Healthcare Reform Will Dominate Internal Medicine Meeting

Healthcare reform and improving the quality of care will drive the discussion at the American College of Physicians (ACP) Internal Medicine meeting, which opens in San Diego on March 30.

But the most passionate exchanges will likely take place during sessions and panels on health policy and record keeping, as internists try to address the health reforms being brought in by the new administration, according to organizers.

“Many doctors see that the climate of healthcare is changing, and they want to know what it all means,” said Patrick Alguire, MD, vice president of membership and internal programs at the ACP.

Robust presentations on health policy and medical regulation have been integrated into the meeting’s scientific program, which is new this year. “Physicians are concerned about patients who might lose their insurance and access to care,” Dr Alguire told Medscape Medical News.

 

Physicians are concerned about patients who might lose their insurance and access to care.

 

For the 54 million people covered by Obamacare, there are pretty huge changes in the offing. “What can be done to help them? What will shifts in the administration mean for the Affordable Care Act? This is certainly going to be a very exciting part of the meeting,” he said.

There will likely be a lot of discussion about health records and the collection of data. The concept of “patients before paperwork” resonates with our members. “What can be done to ease administrative burdens for physicians and their patients?” Dr Alguire asked. “This is certainly an area that addresses physician wellness,” because physician burnout and paperwork related to the delivery of healthcare are likely linked.

Physician Burnout

The popularity of the topic of physician wellness “caught me by surprise,” Dr Alguire explained, noting that it is “relatively new to the meeting.” But “sessions addressing resilience and burnout are…

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