FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, Feb. 26, 2014
Public Relations Strategist
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5222
LEAWOOD, Kan. — Members of the American Academy of Family Physicians maintain a full-court press urging Congress to pass the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014” (H.R. 4015 / S. 2000). In a letter sent today, the AAFP and 49 of its constituent chapters call for immediate passage of the legislation as a means to stabilize Medicare payment and bolster health care security for millions of elderly and disabled Americans.
The AAFP’s actions to repeal the flawed SGR formula and replace it with a system that focuses on improving health care quality have been ongoing for more than 11 years, but recently picked up momentum with a Feb. 17 letter to Congress in support of the bipartisan, bicameral legislation. The letter was preceded by a Feb. 6 statement welcoming the SGR proposal. A second statement dated Feb. 20 noted that Congress had failed 16 times in the past 11 years to “fix” the SGR at the cost of $154 billion to taxpayers.
“The AAFP and its member physicians commend the Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means and Senate Finance committee members who have worked diligently and cooperatively to move this legislation forward,” said Reid Blackwelder, MD, president of the AAFP. “Congress cannot let this opportunity pass them by. The proverbial can is now at the end of road. It’s time to stop kicking. Approve this measure before March 31 when the current SGR extension expires. It’s the right thing to do for America’s health.”
Individual family physicians are also taking an active stance by participating in a letter writing blitz to legislators through the AAFP’s grassroots Speak Out program, as well as on social media using the hashtag #RepealSGR.
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Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 120,900 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.
Approximately one in five of all office visits are made to family physicians. That is nearly 192 million office visits each year — nearly 66 million more than the next largest medical specialty. Today, family physicians provide more care for America’s underserved and rural populations than any other medical specialty. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing, personal patient-physician relationship focused on integrated care.
To learn more about the specialty of family medicine, the AAFP's positions on issues and clinical care, and for downloadable multi-media highlighting family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, please visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.FamilyDoctor.org(www.familydoctor.org).
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Family Physicians Unite to Urge Congress to Pass the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014”