A confluence of events in Washington is pushing TMA to increase the volume of our work to enact a permanent fix to the Medicare payment formula. Despite their professed support for a new Medicare payment system for physicians, senators and representatives from both parties have done nothing to fix the formula that threatens to bankrupt physicians and leave Medicare patients without a doctor. For 10 years, they’ve done nothing to fix the single largest government health program. How can they build a new system on a broken foundation?
To educate patients on Medicare’s problems and engage all Texans in the drive to fix them, we are embarking on a campaign to gather 1 million signatures to stop the Medicare Meltdown. We begin with an open letter to Congress (PDF), which we will deliver to members of the Texas congressional delegation the last week of March at news conferences across the state. (Please see — and sign — the open letter to Congress, below.) The petition drive will include online petitions (PDF) posted on the TMA (PDF) and MeAndMyDoctor Web sites, social media petitions for Facebook and Twitter, and other tactics. We will use all of our communication vehicles and our county medical society partners to send campaign materials and the petitions to physicians and patients. We will work with community partners such as senior citizen groups, disability rights organizations, and others.