ACP on the State of the Nation's Health Care

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February 22, 2013
In this issue
» ACP Puts Forth Two-Pronged Approach for Fixing U.S. Health Care Woes

» Congress Gets New Bill to Repeal the Medicare Payment Formula

» President's State of the Union Address Notes a Need for Entitlement Reforms

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 and to access the ACP Advocate archives, go to

Welcome to The ACP Advocate

On Wednesday I joined ACP’s President Dr. Bronson in Cleveland to deliver ACP’s annual briefing on the State of the Nation’s Health Care.  We used this opportunity to implore legislators and other stakeholders to address what we feel are some of the most important changes that need to be made to make the health care system more effective and protect the patient-physician relationship.  Check out the article for more about what we had to say.

Today’s second story brings you up-to-date on some new legislation out of Capitol Hill to address the physician payment problems caused by Medicare’s Sustainable Growth Rate formula.  The Chair-Elect of our Board of Regents, Dr. Charles Cutler was on hand at the press conference announcing this legislation to lend ACP’s support.  Read the article for more details about what the legislation proposes.

Finally, our last story today updates you on what President Obama did, and more prominently didn’t, have to say about health care in his State of the Union address.  We’ll have to watch over the course of the year to see what happens in relation to Medicare and entitlement reform, but I’m glad to see that he addressed the reforms in terms of what improvements we can make to the system that might result in cost savings.

For more coverage of what's happening in Washington take a look at my award-winning blog, The ACP Advocate Blog by Bob Doherty. You can also follow me on Twitter @BobDohertyACP.

As always, 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 Puts Forth Two-Pronged Approach for Fixing U.S. Health Care Woes
  Suggested reforms to improve access and quality must also ease hassled, harried lives of physicians, ACP president says

Ongoing attacks on the patient-physician relationship threaten to halt progress toward more effective and equitable health care, top officials of the American College of Physicians warned in their annual assessment of the country's heal... » Click to read the full article

» Congress Gets New Bill to Repeal the Medicare Payment Formula
  ACP supports bipartisan effort as "the right thing to do"

The American College of Physicians has come out in support of a new bipartisan effort in Congress to repeal the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate.

U.S. Reps. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.) and Joe Heck, D.O. (R-Nev.) introduced legis... » Click to read the full article

» President's State of the Union Address Notes a Need for Entitlement Reforms
  ACP executive finds encouragement in emphasis on savings from improvements rather than cuts

Health care did not receive much mention in President Obama's State of the Union address Feb. 12, but what was said warrants close attention, said Bob Doherty, the American College of Physicians' senior vice president for governmental a... » Click to read the full article

In focus
PCORI Now Accepting Applications
The Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute (PCORI) is accepting applications for their current Advisory Panels until Monday, March 4. The panels on Addressing Disparities; Assessment of Prevention, Diagnosis, and Treatment Options; Improving Healthcare Systems; and Patient Engagement, will assist PCORI to identify research priorities and refine their research project agenda. Applications are due by 5 pm Eastern Time on March 4, and must be submitted online.

Contact Your State Medicaid Office About Enhanced Primary Care Payments
In 2013 primary care and related specialtiy physicians will see an increase in their Medcaid payment to make them at least equivalent to payments under Medicare. In order to ensure that you receive this increase you must contact your state Medicaid office. Each state has a different timeline and procedure to fulfill an “attestation” requirement to receive the payment increases and you need to contact your state to determine exactly what you need to do. Additional information about the enhanced payments is on the College website.

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