June 13, 2017
ASA Shares Priorities for Health System Reform with Senate Finance Committee
On Friday, June 9, the American Society of Anesthesiologists shared its priorities for health system reforms with the Senate Finance Committee in response to a request for input. In the letter, ASA detailed how health reform legislation would impact patients, communities, and the practice of anesthesiology.
In the letter, ASA agrees with the Committee that reforms should be patient-focused and address costs of care, although ASA also expresses serious concerns about proposals that would adversely impact patient access to insurance. ASA believes that access to anesthesia and pain management services is only achievable by preserving coverage of appropriate essential benefits standards, including coverage for physician and hospital services, maternity care, and prescription medications. Additionally, ASA encouraged the Committee to ensure that any health care reform legislation does not interfere with patients’ access to physician-led care, regardless of location. Lastly, although it may not be possible to include in health care reform legislation, ASA urged the Committee to take steps to repeal the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB).
The Senate Finance Committee requested input on health system reforms as it continues to draft legislation to repeal and replace the Affordable Care Act. This legislation would need to pass the Senate and then be reconciled with the American Health Care Act, repeal legislation that passed in the House of Representatives last month before being sent to the President for signature.
Read a full copy of ASA’s letter to the Senate Finance Committee here.
Find more information about health care reform here.