At the 2013 AAOS Annual Meeting, members of the Orthopaedic Political Action Committee (Orthopaedic PAC) got a lesson in advocacy from former Arizona Sen. Jon Kyl (far right).


Published 2/1/2014
Elizabeth Fassbender

Annual Meeting Includes Advocacy Education

Planning to attend the 2014 Annual Meeting in New Orleans next month? Don’t limit your educational opportunities to the latest in clinical studies and research topics. Stop by the Advocacy Booth sponsored by the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) and enhance your understanding of the regulatory and legislative issues confronting orthopaedic surgeons.

The Advocacy Booth will highlight priority issues for the coming year along with advocacy accomplishments from 2013. It will be staffed by physician volunteers as well as staff from the AAOS office of government relations, ready to answer your questions and provide information on critical advocacy issues. You’ll also discover the many different ways you can get more involved with advocacy in your community and on the national level.

Additionally, you can learn about advocacy opportunities such as Research Capitol Hill Days, the National Orthopaedic Leadership Conference, and grassroots methods like contacting your Congressional representatives and writing letters to the editor.

Visit the AAOS advocacy booth between 9:00 a.m. and 5:00 p.m., March 12–14. The booth is located in Hall F, Booth 4213, at the Morial Convention Center.

Healthcare reform symposium
Attending the newly added symposium, “Healthcare Reform: How Can We Adapt?” is another way to enhance your understanding of advocacy activities. The symposium will be held on Friday, March 14, beginning at 8:00 a.m. in La Nouvelle Ballroom. Moderators Craig A. Butler, MD, MBA, chair of the AAOS Health Care Systems Committee, and Thomas J. Grogan, MD, chair of the AAOS Practice Management Committee, and a distinguished faculty will cover topics ranging from the implementation of ICD-10 to the impact of the Affordable Care Act (ACA).

With the proliferation of technologic advances as well as the prospect of real payment reform and the growing pressures of providing care to more people for less cost, 2014 will be a sentinel year of change. This cutting-edge symposium will examine the changing regulatory and payment landscape and provide practical solutions to enable your practice to excel in these tumultuous times.

Advocacy agenda
The AAOS advocacy agenda focuses on issues of significant importance to orthopaedic surgeons, including the following:

  • policies that ensure appropriate access to specialty care
  • fair reimbursement for specialty services
  • increased funding for basic science and clinical musculoskeletal research
  • patient autonomy and preservation of the physician/patient relationship
  • improved patient safety

In 2014, priority issues will include preserving in-office ancillary services, repealing the sustainable growth rate system, supporting medical liability reform, promoting the value of orthopaedic surgery, and tracking issues related to the ACA and its implementation.

The increased focus on healthcare policy as well as the impending changes resulting from the ACA mean that orthopaedic surgeons must ensure their voices are heard. The AAOS uses various communication vehicles to keep members informed, including Advocacy Now, AAOS Now, AAOS Headline News Now, and AAOS in the States.

Orthopaedic PAC

Members of the Orthopaedic Political Action Committee (Orthopaedic PAC) will have additional options for increasing their knowledge and advocacy skills during the AAOS 2014 Annual Meeting. See “News from the Orthopaedic PAC” for complete details.

For more information on AAOS advocacy, visit

Elizabeth Fassbender is the communications specialist in the AAOS office of government relations. She can be reached at