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Professional News
Lazarus Discusses AMA Priorities
Psychiatric News
Volume 47 Number 19 page 11-11

AMA President Jeremy Lazarus, M.D., spoke to the APA Area 4 Council at its summer meeting in Milwaukee August 26. Lazarus is a past speaker of the APA Assembly and past chair of APA’s Council on Advocacy and Public Policy. He discussed the AMA’s decision to support the Affordable Care Act (ACA), saying that the health reform law includes provisions that the AMA had long advocated. He noted that APA was one of the specialties that stood with AMA in support of the ACA.

As for the law’s controversial individual insurance mandate, Lazarus noted that the lack of uniform personal coverage costs the average insured person up to $1,000 a year and that to be affordable, health insurance needed to cover the largest possible population in the United States. He explained as well the AMA’s efforts to repeal the Medicare Independent Payment Advisory Board, Congress’s failure to permanently address Medicare’s flawed sustainable growth rate formula, and the lack of medical malpractice reform as areas of ongoing AMA advocacy. Lazarus also spoke about the AMA’s successful efforts to ensure that the majority of accountable care organizations are physician led.

Lazarus also discussed the long-standing effective working relationship between the AMA and the APA Section Council on Psychiatry, highlighting the numerous leadership positions held by APA members at the AMA. Noting that physicians cannot influence the AMA and their state medical societies if they do not actively participate, he urged APA members to join the AMA and continue the partnership between the two organizations. inline-graphic-1.gif

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