ASA Grassroots Network

ASA Grassroots Network The American Society of Anesthesiologists Grassroots Network engages in grassroots activity to keep its members informed about important legislative and regulatory issues affecting the medical specialty of anesthesiology.
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The American Society of Anesthesiologists® keeps its members informed about important legislative and regulatory issues affecting the medical specialty of anesthesiology. To learn more about the ASA Grassroots Network, please visit http://www.asahq.org/grassroots.

Read about the experiences of our April Resident Scholar, Anthony Sawyer, MD, MPH during ASA's Anesthesiology Policy Res...
06/07/2021

Read about the experiences of our April Resident Scholar, Anthony Sawyer, MD, MPH during ASA's Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs, as he talks about health disparities and a need for diversity in medicine. (Members Only) https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/advocacy-tools/policy-research-rotation/resident-scholar-articles/anthony-sawyer-md-mph

Read about the experiences of our April Resident Scholar, Anthony Sawyer, MD, MPH during ASA's Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs, as he talks about health disparities and a need for diversity in medicine. (Members Only) https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/advocacy-tools/policy-research-rotation/resident-scholar-articles/anthony-sawyer-md-mph

"If there is anything I’ve learned during my rotation, it’s how impactful our voices can be in advocating for our patien...
06/04/2021

"If there is anything I’ve learned during my rotation, it’s how impactful our voices can be in advocating for our patients and profession." Check out what our March Resident Scholar, Mariam Sarwary, MD had to say about her experience during ASA's Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs! https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/advocacy-tools/policy-research-rotation/resident-scholar-articles/mariam-sarwary-md

"If there is anything I’ve learned during my rotation, it’s how impactful our voices can be in advocating for our patients and profession." Check out what our March Resident Scholar, Mariam Sarwary, MD had to say about her experience during ASA's Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs! https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/advocacy-tools/policy-research-rotation/resident-scholar-articles/mariam-sarwary-md

ASA welcomes Muhammad Anwar, MBBS as our June 2021 participant in the ASA Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs,...
06/03/2021

ASA welcomes Muhammad Anwar, MBBS as our June 2021 participant in the ASA Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs, also known as the “Resident Scholar” program. Dr. Anwar will spend the month protecting patient care and advocating for the specialty at the highest level. Stay tuned for his Instagram takeover later this month!

ASA welcomes Muhammad Anwar, MBBS as our June 2021 participant in the ASA Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs, also known as the “Resident Scholar” program. Dr. Anwar will spend the month protecting patient care and advocating for the specialty at the highest level. Stay tuned for his Instagram takeover later this month!

The American Society of Anesthesiologists invites you to participate in the 19th annual survey of commercial payment rat...
06/02/2021

The American Society of Anesthesiologists invites you to participate in the 19th annual survey of commercial payment rates. Participate by July 9: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/06/2021-asa-conversion-factor-survey

The American Society of Anesthesiologists invites you to participate in the 19th annual survey of commercial payment rates. Participate by July 9: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/06/2021-asa-conversion-factor-survey

Earlier this week, the Senate voted to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure as the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare a...
05/27/2021

Earlier this week, the Senate voted to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure as the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/chiquita-brookslasure-confirmed-as-administrator-of-cms

Earlier this week, the Senate voted to confirm Chiquita Brooks-LaSure as the Administrator of the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/chiquita-brookslasure-confirmed-as-administrator-of-cms

ASA is proud to endorse H.R. 3173 the Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act, which will address prior authorizati...
05/27/2021
ASA Endorses HR 3173 to Address Prior Authorization Barriers

ASA is proud to endorse H.R. 3173 the Improving Seniors’ Timely Access to Care Act, which will address prior authorization barriers that have delayed approval of medical services for senior Americans. This will help ensure that as the health care sector recovers from the pandemic, prior authorization requirements do not continue to affect seniors who are in need of life saving procedures and medication. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/asa-endorses-hr-3173-to-address-prior-authorization-barriers

See how ASA is working to resolve three key economic issues that are impacting you, explore the resources of ASA’s Payment Progress initiative, and test your anesthesia payment literacy!

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will not be calculating or applying the ...
05/26/2021
CMS To Reweight MIPS Cost Component for 2020

Last week, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) announced that it will not be calculating or applying the Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) Cost Performance Category score to 2020 MIPS participants or their groups. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/cms-to-reweight-mips-cost-component-for-2020?&ct=ccdc45b5713bea00b07997a4f2f2f516a198cdf3cf96d8d35aff678987951cd637cd7fd08a603893643daed4995e33adf4443e7b8b4c2b5974ecd09e5c453572

See how ASA is working to resolve three key economic issues that are impacting you, explore the resources of ASA’s Payment Progress initiative, and test your anesthesia payment literacy!

ASA, along with other members of the Health Coalition on Liability and Access (HCLA), applaud the introduction of H.R. 3...
05/24/2021

ASA, along with other members of the Health Coalition on Liability and Access (HCLA), applaud the introduction of H.R. 3021, the Coronavirus Provider Protection Act, which will help ensure that health care professionals and facilities who have served on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic are not drawn into unwarranted lawsuits for the care they have provided during the public health emergency. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/asa-supports-legislation-to-address-covid-liability-issues

ASA, along with other members of the Health Coalition on Liability and Access (HCLA), applaud the introduction of H.R. 3021, the Coronavirus Provider Protection Act, which will help ensure that health care professionals and facilities who have served on the front lines of the coronavirus pandemic are not drawn into unwarranted lawsuits for the care they have provided during the public health emergency. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/asa-supports-legislation-to-address-covid-liability-issues

This year, ASA honored Congresswoman Anna Eshoo with the 2021 Excellence in Government Award in recognition of her resol...
05/21/2021

This year, ASA honored Congresswoman Anna Eshoo with the 2021 Excellence in Government Award in recognition of her resolute work on behalf of patients and physicians to ensure access to high-quality health care and for the knowledge and highly effective leadership she brings to Congress. Congratulations, Rep. Eshoo! https://www.asahq.org/about-asa/newsroom/news-releases/2021/05/asa-honors-congresswoman-anna-eshoo-with-2021-excellence-in-government-award

This year, ASA honored Congresswoman Anna Eshoo with the 2021 Excellence in Government Award in recognition of her resolute work on behalf of patients and physicians to ensure access to high-quality health care and for the knowledge and highly effective leadership she brings to Congress. Congratulations, Rep. Eshoo! https://www.asahq.org/about-asa/newsroom/news-releases/2021/05/asa-honors-congresswoman-anna-eshoo-with-2021-excellence-in-government-award

ASA congratulates Claude Brunson, MD, FASA, executive director of the Mississippi State Medical Association (MSMA), who ...
05/21/2021

ASA congratulates Claude Brunson, MD, FASA, executive director of the Mississippi State Medical Association (MSMA), who received the 2021 Bertram W. Coffer, MD, Excellence in Government award in recognition of his tireless leadership in protecting patient safety in Mississippi. Congratulations, Dr. Brunson! https://www.asahq.org/about-asa/newsroom/news-releases/2021/05/asa-honors-claude-brunson-with-2021-bertram-w-coffer-md-excellence-in-government-award

ASA congratulates Claude Brunson, MD, FASA, executive director of the Mississippi State Medical Association (MSMA), who received the 2021 Bertram W. Coffer, MD, Excellence in Government award in recognition of his tireless leadership in protecting patient safety in Mississippi. Congratulations, Dr. Brunson! https://www.asahq.org/about-asa/newsroom/news-releases/2021/05/asa-honors-claude-brunson-with-2021-bertram-w-coffer-md-excellence-in-government-award

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s Legislative Conference! The conference was recorded and will be av...
05/16/2021

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s Legislative Conference! The conference was recorded and will be available to all registrants via email within the next week.

Thank you to everyone who participated in this year’s Legislative Conference! The conference was recorded and will be available to all registrants via email within the next week.

Registration for the 2021 virtual Federal Legislative Conference closes tomorrow at 12pm CT. Rep. Andy Harris, Rep. Juli...
05/12/2021

Registration for the 2021 virtual Federal Legislative Conference closes tomorrow at 12pm CT. Rep. Andy Harris, Rep. Julia Brownley and several other members of Congress will be joining us this year! Register today and join us on Sunday afternoon: https://www.asahq.org/legislative

Registration for the 2021 virtual Federal Legislative Conference closes tomorrow at 12pm CT. Rep. Andy Harris, Rep. Julia Brownley and several other members of Congress will be joining us this year! Register today and join us on Sunday afternoon: https://www.asahq.org/legislative

ASA is pleased to announce the next cycle of participants in the Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Af...
05/11/2021

ASA is pleased to announce the next cycle of participants in the Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs - also known as the Resident Scholar program. ASA congratulates Dr. Katherine Mills from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Dr. Chirag Patel from the University of Miami, Dr. Caroline Phillips from the University of Alabama, Birmingham, Dr. Derek Stout from Dartmouth Hitchcock, and Dr. Randall Yale from the Medical College of Wisconsin. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/candidates-for-2021-2022-resident-scholar-program-selected

ASA is pleased to announce the next cycle of participants in the Anesthesiology Policy Research Rotation in Political Affairs - also known as the Resident Scholar program. ASA congratulates Dr. Katherine Mills from the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, Dr. Chirag Patel from the University of Miami, Dr. Caroline Phillips from the University of Alabama, Birmingham, Dr. Derek Stout from Dartmouth Hitchcock, and Dr. Randall Yale from the Medical College of Wisconsin. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/05/candidates-for-2021-2022-resident-scholar-program-selected

Yesterday, President Joe Biden addressed a joint session of Congress to mark his first 100 days in office. During his ad...
04/30/2021

Yesterday, President Joe Biden addressed a joint session of Congress to mark his first 100 days in office. During his address, President Biden acknowledged the devastating toll that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the nation, as well as efforts taken to deliver over 220 million vaccine doses to Americans over the first 100 days of his presidency. President Biden also referenced ongoing efforts to combat the nation’s opioid abuse epidemic, which remains a key priority of ASA. ASA looks forward to continuing to work with the Biden Administration and Congress to advocate for patient safety and increased access to health care services in the US. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/biden-delivers-first-joint-address-to-congress

Yesterday, President Joe Biden addressed a joint session of Congress to mark his first 100 days in office. During his address, President Biden acknowledged the devastating toll that the COVID-19 pandemic has had on the nation, as well as efforts taken to deliver over 220 million vaccine doses to Americans over the first 100 days of his presidency. President Biden also referenced ongoing efforts to combat the nation’s opioid abuse epidemic, which remains a key priority of ASA. ASA looks forward to continuing to work with the Biden Administration and Congress to advocate for patient safety and increased access to health care services in the US. Read more: https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/biden-delivers-first-joint-address-to-congress

Earlier this week, HHS announced updated practice guidelines to expand access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) by ...
04/29/2021

Earlier this week, HHS announced updated practice guidelines to expand access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) by allowing physicians to prescribe buprenorphine for opioid use disorder (OUD) without the regulatory barriers of certain certification requirements. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/hhs-decision-to-expand-access-to-opioid-use-disorder-treatment

Earlier this week, HHS announced updated practice guidelines to expand access to medication-assisted treatment (MAT) by allowing physicians to prescribe buprenorphine for opioid use disorder (OUD) without the regulatory barriers of certain certification requirements. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/hhs-decision-to-expand-access-to-opioid-use-disorder-treatment

On April 22, the American Society of Anesthesiologists joined a coalition of health care organizations in urging the Dep...
04/29/2021

On April 22, the American Society of Anesthesiologists joined a coalition of health care organizations in urging the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra to reinstate the step therapy prohibition in Medicare Advantage plans for Part B drugs, which include drugs used to treat a wide variety of chronic conditions, including chronic pain. Read more: https://bit.ly/3nrZSK5

On April 22, the American Society of Anesthesiologists joined a coalition of health care organizations in urging the Department of Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra to reinstate the step therapy prohibition in Medicare Advantage plans for Part B drugs, which include drugs used to treat a wide variety of chronic conditions, including chronic pain. Read more: https://bit.ly/3nrZSK5

A new Medicare Local Coverage Determination (LCD) for facet joint injection procedures became effective April 25, 2021. ...
04/28/2021

A new Medicare Local Coverage Determination (LCD) for facet joint injection procedures became effective April 25, 2021. Prevent denied and delayed claims with the information from ASA’s latest Timely Topic in Payment and Practice Management. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/the-facts-on-facet-joint-injections?&ct=49ba0acb9f95f10b4c7cffc410dff6ff7c9e2ded6ad5090303249ed8cc7133aa3c4718145f218131a19838f3d696697cac5555066711b8c8ad0f1695b26806d8

A new Medicare Local Coverage Determination (LCD) for facet joint injection procedures became effective April 25, 2021. Prevent denied and delayed claims with the information from ASA’s latest Timely Topic in Payment and Practice Management. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/the-facts-on-facet-joint-injections?&ct=49ba0acb9f95f10b4c7cffc410dff6ff7c9e2ded6ad5090303249ed8cc7133aa3c4718145f218131a19838f3d696697cac5555066711b8c8ad0f1695b26806d8

Follow ASA on Instagram tomorrow, April 22, as our April Resident Scholar Dr. Anthony Sawyer takes over the account to s...
04/21/2021

Follow ASA on Instagram tomorrow, April 22, as our April Resident Scholar Dr. Anthony Sawyer takes over the account to showcase his advocacy for the specialty and patient safety. http://ow.ly/oDUN50Eus5o

Follow ASA on Instagram tomorrow, April 22, as our April Resident Scholar Dr. Anthony Sawyer takes over the account to showcase his advocacy for the specialty and patient safety. http://ow.ly/oDUN50Eus5o

Last week, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra extended the Public Health Emergency (PHE) declarati...
04/20/2021

Last week, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra extended the Public Health Emergency (PHE) declaration related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was set to expire. The extension of the PHE means that providers will continue to be able to leverage the COVID-19 waivers and regulatory flexibilities released by HHS, including those pertaining to telemedicine. ASA is continuing to work to reverse the CMS waiver of the Medicare Anesthesia Services physician supervision requirement, which is extended by this action. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/public-health-emergency-extended

Last week, Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Xavier Becerra extended the Public Health Emergency (PHE) declaration related to the COVID-19 pandemic, which was set to expire. The extension of the PHE means that providers will continue to be able to leverage the COVID-19 waivers and regulatory flexibilities released by HHS, including those pertaining to telemedicine. ASA is continuing to work to reverse the CMS waiver of the Medicare Anesthesia Services physician supervision requirement, which is extended by this action. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/public-health-emergency-extended

Earlier this week, the House of Representatives passed HR 1868, legislation to extend a moratorium on across-the-board s...
04/16/2021

Earlier this week, the House of Representatives passed HR 1868, legislation to extend a moratorium on across-the-board sequester Medicare payment cuts. The legislation, which already passed the Senate, was signed into law by the President.

Earlier this week, the House of Representatives passed HR 1868, legislation to extend a moratorium on across-the-board sequester Medicare payment cuts. The legislation, which already passed the Senate, was signed into law by the President.

ASA, in partnership with other health care organizations, responded to the Biden Administration’s Executive Order (EO) 1...
04/14/2021

ASA, in partnership with other health care organizations, responded to the Biden Administration’s Executive Order (EO) 14017, which serves as an important step in further addressing drug shortages and supply issues related to personal protective equipment (PPE), in particular. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/asa-partners-respond-to-executive-order-on-americas-supply-chain

ASA, in partnership with other health care organizations, responded to the Biden Administration’s Executive Order (EO) 14017, which serves as an important step in further addressing drug shortages and supply issues related to personal protective equipment (PPE), in particular. https://www.asahq.org/advocacy-and-asapac/fda-and-washington-alerts/washington-alerts/2021/04/asa-partners-respond-to-executive-order-on-americas-supply-chain

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General information

The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) Grassroots Network page shares and encourages engagement on grassroots activity on behalf of the medical specialty of anesthesiology and keeps its members informed on important legislative and regulatory issues. The ASA Grassroots Network hopes to encourage an insightful community and positive dialogue on advocacy issues impacting the practice of anesthesiology. ASA reserves the right to remove objectionable messages from the page and wall at its discretion, including but not limited to, posts that contain unlawful content, profanity, libel, or obscene, defamatory, threatening and hateful language or third party advertising or spam. Comments must comply with Facebook’s terms of use. After multiple offenses, users may be removed from the page. The views and opinions expressed on the ASA Grassroots Network page do not necessarily represent those of ASA. ASA shall not be responsible for the accuracy or reliability of information posted by external parties. Please message [email protected] with any questions or concerns, and join the ASA Grassroots Network at http://www.asahq.org/grassroots.

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It is clear that CMS and its office bearers seem to have little idea what surgical care is all about. One mistake or lack of timely intervention and the patient could be dead. There is a reason a why specialist anesthesiologist physician whose training spans over close to 12 to 15 years and costs close to a million dollars is delegated with the primary responsibility of surgical care of patients. The nurse is trained to work under the supervision of an anesthesiologist who evaluates a patient, understands the associated anesthetic and surgical risk and above all proposes a plan that either he/she or one of his or her designee executes . Remember 100% of the rescues in the operating rooms are performed by physician anesthesiologist in united states. And 100% of the sickest patients undergoing high risk procedures are performed by Physician anesthesiologists. They catch the problems before, during and after surgery. Todays patients coming to ASE are sicker, older, have multiple co-morbid conditions that only a seasoned physician anesthesiologist can evaluate and treat. Almost 100% of the medicare patients that CMS is responsible for will be placed in great peril, and by the time data becomes available a number of patients would have suffered serious damage or death due to this policy change. And frankly, I can't understand one setting where, why sickest of the sick should not get the benefit of a Physician Anesthesiologist. It clearly appears to be about money or a clear attempt to discriminate against the under privileged patients who are frail, sicker and poor and live in rural or underserved areas. This does little to improve access, however, it surely creates a double standard, a double whammy, because with this ruling and similar rulings in the past sicker, poorer, rural and above all medicare beneficiaries ( over 67 years, the sickest population) now will be offered cheap and substandard care. As a physician anesthesiologist, I am deeply concerned that in the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule proposed rule, CMS is proposing to allow nurse anesthetists to perform the preoperative assessment of anesthetic risk and presurgical evaluation in an ASC setting. This is a deeply troubling proposal that will have a negative impact on patient safety. I oppose this proposed change because it would jeopardize the safety of patients. Physicians have the medical background necessary to assess the patient’s underlying condition in an objective, evidence-based and patient-centric way. As a physician anesthesiologist, I have the necessary knowledge and skills to assess the patient with respect to anesthetic risk, and also to assess whether each patient’s preoperative management has been optimized prior to undergoing surgery. Nurse anesthetists do not have the same clinical background or depth of training in clinical issues. Nurse anesthetist training is limited to anesthesia care delivery, not risk assessment, diagnosis or medical decision making outside the scope of an anesthetic. Thank you, Dr. Govind Rajan M.B.,B.S., FAACD, FASA