American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

Our Changing Health Care System

Our Changing Health Care System

Our Changing Health Care System Since the Inception of the Affordable Care Act: 

A collection of articles and primers from the American College of Surgeons

The American College of Surgeons (ACS) takes very seriously our responsibility to ensure that surgeons fully understand the breadth of the legislative and regulatory health care landscape. This responsibility assumed heightened importance during the days leading up to the enactment of the Affordable Care Act and for the past several years as implementation has progressed.

Our Changing Health Care System Since the Inception of the Affordable Care Act represents a compendium of articles from the ACS Bulletin along with two surgical practice primers, which provide a retrospective and, to some extent, a prospective look at the changing health care landscape. These articles frame the salient issues for surgeons over the past four years. We have organized the collection by subject area to facilitate your ability to quickly locate the information you need.

Complete book (PDF)
(Please note that this is a very large download [210 MB])

Book by Section

Section 1: Introduction and Health Care Reform Efforts Leading to and Including Passage of the Affordable Care Act

  • The modern history of U.S. health care reform: A primer for practicing surgeons, residents, and associate fellows
  • Health care reform becomes law–with room for improvement
  • The ACS plays an active role in initial implementation of the ACA
  • Insurance exchanges under the Affordable Care Act: How will they affect surgical care?

Section 2: Physician Payment Reform: New Models Emerging

  • Surgeons as institutional employees: A strategic look at the dimensions of surgeons as employees of hospitals
  • Surgeons and bundled payment models: A primer for understanding alternative physician payment approaches
  • Sustainable growth rate repeal: The bandages are running out
  • Surgical leadership in the era of quality-based payment
  • Leading the charge in defense of the RUC

Section 3: New Systems of Care

  • Surgeons, other providers take the lead on integrating health care services
  • Accountable care organizations: A primer for surgeons
  • What surgeons should know about... The Medicare Shared Savings Program

Section 4: Liability Reform

  • New approaches to liability reform: An introduction
  • AHRQ program promotes patient safety and liability reform
  • Medical mediation: Bringing everyone to the table
  • The University of Michigan’s Early Disclosure and Offer Program
  • New York State shows benefits of CRP demonstration project
  • Health courts may be best cure for what ails the liability system
  • Health courts will not cure all liability ills
  • New directions in liability reform
  • Safe harbors: Liability reform for patients and physicians
  • Alternatives to litigation are available: The liability insurer’s perspective
  • More emphasis on safety needed: The patient advocate's perspective
  • Attorneys and physicians share common goals: The medical liability lawyer’s perspective
  • The state of medical liability reform
  • Medical liability reform: Evidence for legislative and alternative approaches

Section 5: Incentive Programs

  • Choosing not to participate in the CMS incentive programs
  • PQRS reporting in 2013
  • What surgeons should know about... Participating in the Medicare eRx Incentive Program

Section 6: Electronic Health Records

  • Health information technology, meaningful use criteria, and their effects on surgeons
  • The Medicare EHR Incentive Program
  • Negotiating the EHR vendor contract

Section 7: Quality Measures and Public Reporting

  • The ACS and the ABCs of how quality measures are established and implemented
  • Public reporting of health care data: A new frontier in quality improvement
  • The Physician Compare website

Section 8: Workforce Shortages

  • The importance of surgical workforce maps
  • The ACS HPRI: Shaping surgical workforce policy through evidence-based analyses
  • Surgical workforce: An emerging crisis
  • What surgeons should know about... Incentive payments for operations furnished in HPSAs

Section 9: Graduate Medical Education

  • The critical state of graduate medical education funding

Contact: Sara Morse