Joseph Tartaglia, MD, FACC

NYACC’s delegate to the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY)

Michael J. Wolk, MD, MACC

NYACC’s Interspecialty Committee Representative for the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY)

Advocacy

Whether it is sending an email to members of Congress, hosting lawmakers at a practice visit, or going to Washington D.C. as part of the annual Legislative Conference, there are many ways for you to be an effective advocate.

Note: The New York State Chapter relies upon its Government Relations Committee and its close association with the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) and other New York State Specialty Society in order to monitor legislative and regulatory activities and the initiation of grassroots lobbying efforts

7/25/2017 – Senate Healthcare Vote

In advance of the upcoming vote to repeal Obamacare, ACC President Mary Norine Walsh, MD, FACC, released a statement saying:

“In light of new analysis from the Congressional Budget Office, it is clear that the health reform measures being contemplated in the Senate, whether the Better Care Reconciliation Act or the Obamacare Repeal Reconciliation Act, would result in the loss of insurance coverage for millions of Americans, limiting access to care for those who need it most,” said Walsh. “The ACC opposes both of these approaches to health reform. Instead, we urge Senate leaders and members on both sides of the aisle to work in an open, bipartisan process to advance concepts that align with the ACC’s Principles for Health Reform. These principles prioritize patient access to meaningful insurance coverage and protection for individuals with pre-existing conditions, goals that would advance the outcome we all strive for: a healthcare system that strengthens and secures the highest quality care for all Americans.”

Walsh reiterated the ACC’s opposition to the Senate’s recent approaches to health care reform in a letter, sent by ACC staff to all members of the Senate today. The letter urges legislators to prioritize patient access to insurance coverage as health reform efforts move forward. The ACC’s Health Affairs Committee and Advocacy staff are closely monitoring the situation. Stay tuned to ACC.org and the Advocate newsletter for updates. You can also follow @Cardiology on Twitter.

Read Walsh’s letter here.

6/30/2017 – Have you registered for Leg Conference 2017 yet??

>> http://www.acc.org/legislativeconference

6/28/2017 – The ACC released a statement of opposition yesterday following release of the CBO analysis

Majority Leader Mitch McConnell (R-KY) announced yesterday afternoon that any votes related to the Senate’s health reform legislation, the Better Care Reconciliation Act of 2017 (BCRA), would be postponed until after the upcoming July 4 congressional recess. Sen. McConnell made the announcement after it became clear that there was insufficient support for the procedural motion required to begin consideration of the bill.

A final vote on the bill was originally planned this week. However, concerns from senators and outside stakeholders mounted yesterday, after the release of the official analysis of the legislation’s impact by the Congressional Budget Office (CBO). CBO estimates that passage of BCRA would result in an estimated 22 million individuals losing health insurance over 10 years. This number is only slightly lower than the number of individuals rendered uninsured by the version of the legislation passed by the House of Representatives. By 2026, an estimated 49 million people would be uninsured, compared with 28 million who would lack insurance that year under current law.

CBO also found that lower financial assistance in this legislation could make premiums unaffordable for many low-income people and raise deductibles as well. The bill would reduce the cumulative federal deficit over the 2017 – 2026 period by $321 billion. The ACC released a statement of opposition yesterday following release of the CBO analysis:

“The Congressional Budget Office analysis makes clear that the Better Care Reconciliation Act would lead to a loss of coverage for millions of Americans and limit access to care for our most vulnerable populations. The ACC is deeply concerned by the potential impact not only on our own patients, but for all Americans who need care,” said Vice President C. Michael Valentine, MD, FACC. “The ACC opposes the Better Care Reconciliation Act as it does not align with our Principles for Health Reform, which stress the need for patient access to meaningful insurance coverage and high quality care. We urge senators to move forward on a bipartisan basis to promote the reforms necessary to strengthen and improve our health care system. We offer our continued support and expertise to lawmakers on both sides of the aisle as we work on the goal we all share – to provide access for all Americans to the finest care in the world.”

2/23/2017 – Cardiac Rehab Bill Introduced in the House

Representatives Lynn Jenkins (R-KS) and John Lewis (D-GA), both members of the House Ways and Means Committee, recently reintroduced legislation – H.R. 1155 – that would expand access to cardiac rehabilitation (rehab) by allowing physician assistants, nurse practitioners and clinical nurse specialists to supervise cardiac, intensive cardiac and pulmonary rehab programs.

The ACC worked with the American Heart Association to get this legislation reintroduced. “Cardiac rehab can be a vital component of a patient’s recovery from a heart attack, heart surgery or for management of heart failure. Supervision requirements for cardiac rehab are currently more stringent than other outpatient services; this negatively impacts access for our patients in areas with physician shortages and drives up costs for these programs,” said ACC President Richard A. Chazal, MD, FACC.

“If enacted, this legislation will allow the cardiovascular community’s well-qualified advanced practice providers to provide the day-to-day supervision of cardiac rehab and help us meet the needs of our patients. We thank Rep. Jenkins and Rep. Lewis for their leadership and commitment.”

The ACC offers a number of ways for members to get involved in advocating for health policies that ensure continued patient access to quality, cost-effective care. For more details, visit ACC’s National Advocacy site