019-20 session. Notable to WAPA members, the Joint Legislative Council will form a study committee to explore the use of direct primary care in Wisconsin. Groups like the Governor’s Task Force on Opioid Abuse will also continue to meet throughout the summer.

Although legislators won’t be passing bills for the next few months, WAPA will be working in the interim to prepare our optimal team practice legislation before next session begins. WAPA members will meet with stakeholders and senators and representatives in their districts around the state to build support for modernizing Wisconsin’s PA laws.

R.J. Pirlot, JD

WAPA Lobbyist
Hamilton Consulting Group

R.J. has over twenty years of experience in government and regulatory affairs, including experience with the Public Service Commission of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Manufacturers & Commerce and the Wisconsin Medical Society. He has also worked as policy director and legal counsel for the Office of the Wisconsin Assembly Speaker, under Republican Scott Jensen.

We are WAPA

WAPA representing PAs in Wisconsin at AAPA 2019.

Pictured here are WAPA delegates representing Wisconsin at AAPA 2019.

What is it like to represent every single PA in Wisconsin on a national stage? Hear directly from delegate Julie Doyle, MPAS, PA-C, DFAAPA, who represented WAPA at the AAPA House of Delgates meeting. The Wisconsin group instrumental in the following resolutions: 

  • Co-author of B-14 to contract with an independent marketing and PR firm to investigate the creation of a new profession title for physician assistants (the resolution was passed). A report will be delivered to AAPA’s House of Delegates in May 2019.
  • Testified against B-15, an amendment that could weaken optimal team practice policies (the amendment was rejected).


For the PA Today

New resources on! We are working hard to empower PAs to practice to their full license, education and training. If you are a PA, you can read our frequently asked practice questions and submit questions of your own. Questions will be answered by the WAPA's Professional Practice Committee.

Q: What role do PAs play in reporting threats to students or schools?
A: Newly updated state statutes require healthcare providers, including PAs, to report threats to students or schools. PAs should notify a law enforcement agency immediately if they believe there is a serious and imminent threat to the health or safety of a student, school employee, or the public. Moreover, any person or institution reporting a threat, in good faith, shall have immunity from any liability, civil or criminal, that results by reason of the action.

Q: I heard PAs can now work as part of podiatrist led teams. What changed?
A: Act 227 was signed into law on April 3, 2018. This bill changes several sections of Wisconsin statute to allow PAs to be supervised by podiatrists. It also redefines a Physician Assistant in Wisconsin to mean “an individual licensed by the medical examining board to provide medical care with physician supervision and direction or to practice podiatry with podiatrist supervision and direction.” We have more exciting questions related to Podiatry on our website, click here to read more. 

PAs Who Hustle Hard

PAs are doing good things in the community every day. If you want to be featured in the next newsletter, send your stories and pictures to Melissa Graham at

Marquette University students Sophia O’Bryan and Cara Moses received a Be the Change grant from National Commission on Certification of Physician Assistants Health Foundation. They used their funding to complete a master’s capstone project with the Milwaukee Christian Center (MCC), developing much needed emergency protocols, training staff in basic life support and meeting with the residents. They also helped MCC acquire an automated external defibrillator unit.
“As a student, it is easy to get overwhelmed by everything you are learning. So, to be able to go out into the community, work with these amazing volunteers, and demonstrate what you’ve learned – you discover you know much more than you give yourself credit for. It’s very rewarding,” O’Bryan said.

Student Section

Upcoming Events

Registration is Open for the Great Midwestern Medical Conference! 

Register Now for the Great Midwestern Medical Conference 
Build your professional network, earn valuable CME, improve your suturing or biopsy skills, learn about new treatments and stay up-to-date on the legislative issues that impact your practice -- all at one conference -- the Great Midwestern Medical Conference.
We’ve expanded our CME program across two tracks. The wide range of topics includes lab and radiology interpretation, pediatrics, orthopedics, cardiovascular health and more. We are also tackling controversial issues, like marijuana use and gender affirming care.
Join us October 10-12 at the Osthoff Resort in Elkhart Lake. Register today!
CME Credits: AAPA Category 1 CME. This activity is under review for credit approval. We have applied for 34 total hours of CME with a maximum of 18 credits per individual.
New! Suturing and Skin Biopsy Workshops
Hone your skin biopsy and/or suturing skills from expert PAs in dermatology, facial plastics and emergency medicine. Hands-on workshops will be available at the Great Midwestern Medical Conference on Thursday, October 11. Space is limited. While there is an additional fee to cover the extra costs of the workshop, you will take home all materials (including the skin kit), to further practice your skills. You must have one day registration or full conference registration to sign up for one ($70) or both ($110) of the workshops. 

Register Today for the Great Midwestern Medical Conference!
Leadership and Advocacy Summit
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