AAOS Now, January 2013
The 113th Congress: More Than Meets the Eye
The 113th Congress, which opened on Jan. 3, included 95 newly elected members—48 Democratic Representatives, 35 Republican Representatives, 8 Democratic Senators, 3 Republican Senators, and 1 Independent Senator. California has more new freshman members than any other state—14, including physicians Raul Ruiz and Ami Bera, both Democrats. Ami Bera, MD What’s different?
Challenges and Opportunities Under “Obamacare”
The re-election of President Obama and the Supreme Court’s validation of the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) mean we are destined to live with “Obama-care.” Where does this leave us as orthopaedic surgeons? What does it mean for our future, the practice of orthopaedic surgery, and the care of our patients? Many believe that further intrusion of government into our healthcare system bodes ill for the future. The record speaks otherwise.
The Simpson-Bowles Plan and the Fiscal Cliff
As we prepared this article, a lame-duck Congress faced a goal of reducing the federal deficit by $1.2 trillion over the next decade. Congressional leaders and President Obama were once again involved in negotiations to avert the “fiscal cliff”—a mix of tax increases and spending cuts scheduled to take effect on Jan. 1, 2013. By the time you read this, you’ll know whether they were successful.
What Can We Expect from PPACA in 2013?
Although full implementation of the coverage expansions established by the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) will not begin until 2014, the upcoming year will not be without major changes in the healthcare landscape. The results of November’s election essentially ensured that PPACA will not be overturned and that enactment of its many reforms will move forward.
2012 State Legislative Update
State policymakers considered a broad range of issues in 2012 that affect orthopaedic surgeons. State-level priorities for the American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) are determined through the Board of Councilors (BOC) Committee on State Legislative and Regulatory Issues. The committee also administers $300,000 per year in Health Policy Action Fund grants to support state orthopaedic society advocacy endeavors.
What Are “Most-Favored-Nations” Doing in Health Care?
Last fall, the Department of Justice (DOJ) and the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) held a public workshop on the use and impact of most-favored-nation (MFN) clauses and the implications for antitrust enforcement and policies. Although MFN clauses originated with international trade agreements, in today’s market, they don’t just apply to nations.
AAOS Taking Lead in Defining Quality in Orthopaedics
With last summer’s Supreme Court decision and the re-election of President Obama, healthcare reform is here to stay. The Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA) is putting pressure on providers to improve outcomes and lower the cost of care. In addition, market forces being exerted by both consumers and businesses are compounding the demand for better healthcare at lower costs.
AMA principles for physician employment The American Medical Association (AMA) has adopted new principles for physicians entering into employment and contractual arrangements. The principles address six potentially problematic aspects of the employer-employee relationship, including conflicts of interest, advocacy, contracting, hospital-medical staff relations, peer review and performance evaluations, and payment agreements.
What Is the Future of Orthopaedics?
Is hospital employment the future of orthopaedics? That question kicked off the 2012 Fall Meeting of the AAOS Board of Councilors (BOC)/Board of Specialty Societies. During a symposium that addressed the future of orthopaedics, presenters examined current trends in physician employment as well as their impact on orthopaedics and the AAOS. Moderated by BOC Chair Fred C. Redfern, MD, the symposium featured presentations by the following: Alexandra E.