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.

Pressure to Expand Medicaid Mounts, Employer Plans Decline

posted: November 3, 2014
When provisions of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) related to the expansion of Medicaid to low-income childless adults took effect in January 2014, 25 states and the District of Columbia had approved... Read More

State Advocacy Conference: Vigilance in the Political Process Essential

posted: October 6, 2014
Leaders of state, regional and subspecialty urologic societies from around the country recently convened for discussions on health policy, grassroots mobilization and organizational development.A... Read More

States Take Novel Steps to Address Work Force Shortage

posted: July 29, 2014
As policymakers learn about the burgeoning bottleneck between medical school graduation and graduate medical education (GME), a number of novel approaches to physician training have launched from... Read More

ACA’s ‘Grace Period’ Shows Physician-Led Reform Must be Grassroots

posted: June 4, 2014
As policymakers pieced together what would become the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (ACA) in 2009, a Gallup poll asked Americans who they trusted to recommend the right reforms for the... Read More

States Push Independence for NPPs: A Solution to Work Force Crisis?

posted: May 1, 2014
Of the myriad proposed solutions to physician shortages, an expanded scope of practice for non-physician providers (NPPs) can be swiftly implemented by policymakers eager for a quick fix... Read More

Legal Hurdles May Stall Telehealth’s Role in Work Force Crisis

posted: February 12, 2014
As thousands of baby boomers age into Medicare every day and millions of newly insured Americans seek health care, analysts point to expanded utilization of telehealth services as one way to... Read More

Battle Over Tort Reform, Physician Drug Testing Wages in California

posted: January 21, 2014
A battle is brewing in California between trial lawyers and physicians, one that could be a harbinger of things to come nationally.Last summer, a controversial ballot initiative was introduced in... Read More

In Washington, Time Running Out to Address Health Care Concerns

posted: November 18, 2013
2013 was always going to be a significant year for our nation’s health care system.October 1 was chosen as the launch date for the various health insurance marketplaces established under the... Read More

Urologists Unveil Future of Health Delivery at AACU Conference

posted: October 29, 2013
Energized by recent legislative victories from Tallahassee to Olympia, urologists looked to the future as they gathered for the 6th annual AACU State Society Network Advocacy Conference. Taking... 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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