This week, ASCRS member Mona Kaleem, MD, met with Rep. Andy Harris, MD (R-MD), at her practice in Baltimore, Maryland. The meeting was in conjunction with ASCRS’ participation in a recent fundraiser in Washington, D.C., and a campaign contribution from eyePAC, the non-partisan political action committee representing ASCRS members.
Rep. Harris, who is up for re-election this fall, is a physician who supports ASCRS issues. During the Congressman’s visit to the University of Maryland Eye Associates, Dr. Kaleem thanked him for the MACRA technical changes and the repeal of IPAB that were passed by Congress in February as part of the budget deal. They also discussed the importance of maintaining of a viable Medicare fee-for-service option since there are no ophthalmology-specific Alternative Payment Models (APMs) available at this time. Therefore, the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) and fee-for-service are our pathways for now.
“I had a great conversation with the Congressman that lasted about 40 minutes,” Dr. Kaleem said. “I really enjoyed it, and I learned some new things.”
Dr. Kaleem is a member of the ASCRS eyeContact volunteer advocacy program. ASCRS•ASOA eyeContacts are actively engaged with elected officials in their communities. Whether it be discussing issues with their Senator while hand-delivering an eyePAC check on behalf of the society, inviting their Representative to visit their practice, hosting a fundraiser for a key candidate, or simply responding to an ASCRS grassroots action alert, eyeContacts are active to the extent that suits their availability and comfort level.
If you would like to join members like Dr. Kaleem and become an eyeContact, please contact Tami O’Brien, manager of PAC and grassroots, at firstname.lastname@example.org.