Colorado Orthopaedic Society Uncategorized Member News Alert: April 16, 2021

Member News Alert: April 16, 2021

Update on Public Option bill from COS President Gary Ghiselli, MD
Your help is needed to stop or amend this bill
The Colorado Orthopaedic Society and our partners in the House of Medicine have been united in our strong opposition to HB21-1232, Standardized Health Benefit Plan Colorado Option. This bill purports to create a health insurance option to increase equitable access to and availability of health insurance in the Colorado individual and small group markets.

However, as currently written this bill threatens the livelihood of our profession by creating a public option health insurance plan that would:

Require mandatory participation by physicians
Force acceptance of reimbursement rates necessary to achieve a mandate to reduce the cost of health insurance premiums in the state by 20% over two years
Add additional cost through an increased benefits package that would require first dollar, pre-deductible coverage for high value services and defined services
Potentially compromise a physician’s clinical decision-making autonomy on behalf of their patients in a drive to cut costs

The Governor’s office is trying to strong-arm this bill through the Legislature with intimidation tactics and an unwillingness to engage in meaningful negotiation with physicians, hospitals or health plans. With the Democratic Party in control of all three branches of the Colorado legislature, we face an uphill battle to defeat or amend this bill. However, the bill has not passed through its first House committee hearing and this is the first opportunity for you to help our lobby effort.

Please take time to send a quick thank you email to two Democratic House of Representative members who so far have resisted extraordinary pressure from the Governor’s office by standing up for physicians by stalling the bill in the House Health & Insurance Committee. The first is a fellow physician, Rep. Yadira Caraveo, MD and the second is a practicing nurse, Rep. Kyle Mullica. Both of these legislators have been longtime friends of Medicine and need to hear the support of Colorado physicians as they work to amend or kill this bill.
The strategy for this email is not to aggressively lobby against the bill but to show our gratitude for their support. Rep. Caraveo can be reached at [email protected] and Rep. Mullica can be reached at [email protected]

Any version of an email that says words to the effect below will be perfect:
I just wanted to write and thank you for taking a stance to support Colorado physicians with respect to HB21-1232. As was said repeatedly in testimony to the House Health & Insurance Committee last week, physicians want to expand access to affordable, high quality health care and want to be part of the solution. Thank you for understanding that mandating participation and price setting by a commission will not improve health care in our state. I am grateful for your understanding and thank you for your leadership.
There will come another time soon when we will be asking for help to lobby a broader group of legislators with a more aggressive ask but for now our friends in this committee need to know that their peers appreciate their efforts on our behalf.

I will send updates on the bill as they become available over the next month and will inform of opportunities to testify against the bill in person, by video conference and by written submissions when the time is right for legislators to hear from physicians in force.
Thank you for your commitment to the profession and your patients.

Please don’t hesitate to contact me at [email protected] with any questions, suggestions or concerns.

Gary Ghiselli, MD
Fellowship Trained Orthopedic Spine Surgeon
Fellow American Board of Orthopaedic Surgery (FAAOS)
President, Colorado Orthopaedic Society[email protected]
News Updates and Events
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