AMA-YPS: Annual Assembly 2017

October 2017 - Vol. 36, No. 09

Raja Sawhney MD, MFA
AAO-HNS YPS Delegate to the AMA-YPS

Young physicians from across the nation met June 8-10 in Chicago, IL, to discuss and shape AMA policy. I attended my first AMA-YPS meeting in November 2016 in conjunction with the interim meeting of the AMA House of Delegates (HOD), immediately after the presidential election. Concerns regarding the future of the Affordable Care Act (ACA) were foremost on people’s minds. As a result, resolutions attempting to protect key components of the ACA were supported by the AMA-YPS and eventually became AMA policy.

The June meeting of the AMA HOD and its YPS fell six months after the start of the new presidential administration. With executive policies regarding immigration having a direct impact on numerous residency programs, particularly those with many international medical graduates, the AMA-YPS crafted Resolution 326, “Supporting International Medical Graduates and Students,” for consideration at the AMA HOD. The resolution sought to establish AMA policy opposing laws and regulations that would broadly deny entry or re-entry to the U.S. by persons based on their country of origin who currently have legal visas, including permanent resident status and student visas.

At the HOD, a similar resolution was adopted that “recognized and supported international medical students and international medical graduates in training programs and opposed laws that broadly deny entry or re-entry to the United States of persons who currently have legal visas, green cards, and student visas, based on their country of origin and/or religion.”

Another AMA-YPS resolution considered the impact of immigration policy on the pediatric population. Titled “Consideration of the Health and Welfare of U.S. Minor Children in Deportation Proceedings Against Their Undocumented Parents,” the resolution proposed new AMA policy to support the welfare of U.S. citizen minors when their undocumented parents are detained or deported.

Finally, a resolution was presented that examined AMA policy on concurrent surgery directing the AMA to advocate for physician involvement when crafting concurrent and overlapping surgery policy. Although the AMA-YPS generally supported the resolution, the decision was made to monitor the proposal during HOD consideration.

During debate, the American College of Surgeons (with the support of the AAO-HNS delegation and other surgical societies) gave testimony seeking to take the lead in drafting a formal opinion on concurrent surgery that could be used by both organizations. This would present a unified voice for physicians regarding this important topic.

In conclusion, I once again found the AMA-YPS assembly to be an excellent meeting. The opportunity to step outside of the silo of my specialty to work with other motivated physicians on topics impacting all of us is truly a worthwhile endeavor. I also would like to congratulate AAO-HNS member Christie Morgan, MD, MS, who was elected as chair-elect of the AMA-YPS. She will be a strong voice for the AMA-YPS, as well as our specialty, in the larger house of medicine.