FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, January 21, 2021
Statement attributable to:
Ada D. Stewart, MD
American Academy of Family Physicians
“The American Academy of Family Physicians applauds the Biden administration for its leadership in outlining the American Rescue Plan. If enacted, this bold legislative agenda will provide much-needed support to American families struggling during the pandemic — especially communities of color and those hardest hit by the virus.
“We are encouraged by the framework to scale up vaccination efforts and access, specifically the plans to collaborate with primary care physicians and community-based practices to reach underserved communities. Family physicians are committed to ensuring equitable access to the vaccines. We know the ultimate success of this effort will hinge on widespread coordination and communication with all stakeholders; primary care physicians and practices should play a key role in the vaccination strategy.
“Family physicians are uniquely positioned in their communities to educate patients, prioritize access and coordinate administration of the COVID-19 vaccines. We also urge the Biden administration to ensure that family physicians and their staffs are able to get vaccinated as soon as possible. Nearly 200 million individuals see a family physician each year, and more than 500 million patient visits are made to primary care practices annually. The faster we vaccinate all primary care physicians and their teams, the faster they can more safely provide care to their communities.
“The AAFP has urged federal and state governments to work with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the nation’s governors to ensure that plans for the allocation, distribution and administration of the COVID-19 vaccines prioritizes community primary care physicians and their practices.
“We applaud President Biden for signing three executive orders related to COVID-19 on his first day in office. His ‘100 Days Masking Challenge’ underscores the importance of public health guidance on masks and physical distancing. Establishing a COVID-19 response coordinator will provide much-needed federal guidance for responding to this pandemic and preventing future pandemics. Re-engaging with the World Health Organization will advance coordination efforts for the international response.
"This legislative agenda and these executive orders will go a long way to stopping the spread of COVID-19 and accelerating the nation’s recovery. Family physicians can play an important role in helping our country effectively respond to this horrible pandemic, and we are eager to partner with the Biden administration for this critical work.”
Editor's Note: To arrange an interview with Dr. Stewart, contact Megan Moriarty, 800-274-2237, Ext. 6052, or email@example.com.
Founded in 1947, the AAFP represents 136,700 physicians and medical students nationwide. It is the largest medical society devoted solely to primary care. Family physicians conduct approximately one in five office visits -- that’s 192 million visits annually or 48 percent more than the next most visited 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.