The recently established AAOS Congressional Awards Program recognizes members of Congress who are committed to high-quality health care and musculoskeletal health. Recipients receive an award to display in their offices, and the announcement is shared through AAOS communication channels.
This year’s awardees include, among others:
Sen. John Barrasso, MD (R-Wyo.)
- Ami Bera, MD (D-Calif.)
- Bill Cassidy, MD (R-La.)
- Johnny Isakson (R-Ga.)
- Peter Roskam (R-Ill.)
- Raul Ruiz, MD (D-Calif.)
- David Scott (R-Ga.)
- Steve Stivers (R-Ohio)
- John Thune (R-S.D.)
- Greg Walden (R-Ore.)
AAOS Distinguished Congressional Ambassador
The AAOS Distinguished Congressional Ambassador is a recognition given to an AAOS member who has demonstrated excellence in advocacy on behalf of orthopaedic priorities. Congressional Ambassadors are AAOS volunteers who either have a relationship with a member of Congress or are willing to develop one and reach out on priority issues. These volunteers are exceptionally effective in terms of advocacy and enhance the efforts of the Office of Government Relations (OGR).
John J. McGraw, MD, Board of Councilors past-chair, is an AAOS Congressional Ambassador who has played a direct role in major advocacy victories. He was named AAOS Distinguished Congressional Ambassador at the Advocacy Resources Committee meeting on Oct. 25, during the AAOS Fall Meeting.
Dr. McGraw has an excellent relationship with Rep. Phil Roe, MD (R-Tenn.), chairman of the House Veterans Affairs Committee, and has helped support Chairman Roe’s work on the Independent Payment Advisory Board repeal, aimed at reducing physician regulatory burden, as well as other physician-related issues. He is also a personal friend of Rep. John Duncan (R-Tenn.) and has worked with him to further AAOS’ advocacy objectives in Congress.
In March, Dr. McGraw met with Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-Tenn.), chairman of the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee, to ask him to drop his opposition to legislation that would allow team doctors to more easily care for their players while traveling across state lines. Following the meeting, the Sports Medicine Licensure Clarity Act (S.808) was cleared through the HELP Committee for the first time and has since passed the Senate; it was signed into law by the president Oct. 5.
Dr. McGraw’s relationships with legislators helped them get the information they need to advance legislation in support of orthopaedic surgeons and patients.
For information about the AAOS Congressional Ambassador program and how to apply, contact Julie Williams at 202-546-4430 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
Julie Williams is a senior manager in the AAOS OGR.