ACEP’s Legislative and Advocacy Conference was in Washington DC May 1-3 of this year. WACEP had five attendees this year (including one virtual). They met with 6 (of 8) of the congressional offices as well as both senator offices regarding several topics important to Emergency physicians.
Senator Baldwin made a special guest appearance this year speaking at a special lunch event on “Diversity in Action: Women in Politics.” Senator Baldwin is also the author of “The Workplace Violence Prevention for Health Care and Social Services Workers Act.” This bill, which has corresponding legislation which already passed the House asks OSHA to issue a standard which would require workplace violence prevention plans be considered by hospitals.
The group also discussed with their representatives the instability of Medicare with a total of a 9% cut anticipated at the end of year unless Congress acts. This is the result of anti-inflationary and budget neutrality policies of CMS. Essentially, even though we are netting 10,000 beneficiaries per day being added to the Medicare role, Congress and CMS have decided that we won’t be spending additional funds to deliver this care. In the past, congress had elected to forego this requirement such that rates are not cut for the subsequent year. This goes without saying with inflation increasing the disparity between the consumer price index (CPI) and physician reimbursement by the Medicare system will continue to grow as it has for the last 20+ years. Our ask at this point is the congress act before the end of the year to avoid cuts to Medicare reimbursement rates as well as consider a permanent fix to this so we can avoid this issue year after year.
LAC 2023 is scheduled from April 30-May 2, 2023. Please email us at WACEP@badgerbay.co should you have interest attending next year or add yourself to the interest list to get the latest updates from ACEP: https://www.acep.org/lac/interested/