2013 AANS Annual Report - page 30

tilizing advocacy, policy development and public relations, the AANS/CNS Washington Committee and
Washington Office worked vociferously to defend and protect the ability of neurosurgeons to practice
medicine freely, and help to ensure the continued advancement of the specialty of neurological
surgery. These efforts have played a fundamental role in a number of health-policy developments, including
repealing the Independent Payment Advisory Board (IPAB), pushing for medical-liability reform, advocating for
adequate reimbursement and streamlining quality-improvement initiatives. This work is critical, as organized
neurosurgery’s Washington Office continues to be at the forefront of the health-policy debates and constantly
makes it clear to the policymakers and other key influencers in our nation’s capital of our core mission: dedication
to advancing the specialty of neurological surgery in order to promote the highest quality of patient care and
create a system that offers greater value tomorrow than it does today.
Legislative Priorities
Virtually every day that Congress is in session, Washington Office staff are on Capitol
Hill advocating on behalf of neurosurgery on several key fronts, including adequate
reimbursement, repeal of the IPAB, Pay for Performance (P4P), medical-liability
reform, Medicare modernization, emergency call requirements, graduate medical
education and surgical innovation. In this role, the AANS interacts frequently with
members of Congress, key government entities including the Centers for Medicare &
Medicaid Services (CMS), and third-party payers, as well as collaborating with other
state and national medical associations.
With the Affordable Care Act (ACA) now the law of the land, the Washington Committee/
Washington Office continues to have a prominent voice in shaping key legislative
alternatives and repeal efforts relating to the ACA. Organized neurosurgery strongly
supports improving our nation’s health-care system; however, we firmly believe that
the ACA goes far beyond that which is necessary to fix what is broken with the current
health-care system. Rather than enacting a carefully targeted set of reforms that would
improve access to affordable health insurance, the law fails to address significant
problems with the current system, represents an unnecessary expansion of government
into the practice of neurosurgery and will ultimately be detrimental to patient access of
timely neurosurgical care.
The AANS serves as a co-chair of a coalition to repeal the IPAB, which gives a handful
of government bureaucrats sweeping authority over Medicare policy. This 350,000
physician-led effort contributed to the passage of the H.R. 5, the Protecting Access to
Healthcare (PATH) Act, in the House of Representatives in 2012. Momentum for IPAB repeal continues, with the
introduction of S.351/H.R. 351, the Protecting Seniors Access to Medicare Act, in early 2013.
Additionally, leading the Health Coalition on Liability and Access, neurosurgery’s ongoing efforts to promote
medical liability reform led to the passage of the H.R. 5, the Protecting Access to Healthcare (PATH) Act in 2012.
The medical liability provisions of the PATH Act are based on California’s MICRA, including a $250,000 cap on non-
economic damages, a three-year statute of limitations and contingency-fee reforms.
1...,20,21,22,23,24,25,26,27,28,29 31,32,33,34,35,36,37,38,39,40,...46
Powered by FlippingBook