Texas Physicians: “Fix What’s Wrong and Keep What’s Good”

For immediate release 
Sept. 10, 2009

Brent Annear  
Phone: (512) 370-1381 
Cell: (512) 656-7320 
Email: Brent Annear 


Texas Medical Association (TMA) physicians today launched a public-action campaign on the heels of President Obama's speech on health system reform. "We're asking our patients to join with their doctors to send a strong message to President Obama: Washington must slow down and get health care reform right," said TMA President William H. Fleming III, MD.  

"America has the best health care in the world. The problem lies in how we finance and deliver that health care. That is why Texas physicians and patients are asking President Obama to fix only what's wrong with America's health care system and keep what's good," Dr. Fleming added. 

TMA believes, as President Barack Obama said in his health system reform address to Congress Sept. 9, "It makes more sense to build on what works and fix what doesn't." 

The new public action campaign, "Me and My Doctor: We Know Best," is designed to educate patients about health system reform and spur them to action. It consists of three different posters for doctors' waiting and exam rooms, lapel stickers, and preaddressed postcards for patients to send to President Obama and members of Congress. The message is simple and highlights what is wrong and good with today's health care system:

What's WRONG with American health care:

  • Too many Americans are uninsured
  • Too much of our health care dollar is spent elsewhere, not on health care
  • Congress is not paying fairly for Medicare and Medicaid
  • Too much insurance profit, hassle, and abuse
  • Lawsuit abuse drives up health care costs

What's GOOD with American health care:

  • Doctors work for me, the patient
  • Patients have a choice of doctors and hospitals
  • Highest quality in the world
  • Innovation and cures save and extend lives
  • It's not a government-run system where you wait and wait

Other elements of the outreach campaign include:

TMA's patient advocacy Web site. www.meandmydoctor.com informs patients on key health system reform issues. In addition, it allows patients to share their thoughts and concerns on health system reform with TMA or send a message to President Obama and their senators and representative.

Social Media. To reach patients in Texas and across the nation, Facebook and Twitter are available. Patients can sign up for the effort on the Facebook Cause page, or sign a Twitter petition .

TMA's Town Hall Meetings, aka "House Calls." Since late July, TMA and county medical societies have held more than 15 " House Calls ," two-hour public sessions during which physicians listen to their patients' concerns about the health care system. These listening sessions have elicited candid and honest feedback from Texas patients on what they want from health system reform. About 3,000 patients, elected officials, and doctors have attended the meetings thus far.

TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation, representing nearly 44,000 physician and medical student members. It is located in Austin and has 120 component county medical societies around the state. TMA's key objective since 1853 is to improve the health of all Texans.

-- 30 --