Physician Advocacy

  • COVID-19 Resources, All in One Place

    As more reports come in on the spread of coronavirus COVID-19, TMA has convened a task force of public health experts to help Texas physicians prepare for the next phase. We’ve started by compiling all the news and information you need right now on our online resource center. Bookmark that page as we will update it continually.

    COVID-19 Resource Center

     
  • Lou Goodman, Former TMA CEO, Passes Away

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    It is with great sadness that the Texas Medical Association announces that Louis Joel Goodman, PhD, passed away on Friday, July 31. He was 71.

    Lou Goodman Was
    a Natural Leader
     
  • TMA Seeks Better Liability Shields for All Physicians During COVID-19

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    Under Texas law, physicians treating COVID-19 patients in a volunteer capacity have potential defenses against lawsuits that might arise from that care.

    Pandemic Poses Legal Pitfalls  
  • Texas Medicaid, CHIP Changes Extended Into October

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    As requested by the Texas Medical Association, the Health and Human Services Commission has extended some Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) flexibilities through Oct. 23.

    Find Out What This Means for Texas Physicians  
  • Online Testimony Opens for Virtual TMA House of Delegates

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    As we told you earlier this month, the Texas Medical Association Disaster Board voted to conduct a virtual meeting of the TMA House of Delegates that will culminate in a live virtual session on Saturday, Sept. 12.

    More Details Here  
  • Medicine-Friendly Candidates Prevail in Tuesday’s Runoff Elections

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    Most of the Texas House and Senate candidates backed by TEXPAC won their races in Tuesday’s primary runoff elections and will move on to November’s general election.

    See the Results  
  • Governor Extends Non-Emergent Surgery Suspension in Texas

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    Gov. Greg Abbott today suspended most non-emergent elective surgeries at hospitals in 11 state Trauma Service Areas (TSAs) because of a steady increase in COVID-19 patients. The proclamation does not affect surgeries or procedures at outpatient or ambulatory services facilities.

    When Will This Proclamation
    Go Into Effect?
     
  • Governor Mandates Face Masks in Public Spaces in Most Texas Counties

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    Texans in counties with 20 or more positive COVID-19 cases will be required to wear a face covering over the nose and mouth in public spaces, with some exceptions, Gov. Greg Abbott recently ordered.

    What are the Requirements
    and the Exceptions?
     
  • TMA President: Stay Vigilant Against COVID-19

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    In many parts of our state, COVID-19 is making a terrifyingly strong return. Hospitals are activating surge plans to make room for more seriously ill patients – whether with COVID-19, other diseases, or significant trauma. If we don’t handle this correctly, the consequences will be severe for us, our patients, and large swaths of the Texas health care system.

    We Must Handle This Correctly  
  • Rapid Rise in COVID-19 Along Border Concerns Area Physicians

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    Physicians from counties near and along the Texas-Mexico border gathered virtually Tuesday to explore ways to protect patients from COVID-19, which continues to spread rapidly throughout the region.

    Preserving Funding for Medicaid and CHIP Is Absolutely Vital for the Region  
  • Houston Case Challenges Noneconomic Damage Cap

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    Without the cap, what is tort reform, exactly? Texas physicians hope they won’t have to answer that question. But a couple that won a 2019 negligence lawsuit is taking aim at the centerpiece of the state’s 2003 medical liability reforms: the $250,000 cap on noneconomic damages.

    Tort Reform on Trial  
  • Sue Bailey, MD, Takes Office as AMA President; “Let Doctors Be Doctors”

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    Susan Rudd Bailey, MD, is American physicians’ new leader in the battles against COVID-19 and outside interference in patient care. The Fort Worth allergist took the oath of office as president of the American Medical Association on Sunday, becoming the sixth Texas physician to lead the organization.

    A Passionate Defender of the Independent Physician  
  • Racism: A Very Important Health Problem

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    Americans should not be surprised that it took the death of George Floyd, an unarmed black man, under the knee of a white police officer to take the COVID-19 pandemic off the lead of every newscast, off the top of every mind, and off the tip of every tongue. Our great country was born with a big problem with racism. Today – 155 years after the end of the Civil War, 65 years after Rosa Parks refused to give up her seat on a Montgomery, Ala., bus, 28 years after Rodney King implored us to “all get along” – our great country still has a big problem with racism.

    Speak Up Because Racism Is a Very Important Health Problem  
  • Could You Be Liable for Volunteer COVID-19 Care?

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    Many Texas physicians have stepped up to care for patients during the COVID-19 pandemic. This includes retired physicians and others who have volunteered their services in areas where they are needed most. If you’d like to volunteer but are concerned about your potential liability, check out TMA's recent white paper.

    More About Liability
    Limitations During a Disaster
     
  • Extend Medicaid Changes Throughout, After Emergency, Medicine Tells State

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    Changes to Medicaid put in place during the COVID-19 pandemic should be extended to ensure physicians can continue to provide care for Texas’ children and youth. That is the message TMA and several specialty societies sent in a letter this week to the Texas Health and Human Services Commission’s director of Medicaid and CHIP Services.

    Read the Letter From TMA and Several Specialty Societies  
  • Survey: Texas Doctor Practices Struggling to Survive Pandemic

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    Like most independent medical practice physicians struggling to stay afloat during the COVID-19 pandemic, Austin pediatrician Brian Temple, MD, had to make a critical choice: reduce salaries and work hours, or lose the staff and pediatric practice he and his partner had built over six years.

    Patient Visits Cut in Half or More; Practice Revenues Slashed  
  • Bill Would Expand Student Loan Forgiveness for Texas Physicians

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    The Texas Medical Association and California Medical Association applauded a bipartisan group of U.S. senators for introducing a bill that addresses physician shortages and improves access to care, particularly in children’s hospitals and nonprofit hospitals.

    Read the Associations Statement  
  • How Do I Comply With TMB’s Safe-Practice Standards?

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    Yesterday TMA published an excerpt from our newest Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ) document that covered a particularly vexing question from physicians: What if a patient refuses to wear a face covering and no exception applies? Today we present the entire FAQ, which is intended to provide more clarity on TMB’s minimum standards.

    Get Answers to
    Your Questions Here
     
  • Protecting Elderly Texans Key to the State’s Reopening Plan

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    Gov. Greg Abbott’s phased plan to reopen Texas businesses, which starts today, places special emphasis on protecting the elderly and containing the spread of COVID-19 in nursing homes and assisted-living facilities.

    Learn More About the Governor's Report to Open Texas  
  • “Overlooked” Pediatricians Fight for Survival During Pandemic

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    As state and federal governments distribute funds and waivers to help health care workers during the COVID-19 pandemic, Texas pediatricians feel their needs have been unmet.

    TMA and Other Physician Groups Are Advocating for Pediatricians  
  • TMA Keeps Pressing Congress on Surprise Billing

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    As lawmakers continue their work on a federal solution to surprise medical bills, the Texas Medical Association is on guard to make sure patients will be protected – and physicians get a fair shot to get paid properly.

    Support the Protecting People From Surprise Medical Bills Act  
  • I Won’t Take the Nurse Practitioners’ Bait

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    The American Association of Nurse Practitioners (AANP) is obviously intent on picking a fight with physicians. No thanks. We’ll take the high road, fully aware of the dangers of their plans, and stick with what we know is best for our patients: the physician-led health care team.

    TMA Details Concerns  
  • California Model Benefits Insurers, at Physicians’ and Patients’ Expense, Physicians Tell Congress

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    TMA physician leaders, along with their colleagues from California and the rest of the country, are on Capitol Hill this week, lobbying Congress to toss out a California-inspired provision from a rapidly moving health insurance bill.

    More About the "Median In-network Rate" Provision  
  • A Plan for the Uninsured in Texas

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    I call for our TMA to bring all of these groups together to directly address the issue of the uninsured in Texas, to plan a strategy, and to put it in motion.

    Creating the Change That Our Patients Need and Deserve  
  • Arbitration Law Will be “Messy,” Bring Operational Concerns, Panelists Say

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    The state’s new law allowing arbitration of payment disputes on certain out-of-network care carries concerns for physicians and uncertainty about what it will look like from an enforcement standpoint, a panel told the Texas Medical Association Winter Conference on Saturday morning.

    New Arbitration Law is "Messy"  
  • State Adopts Emergency Rule on Surprise Billing Law

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    The Texas Department of Insurance (TDI) has adopted an emergency rule outlining the narrow circumstances when it will be legal for physicians to balance bill patients under the state’s new law that protects patients from surprise medical bills.

    Read the Details Here  
  • Medicine Pushes For Expanding Medicaid Coverage to New Moms

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    Federal lawmakers must pass a bill that would allow states to provide 12 months postpartum coverage to mothers who lose Medicaid coverage two months after giving birth, and would provide a bump in Medicaid matching dollars for those states, medicine and others said in a letter this week.

    Give New Mothers
    a Fighting Chance
     
  • Senate Committees Will Examine Uninsured Rate During Interim Year

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    Texas’ nation-leading uninsured rate will be under the state senate’s microscope in 2020 as part of the interim charges Lt. Gov. Dan Patrick has assigned to senate committees.

    More Details Here  
  • Texas’ Rise in Uninsured Kids Among Fastest in Nation, Report Says

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    The bad news keeps coming for Texas’ uninsured rate. Between 2016 and 2018, Texas tied for the second-highest jump in the rate of uninsured children among all 50 states, according to a study released Wednesday by Georgetown University's Center for Children and Families in Washington, D.C.

    No Other State Is
    Even in Double Digits
     
  • TMA to Trump: Do Not Expand NPPs’ Scope of Practice

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    When President Donald Trump released an executive order earlier this month that would, in part, expand the scope of practice of nonphysician practitioners, the Texas Medical Association vowed to keep physicians at the head of the health care team. On Monday, TMA President David Fleeger, MD, took a major step to do that, urging President Trump and Health and Human Services (HHS) Secretary Alex Azar to remove that language entirely.

    More on TMA's Concerns  
  • Action Alerts

    Respond to Action Alerts. Some bills will be particularly important to TMA, and we request your assistance in either supporting or opposing those bills. Through our Grassroots Action Center and mobile app, VoterVoice, you’ll be able to respond on the fly, sending a message directly to your legislator.

    Get the App

     
  • TMA is helping to strengthen your practice by offering advice and creating a climate of medical success across the state. 

  • What could a TMA membership mean for you, your practice, and your patients?