2013 Public Policy Agenda
Metro Med is involved in advocacy efforts related to the most vital issues in medicine today. Not all of these issues will be in current debate each year. Based on our intelligence gathering in the states and nationally, the 2013 Priorities are the issues the Metro Med Government Relations Committee expects will be active in 2013.
Anticipated Top Issues of 2013
- CRNA Independent Practice
- Medical Malpractice Reform
- Medicaid Expansion
- Mental Health
- Health Levy Renewal – in KCMO
- Indoor Smoking Ban
- Tanning Legislation
- Medicaid Expansion
- KanCare Implementation
- Mental Health Initiatives
Public Health & Patient Advocacy
- Support higher state taxes on tobacco products
- Encourage food policies that support healthy eating and active living
- Support a Missouri statewide smoke-free law that covers all workplaces, including bars, restaurants and casinos
- Support efforts to end texting while driving
- Support the monitoring and limiting of meth ingredients
- Encourage attention to narcotic diversion and prescription drug monitoring
Patient Safety and Quality Improvement
Metro Med will continue to lead physicians’ efforts to measurably improve patient safety and quality of care.
- Reinforce the collaborative practice agreement between Advance Practice Registered Nurses (APRN) and physicians to ensure patient safety and high quality medical care
- Aggressively demand fairness in public quality reporting
- Support enhanced performance of health information exchanges in the region and state
Health Care Reform
- Monitor implementation of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and support certain modifications to make the implementation more fair and appropriate to practicing physicians.
- Support innovative outreach and enrollment strategies for uninsured individuals who are eligible for state health coverage options, including Medicaid
- Support innovation among physicians and hospitals to improve collaboration to benefit health care in Kansas City
Medical Liability Reform
To preserve patients’ access to care and help reduce health care costs, Metro Med will continue to lead an aggressive, multi-year campaign to reduce medical liability premiums and to fix the broken medical liability system for both patients and physicians:
- In Kansas defend enacted medical liability reform laws as they are challenged in legislatures and the courts and in Missouri reinstate previously passed medical liability reform laws.
- At the federal level, Metro Med is urging Congress to pass reforms at least as stringent as those enacted in states, including a $250,000 cap on non-economic damages, as well as provide funding for state-based pilot programs to develop promising alternative reforms, such as health courts, administrative determination of compensation, early offers, and safe harbors for the practice of evidence-based medicine.
- In Missouri, expand medical liability coverage of the Missouri State Legal Expense Fund to/MetroCARE volunteer physicians, their staffs, and their practices.
Physician Payment, Regulatory Relief and Fairness
- Support replacement of the flawed Medicare physician payment formula (SGR) without accomplishing it by shifting reimbursement from one physician specialty group to another physician specialty group, e.g. specialists vs primary care
- Support federal legislation to bring about the implementation of Medicare balance billing, including but not limited to relaxing the Limiting Charge Rules.
- Oppose third-party interference with the physician-patient relationship
- Support mandate of Predetermination Insurance Standard. The standard is known as 837P.
- Support Any Willing Provider
- Encourage the move away from Economic Credentialing
- Support Certificate of Need repeal
- Most Favored Nation Clause legislation
- Support federal health care reform regulations to encourage health care workforce development including increased funding for Graduate Medical Education (GME) to address the impending physician workforce shortage
- Support economic development and workforce initiatives to encourage physicians to train and practice in the Kansas City area including loan repayment and tax credit programs
- Foster an environment where private practice continues to be a viable practice model
- Encourage Medicaid to evolve in ways that encourage physicians to participate
- Support standardized and prompt credentialing application for health insurance companies (CAQH)
- Support policies to reduce medical education debt
- Encourage statewide analyses of the physician workforce
- Support the removal of non-compete clauses
Uninsured and Underinsured
- Fully support reauthorization of the Kansas City Health Levy and its current funding structure
- Support state tax credit for charity care provided through Northland CARE/MetroCARE
- Support efforts to modernize and improve the Medicaid program in order to increase efficiencies including maintaining Medicaid funding at levels that allow Missouri and Kansas to sustain vital safety net coverage for children and families and important medical education programs