AAOS Now, January 2019
Advocacy in Action
How the AAOS Office of Government Relations (OGR) is working for you … Strongly advised against and began interfacing with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and the Relative-value Update Committee about a review of potentially misvalued current procedural terminology codes 27130 (total hip arthroplasty) and 27447 (total knee arthroplasty). These procedures save the U.S.
Big Battles, Small Change Ahead in Divided Congress
With Democrats in control of the House in the 116th Congress, they are expected to introduce legislation that aligns with their campaign goals. Americans also can expect some disagreement over Medicaid: Republicans will want to put the program on a “sustainable path,” whereas Democrats favor expansion. A “Medicare for All” alternative, or added public option, to the Affordable Care Act (ACA) becomes more likely with a Democratic-led House.
Mentorship Program for Veterans Builds Lives and Congressional Relationships
The 2018 midterm election was considered historic for many reasons and for many groups of people. For veterans, it represented the largest wave of former service members seeking office in nearly a decade, with an unprecedented 173 appearing on the ballot and 77 scheduled to serve in the next Congress.
Congress United in Battle Over Drug Pricing
The rapid rise in prescription drug prices has faced increased scrutiny from Congress and the president in recent years. Often, public officials compare U.S. and international drug costs to initiate meaningful change. As of 2015, Americans were spending approximately $1,000 per person on prescription drugs. The second highest spender was Switzerland at $783 per person, and Sweden was the lowest spender at $351 per person.
The Orthopaedic Political Action Committee (PAC) supports candidates for federal office who champion orthopaedic issues and help advance the legislative agenda of AAOS. In late November 2018, the OrthoPAC cohosted the 9th Annual Specialty Physician and Dentist Candidate Workshop in Washington, D.C.
CMS Finalizes Rules for 2019
On Nov. 1 and 2, 2018, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) finalized two major payment rules for 2019 that went into effect on Jan. 1: (1) the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) rule, and (2) the Medicare Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (OPPS) and Ambulatory Surgical Center (ASC) Payment System rule.
AMA’s RUC Is Critical to Physician Reimbursement
As one of 21 medical specialty societies with a permanent seat, AAOS has been a part of the American Medical Association (AMA) multispecialty Relative-value Update Committee (RUC) since its inception in 1991. Although the RUC, a 31-person advisory body, has been described as “little known” and “hardly ever heard of,” it plays a critical role in the maintenance and development of physician reimbursement.