Don Selzer - Governor-At-Large - November 2022
Advocacy and Health Policy Workgroup• Continuing their work on focusing on three main topics for the workgroup to do a “deep dive” on to find ways for Fellows to make positive, meaningful change:• Administrative Burden• Moral Injury / Burnout• Disparities and Inclusion
Liaison to the Coding & Reimbursement Committee • Since last report – 2 GSCRC meetings, 2 CPT meetings, 2 RUC meetings• 2023 Inpatient Prospective Payment System• Discussed DRG assignments – complex appendicitis with abscess, laparoscopic attempted CBDE• 2023 Medical Payment Fee Schedule Proposed Rule• Changes to E&M codes, hernia codes (CMS reduced wRVU for many of the new codes based on those submitted by RUC)• Webinars – 11/9/2022 at 8 pm EST on hernia codes; new inpatient and consult E&M codes pending date/time• On the horizon• Surgeon compensation in a value-based model• Impact of private equity and ACS interaction with Fellows in equity-owned practices
Health Policy and Advocacy Council• Currently:• 193 members• 47 states plus Puerto Rico and DC represented (missing AK, MT, VT)• 12 specialties, RAS and YFA represented• Two active Medicare Payment campaigns:• Targeted legislative effort, House: “Tell your Representative to co-sponsor legislation to stop the Medicare payment cuts”• Broader to House and Senate: “Tell Congress to stop the Medicare physician payment cuts!”• Goal is to have 3,500 actions by 1,000 participants by 10/28/2022• Look for upcoming improvements to the SurgeonsVoice action center• Upcoming plans to establish liaison roles with the Chapters to help strengthen the grassroots efforts
SurgeonsPAC• Participation continues to be low• Vital that all people who can participate, do so• Reminder – your personal politics are different from professional politics• Thank you all who participated in the Pillar Competition!!
Legislative Committee• Continue to review relevant legislation that is relevant to the Fellows of the ACS• Medicare cuts, MACRA/MIPS, Quality Initiatives• ACS/COT – first firearm regulation bill passed in decades, passed with bipartisan support• Tougher background checks• $15 billion for mental health programs, school security• “Boyfriend” loophole closed• Student Loan Debt:• Loan Deferment: REDI Act (defer while in residency/fellowship)• Loan Forgiveness: SPARC ACT (forgiveness for working in established rural areas)• Also active on the State Affairs front, tracking legislation across the country
Stephen Bodney - Governor-at-Large - April 2022
I do not have anything new from the Finance Committee since my last report in February. We have a meeting scheduled for May 4, 2022 (virtual); if there are any specific questions or concerns please let me know so I can bring them up.The College has had another successful Leadership and Advocacy Conference, held hybrid with some attendees in person and many others (such as myself) virtual. I have the role of Physician Assistance Officer for my hospital, so I found particularly interesting a session on The Surgeon as the Second Victim, which covered current thoughts and programs to help surgeons negotiate and survive the wash of emotions that occur after one of their patients has an adverse event.For the advocacy part, the usual suspects (Dr Welsh, Dr Selzer, and me) were able to meet virtually with both of our Senators and each of the Representatives from our districts. We focused on addressing long term stability of Medicare physician payment, Medicare Advantage plan prior authorization difficulties, and directing the HHS to study and designate Surgical Workforce Shortage areas. We also requested that prior authorized acts concerning Mission Zero, firearms injury research, and cancer research be fully funded. Finally, we asked for support of resolutions recognizing the 100th anniversaries of the ACS Committee on Trauma and Commission on Cancer. The members of Congress seemed engaged, informed, and supportive. Their healthcare legislative assistants were very well informed on the issues.I have attached two files (PDF). One briefly explains the process involved in getting something presented at the Clinical Congress. The other is a summary from Dr Guillamondegui, Secretary of the Board of Governors, of the important topics discussed at the Board of Regents meeting in February 2022.
Respectfully submitted,Stephen Bodney, MD, FACSsbodney@hchin.org812-972-0255