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February 2023 President’s Message: Advocating for Ourselves and Our Patients

Maya Angelou once said, “I learned a long time ago the wisest thing I can do is be on my own side, be an advocate for myself and others like me.”

As physicians, our role is uniquely intertwined with those that we serve—our patients—and part of our job is to advocate on their behalf.

Next week presents a great opportunity to do so in the legislature, by joining me and your colleagues from across the state in Frankfort for KMA’s 2023 Physicians’ Day at the Capitol. Registration is free and is available at

The event begins with a Virtual Legislative Briefing Feb. 16 at 7 p.m. ET via Zoom. During the briefing, you will hear from KMA lobbyists about priority legislation for the session and have a chance to ask questions.

Next Wednesday, February 22, KMA members will gather in a new venue to start the day in the State Capitol Rotunda at 8:30 a.m. for a press conference to urge legislators to “Reform Prior Auth” and support House Bill 134. This bill, sponsored by Rep. Kim Moser, would create a prior authorization exemption program that automatically waives prior auth requirements if a physician has historically been approved for a specific procedure or service most of the time (e.g., 90 percent). A prior authorization exemption program would ensure Kentuckians have timely access to the care they need, while reducing administrative burdens for physicians and allowing our healthcare system to operate more efficiently. With so many of us in attendance, I know we will make our voices heard on this issue.

Following the press conference, attendees will meet with their legislators and then reconvene for lunch and a legislator visit debriefing. Please note that attendees must call the Legislative Research Commission at (502) 564-8100 to set up their meetings in advance.

There are several other KMA priority bills still in play this session, including Senate Bill 12, which encourages physicians to seek care when needed through a wellness program and ensures that record of that participation is confidential and has additional legal protections.

With so much at stake for our profession and our patients, it’s imperative that we join together to advocate for what is best for Kentuckians. I hope to see you in Frankfort on February 22.

If I can ever be of assistance to you, please reach out to me. I’m listening.

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