2013 AANS Annual Report - page 32

CMS agreed to delay the start of stage 2 of the EHR program until 2014; and
CMS has limited the scope of its value-based payment modifier by phasing in practice
eligibility. For 2015, CMS has limited it to very large practices. For 2016, it applies to
practices of 10 or more physicians, largely eliminating the potential for neurosurgeons
to receive even more reductions in their reimbursement.
Organized neurosurgery has established a tried-and-true formula for working inside the Washington Beltway
to have an impact on health policy. In FY2013, the AANS actively engaged its members in the political process
through grassro
s, calls to action and participation in NeurosurgeryPAC. As such, neurosurgeons
from across the country communicated and met with members of Congress to encourage repeal of the IPAB,
to restructure and better align quality improvement measures, or to advocate for a stable
mechanism for reimbursing physicians. Additionally, AANS members attended advocacy
the Alliance of Specialty Medicine Annual Legislative Conference. Lastly,
hundreds of neurosurgeons donated to NeurosurgeryPAC, which in raising more than $280,000
had it most successful year to date.
Communications Outreach
In addition to its direct lobbying and grassroots advocacy in Washington, D.C., the Washington
Committee is garnering support for neurosurgery’s health policy positions by carrying out a nationwide
earned media campaign, and providing the media with timely information that can be used for their reporting.
Last year, the Washington Office digital media communications platforms — including Neurosurgery Blog,
Twitter, Facebook and LinkedIn — reached nearly 4.3 million individual impressions. By using these social media
platforms, organized neurosurgery has continued to reach opinion-influencers in the media, on Capitol Hill, and
in various health policy circles that wouldn’t have been easily achievable through more traditional means. These
social media tools include:
a Web-based opinion and perspective
column, which offers insights and perspective on contemporary health issues as they
relate to organized neurosurgery.
Twitter feed that is used to gain greater visibility for neurosurgery’s
advocacy efforts. @Neurosurgery’s followers are made up primarily of media,
congressional and health policy communities. The Twitter feed focuses primarily on
health policy updates and provides links to positive stories about neurosurgery.
nd LinkedIn sites that help drive health policy influencers to information on
Neurosurgery Blog and the Twitter feed, while also spotlighting newsmaking successes
and initiatives for neurosurgical organizations.
In addition to the aforementioned social media efforts, increasing recognition for neurosurgery’s advocacy efforts
also includes using traditional media tools, and through press releases, letters to the editor, interviews with
reporters, and the like, millions of individuals have been reached. Since January 2012, the Washington Office has
generated 39 traditional media hits reaching a circulation of nearly 2.5 million. Reaching beyond our specialty,
neurosurgeons also serve as spokespersons for several Washington, D.C.-based coalitions, including the Alliance
of Specialty Medicine and Partners for Healthy Dialogues. This has allowed organizations such as the AANS to
expand its reach well beyond the small specialty of neurosurgery.
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