Updated November 13, 2009
Update: The Academy has signed on to a letter addressed to House Speaker Nancy Pelosi asking for her for swift passage of HR 3961. Read the letter.
Following passage of the US House's version of the health care reform bill, the Academy will direct its efforts on the US Senate. Senator Amy Klobuchar (D-MN) has agreed to introduce an amendment to add neurology to the bill's primary care section, since it does not currently include neurology in any primary care bonuses.
The Senator Majority Leader, Harry Reid (D-NV) has taken the first step towards a Senate floor debate by placing the House Bill (HR 3962) on the official Senate calendar, which could lead to a debate on the bill as soon as November 16. However, there have also been indications the Senatewill not act until mid-December, or possibly later.
Meanwhile, House leaders have said a floor vote is planned for next week on the "Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act of 2009" (HR 3961), which would repeal the broken sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula. Funding for this bill is offset, which means it won’t have the same objections the Senate version had a few weeks back.
An "Action Alert" was emailed to all US Academy members on November 6, asking them to contact their member of the House of Representatives and write in support of HR 3961. To date, over 400 members have responded to this alert.
If you have done so yet, please take two minutes and login to Vocus to tell your representative that you support HR 3961! You can also call the AMA's grassroots hotline (1-800-833-6354) to be connected to your House member's office during business hours.
For more information, contact Mike Amery at firstname.lastname@example.org.