On May 15th, Board members from AAPPO met once again in Washington, D.C. for our 2013 Capitol Caucus providing the opportunity for board members from both associations to reengage with key members of Congress and hear directly from leading voices in the nation’s ongoing debate over the future of American healthcare and our industry in particular.
Our two boards began the day meeting with U. S. Congressman Paul Ryan of Wisconsin on the Hill. Chairman Ryan took time from his incredibly busy schedule to share his thoughts on the considerable implementation challenges of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) and responded to our board members questions.
Following our meeting with Chairman Ryan board members met with the former Governor of Mississippi for lunch. Governor Barbour’s down-to-Earth, and insider’s take on Washington was very informative. Few people in Washington have a better grasp on what it takes to get things done in what many think is a broken town. Our board members enjoyed the opportunity to get his perspective on the 2014 and 2016 upcoming elections.
Next, Congressman Kevin Brady of Texas, Chairman of the House Ways and Means Committee’s Health Subcommittee, met with our board members and discussed specifically what he sees as the negative influence that the ACA is having on healthcare costs, the uncertainty it has caused in our industry as well as the overall economy and job market. It was clear from his responses to our members’ questions that he truly understands what our industry is facing.
Following a detailed and informed presentation by the Chief Health Counsel on the Minority Staff of the Senate Finance Subcommittee on Health Care, Jay Khosla, we were pleased to be joined by Congressman Tom Price of Georgia. Congressman Price, a practicing orthopedic surgeon for nearly 20 years before entering politics, brings a unique provider perspective to the ACA discussion. He discussed with board members his work on Capitol Hill focused on the replacement of ACA with common sense, market-based solutions.
It’s important to note that without the financial support of our sponsors, this important annual board event would not be possible. So a heartfelt thank you is due to First Health, CIGNA, First Choice Health, Ecom PPO, Aetna, Federated Mutual, MultiPlan, Inc., HealthSmart, HealthHelp, ppoONE, Sedgwick, Stratose, Ethicon, Devon Health, Healthcare Solutions, Davis Vision and Palladian Health.
Pictured from left to right: Thomas Byrd, Chairman of TPAAA and President & CEO, Group Resources, Inc.; Chairman Paul Ryan (R-WI); Mario Vangeli, Chairman of AAPPO and VP National Contracting, CIGNA