The AAFP is rallying member support for three core issues that could determine the fate of family medicine for years to come.
In a Speak Out alert notice(www.capwiz.com) linked to the Academy's grassroots page, the AAFP is calling on family physicians to contact their representatives in the House to voice support for two key pieces of legislation: H.R. 574, which would eliminate the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula and provide Medicare payment increases for primary care services, and H.R. 487, which would promote primary care residency training in nonhospital settings where most primary care is practiced and delivered.
The AAFP also is urging members to contact their elected representatives to ask for support of adequate funding for programs such as the National Health Service Corps and Title VII health professions training grant programs, which are vital to sustaining and strengthening the nation's primary care physician workforce.
"As a family physician, you are dedicated to treating the whole person and serving as an advocate for your patients in our complex health care system," says the Speak Out alert. "Because of your focus on prevention and overall care coordination, you are able to treat illnesses early and, when necessary, refer … patients to the right subspecialist."
The Speak Out alert includes a link to a prewritten letter AAFP members can edit and send to their representatives in Washington. It calls on lawmakers to co-sponsor H.R. 574 and H.R. 487. The letter also urges congressional members to allocate $71 million for health professions primary care training grants during the next fiscal year.
The AAFP also is providing an infographic members can access and send to their representatives in the House. The infographic provides a brief description of what family physicians do and the key role they play in the nation's health care system. It also explains why each of the three issues is vital to the practice of family medicine.
"Congress needs to make a robust investment in our nation's primary care workforce to respond to the numerous changes our population will face in coming years," says the infographic. "The investment will ensure that Americans receive efficient, effective health care that addresses access, quality and value."