Updated June 8, 2020
In the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, the AMA has been the leading physician and patient ally—voicing recommendations to key Congressional leaders and agency staff, state policymakers and private sector stakeholders.
The House recently passed its version of "phase four" coronavirus relief legislation; the Senate is expected to introduce its plan in the coming weeks. The AMA is strongly urging the Senate to take critical steps to protect patient access to care by preserving the viability of physician practices as part of the nation's essential health care system.
Make your voice heard too: please contact your Senators today and tell them that their phase four coronavirus relief legislation must include critical physician and patient protections to ensure the health care system stays viable and able to provide high-quality care.
Download of complete list of advocacy efforts
Download the full list (PDF) of AMA's latest advocacy efforts.
Snapshot of recent and ongoing advocacy efforts
Recent advocacy efforts
Acting on both federal and state levels, a few examples of AMA's recent actions include:
- Successfully seeking billions in emergency funding to help physician practices stay viable and keep providing needed care through the Coronavirus Aid, Relief and Economic Security (CARES) Act and subsequent emergency supplemental legislation (many practices qualified for loan-to-grant programs, advance payments and emergency payments)
- Seeking and securing broad telehealth expansion at the federal and state levels to increase access to care and provide patients with a safer way to receive COVID-19 and non-COVID-19 care
- Obtaining changes to federal payment rules to allow for parity in payment for telehealth services whether provided by audio/video means or audio-only
- A call for a “Manhattan Project” to provide personal protective equipment (PPE) and other needed resources to front line responders as the magnitude of this issue rapidly emerged
- Urging the federal government to improve and expand testing and allow increased FDA Emergency Use
- Convincing FDA and CDC to review and revise antibody tests and guidelines based on validity concerns, reflecting guidelines issued by the AMA
Along with other continued actions, the AMA is:
- Advising Congress on the true scope of physician practice financial loss during the pandemic and ways to aid physician practices in the upcoming COVID-4 legislative package
- Collecting expenditure and practice data to help address the financial impact of COVID-19 and barriers to reopening practices
- Calling on federal and state leaders to rely on science when considering reopening businesses, schools, etc., as well as relaxing stay-at-home orders
- Pressing for the continuation of temporary telehealth provisions that enable better patient care, greater alignment of telehealth coverage, payment and coding policies across all payers and the continued suspension of further regulatory hurdles