Change has always been a constant in medicine. Today, American health care is shifting at an unprecedented pace. The way we practice, how we are paid, regulator and payor demands, non-traditional and expanding entrants into the delivery system, educational and certification requirements and the varied needs and expectations of patients all contribute to an environment requiring doctors, and our AMA, to boldly lead rather than react. Achieving our goals of excellence in health care delivery while maintaining an energized and resilient physician workforce is essential to leading this transformation. Too often we are frustrated by other segments of the health care industry defining how we live our professional calling. We must clearly engage to preserve our professional identity and quality of patient care.

We Must Do Better and Lead the Change

Supporting doctors to practice their best medicine

Challenge: Transforming medical education and lifelong learning to meet real world needs of today’s students, residents and practicing doctors

Solution: Restructure medical education and enhance lifelong learning consistent with physicians’ needs and career paths.

Lead change now by:

  • For practicing physicians
    • Revamping MOC by eliminating recurring high-stakes exams
    • Using technology to provide meaningful real-time physician feedback enabling continuous quality of care improvements
    • Using existing patient care information to create accreditation standards of performance
  • For medical students and residents
    • Requiring medical schools to ensure there are new residency slots created when they add students, expand class size or start new programs
    • Creating programs to reduce education costs and debt burden
    • Incorporating health systems science into all schools’ curricula and providing meaningful experiences to support new doctors to succeed and lead in modern practice

Challenge: Addressing practice burdens arising from HIT, private and public regulatory requirements and the way we are reimbursed

Solution:  Create easy, seamless consistent information sharing that harmonizes across all health care participants.

Lead change now by:

  • Catalyzing groups that are slow in creating solutions to develop a sensible approach to reimbursements
  • Making medical records easy to share anytime, anywhere
  • Standing-up for patients and eliminating the burden of our current archaic system to speedup the adoption of technology to facilitate the flow of information and money

Challenge: Develop new services to support doctors as practice evolves ensuring professional integrity and choice

Solution:  Strengthen doctors’ ability to best care for patients with consolidated investments in practice technologies.

Lead change now by:

  • Creating technology that integrates referral processes and patient care flow
  • Engaging physicians in various regions and specialties in the creation and evolution of these technologies so that we remain on the leading edge
  • Make access to these technologies affordable through our members’ buying power

Strengthening our AMA to best meet the needs of doctors and create a bold vision of health care’s future

Challenge: Creating innovative products and services that decrease practice burden, reduce burnout and return joy to the practice of medicine

Solution:  The AMA needs to be a clear voice for doctors in our national health care conversation in the development and implementation of technology to enhance physician satisfaction and retention.

Lead change now by:

  • Spearheading the development and dissemination of medical technology that keeps doctors focused on patient care and not antiquated record keeping
  • Engaging our members to better understand their professional challenges and what they need to be able to thrive in their practices—and delivering it as the leading organization for doctors.
  • Be the leading voice for physicians in era of mega-mergers, large-player capital investments, market changes and policy forces that are radically impinging on the freedom of how physicians’ practice.

Challenge: Growing membership by increasing focus on the needs and interests of students, residents and young and established physicians through useful products and services across all practice types.

Solution:  Fostering innovation within the AMA so that is it a leading member-services organization dynamically engaging doctors.

Lead change now by:

  • Offering, at every career stage, dynamic and meaningful practice and career management tools that support doctors as they move through various career stages
  • Preparing doctors to engage in every part of the health care system through ongoing leadership development
  • Providing doctors experience and opportunities to lead in their communities to ensure local health care systems are meeting patient needs and enhancing the doctor patient relationship

Challenge: Generating member engagement by effectively utilizing technology to facilitate conversations to understand and provide real time responses to clinicians’ needs. While AMA membership is increasing, large numbers of doctors are not members.

Solution:  By becoming a valuable part of a doctor’s success we increase our numbers and out ability to impact decisions in our health care system

Lead change now by:

  • Creating in-person and virtual physician communities to support each other in addressing issues relevant to practice and success, such as transition from residency to practice, understanding personal practice options within large delivery systems and changing public and private payor expectation
  • Demonstrating the value of an AMA membership, with evidence based results show that members experience tangible benefits

Delivering quality patient care as doctors lead in preventing and treating disease becoming leaders in new approaches to strengthening health care through creative disruption

Challenge: Our current health care system is heavily weighted to focus on the treatment of disease while there is a growing attention to preventing disease and creating wellness.

Solution:  The health care system needs to focus care on preventative behaviors and the economic incentives that support them. If doctors are to continue to lead we must work to ensure public policy, health care financing and practice are in sync.

Lead change now by:

  • Ensuring public policy, health care financing and practice standards are aligned
  • Proactively engaging with leading disrupters to create new models of promoting wellness with better patient outcomes and return on health care spending
  • Preserving the fundamental relationship in medicine between doctor and patient within the changes of timing and location of service delivery

Challenge: There is a need for doctors’ clear, powerful engagement with public health crises. The expertise doctors can bring to the table on important and key health care debates is often left out as our communities call out for the leadership we can provide locally and nationally.

Solution:  Doctors are natural community leaders. We can support our members to be clear about the role of health in these issues to deescalate partisanship and to create solutions that focus on health.

Lead change now by:

  • Advocating for sensible Medicare and Medicaid solutions that meeting the needs of patients and doctors alike.
  • Elevating physician engagement in implementing solutions to public health crisis. When doctors provide leadership we create changes the majority of the public wants and supports
  • As the front line to many hot-button issues such as, the opioid crisis, gun violence, doctors bring an important and powerful perspective on solutions to the policy table

Challenge: Many new players are entering the health care debate because they are frustrated with costs and outcomes. Doctors must be a key part of these conversations that are solution and outcome focused.

Solution:  Engage and lead as THE voice of doctors and become a powerful voice at the table—leading rather than reacting to others ideas about how to address these challenges.

Lead change now by:

  • Engaging our members in understanding the implications of mega mergers and scrutinizing the threats and opportunities to understand what is unfolding and how to positively impact outcomes
  • Developing leadership groups for doctors who want to play a greater role in shaping the changes in our profession and the health care system
  • Become the public voice for doctor-patient views on system changes before they happen—not after