Last month, ISASS began a major initiative to increase the number of ISASS members in the AMA in order to maintain the ISASS seat in the AMA House of Delegates. Through membership in the AMA House of Delegates, ISASS is also able to be an active participant in several AMA bodies, including the AMA House of Delegates, the AMA CPT Editorial Panel, the AMA/Multi-Specialty Relativity Update Committee (RUC), and the AMA Federal Advocacy and Policy Federation, among others. It is through this activity that ISASS has been able to directly achieve many important outcomes that have benefited ISASS members.
ISASS asked its surgeon members to please make sure they had membership in the AMA. ISASS board members also directly reached out to hundreds of ISASS members with calls or emails asking their colleagues to consider renewing or joining the AMA. Through the hard work and initiative of ISASS leadership, we were able to meet the requirements and be reaffirmed for our seat in the AMA House of Delegates. ISASS appreciates the support of every member who answered the call and joined the AMA to ensure ISASS was able to participate to the fullest extent in the coding and reimbursement process.
In the last five years alone, ISASS was able to successfully pursue a partial correction of the valuation of CPT 27279, Minimally Invasive Sacroiliac Joint Fusion in 2020, work to correct the valuation of CPT 22867, Interlaminar Stabilization Distraction Device Insertion (Coflex Procedure), develop a definition of Endoscopic Decompression procedures at CPT, and foster the development of emerging spine surgery technology that are the foundation of ISASS’ commitment to new technology development.
Other critical issues pursued by ISASS in cooperation with the AMA and other stakeholders include:
- Advocating for meaningful provider network regulation
ISASS and the AMA are working tirelessly at the state and federal levels to enact “surprise billing” laws that ensure network adequacy rules are enforced and physicians are offered fair contracts.
- Protecting the value of spine surgical services
ISASS takes part in the AMA Relative Value Scale Update Committee, attesting to the value of physician services.
- Increasing access to innovative spine surgical services
ISASS takes part in the AMA CPT Editorial Panel, which maintains the CPT code set used for procedural coding and through which we create new codes for new and innovative services for our members.
- MACRA improvements
MACRA represents significant change to Medicare’s payment system— AMA and ISASS are helping physicians succeed in today’s MIPS environment
- Prior authorization reform
The AMA and ISASS continue to advocate for prior authorization reforms that will prevent harmful patient care delays and relieve practice administrative burdens
ISASS is committed to continuing to actively advocate for policies and legislation for spine surgeons and ISASS members, and in order to do that, it is critical that ISASS maintain our seats in these AMA bodies.
Thanks to ISASS’ members for stepping up—now, we will be able to continue this critical work on their behalf.
Thank you for your efforts and commitment to ISASS and the medical community.
Morgan Lorio, MD
Chair, ISASS Coding and Reimbursement Task Force