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Cardiologists Take on Capitol Hill to Talk “Doc Fix” and Budget
Over 350 Members of the American College of Cardiology to Participate in Grassroots Legislative Outreach
Top cardiovascular professionals from across the country, who are all members of the American College of Cardiology, the leading medical society for cardiovascular professionals, will descend on Capitol Hill today to meet with their Members of Congress to discuss important health policy issues facing cardiology. The grassroots legislative outreach is a part of the ACC’s annual Legislative Conference, and this year the 350 cardiologists who have traveled to Capitol Hill hope to have a major impact on the Joint Select Committee’s budget talks.
The top issues American College of Cardiology members are advocating for are:
• Permanent repeal of the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) or “Doc Fix”
• Prevent further payment cuts to imaging services
• Implement medical liability reform
“Heart disease is the leading cause of death in the US and constitutes more than 40 percent of Medicare costs,” said David Holmes, MD, FACC, president of the ACC. “It is important for Congress to understand the harsh realities and effects these issues will have on our patients’ access to care if not addressed.”
“We are asking the Joint Select Committee and Members of Congress to permanently rid of the flawed SGR formula,” said Jack Lewin, MD, CEO of the ACC. “The SGR is a major problem Congress has been putting off each year since 2003, and has therefore accumulated billions of dollars towards the US debt. Let’s hope this is the year they have the courage to fix the problem.”
ACC members are also urging Congress to oppose further cuts to medical imaging services, as continued reductions in medical imaging services will negatively impact Medicare beneficiaries' access to high-quality and appropriate imaging, and will result in the disruption of patient-centered care.
Members are also advocating for the implementation of medical liability reform to ensure that injured patients are compensated quickly and fairly; to improve provider-patient communication; and to foster an environment for affordable and accessible medical liability insurance.
About the American College of Cardiology
The American College of Cardiology is transforming cardiovascular care and improving heart health through continuous quality improvement, patient-centered care, payment innovation and professionalism. The College is a 39,000-member nonprofit medical society comprised of physicians, surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists and practice managers, and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet its stringent qualifications. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines, and is a staunch supporter of cardiovascular research. The ACC provides professional education and operates national registries for the measurement and improvement of quality care. More information about the association is available online at www.cardiosource.org/ACC.