• Get Ready for First Tuesday

    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.

    Materials for May 5, 2015 First Tuesdays at the Capitol

    The April 7, 2015, First Tuesdays is history, see how the news and social media covered it.

    The March 3, 2015, First Tuesdays is history, see how the news and social media covered it.

    The Feb. 3, 2015, First Tuesdays is history, see how the news and social media covered it.

    Although the Texas Legislature is becoming more hyper-partisan and hyper-political, TMA will continue to work for what’s best for patients and their physicians. Medicine’s 2015 legislative agenda, based on TMA’s Healthy Vision 2020, second edition, will focus on:

    • Increasing funding for graduate medical education.
    • Improving physicians' Medicaid and CHIP payments to more appropriately reflect the services they provide to patients.
    • Holding health insurance companies accountable for creating and promoting adequate physician networks.
    • Devising and enacting a system for providing health care to low-income Texans that improves efficiencies by reducing bureaucracy and paperwork.
    • Stopping any efforts to expand scope of practice beyond that safely permitted by nonphysician practitioners' education, training, and skills.
    • Promoting government efficiency and accountability by reducing Medicaid red tape.
    • Protecting physicians' ability to charge for their services.
    • Improving the state's public health defense to better respond in a crisis.
    • Preserving Texas' landmark medical liability reforms.
    • Protecting the patient-physician relationship from corporate intrusions.

    TMA will push also 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.

    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 must enhance the environment in which Texas physicians practice medicine. Our government must make it easier — not more difficult — for us to care for our patients,” said TMA President Austin King, 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.

  • What To Do Now

    • Register today  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 1-800-HILTONS (445-8667). 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 2015 session.
    • Inform your senator and representative and their aides about these issues.
    • Attend committee hearings and House and Senate sessions.
  • 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 
    TMA Building 
    1-4 pm   Visits with Legislators, Committee Hearings, House and Senate Sessions
    State Capitol 
    April 7 only - Meet the Justices and tour the 3rd Court of Appeals
    209 W 14th Street, Room 101