Wednesday, October 21, 2009

Physician Coalition: "No Place for Big Government in Exam Room"

The Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) joined more than 100 doctors from across the country in Washington, D.C., today to offer legislators a “second opinion” on the best way to reform the nation’s health care system at a press conference that was sponsored by the Coalition to Protect Patients’ Rights.

“We need to reform our broken medical payment system, but a hurried approach that fails to protect the patient-physician relationship isn’t the answer,” said M. Todd Williamson, M.D., MAG’s immediate past president and spokesman for a coalition of state and national specialty societies that represents nearly 50,000 physicians. “There is no place for big government in our exam rooms.”

Of S.B. 1776 – which would have eliminated the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) payment cuts that are scheduled to go into effect on January 1, 2010 and that would have indefinitely frozen Medicare payment rates – Dr. Williamson said, “MAG supported the provisions that were included in Senate Bill 1776 that were designed to address the flawed SGR on an unconditional basis.”

Dr. Williamson added that tort reform represents a reasonable and proven way to reform the nation’s unsustainable medical payment system.

Dr. Williamson said that, “Our physician coalition group is encouraging Senate leaders to produce legislation that addresses the flawed medical payment system in a way that ensures that individual patients can control their own health care dollars and can consult with the physician of their choice as a trusted advisor in making the medical decisions that are best for them and their families.”

The Coalition to Protect Patients’ Rights is a non-partisan, grassroots coalition made of more than 10,000 doctors, health care providers, advocacy groups, and concerned citizens who are dedicated to the implementation of patient-centered health care reform that will improve patient care. It’s headed up by former American Medical Association President Donald J. Palmisano, M.D. Go to for additional information on the Coalition to Protect Patients’ Rights.

With more than 6,000 members, MAG is the leading voice for physicians in Georgia. Go to for more information.
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