DO Engage: June 23, 2017


The AOA was a big hit at the Congressional Baseball Game, opioids continue to top inpatient care spending, and the AOA is seeking your help for a major advocacy issue. But first, the Senate health reform bill was released this afternoon.

— Health Reform Episode V: The Senate Strikes Back: After over a month of negotiation behind closed doors, the Senate finally released its health care reform legislation. The legislation, if passed, would make drastic changes to the current Affordable Care Act and make large cuts to the Medicaid program. A vote on the bill is scheduled for late next week. Here are 3 key takeaways from the draft legislation:

  1. The legislation would repeal the Affordable Care Act’s individual and employer mandates, and taxes.
  2. The legislation phases out the Medicaid expansion program over three years, ending in 2024.
  3. The legislation significantly limits Medicaid spending by converting the program to per capita limits. The spending growth rate would become stricter in 2025.

— The AOA Speaks Out: The AOA, along with many other physician organizations, hospital organizations, and patient groups have expressed disappointment in the Senate health care legislation and its potential impact on patient access to high quality care and plan affordability. For more information regarding AOA President Boyd Buser’s statement on the Senate health care bill, CLICK HERE.

–The AOA Needs Your Voice: Over the last several weeks, I’ve gotten the privilege to email and chat with many of the members of the AOA family. And while many have expressed various opinions about the Affordable Care Act and both the House and Senate repeal legislation, there is one common concern: the lack of transparency regarding the legislation. So far there have been no hearings in the Senate committees of jurisdiction, no input from physician organizations, medical societies, and patient groups, and there will be limited floor debate on the bill.

As an organization, we are concerned a lack of input from those on the front lines of healthcare, such as physicians like you, will result in legislation that does not align with the AOA’s Priorities for Health Care Reform. Many of you have received emails from AOA President Boyd Buser, DO, urging you to write or tweet your Senators and ask them to engage in an open and transparent process to craft real bipartisan legislation to reform our health care system. We hope that you will join us in this effort to ensure that patients receive access to affordable, high-quality care that is done in an open and transparent process. For more information about how the AOA has developed its position on health care reform and the AHCA to date, watch our webinar that explains the process.

This is the DO Engage for June 22, 2017. We are officially deep into the summer and your author is patiently waiting for two things, the release of the Senate health care bill CBO score, and the release of pictures of Beyonce’s twins (not necessarily in that order). She is also desperately seeking a list of summer jams to rock out to. Please share your top songs of the summer (or podcasts) to And don’t forget to follow the AOA on Facebook and Twitter @AOAforDOs.

–The AOA Scores a Big Win at the Congressional Baseball Game– Thursday June 15th, marked the annual Congressional Baseball Game where members of both sides of the aisle compete for charity and bragging rights. This year the AOA sponsored the Presidents Race, where our own Ali Abdallawah, D.O., provided the pre-race sports physical. The AOA was so excited to be a part of such a wonderful Congressional tradition, and to highlight the osteopathic philosophy. Check out the race HERE.

–Opioid Epidemic Increasing Emergency Room Visits: According to a study by the Agency for Health Care Research and Quality, between 2005 and 2014 the rate of opioid-related emergency room visits nearly doubled for both sexes and all age groups. There were 1.27 million emergency room visits or inpatient stays for opioid-related issues in 2014 alone. For more information regarding the report and the overall impact on the health care industry, CLICK HERE.

–The AOA is Seeking CVs and Resumes for the Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF): The AOA is interesting in nominating highly qualified DOs to serve on The Community Preventive Services Task Force (CPSTF). The CPSTF is an influential panel of public health and prevention experts authorized by Congress to provide evidence-based findings and recommendations about community preventive services, programs, and policies to improve health. The CPSTF produces recommendations (and identifies evidence gaps) to help inform the decision making of federal, state, and local health departments, other government agencies, communities, healthcare providers and organizations, employers, schools and research organizations.

If you are interested in being considered for an AOA nomination, please share your CV and a short bio by June 23, 2017 to The AOA will notify all applicants of their status and should an applicant not progress to an AOA nomination, they are welcome to self-nominate for this opportunity by following the guidance provided on the Federal Register announcement in advance of the application deadline of July 3, 2017 at 11:59pm Eastern Time.



DO Engage<< >>AOA Statement on Senate Health Care Bill

About the author : Tammy Whaley

Tammy E. Whaley is the executive director of the South Carolina Osteopathic Medical Society (SCOMS).