• First Tuesdays at the Capitol Returns

     

    And the Family of Medicine needs YOU! The "White Coat Invasion" has been the key to physicians' successes in the Texas legislature since the inception of First Tuesdays at the Capitol in 2003. Our senators and representatives listen when their hometown doctors appear in their offices. Our influence is so much greater when physicians and alliance members arrive en masse in the House and Senate galleries. It's time again to bring out Texas medicine's strongest weapon.

     

    The 2013 session of the Texas Legislature will be especially challenging for medicine. The prognosis as of right now:

    • The state faces tremendous budget stresses - so more pressure to cut payments for Medicaid, for graduate medical education and medical schools, and for public health programs.
    • Advance practice nurses and other non-physician practitioners will battle to practice medicine without a license.
    • The trial lawyers, as always, will push to erode our 2003 liability reforms.

    Meanwhile, TMA will push for big improvements in Medicaid, strong anti-tobacco and obesity-fighting laws, better protections for physicians' independent clinical judgment, and major reductions in government red tape and interference in medical practice.

    All is not gloom and doom, however. With the tremendous team of grassroots physicians, alliance members, county medical society leaders, and paid lobbyists, medicine will be up to the challenge. It is absolutely essential for medicine to engage our representatives and senators early and often.

    “We have our Healthy Vision 2020. This vision for the future protects the patient-physician relationship and ensures high-quality, efficiently delivered care for our patients. Now we need you to share that vision with your senator and representative at First Tuesdays,” said TMA President Michael E. Speer, MD.

    Physicians, alliance members, and medical students from around the state will converge on Austin the first Tuesday of each month to reenact the White Coat Invasion. Lobbying tips, legislative briefings and debriefings, and personal visits to legislators’ offices are all part of First Tuesdays at the Capitol. The Texas Medical Association and Texas Medical Association Alliance are calling on YOU. Be a medical lobbyist for a day. You will make a difference.

    Mark your calendar for the 2013 First Tuesdays at the Capitol: 

    • Feb. 5
    • March 5
    • April 2
    • May 7

  • What To Do Now

    • Register for one, two, or all four of the First Tuesday dates, and make your travel arrangements. Check with your county medical society before making travel plans; the staff may have arranged group transportation.
    • Reserve your room at the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel for the Monday before each First Tuesday event by calling (800) 222-8733. Hotel rooms in Austin are in demand during legislative sessions, so make your reservations now!  
    • Make an appointment with your legislators. 

    Please help spread the word that First Tuesdays at the Capitol needs physicians and alliance members from all over Texas, and that it is open to all members and their spouses. If you have ever participated First Tuesdays, tell your colleagues what a rewarding experience it was to walk down the halls of the Texas Legislature in your white coat. If you need more registration forms or any other information, call your county medical society or TMA at (800) 880-1300, ext. 1361. 

  • As Part of First Tuesdays, You Will

    • Make a difference now and for medicine’s future.
    • Become well-versed on the issues facing medicine in the upcoming session.
    • Inform your senator and representative and their aides about these issues.
    • Attend committee hearings and House and Senate sessions.
  • Hotel Information

    The Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel has set aside suites for First Tuesday participants at a rate of $179. The hotel is conveniently located between TMA and the Capitol at 303 W. 15th St. Please call (800) 222-8733 for reservations. Don’t forget to mention that you are attending First Tuesdays at the Capitol with TMA and TMA Alliance!

    Remember: Reserve your hotel room by the following dates to ensure availability at the special rate:

    • For the Feb. 5 First Tuesday: the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel deadline is Jan. 21 
    • For the March 5 First Tuesday: the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel deadline is Feb. 18 
    • For the April 1 First Tuesday: the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel deadline is March18  
    • For the May 7 First Tuesday: the Doubletree Suites by Hilton Hotel deadline is April 22 
  • Dedicated Students and Residents First Tuesday

    Tuesday, April 2, 2013
    Attention medical students and residents: The future of medicine is now! April 2 is the dedicated Students and Residents First Tuesdays at the Capitol lobby day! The TMA lobbying team will provide briefings on the issues most important to you. Receive talking points and grassroots training, then march to the Capitol and make a difference for your future! For more information about this exciting event, please contact Christina Shepherd (800) 880-1300 ext. 1443.
  • First Tuesdays at the Capitol Agenda

    7 am    Registration 
    TMA Building — Thompson Auditorium 
     
    7:15 am    Hot Topics – Issues Briefing
    TMA Building — Thompson Auditorium 
     
    8-8:30 am    Be a Lobbyist for a Day – Crash Course for Novices
    TMA Building — Thompson Auditorium 
     
    8 am-Noon     Visits with Legislators, Committee Hearings, House and Senate Sessions
    State Capitol 
     
    Noon-1 pm    Boxed Lunches 
    State Capitol — Legislative Conference Center** 
     
    1-4 pm    Visits with Legislators, Committee Hearings, House and Senate Sessions
    State Capitol 
     

    **Please check onsite schedule for lunch location.