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Internists issue 2-pronged plan to improve health care system
Date:2/21/2013

(Washington) "Continued improvement in the health care system to expand coverage and reduce unnecessary costs is imperative," David L. Bronson, MD, FACP, president of the American College of Physicians (ACP), said at today's annual State of the Nation's Health Care briefing. "Such efforts will not succeed in ensuring patient access to high quality medical care if the current assault on the patient-physician relationship continues unabated."

  • In yesterday's report, ACP noted that in some ways it is the best of times for U.S. health care, because the Affordable Care Act will soon make affordable coverage available to nearly all legal U.S. residentsfor the first time in historyaccompanied by a record slowdown in health care cost increases. But ACP also warned of vulnerable patients being left behind in states that refuse to cover their poor under Medicaid; the threat to public health and access if an across-the-board budget cut (sequestration) is allowed to occur; the continued obstacles to high quality care created by Medicare's flawed SGR formula; and the unacceptable toll of deaths and injuries from firearms. A growing shortage of primary care physicians for adults will increase costs and reduce access. And, ACP noted that many physicians report that it is the worst of times when it comes to intrusions on the hallowed patient-physician relationship.

ACP's two-pronged plan

  1. includes specific and achievable proposals to continue to advance the progress being made in expanding affordable coverage, lowering costs, recruiting and retaining primary care physicians, and reforming physician payment systems.

  2. reduces barriers to the patient-physician relationship to accomplish the only genuine purpose of health reform, which is to put the interests of patients first.

"It simply is unacceptable that the political divisions in Washington have caused a recurring series of
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Contact: Jackie Blaser
jblaser@acponline.org
202-261-4572
American College of Physicians
Source:Eurekalert

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