Conference for health care providers, administrators to focus on legislative changes

It’s no secret. There’s a lot happening in Washington, D.C., right now affecting health care.

The Medical Group Management Association (MGMA) and the American Medical Association are joining forces to put on the Collaborate in Practice Conference April 9 to 11 in Chicago.

The conference gives physicians the chance to hear from the nation’s top health care government affairs experts about the effects regulatory and legislative changes will have on medical groups across the country.

“My job is to translate this kind of stuff” said Anders Gilberg, MGMA’s senior vice president for government affairs. “There is so much noise coming out of Washington — it’s often very emotional, distracting and disruptive. It can be very confusing to patients. My job is to tell medical groups, here’s what you need to focus on.”

Gilberg and Richard Deem, AMA’s senior vice president for advocacy, will talk about federal policy discussions taking place, including recent changes to Medicare reimbursement and the shift to value-based care.

“Physicians are now being held far more accountable on cost and quality,” Gilberg said. “If a physician is being held accountable for a group of diabetes patients, under the new reimbursement system … if the doctor doesn’t do a foot exam every year, they would be financially dinged.”

Doctors must be far more proactive under the news system, he continued.

Attendees also can sign up for a Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015 readiness workshop, where industry experts will help physicians and administrators analyze their readiness to comply. The workshop will provide specific steps individual practices should take in 2017 to prepare.

In addition to Medicare, Gilberg anticipates talking about potential changes coming to Medicaid and the expansion population as well as repeal of the Affordable Care Act and its Republican replacement the American Health Care Act.

Though he was cautious to speculate what those conversations might look like.

“In Washington, one month is like a year,” he said.

For more information on the conference, to be held at the Sheraton Grand Chicago, 301 E. North Water St., visit http://www.mgma.com/collaborate/register.

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