I’ve spent much of the past year talking with physicians around the country about the issues that matter most to them and listening to the challenges they face every day. In my travels, I have found that doctors don’t always know how the AMA is working to address those challenges and improve the health care landscape so we can do what we do best – care for patients. Here’s how the AMA is making the medical ecosystem better – and why you should be a member:
- We’re working to protect patients and improve public health. The AMA has been strongly supporting an evidence-based, public health approach to addressing the country’s prescription drug abuse crisis, and has been advocating for policies such as the Stop Overdose Stat Act. For the past five decades, we’ve also supported anti-tobacco efforts, including urging the federal government to support anti-tobacco legislation and calling on tobacco companies to stop targeting children in their ads.
- We’re keeping our eyes on the future and working proactively to shape emerging issues. The AMA is beginning to delve deeper into telemedicine, not only from the technology side but from the insurance coverage side. We’re also taking on workforce issues, addressing future workforce issues with our Save GME campaign and examining physician re-entry to make it easier for doctors to re-enter the workforce.
- We’re increasing physicians’ professional satisfaction and minimizing regulatory burdens. We hear you – there are too many taxing administrative burdens weighing down physicians. Meaningful use of electronic health records (EHR), ICD-10, Physician Quality Reporting System – it’s a lot to keep up with, and it’s taking away from your time with patients. Through our Professional Satisfaction and Practice Sustainability initiative, the AMA is developing practice-level solutions and working with the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services and other regulatory bodies to make sure that your practice, whatever its size, can thrive in this current environment.
- We’re transforming medical education and helping schools teach the physicians of the future. There’s no question that the health care landscape is radically different than it was even a few years ago. We’re collaborating with schools to reimagine med school curriculum, incorporating competency-based assessment, new technologies, interprofessional education and more. No other organization has ever done the work the AMA is doing now to innovate medical education. We’re already making a huge difference in how future physicians are trained, and as the Accelerating Change in Medical Education initiative moves forward, expect to see even bigger changes.
- We’re improving health outcomes and developing best practices around type 2 diabetes and hypertension. These two chronic diseases are major killers, but they are preventable. Our Improving Health Outcomes work is honing in on evidence-based methods at pilot sites in communities around the country. I firmly believe that the best leadership is at the local level, and that’s what the AMA is doing – working directly in communities to help connect patients in the area with resources to prevent these diseases. It can’t all be on the shoulders of physicians alone—it’s also about patients within their communities, and you’re an integral part in making these local changes happen.
The AMA has been working hard for physicians for decades – you might not even be aware of some of our work and the impact we’ve had. Our advocacy, research and connections have helped stave off burdensome regulatory requirements, improve the health care landscape for physicians and get bills passed that will benefit doctors and the patients they treat.
Physicians don’t have time to act as a government watchdog, read pages of regulatory reports, devise ways to improve EHRs and give their patients the best care possible. We want you to focus on doing what you do best – providing care to your patients. We’ll handle the other stuff for you.
Help us do that. Join the AMA today.