Report on the 2009 AMA HOD meeting

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					Report on the 2009
AMA HOD meeting
by Jon H. Sutton, Manager of State Affairs, Division of Advocacy and Health Policy

  Delegates expecting a robust       cious pay-for-performance de-                •	 Resolution 203—Right to
discussion of health system          bates, where he demonstrated               Privately Contract. An emo-
reform were not disappointed         plain-spoken and stalwart sup-             tional issue for many delegates,
at the American Medical As-          port for the College’s agenda.             Resolution 203 would have
sociation (AMA) annual House                                                    made the right to privately
of Delegates (HOD) meeting           Issue highlights                           contract the highest advocacy
in Chicago, IL. Contributing           Highlights of the HOD meet-              priority of the AMA. After con-
to that debate was a one-hour        ing included the following:                siderable testimony, the resolu-
address by President Barack            •	 R e s o l u t i o n 1 1 0 — P u b -   tion was amended and adopted
Obama, who made his case for         lic Option Health Insurance.               to direct the AMA to include in
reform to the HOD during the         Sponsored by more than 15                  its top advocacy priorities the
June 2009 meeting. He was            state medical societies, Resolu-           enactment of federal legislation
warmly greeted by those in the       tion 110 would originally have             that ensures and protects the
crowd, and while many were           directed the AMA to oppose                 fundamental right of patients
not in complete agreement with       public option proposals that               to privately contract with phy-
some of the president’s propos-      could result in the elimination            sicians, without penalties for
als, delegates felt he candidly      of the private health insurance            doing so, and regardless of the
presented his views on the is-       market. After long and robust              payor within the framework of
sues requiring attention.            debate on the matter, the HOD              free market principles.
  After almost nine years of         finally adopted a resolution                 •	 CMS Report 8—Patient-
service as a delegate, Charles       that outlines the AMA support              Centered Medical Home
Logan, MD, FAC S, retired            of health system reform alter-             (PCMH). The AMA Council on
from the ACS Delegation. He          natives that are consistent with           Medical Service presented a
engaged fully in AMA HOD ac-         AMA principles of pluralism,               report on the patient-centered
tivities on behalf of the College,   freedom of choice, freedom of              medical home. Most signifi-
including his role as reference      practice, and universal access             cantly, the recommendations in
committee chair during tena-         for patients.                              this report reinforced the no-
                                                                                tion that payments associated
                                                                                with the PCMH model not be
                                                                                subject to a budget neutrality
  June 2009 ACS Delegation to the AMA HOD                                       offset in the Medicare physician
                                                                                payment schedule. This is con-
  Richard B. Reiling, MD, FACS, Delegation Chair                                sistent with the position taken
  John H. Armstrong, MD, FACS, Delegate                                         by the physician specialty com-
  Carlo A. Dall’Olmo, MD, FACS, Delegate
  Charles W. Logan, MD, FACS, Delegate
                                                                                munity as it advocates in favor
  Chad A. Rubin, MD, FACS, Delegate                                             of health system reform.
  Sanjay R. Parikh, MD, FACS, Young Physician Section (YPS) Delegate              •	 Financial relationships
  Jacob Moalem, MD, YPS Delegate                                                with industry in continuing
  Patricia L. Turner, MD, FACS, YPS Liaison                                     medical education (CME). The
  Hannah Zimmerman, MD, Resident and Fellow Section (RFS) Delegate              issue of industry financial sup-
  Christian Shults, MD, RFS Sectional Delegate                                  port for CME has, over the past
                                                                                couple of years, achieved a high        37

                                                          SEPTEMBER 2009 BULLETIN OF THE AMERICAN COLLEGE OF SURGEONS
level of scrutiny, and as a result   ACS Executive Director, and        ful in his election bid to be the
the AMA Council on Ethical                    .
                                     Kristen V Hedstrom, Assistant      Resident Trustee on the AMA
and Judicial Affairs developed       Director of Legislative Affairs    Board of Trustees, and Michael
a report (CEJA Report 1) in          in the College’s Division of Ad-   Deren, MD, FACS, of Connecti-
2008 that was referred back          vocacy and Health Policy.          cut, was re-elected to the AMA
for further work. During the                                            Council on Constitution and
discussion of the June 2009          Elections                          Bylaws.
report, the council was compli-        As reported in the June 2009       In other election news, sev-
mented for presenting a much-        issue of the Bulletin (page 55),   eral surgeons were successful
improved report to the HOD.          Richard Reiling, MD, FACS,         in races for the Young Physi-
However, significant concerns        ran for re-election to the AMA     cian Section (YPS) Governing
still exist, particularly the        Council on Medical Education.      Council. Patricia Turner, MD,
definitions of ethically prefer-     A well-coordinated campaign        FACS, was elected to serve as
able and ethically permissible.      managed by John Armstrong,         Speaker of the YPS Assembly:
As such, the CEJA Report 1           MD, FACS, and the support of       Steven Chen, MD, FACS, was
was referred back for further        numerous surgical specialty        elected to be the Assembly’s
consideration.                       societies and delegates helped     Alternate Delegate to the HOD;
                                     Dr. Reiling achieve re-election    Ravi Goel, MD, an ophthal-
Surgical Caucus of the AMA           in the first round of voting.      mologist from New Jersey, was
  The Surgical Caucus of the           A number of Fellows ran          elected Chair-Elect; and Dawn
AMA, which met during the            for election to AMA positions.     Buckingham, MD, FACS, as-
HOD meeting, continues to op-        Barney Maynard, MD, FACS,          sumed the Chair position.
erate smoothly under the man-        a urologist from Indiana, ran        For further information on
agement of the College. This         for the AMA Board of Trustees,     the annual 2009 AMA HOD
meeting’s educational session        but, in a tough multi-candidate    and surgical involvement in
—Health Care Reform and the          race, was not successful. Raj      this meeting, contact jsutton@
Surgeon—was presented by             Ambay, MD, a plastic surgeon       facs.org.
Thomas Russell, MD, FACS,            from Wisconsin, was success-