Rheumatology Association of Iowa 2nd Annual Meeting

Cedar Rapids, IA US
March 11, 2016 to March 12, 2016

Click here to register (Closed)

If you have questions, please contact Lorene Harder at lorene@wjweiser.com or 847-264-5912.

Target Audience

Health care professionals involved with rheumatological care in the state of Iowa and the Midwest.

Educational Need

Spondyloarthritis is a frequently misdiagnosed or delayed diagnosis for patients leading to prolonged suffering. There are new guidelines to the diagnosis and treatment recently published. Rheumatologists need to be aware of the latest developments regarding this complex disease.

There have been several important changes in the ASAS Guidelines for the Use of Anti-TNF Therapy in Patients with Ankylosing Spondylitis and Psoriatic Arthritis. Rheumatologists need to be aware of these new guidelines in order to provide their patients with the best treatment options. 

Given the challenges of operating a financially sustainable medical practice in this economic environment, rheumatologists are particularly sensitive to the need to control costs of providing healthcare across a large population. State legislators are considering legislative proposals to limit step-therapy policies, as well as simply the prior authorization process, limit specialty tiers, regulate the substitution of biologic prescriptions, and other measures which will provide patients with access to quality care. The opportunity exists for rheumatologists to advocate for the best public policy with a unified voice and a mechanism to act. 

Today’s challenging health care environment is affecting the way physicians manage their practices, interfering with access to care and forcing them to make difficult decisions. Physicians seek to continue to provide quality care while contending with reduced Medicare reimbursement rates, medical claims, process errors and inefficiency, and legislative and regulatory changes. Rheumatologists need to be aware of emerging trends in practice management, payer reform, and administrative simplification of impact to the success of their practices and quality of patient care.


  1. Describe the prevalence and clinical spectrum of anklosing spondylitis and related forms of spondyloarthritis.
  2. Describe the early clinical manifestations of anklosing spondylitis and focus on achieving the goal of early diagnosis.
  3. Describe the complex management decisions of anklosing spondylitis and the role of NSAIDs and biologic therapy in the effective management.
  4. Describe recent advances in understanding the etiopathogenesis of spondyloarthropathies (SpA) that have led to potential new therapeutic avenues.
  5. Explain the complex management decisions in the effective management of SpA and PsA.
  6. Describe the new and upcoming therapies in SpA and PsA.
  7. Identify Medicare coverage for biologic agents.
  8. Examine the business, legal and regulatory forces impacting the delivery of medical care, with a particular emphasis on the impact on rheumatology.
  9. Analyze the key cost and strategic drivers demanding change in the health care industry.
  10. Explain legislative trends regarding practice management, payer reform, and medication access of impact to the medical community and rheumatologists throughout the country and related proposals in Iowa.
  11. Identify methods that may be utilized by rheumatologists and the medical community to advocate for political action, such as collaborating with provider and patient advocacy organizations and other stakeholders.
  12. Recognize how to effectively communicate with state legislators regarding their positions on state legislative proposals and what is in the best interests of their patients.


FridayMarch 11
5:10 pm

Keynote Lecture: Axial Spondylarthritis: New Concepts 
Muhammad A. Khan, MD FRCP MACP MACR

The field of spondyloarthritis (SpA) has seen remarkable progress within the last decade with breakthrough discoveries in epidemiology, genetics, and pathogenesis; development of new classification and monitoring criteria; and pioneering innovative therapies. Tumor necrosis factor (TNF) inhibitors received Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval for the treatment of ankylosing spondylitis (AS) in 2003, and in 2009 the concept of SpA was streamlined by new classification criteria from the Assessment of SpondyloArthritis international Society (ASAS) that included the terms “axial spondyloarthritis” (axSpA) to describe patients with predominant involvement of the axial skeleton. Data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) conducted between 2009 and 2010 indicate that the prevalence of axSpA in the US may be at least 0.9–1.4%. Apart from the well-known association of HLA–B27 with AS, several non–major histocompatibility complex genes were recently found to increase the risk of developing AS, and are also thought to play an important role in its pathogenesis. These discoveries are directly fueling translational research into development of novel therapies, such as IL-12/IL-23 and IL-17 inhibitors, to treat axial and peripheral SpA. Rheumatologists need to be aware of these new concepts and treatments in order to provide their patients with the best possible outcomes.

6 pm


SaturdayMarch 12
9:15 amPathogenesis and Genetics of SpA and PsA
Muhammad A. Khan, MD, FRCP, MACP, MACR
10:15 am

Healthcare Reform as it Affects the Rheumatologist
Herbert S. Baraf, MD, FACP, MACR

Rheumatologists need to be aware of the business, legal and regulatory forces impacting the delivery of medical care, particularly as it impacts rheumatology. In order to provide the best patient care, Rheumatologists need to understand the key cost and strategic drivers in the health care industry, including the federal health reform legislation, state choice regarding Medicaid expansion, the health insurance exchanges, and the adoption by the private sector of many of the innovations set forth in the federal health reform law, such as Accountable Care Organizations. Specifically, it is important that they understand their impact on the provision of health care, including industry consolidation, physician employment, the utilization of physician extenders and the role of urgent care centers and medical tourism. Additionally, the delivery mechanism used to this point to deliver patient care is rapidly being replaced by a new model, moving away from independent practice and fee for service, and toward health system employment and population health.

11:15 am


11:45 amAnnual Business Meeting
12:30 pm


1:30 pm

The Future of Medicare and Value Analysis for the Future
Emily L. Graham, RHIA, CCS-P

Rheumatologists working in Iowa State are focused on the delivery of care, and often cannot keep track of daily legislative and regulatory developments that will ultimately impact their provision of that care. It is important to keep rheumatologists informed on socioeconomic activity in Washington and their state capitols, focusing on how new initiatives will impact their patients and practice. State and Federal legislation directly affects the way that physicians practice and how their patients are able to receive services. During 2015, a number of significant issues fell under the purview of state and federal legislation that have direct impacts on the ways that medicine is handled in the state of Washington. Of special note are rules related to the prescription and dispensary of medications which fall under the purview of state control.

3 pm

Legislative and Advocacy Panel
Moderator: Jeff Okazaki, MBA

  • Iowa Medical Society - Dennis Tibben
  • Arthritis Foundation - Michele Guadalupe, MPH
  • American College of Rheumatology - Adam Cooper
5 pmAdjourn


Relevant to the content of this educational activity, the following individuals have no relevant conflict of interests with commercial interests to disclose.

  • Herbert Baraf, MD, FACP, MACR, Speaker
  • Bogdan Cherascu, MD, MS, Planning Committee
  • Adam Cooper, Panelist
  • Emily Graham, RHIA, CCS-P, Speaker
  • Michele Guadalupe, MPH, Panelist
  • Susan Jacobi, MD, Planning Committee
  • Jeff Okazaki, MBA, Moderator
  • David Staub, MD, Planning Committee
  • Dennis Tibben, Panelist

Relevant to the content of this educational activity, the following individuals a relevant conflict of interest with commercial interests to disclose.

  • Michael Brooks, MD, FACP, FACR, Activity Director and Speaker, receives grants/research Support from Pfizer, Merck, Janssen, Lilly, and Novartis.
  • Muhammad Khan, MD, FRCP, MACP, MACR, Speaker, is a speaker for AbbVie and a consultant for Novartis and Pfizer.

Educational Grants

No commercial interest provided financial support for this continuing education activity.

Continuing Education Credit

  • MD:  This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the Iowa Medical Society (IMS) through the joint providership of Des Moines University (DMU) and the Rheumatology Association of Iowa. DMU is accredited by IMS to provide continuing medical education for physicians. DMU designates this live activity for a maximum of 5.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.
  • DO: Des Moines University is accredited by the American Osteopathic Association (AOA) and approves this live activity for 5.5 AOA Category 2-A CME credit(s).
  • Other: This live activity is designated for 5.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credit(s)TM

Everyone in a position to control the content of this educational activity will disclose to the CME provider and to attendees all relevant financial relationships with any commercial interest. They will also disclose if any pharmaceuticals or medical procedures and devices discussed are investigational or unapproved for use by the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). Determination of educational content and the selection of speakers is the responsibility of the activity director. Firms providing financial support did not have input in these areas.

Course summary
Available credit: 
  • 5.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits
  • 5.50 AOA Category 2­A
  • 5.75 CE Contact Hour(s)
Course opens: 
Course expires: 
Event starts: 
03/11/2016 - 5:10pm CST
Event ends: 
03/12/2016 - 5:00pm CST
The Hotel at Kirkwood Center
7725 Kirkwood Blvd. S.W.
Cedar Rapids, IA 52404
United States

Available Credit

  • 5.75 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits
  • 5.50 AOA Category 2­A
  • 5.75 CE Contact Hour(s)


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