Updated Guide for Physicians on the Affordable Care Act

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March 08, 2013
In this issue
» Revised ACP Guide Reflects Changes to Affordable Care Act

» GOP Congressmen Join Effort to Change Medicare Payment System

» Federal Government Sets Insurance Standards for Core Benefits

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 www.acponline.org/advocacy.

Welcome to The ACP Advocate

Today’s first story shares with you an updated resource we have for you about the health care reform law.  An Internist’s Practical Guide to Understanding Health System Reform is now available on the Advocacy section of our website.  Read the story to find out what has been updated, and to find a link to the Guide.

Our second story today is more promising news for you on the SGR.  The House Ways and Means Committee and Energy and Commerce Committee have been working on joint framework for legislation that would repeal the dysfunctional SGR formula and replace it with a new payment system.  While it’s still early in the year and anything could happen, I think this is the best hope we’ve had in a long time for ending the recurring SGR nightmare.  Take a look at the story for more details about what is being discussed.

And, our last story for today lets you know about new insurance regulations that were recently released.  The rules, a result of the ACA, set the standards for what the “essential health benefits” are that must be included in any health insurance as of next year.  Check out the article for more about what the regulations say.

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: TheACPAdvocate@acponline.org.

Yours truly,

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

In the news
» Revised ACP Guide Reflects Changes to Affordable Care Act
  Publication showcases what internists need to know in coming years

The American College of Physicians has released an updated version of An Internist's Practical Guide to Understanding Health System Reform, including revisions that offer an up-to-the-minute understanding of how the Affordable Ca... » Click to read the full article

» GOP Congressmen Join Effort to Change Medicare Payment System
  ACP executive expresses cautious optimism that lawmakers will find bipartisan agreement

Two Michigan Republicans who chair committees in the U.S. House of Representatives have come forward with a framework for repealing the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate, providing renewed hope that movement on the issue can take place d... » Click to read the full article

» Federal Government Sets Insurance Standards for Core Benefits
  New regulations provide framework for states' decisions on what must be covered

Adding clarity to the requirement that nearly all U.S. residents must have health insurance next year, the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services has issued regulations on just what must be included in that coverage, known as "ess... » Click to read the full article

In focus
Final Rule Issued on "Sunshine Act"
On Feb. 26, CMS issued the final rule on the Physician Payment Sunshine Act that is designed to increase transparency of physician industry relations. The Act requires drug and device manufacturers to report payments made to physicians. Learn more about the regualtion in a side-by-side comparison of the new rule to ACP policy.

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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