AANEM member and Advocacy Advisor, Peter Grant, MD, and AANEM Health Policy Director, Millie Suk, JD, MPP, attended the spring meeting of the National Physicians’ Council for Healthcare Policy
(NPCHCP) in Washington, D.C. on March 19-20. Dr. Grant serves as a Vice Chair of the NPCHCP. The focus of the meeting was wide-ranging, looking at ways to reform MACRA to preserve private and rural practice in the current legislative efforts to restructure America’s health care system.
The NPCHCP is a multispecialty physician group representing a majority of the states. The group was established in 2014, under the leadership of Marcy Zwelling-Aamot, MD, FACEP, and John Gill, MD, and facilitated by Congressman Pete Sessions (R-TX). The purpose of the group is to give a voice to physicians engaged in private practice.
Over 100 physicians attended the meeting. Much of the time was devoted to presentations about potential solutions to current healthcare issues affecting private physician practices. There was significant group discussion of the ideas, including active participation by Rep. Sessions, who was present for much of the meeting on March 19. Rep. Sessions urged the group to solidify their ideas into cohesive, practical solutions. At the end of the meeting, the group had an audience with Patrick Conway, MD, Deputy Administrator for Innovation and Quality and the Chief Medical Officer for the Centers of Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS). Dr. Conway has expressed interest in working with physicians to reduce the administrative burden of MACRA and the Quality Payment Program (QPP) on physician practices.
While in D.C., Ms. Suk also met with a handful of legislative offices to update them on AANEM efforts to work with CMS on quality EDX medicine and to discuss plans moving forward. In May, members of the AANEM State Liaison Committee will return to D.C. for a Hill Day to discuss this issue, as well as reforms to the QPP to ease the burden on neuromuscular (NM) and electrodiagnostic (EDX) physicians, and to urge Congress to increase NIH funding for NM research.