Throughout the COVID-19 public health emergency, UROPAC has been sensitive to the strain on physicians and their families and has suspended its planned fundraising events and campaigns. The PAC has been nimble enough though to find opportunities for political engagement by participating in low-dollar, high-impact virtual meetings with key legislators in Washington.
In April and May, UROPAC members and staff met via videoconference with 21 members of Congress. As the lockdown on non-essential, in-person gatherings has continued into summer, UROPAC has continued to seek opportunities for connecting with legislators in order to share the views of the urology community.
On June 9, about 10 physicians from AACU and UROPAC’s leadership participated in a video conference meeting with Senator Tammy Baldwin (D-WI), a member of the Senate HELP Health Subcommittee as well as the Senate Appropriations Health Subcommittee. The senator voiced her support for expanding coverage for telehealth services and providing additional relief for physician practices. She has also been a leader in the Senate on addressing the shortage of personal protective equipment.
UROPAC representatives joined a dozen other virtual meetings with elected officials in June and July that were organized by candidates' camapigns or other medical specialty groups. These legislators, as well as the UROPAC members who participated in the meetings, are listed to the right.
The most common topics discussed in these meetings were reimbursement for telemedicine, medical liability protection, physician workforce shortages, and scope of prctice issues. UROPAC will continue to stay in front of these issues and ensure the voice of Urology is heard as Congress develops policies that impact physician practices and the public health.