We have less than two weeks until the voter registration deadline. Over 700 clinicians in Arizona are already using VotER to help folks register to vote. Take 30 seconds and download your own Democracy, STAT Toolbox right now to join them and help your patients, colleagues, and loved ones get ready for the election.
“VotER is a nonpartisan project led by physicians, for physicians. When we interact with patients, we have a unique opportunity to also strengthen the democratic process and improve the healthcare system, simply by registering people to vote. I encourage all physicians to use VotER – it’s easy and it makes a difference.”
—Dr. Ricardo Correa, ArMA Board of Directors
Arizona’s physician community is at a crossroads. To meet this moment, Thursday night’s event was organized to support all of ArMPAC’s endorsed candidates in the upcoming November election. Your donations will go directly to helping these pro-healthcare candidates win critical seats in the Legislature this fall. The stakes are tremendously high as we approach the 2021 legislative session, and much is at stake. We need your help! Click here to watch Senator Brophy McGee’s invitation to physicians to participate in tomorrow night’s event.
Click here to purchase access to the virtual fundraising event, slated to take place tomorrow night from 6:00 p.m. to 7:15 p.m. AZ physicians must help the best candidates to protect both their profession and their patients. Let’s make it happen!
As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to disrupt life across the United States, multiple potential vaccines are being developed and tested—some right here in Arizona!
The phase 3 trial of Moderna’s COVID-19 vaccine took a major step this week as participants began to receive the second of two doses. Phase 3 of clinical testing also began this week for AstraZeneca’s COVID-19 vaccine while Pfizer CEO Albert Bourla announced that results from his company’s phase 3 trial could come back as soon as October.
“We expect by the end of October, we should have enough to say whether the product works or not,” he said. U.S. health officials have previously said results from late-stage vaccine trials could come in November or sooner.
In July, the U.S. government announced it would pay Pfizer and BioNTech $1.95 billion to produce and deliver 100 million doses of their vaccine if it proves safe and effective. The deal was signed as part of Operation Warp Speed, the official White House effort to accelerate the development and production of vaccines and treatments to fight COVID-19.
For more detailed information on the latest news regarding vaccines in Arizona, you can view the latest edition of Arizona Vaccine News from the Arizona Department of Health Services.
The proposed CME Fee Schedule for 2021 will result in significant cuts to physician payment for most surgical services delivered to Medicare patients.
As proposed, general surgery would experience a 7% cut to Medicare payments, while nearly all surgical specialties will face additional reductions, including cardiac surgery 9%, thoracic surgery 8%, vascular surgery and neurosurgery 7%, and ophthalmology 6%.
The American College of Surgeons has created an online petition for surgeons to contact members of Congress and register their opposition to the proposed cuts. If you would like to add your voice to the effort, click here.
Join your colleagues and let’s keep the pressure on.
A new tool, created by a team of physicians in partnership with voter registration activists, is available to help physicians get their patients registered to vote. As described by its creators, VotER was developed in response to the healthcare inequities that stem from a democratic process where 51 million citizens are not registered to vote.
VotER developed a platform where patients can register to vote on their phones. Click here to take a look. The platform independently walks patients through the steps to check their registration status or register to vote while physicians can continue on to their next patient.
VotER has free badgebackers, lanyards, and posters as part of their Healthy Democracy Kit, available to all interested healthcare workers who access their platform. You can pre-order now on their website at vot-er.org/kit.
On August 4, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) released a proposed rule for the 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule and Quality Payment Program. Comments are due to CMS no later than October 5, 2020. The American Medical Association (AMA) has provided a new, more complete summary of the proposed rule, which you can click here to view in its entirety.
Among other concerns, the proposed rule seeks an almost 11% reduction from the CY 2020 Medicare conversion factor, and a 10% reduction in the anesthesia conversion factor.
Any individuals wishing to provide comments before the October 5, 2020 deadline can do so by clicking here.
Phoenix is partnering with Vincere Cancer Center to offer free COVID-19 testing to city residents in traditionally underserved communities. Testing is being conducted out of a mobile van—the first of its kind in Arizona. Vincere trains its medical staff to provide both viral and antibody tests for the virus. The more common viral tests take several days to return results while antibody tests typically present results within a quick 15 minutes.
The van began operations on Tuesday parked inside the U-Haul parking lot located near Central Avenue and Thomas Road. Testing hours are from 7 a.m. to 1 p.m., five days a week, except for Wednesdays and Sundays.
Vincere Cancer Center’s Dr. Vershalee Shukla says that a peripheral focus of the van’s operations will be to support Phoenix small businesses. She says the van plans on parking itself in the parking lots of small businesses throughout the city in the next few weeks.
Click here for more on this story.
Physicians and medical students from Arizona to Virginia are preparing for a massive push to register voters in time for Election Day as the COVID-19 pandemic continues to take its toll on America’s healthcare infrastructure. Hospitals, doctors, and other institutions across the country are committing to efforts to engage American voters in the election process as a part of Civic Health Month, a nationwide campaign that kicked off Saturday, August 1.
Hospital networks in Arizona, Kansas, Missouri, Pennsylvania, North Carolina, Wisconsin, and elsewhere are among more than 60 institutions participating, along with thousands of individual physicians.
An emergency room doctor in Boston is assembling thousands of voter registration kits for distribution at hospitals and doctor’s offices. Medical students at the University of North Carolina recently bested their counterparts at Duke in a three-day contest that resulted in more than 500 total new voter registrations and requests for mail ballots. Later this month, students at Harvard and Yale’s medical schools are planning a contest to see which of the Ivy League rivals can register the most voters.
Click here for more on this story.
Voting is the most important part of the political process, and Tuesday, August 4, is Election Day. If you haven’t already, PLEASE VOTE. The stakes have never been higher than they are now. The pandemic will place healthcare issues front and center in the upcoming legislative session, and the right legislators can make the difference between helping your practice or harming it. Please click here to view a list of the candidates endorsed by ArMPAC.
Also, for those who live in LD15 or know someone who does, click here to watch a video made by ArMPAC in support of Senator Heather Carter, who is in the midst of a tough primary race. A victory for her is a victory for Arizona physicians — Senator Carter has been a long-time ArMA champion, and her continued leadership is needed more than ever. Please spread the word and support her campaign!
Thank you for doing your part on Election Day to protect the House of Medicine.
July 22, 2020 (Phoenix) – The Arizona Medical Political Action Committee (ArMPAC) is pleased to announce its 2020 candidate endorsements for Arizona’s State House of Representatives and Senate. Comprised of physicians across Arizona and led by an 18-member Board of Directors, ArMPAC is a nonpartisan political action committee that supports candidates for office who understand the challenges physicians face today.
“These candidates were thoroughly vetted by our diverse board and we are excited about their promising impact on the direction and changes needed for Arizona’s healthcare,” stated Gary Figge, MD, ArMPAC Board Chair. “Arizona’s physicians care deeply about the effect healthcare policy has on the ability to treat their patients, and this concern is reflected in these outstanding endorsements.”
Incumbent Endorsements Include:
Arizona House of Representatives
- Rep. Daniel Hernandez — LD2
- Rep. Alma Hernandez — LD3
- Rep. Regina Cobb — LD5
- Rep. Thomas “T. J.” Shope — LD8
- Rep. Randall “Randy” Friese, MD — LD9
- Rep. Pamela Powers Hannley — LD9
- Rep. Joanne Osborne — LD13
- Rep. Jeff Weninger — LD17
- Rep. Diego Espinoza — LD19
- Rep. Lorenzo Sierra — LD19
- Rep. John Kavanagh — LD23
- Rep. Amish Shah, MD — LD24
- Rep. Speaker Russell “Rusty” Bowers — LD25
- Rep. Michelle Udall — LD25
- Rep. Kelli Butler — LD28
- Rep. Aaron Lieberman — LD28
- Sen. President Karen Fann — LD1
- Sen. Victoria Steele — LD9
- Sen. Vince Leach — LD11
- Sen. Warren Petersen — LD12
- Sen. Sine Kerr — LD13
- Sen. Heather Carter — LD15
- Sen. Sean Bowie — LD18
- Sen. Rick Gray — LD21
- Sen. Tyler Pace — LD25
- Sen. Kate Brophy McGee — LD28
New Candidate Endorsements Include:
Arizona House of Representatives
- Coral Evans — LD6
- Felipe Perez, MD — LD11
- Jarret Hamstreet — LD15
- Lisa Godzich — LD16
- Kathy Knecht — LD21
About Arizona Medical Political Action Committee
The Arizona Medical Association Political Action Committee (ArMPAC) is the nonpartisan PAC for the Arizona Medical Association, the largest organization in the state representing the interests of physicians. ArMPAC endorses candidates who support Arizona physicians and the patients they care for and is committed to the highest quality of healthcare for all Arizonans. For more information, visit www.ArMPAC.org and follow ArMPAC on Facebook and Twitter.