Urology Times

Urology Times.Based on a partnership with Urology Times, articles from the American Association of Clinical Urologists (AACU) provide updates on legislative processes and issues affecting urologists. We welcome your comments and suggestions. Contact the AACU government affairs office at (847) 517-1050 or info@aacuweb.org for more information.

HHS Nominee Promises Physician-Friendly Reforms

posted: January 11, 2017
President-elect Donald J. Trump is poised to nominate Tom Price, MD, to serve as Secretary of Health and Human Services (HHS). If confirmed, Dr. Price, who currently represents Georgia's 6th... Read More

Urologist Elected to US House

posted: November 29, 2016
The Doctors' Caucus in the U.S. House of Representatives will include a newly elected Florida urologist when the 115th Congress convenes Jan. 3, 2017. Neal Dunn, MD, secured 67% of the vote in... Read More

Relationships Between Urologists, Policy Makers Yield Positive Results

posted: October 27, 2016
Given the complex nature of health care issues, elected officials depend on subject matter experts to enhance their understanding of a proposed policy's impact on their district. Office staff... Read More

Update: States Limit the Role of Specialty Certification

posted: October 6, 2016
Passionate physicians have organized state-based campaigns to minimize the role recertification plays in licensing, payment, and employment or admitting privileges. These advocates firmly believe... Read More

AACU Conference Assembles “Urology Advocacy Armada”

posted: September 6, 2016
Facing uncertainty in Medicare and increasing regulatory and insurer burdens, the leaders of organizations representing urologists across the country gathered in mid-August for the 9th Annual AACU... Read More

Federal Agencies Consider Telehealth, Scope of Practice Proposals

posted: August 1, 2016
In an effort to increase access to health care providers for members of the military and veterans, federal agencies are seeking ways to expand telemedicine and practice authority for advanced... Read More

AACU on MACRA: Delay Rollout, Adjust Low-Volume Threshold

posted: July 5, 2016
The American Association of Clinical Urologists submitted comments on the post-SGR Medicare reimbursement program, MACRA, on June 27, 2016. In its comments to the Centers for Medicare &... Read More

Feds Flex Regulatory Muscle On Health Care Mergers, Professional Board Authority

posted: June 1, 2016
State lawmakers also hear from the FTC during the legislative process, before scope-of-practice rules become legally binding. In April 2013, the American Medical Association summarized FTC comments... Read More

States Attempt To Limit Importance of MOC

posted: May 3, 2016
Maintenance of certification (MOC) is an increasingly time consuming, expensive, and unnerving exercise.According to the Urology Times 2015 State of the Specialty survey, 85% of respondents'... Read More

Single-Payer Proposals Crop Up At State, Federal Level

posted: April 1, 2016
Senator Bernie Sanders' campaign for the Democratic Party's nomination for president reminds many Americans that single-payer health care proposals often pop up in his home state of Vermont... Read More

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Advocacy Priorities
  • Prostate Cancer Screening and Awareness

    Eliminating Misdiagnosis and Reducing Wasteful Medicare SpendingEvery 20 minutes an American man dies from prostate cancer. The American Cancer Society estimates that 161,360 men were told they have prostate cancer in 2017. Early detection is critical because research shows the five-year survival...

  • IPAB Repeal

    IPAB permanently repealed in a major victory for the AACU and urology communityThe AACU is pleased to report that the Bipartisan Budget Act of 2018 (H.R. 1892) included provisions to repeal the Independent Physicians Advisory Board (IPAB), a 15-member panel of unelected officials that had the...

  • Graduate Medical Education and Physician Workforce Shortage

    Ensuring a Well-Trained Physician Workforce Increase Federally Funded Physician Training ProgramsRequestUrologists urge Congress to acknowledge the importance of specialty medicine and address urological workforce shortages that jeopardize patient access to care. We urge lawmakers to support...

  • The Impact of Pharmacy Benefit Managers on Access to Affordable Treatment

    Pharmacy benefit managers (PBMs) have a significant impact on prescription drug costs and the ability of patients to obtain the medications they need in a timely and affordable manner, and yet very little is known about their role. The AACU is dedicated to working with policymakers at both the...

  • Improve Preventive Task Force Recommendations, Preserve Access to Prostate Cancer Screening

    The United States Preventive Services Task Force (USPSTF) plays a critical role in preventive care because its recommendations dictate what preventive services many health plans must provide without cost sharing. Currently, however, the USPSTF has little accountability. Task Force members are...

  • Medical Liability Reform: Protect Physician Volunteers During National Disasters

    Protection for Physician Disaster VolunteersClinical urologists urge support for the Good Samaritan Health Professionals Act of 2017, introduced in the House by Rep. Marsha Blackburn (R-TN-7) and in the Senate by Sen. Bill Cassidy, MD (R-LA). This crucial legislation seeks to shield medical...

  • Modernize Law Restricting Coordinated Care (“Stark Law”)

    When Congress enacted the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act, it replaced a fundamentally flawed reimbursement framework with a program promoting value-based care delivery. Value-based care, as measured by the new Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and alternative payment...

  • Patients Over Paperwork: Reducing the Burden of Medicare Red Tape

    Urologists across the country treat a high volume of Medicare patients and therefore deal with the program’s numerous requirements and complex payment structures on a near daily basis. The AACU is dedicated to working with legislators and policymakers to identify ways to simplify and...

State Advocacy
  • Fair Contracting and Medical Practice Freedom

    Where We Stand Ensure openness and fairness in health care provider contacts. Prevent third-party payors from changing the terms of their provider contract without notice to the provider and without the consent of the provider. Ensure that physician licensure is based upon a physician's...

  • Medical Liability Reform — Expert Witness Qualifications

    Strengthen expert witness standards Ensure that expert witness is from the same specialty as the defendant physician Prevent frivolous lawsuits Improve the practice environment for physicians in your stateWhenever a physician’s conduct is being called into question, it is only fair...

  • Prostate Cancer Awareness & Assessment

    Where We Stand Continue the progress that has been made in the reduction of prostate cancer morbidity and mortality with the appropriate use of prostate cancer testing. Ensure that third-party payors provide for the reimbursement of prostate cancer testing when the patient and his physician...

  • Uniform Prior Authorization for Prescriptions and Health Services

    Where We Stand Prior authorizations cost the health system $728 million in 2012. Prior authorization requests must use a single form, no more than two pages in length. Forms must available for both access and submission electronically. Requests are deemed approved if no response is...

  • Work Force — Scope of Practice

    Where We Stand Allow the maximum patient-to-physician ratio to increase based on the number of physician assistants in a practice. Expand the ability of nurse practitioners and physician assistants to supervise medical assistants when doctors aren’t on the premises.Proactive Physician...

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