AMS’s advocacy efforts are brought to the forefront at the state Capitol,
and we work to make sure Arkansas physicians ALWAYS have a seat at the table.

Latest News from AMS Governmental Affairs

Issue Spotlight

$15 billion win for physicians on prior authorization 
Under the leadership of Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) has released a final rule making important reforms to prior authorization to cut patient care delays and electronically streamline the process for physicians. Together, the changes will save physician practices an estimated $15 billion over 10 years, according to the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). Read the full story to learn more about what the rule entails.
Read more.

Medicare Physician Payment

How Congress is failing America’s Medicare patients
The AMA and more than 120 other national medical organizations and state medical societies last week called on Congress to pass legislation to reverse the 3.37% Medicare physician pay cuts that took effect Jan. 1.
Read more.

National Update

Bipartisan Substance Use Disorder Workforce Act reintroduced in the House 
The Substance Use Disorder Workforce Act provides an additional 1,000 Medicare supported graduate medical education slots for residency programs specifically in addiction medicine, addiction psychiatry or pain medicine.
Read more.

New speakers added to the AMA National Advocacy Conference: Feb. 12-14
Register now to secure your spot for the AMA National Advocacy Conference – Feb. 12-14 at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. New speakers from Congress and the Administration have been announced, with more to come.
Read more.

State Update

AMA opposes inappropriate scope expansion efforts in New Jersey, South Dakota, Washington State 
Scope of practice continues to be a top priority for the AMA, state medical associations and national specialty societies across the country.
Read more.

Recap of the 2024 AMA State Advocacy Summit 
On Jan. 11-13, more than 300 physician leaders and medical society staff joined the AMA for the annual State Advocacy Summit. Conference content covered key health care topics that states are likely to address in their upcoming legislative sessions.
Read more.

Upcoming Advocacy Events

AMA National Advocacy Conference
Feb. 12-14: The AMA National Advocacy Conference – Feb. 12-14, 2024, at the Grand Hyatt in Washington, D.C. – brings the power of organized medicine to our nation’s capital. Don’t miss your chance to: Connect with industry experts, members of Congress and the Administration, and others about federal efforts to improve health careAdvocate on crucial health care issues affecting physicians and patients 2024 AMPAC Campaign Workshop
March 22-24: Registration is now open for the 2024 AMPAC Candidate Workshop – March 22-24 at the AMA offices in Washington, D.C. The Candidate Workshop is designed to help physicians make the leap from the exam room to the campaign trail by providing the skills and strategic approach needed to make a run for public office. At the Candidate Workshop, Republican and Democratic political veterans work together to give expert advice about being a successful candidate and how to run a winning campaign. Space is limited and the deadline to register is March 1. 

New GME slot application deadline 
March 31: The CMS application for 200 new GME slots is now open. These new slots were created per the Consolidated Appropriations Act of 2021, and the application will be open until March 31. These new slots will become effective on July 1, 2025. Additional resources are available on the CMS DGME website (under the Section 126 resources tab) to assist hospitals with the application process. 

Rx and Illicit Drug Summit
April 1-4: Registration is open for this year’s national Rx and Illicit Drug Summit, which will feature a presentation by Bobby Mukkamala, MD, chair of the AMA Substance Use and Pain Care Task Force. Dr. Mukkamala will be joined by Chad Kollas, MD, who represents the American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine on the Task Force. Drs. Mukkamala and Kollas will present “An Honest Discussion About the Nation’s Overdose and Death Epidemic: Perspectives and Recommendations from the American Medical Association and Practicing Physicians.” The session will be held April 3, 4:15-5:30 p.m. Eastern time. The AMA encourages physicians, public health experts, policymakers and all others to attend the summit – April 1-4 in Atlanta, GA – which is now in its 13th year. 

Other Upcoming Events

AMA Joy in Medicine™ Health System Recognition Program application deadline
March 1: 2024 applications are now open for the AMA Joy in Medicine™ Health System Recognition Program. Take the first step by completing an Intent to Apply form today. Applications are due on March 1. 

Saving time: Practice innovation boot camp
March 4-5: Gain insights from top experts, network with industry leaders and implement strategies for positive change during this intimate, interactive boot camp. CME is available, and AMA members save 40%. Space is limited, so secure your spot today. 

Medical Justice in Advocacy Fellowship application deadline
March 15: Are you a physician seeking to advance health equity in your community? Apply to join the third cohort of the Medical Justice in Advocacy Fellowship by March 15. The AMA and Morehouse School of Medicine’s Satcher Health Leadership Institute provide this educational initiative to empower physician-led advocacy that advances equity and removes barriers to optimal health for marginalized people and communities. 

Why Should Physicians Get Involved in Politics?

Whether in private practice or employed, physicians are undoubtedly impacted multiple times a day by the decisions legislators have made. 

Watch our video to hear why it’s important to get to know your legislators.

It is vital to have a voice in the room when those decisions are made; often, those that make the decisions see issues from a 30,000 feet level and they need the perspective of how their decisions would impact the practice level.

We encourage you to reach out to and get to know your legislators so that you can share your insight and medical expertise regarding crucial issues that will come up.

Important Links

Committee Information
Senate Public Health
Senate Insurance & Commerce
House Public Health
House Insurance & Commerce

General Assembly Website 

Capitol Message Center
Senate:  501-682-2902
House:  501-682-6211 

Live Streaming
from the Capitol


Updates on New Legislative Districts and 2022 Elections.

Join ARKMED-PAC and Help Support
Physician-Friendly Candidates

When we strongly support successful physician-friendly candidates, we build closer, stronger relationships that can continue our ability to provide successful advocacy for Arkansas physicians and their patients.

The most effective and efficient way for most AMS members to help physician-friendly candidates is to contribute to the political arm of the Arkansas Medical Society, ArkMed-PAC.

ArkMed-PAC needs your financial support. The stronger financially ArkMed-PAC is, the more help it can provide to those physician-friendly candidates around the state. Please join us in the fight as we attempt to do our best to become the best that we can be.

AMS Governmental Affairs Team

David Wroten

Executive Vice President

H. Scott Smith, JD

Director, Governmental Affairs

Laura Hawkins

Legislative Support Specialist

Katie Garcia

Membership & Communications Specialist

2021 Doctor of the Day Photo Album