Legislative Conference 2019 Daily Updates
Thursday, May 16, 2019
Yesterday, at the conclusion of LEGISLATIVE CONFERENCE 2019, more than 650 ASA members heard from Rep. Kim Schrier, M.D. (R-WA-08), the only current female physician in the U.S. Congress and the first Democratic female physician ever elected. Dr. Schrier discussed the Medical for All proposal and current Congressional consideration of the proposal. Conference participants had the opportunity to share their perspective with the Congresswoman on the proposal, noting concerns about the mandated elimination of private insurance included in the proposal and the inadequacy of Medicare payment rates for anesthesia services – the “33% problem.”
Wednesday, May 15, 2019
On day two of LEGISLATIVE CONFERENCE 2019, there was robust discussion on addressing “surprise medical bills” at the federal level. ASA was commended by legislators for our proactive involvement on the issue and the input they received through multiple meetings with ASA physician leaders and ASA lobbying staff. As a leading proponent of surprise medical bill solutions, ASA has sought the development and enforcement of network adequacy requirements and the creation of an independent dispute resolutions process to resolve payment issues. ASA has opposed Medicare payment rates and mandated discounted insurance company-set payment rates as out-of-network payment benchmarks. The successful New York state law has been identified as a model for use at the federal level.
Tuesday, May 14, 2019
On the first day of LEGISLATIVE CONFERENCE 2019, ASA members received a briefing from Dr. Randy Clark regarding on-going efforts to fully exempt or opt-out the State of Colorado from Medicare anesthesia physician supervision standard. Dr. Clark instructed meeting participants on strategy and tactics to prepare for new nurse anesthetists-led lobbying campaigns seeking to weaken and dismantle team-based anesthesia care. The need for ASA and State Component members to fully engage in their state’s lobbying campaigns was highlighted. To date this year, ASA has worked with 7 ASA State Components to successful defeat similar nurse anesthetists campaigns. Meeting participants also received a briefing from Dr. Friedman of New Hampshire who is leading the New Hampshire Society of Anesthesiologists’ efforts to rescind a New Hampshire Board of Nursing policy statement approving the professional descriptor “nurse anesthesiologist.” Strengthening state health care provider truth and advertising and professional identification laws is now a priority for many ASA State Components.
Monday, May 13, 2019
LEGISLATIVE CONFERENCE 2019 kicks off today with more than 600 members of the American Society of Anesthesiologists traveling to Washington, D.C. to learn about the top issues facing the specialty.
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