ACP details State of the Nation's Health Care

The ACP Advocate

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February 06, 2009
In this issue
» ACP Urges Primary Care Expansion

» Will Primary-Care Workforce Expansion Fly in Washington?

» SCHIP Expansion Will Help an Additional 3-to-4 Million Children

About this newsletter

The ACP Advocate is an e-newsletter, edited by the College's Washington, DC governmental affairs division, created to provide you, our members, with succinct news about public policy issues affecting internal medicine and patient care. To learn more about ACP's Advocacy, go to

Welcome to The ACP Advocate.

On Monday ACP released our priorities for health care reform this year.  In our annual State of the Nation’s Health Care briefing we called on President Obama and Congress to take steps to improve health care by recognizing that primary care is the best medicine for better health and lower costs.

In this issue you’ll find coverage of our recommendations, as well as coverage of how likely we are to see movement toward expanding the primary care workforce.  Also, we tell you about the new bill that has passed to expand the State Children’s Health Insurance Program.

For more on health care reform and other health policy issues, check out my blog, The ACP Advocate Blog by Bob Doherty .  I hope you’ll join me over the course of this year, as I discuss ACP’s efforts in guiding health care reform.

Please send your feedback and suggestions on this newsletter to:

Yours truly,

Bob Doherty
Senior Vice President
Governmental Affairs and Public Policy
American College of Physicians

In the news
» ACP Urges Primary Care Expansion
  Leaders outline policies to increase workforce capacity

HealthDay News -- The American College of Physicians is calling on the U.S. Congress and the Obama administration to provide access to care for all and provide every American with access to a primary care physician.

Both initiatives must be pursued simultaneously, ACP officials stress, cautioning that efforts to expand health coverage will falter unless the doctor shortage is reverse... » Click to read the full article

» Will Primary-Care Workforce Expansion Fly in Washington?
  Competing interests and nation's economic downturn present obstacles

HealthDay News -- Expanding America's primary-care workforce is a goal that many physician organizations and health policy experts share. The conflict arises when primary-care expansions are paid for out of the pockets of other specialties.

"If you do it in a zero sum game, there's no question that there's going to be a huge fight," said Dr. Bruce S. Auerbach, president of the Massachusett... » Click to read the full article

» SCHIP Expansion Will Help an Additional 3-to-4 Million Children

HealthDay News -- With President Obama's signature, a bill that expands the State Children's Health Insurance Program (SCHIP) has become law, increasing the number of poor children who could qualify for medical care by up to 4 million.

Obama signed the measure Feb. 4, after it had passed in the House of Representatives by a vote of 290-135. The new law allocates an additional $32.8 billion over... » Click to read the full article

In focus
Daschle Withdraws Nomination for Secretary of HHS
On Tuesday, Feb. 3, Tom Daschle withdrew his nomination for Secretary of the Department of Health and Human Services. His exit is the result of tax problems that were revealed over the weekend. The former Senate majority leader failed to pay over $100,000 in federal taxes. His confirmation hearing had been scheduled for Feb. 10. President Obama has yet to announce a replacement nominee.

Free E-prescribing webinar available from ACP
An archived version of a webinar about the new Medicare E-Prescribing Incentive program is now available on ACP’s website. The presentation provides an overview of the program and advice from a practicing physician about the use of e-prescribing in the office setting. In addition to the webinar the website has other resources (available here)that could help you participate in the new incentive program and earn an extra 2% from Medicare this year.

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