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The American Academy of Ophthalmology recently honored Sen. Sherrod Brown, D-OH, for his legislative efforts to advancing the quality of eye care available in the United States.
Washington-The American Academy of Ophthalmology recently honored Sen. Sherrod Brown (D-OH) for his legislative efforts to advancing the quality of eye care available in the United States.
Each year, the academy presents its Visionary Award to members of Congress for their leadership in supporting issues important to ophthalmologists and their patients.
Sen. Brown received the award for his efforts to protect physicians’ rights and patients’ continuity of care. He wrote a critical letter to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) asking the agency to withdraw a redundant government quality-reporting requirement for centers performing cataract surgery.
These measures are already reported by treating physicians, and not surgery centers, as part of their CMS quality reporting. As a result, in April 2014, CMS announced it was delaying implementation of the problematic reporting measure. In the 113th Congress, Sen. Brown also introduced the Medicare Advantage Participant Bill of Rights Act (S. 2552) that would have protected Medicare beneficiaries and providers by requiring more advanced notification and transparency when Medicare Advantage plans change their networks of providers.
In addition to Sen. Brown, the academy presented awards to Sen. Lamar Alexander (R-TN), and Reps. Vern Buchanan (R-FL), Tom Price, MD (R-GA), and Pete Sessions (R-TX), in special ceremonies on Capitol Hill.
“These legislators have demonstrated a tremendous commitment to health care by spearheading issues that are extremely important to ophthalmologists and our patients, such as promoting patient safety, ensuring continuity of care and making sure patients are provided choices in their treatment,” said David W. Parke II, MD, chief executive officer of the academy. “We commend our champions in Congress for their efforts, and look forward to continuing to collaborate with the House and Senate leaders on future steps to ensure American’s access to the highest quality eye care.”