Over the dates of February 13-15, the American Medical Association convened for its 2023 National Advocacy Conference in Washington, DC.  The agenda included updates from members of Congress, DHHS and CMS leaders, political columnists and political consultants that keep their finger on the congressional pulse.  Topics ranged from the political landscape inside the beltway, to fighting the opioid epidemic, to equity in the healthcare system.

(L-R) Randy Aldridge, Art Apolinario, Mary Ann Contogiannis, Alan Skipper

Leading our North Carolina delegation at this year’s NAC was NCMS President, Dr. Art Apolinario, along with Dr. Mary Ann Contogiannis who serves on the NC delegation to the AMA House of Delegates and is a member of the AMA’s Council on Constitution and Bylaws.

Over the three-day event, meetings were held on Capitol Hill with our House and Senate members’ staff.  The primary issues that the group took to the Hill were

Medicare Payment System Reform – averting future fights over reimbursement cuts and providing for inflationary adjustments

Workforce Challenges – expansion of GME slots and expansion of international medical graduate waivers

Patient Safety – promoting team-based care while recognizing appropriate boundaries

To “bring the message home,” the focus of meetings on the Hill was how each of these priority issues is impacting patient care and physicians in North Carolina.  The NC Medical Society approaches its legislative advocacy at both the state and federal level with that objective in mind.