By J. James Rohack, M.D.
President, American Medical Association
The AMA hails the passage of the House health reform bill, which will help improve the health system for patients and physicians and calls for swift passage of H.R. 3961 to secure the stability of the Medicare program. Passage of the House health reform bill is a big step forward as we work for comprehensive health reform this year. The AMA will continue its work with Congress and the administration to strengthen and improve health reform legislation as the process continues for patients and physicians.
The bill will significantly expand health insurance coverage to Americans; empower patient and physician decision making; institute meaningful insurance market reforms; make substantial investments in quality; institute prevention and wellness initiatives; provide incentives to states that adopt certificate of merit and/or early offer liability reforms, and reduce administrative burdens.
As Congress considers new coverage commitments to the American people through health reform, it must ensure that commitments already made are fulfilled through passage of the Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act of 2009 (H.R. 3961). This bill will permanently repeal the broken physician payment formula and preserve access to care for seniors, baby boomers and military families.