2021 NYACP Legislative Agenda
- Promote and participate in opportunities that serve to explore and address the issue of health disparities, especially among the minority population and advocate for needed change.
- Seek telehealth expansion that includes payment parity, unrestrictive locations for patients and physicians during telehealth delivery, and expanded technology platforms across all payer types (public and private).
- Support access to PPE for all physicians and healthcare workers.
- Oppose funding cuts to public healthcare programs including Medicaid.
Access to Care
- Engage in the development and testing of alternative payment models and encourage identification and alignment of outcome-based metrics across all payers that have the capacity for adoption by all physician practice types, sizes and settings.
- Address the shortage and maldistribution of the physician workforce through: adequate funding of graduate medical education, physician loan forgiveness, scholarships, expenses for practice start-up and ambulatory care training, and an increase in the number of residency training slots. Seek to establish policies for economic development that apply to community-based physician practices to enhance health care as a value proposition.
- Engage policymakers to ensure the continuing viability of independent practices, regardless of size.
- Seek and support legislation to mandate use of standardized forms and data collection and reporting rules across all payers to reduce regulatory and administrative burdens, which often lead to physician burnout and add to cost.
Quality of Care and Patient Safety
- Seek opportunities for quality improvement and enhanced patient safety through voluntary reporting, care coordination, collaboration, and team-based care and assure protection for physicians who perform peer review functions.
- Support comprehensive medical liability reform and development of alternative systems for dispute resolution in medical liability cases, including models such as health courts and workers’ compensation or no-fault systems.
- Support and promote financing and expanded opportunities for clinical research among physicians, institutions and patients, especially for under-represented populations.
- Eliminate barriers to treatments that address the opioid crisis and other substance use disorders.
Public Health and Health Care Delivery
- Encourage and support evidence-based practice to achieve an appropriate balance between population health and individual well-being using principles of high-value, cost-conscious care.
- Support healthy lifestyles across the continuum of patient care through; prevention, identification of barriers and management of chronic conditions including integration of behavioral health; prevention of and treatment for substance use disorders including tobacco use.
- Advocate for responsible environmental policies that promote public health including, but not limited to mitigation of climate change.
- Encourage programs to improve adult immunization rates, provide vaccination information and education for patients, and remove barriers to immunization.
- Support measures to strengthen preparedness for environmental disasters and outbreaks of infectious disease.
- Advocate for tobacco prevention and cessation inclusive of all electronic delivery platforms.
- Evaluate and support proposals targeted toward reducing firearm injuries and deaths.
NYS Legislature Passes 2021-22 Budget: Analysis of Impact on Internists
NYACP is grateful to the hundreds of members who joined us by contacting their State Assembly Members and Senators about budget issues impacting internists. Below is a summary of outcomes you should know:
- Telehealth: The adopted budget does two things that are helpful for NY’s internists, but did not address all of NYACP’s concerns with regard to telehealth. On the positive side, the budget bill preserves pandemic rules that expanded the list of permissible locations for physicians and patients to use when engaged in telehealth activities and limited health insurance companies utilization of out-of-state physicians to perform telehealth services for NY patients. On the negative side, however, the budget does not require parity in payment for medical care rendered using telehealth with in-person care, nor establish parity for video and telephone consultations. NYACP will continue to advocate on telehealth issues in collaboration with our members, MSSNY, and specialty society colleagues.
- NYS will fund Medical Excess Liability Insurance Program: A proposal contained in Governor Cuomo’s original budget cut the state’s share of funding for the Medical Excess Liability Program in half, thereby shifting thousands of dollars of premium costs onto the shoulders of physicians covered under the program. The Senate and Assembly restored the cut, thereby continuing NY’s coverage of the full premium for the Medical Excess Liability Program for another year.
- OPMC Complaints will not be Publicly Disclosed Until Investigations are Conducted and Physicians have an Opportunity to Respond: A provision in the budget that would have authorized immediate public disclosure of all complaints filed with OPMC was rejected by the Senate and Assembly, thereby preserving current standards related to follow-up investigations and physician due process protections.
- Pharmacy Services Expansion to Authorize Laboratory Tests and Permit Administration of All Immunizations Rejected: The portion of the Executive Budget that would have authorized pharmacies to perform new services, including ordering laboratory tests and administering all ACIP approved vaccines, was not approved by the Senate and Assembly, thereby leaving current authority in place, but not expanding approval to new therapeutic areas.
- Nurse Practitioners: An expiring law authorizing NP’s who have achieved a required minimum numbers of hours working under the terms of collaborative agreement with physicians to practice independently was extended through June 30, 2022.
Legalization of recreational marijuana in new york
NY’s Legislators reached an agreement with Governor Cuomo to legalize recreational marijuana in New York State through the passage of S.854-A/A.1248-A, which was signed into law on March 31st. The new law establishes an adult-use cannabis industry in the state, provides for the licensing of producers, distributors, retailers, and others. State leaders estimate that tax collections will reach $350M annually.
For a summary of provisions and additional information about the law, please visit: https://www.governor.ny.gov/news/governor-cuomo-signs-legislation-legalizing-adult-use-cannabis
Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address - January 11, 2021
Seven Point Plan Outline:
- Defeat Covid-19
- Vaccinate New Yorkers
- Manage short-term economic crisis
- Invest in the future
- Transition to green energy
- Understand long-term effects of COVID-19
- Address systemic injustice
Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address Part 2- January 12, 2021
Reopening and Rebuilding the Economy:
- Rapid testing pilot model at NFL games has been successful
- Gov: local real estate communities will open new rapid testing sites
- The state will partner with property owners to open office buildings with testing for all tenants
- Gov will launch a Commission on the Future of the US Economy
- This will draw a roadmap for New Yorkers to find jobs
- Gov: why not convert empty commercial space to affordable housing
- This could create more jobs, make cities more diverse
- Jobs of the Future Program
- Large employers will report on new partnerships and new jobs
- The goal is to triple the number of employers
- Expansion of the SUNY training system
- Gov. Cuomo highlighted the struggles that artists have faced during the pandemic
- Gov announced the launch of NY Arts Revival
- Pop-up performances beginning Febuary 4th
- Participants will include comedians, actors, arts organizations, and orchestras
- Performances will be held on state properties, flexible venues, and parks
- Two landmark events:
- Opening of Little Island at Pier 55
- 20th anniversary of the Tribeca Film Festival
- The state will launch the Creative Rebuild Initiative to put artists back to work and fund community arts groups
- Gov stressed the importance of making broadband both accessible and affordable
- Gov proposed $15 per month internet to help low income households
- NY will establish a fund for families that cannot afford $15 per month for internet
Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address Part 3- January 13, 2021
- Gov. asserted progress so far has been too slow
- Gov. outlined four main components state will focus on: Identify large-scale projects, build manufacturing in NY, build energy transmission capacity, and workforce development
- Announcing $26 billion private-pubic partnership to create 100 renewable projects some of which have already begun
- 24 more projects being announced today, which will create 11,000 new jobs
- Announcing new wind farms off the shore of Long Island
- Announcing off shore wind tower factory off the port of Albany, will create 500 new construction jobs
- NY will have 5 active port facilities serving off shore wind industry
- State is opening competitive bidding process for green transmission grid
- Smartpath project to open the grid will begin this year, energy will be stored by battery
- Investing $20 million in offshore wind training institute at Farmingdale and Stonybrook
- Meeting MWBE goals will be prioritized
Governor Cuomo's State of the State Address Part 4- January 14, 2021
- Gov. again criticized the federal government's inability to provide aid to the state in response to COVID-19
- Gov. discussed the need to improve the state's infrastructure, and projects completed so far
- One priority is to increase mass transit in New York City, first step was the Moynihan Train Hall which has been completed
- One goal is to build new west side transit hub in Manhattan
- Renovating Penn station will be the next goal, eight additional tracks will be added as well, will result in 40% more train capacity
- Two new cross river trains tunnels will be added, which the Gov. said is a project the federal government has been delaying for years
- New project is "Empire Station Complex"
- Javits Center will be expanded by 50%
- 14 building sites are available yielding 20 million square feet for retail development, 1,400 affordable housing units
- Highline will be expanded, pier 76 will be transformed into public park
- Port Authority will be completely renovated
- 196,000 jobs will be created through these projects
- In Rochester, projects will be expanded, I-390 / I-490 interchange will be completed by end of the year
- In Buffalo, will be taking down Skyway, will create a public park
- Elevated park will be created in Albany, will be completed this year
- In the Southern Tier, Binghamton School of Nursing will be created
- In the Mohawk Valley, new Utica hospital being created by 2023
- In the North County, a new mid-station lodge at Whiteface Mountain
- In the Hudson Valley, re-decking of Newburgh-Beacon bridge will be accelerated
- Legoland Park will open in Orange County
- In Central NY, transforming I-81 viaduct in Syracuse, will break ground in 2022
- In Long Island, a complete overhaul of Bay Park outflow system, will end pollution in bays
- Airports across the state will continue to be updated
- The Second Ave. subway will be extended to 125th street, opening up the East side
- Long Island railroad track expansion will be completed in 2022, in addition to station renovations
- $306 billion total will be invested in infrastructure in NY
On March 25th NYACP sent a letter to Governor Cuomo requesting the promulgation of critical care guidelines by the Department of Health for use in allocating ventilators among patients in the event of shortages, and immunity from liability for physicians following these guidelines. Importantly, decisions related to ventilator allocation that exclude patients from eligibility, triage and prioritize individuals, and/or direct patients to be extubated are medical determinations that may run counter to current standards of care. An article in April 1, 2020 NY Times reviews the issues and references the NYACP letter.
NYACP is grateful to Governor Cuomo for his leadership and for immunities from civil liability granted in Executive Order 202.10 which was issued on March 23rd. However, criminal and professional liability, as well as liability for deviating from current standards of care, are not specifically included in the Executive Order. The NYACP March 25th letter hopes to open a dialogue with Governor Cuomo’s office to address these concerns. Read the Letter Here.