We need the American Medical Association (AMA). If it were to slip away, we would need another national medical organization to take its place. Physicians need, now more than ever, representation in Washington D.C. and our state houses. American physicians need a voice and “a seat at the table” as insurance companies, politicians and regulators restrict our practices, distance us from our patients and reduce our incomes. The College’s Advocacy Council does great work, but we cannot do it alone. We need the AMA.
What does the AMA do for you? Many things. In this installment of my series on the value of AMA membership, I will focus on the work of the AMA House of Delegates (HOD).
Since 1967 the College has been represented in the AMA HOD. The College achieved its own vote in 1980 and has since faithfully and ably been served by its Delegation. We now caucus with other allergy organizations as well as related specialty organizations. Susan Bailey, MD, FACAAI, former College HOD speaker, is now the powerful Speaker of the AMA HOD and soon to be President of the AMA.
The College and the AMA have worked closely together, often quietly and unheralded. But this is VERY important work. The allergists working for us put in long and arduous hours and need your support. One recent example of this work is the successful collaboration at the last AMA HOD meeting on the issue of some insurance companies’ directive that the evaluation and management (E&M) codes be paid at 50% when used with modifier 25. The final result of our joint efforts was a new and strengthened policy: “That our American Medical Association aggressively and immediately advocate to ensure when an evaluation and management (E&M) code is appropriately reported with a modifier 25, that both the procedure and E&M codes are paid at the non-reduced, allowable payment rate.”
The AMA deserves your membership. The College Advocacy Council wants YOU to belong to the AMA. To keep our Delegate seat and to continue to make a difference, 20% of College members need to be AMA members. That’s why you need to join or renew your membership today.
Stephen A. Imbeau, MD
Advocacy Council chair