Public Policy Agenda

Maryland ACEP represents the interests of emergency physicians and their patients throughout the State of Maryland. Our mission is the preservation of quality emergency care, patient advocacy, emergency medical training, and continuing education for emergency physicians, nurses, and technicians. The college promotes policy that preserves the integrity of emergency medicine.

Emergency physicians proudly serve as the safety net for our community, providing care for everyone, including the poor, uninsured, and the disenfranchised. We cannot and do not deny care to anyone; all stabilizing medical care including x-rays, lab work and consulting of specialists cannot be delayed to inquire about methods of payment or of insurance coverage.

Issues of Concern to Emergency Medicine

The Health Care Delivery System is undergoing tremendous change and redesign nationally and in Maryland. In our ongoing efforts to preserve and advance patient access to care we will continue to focus our advocacy efforts on initiatives that strengthen our ability to recruit and retain providers, improve the practice environment for our members, and ensure that we can continue to be the safety net Marylanders rely on. Key areas of concern include (but are not limited to):

  • Health Care Delivery System Reform (Bundled Payments, Medical homes, ACOs, etc.)- It is critical that we have a seat at the table for all discussions impacting how care is delivered.
    • Any health care delivery changes must embrace physician community input as the risk of unintended consequences is unsettling; this will maximize success of change.
      Change should be slow and not jeopardize care currently being delivered;
    • Emergency care represents less than 2 percent of the nation’s health care expenditures. To learn more go to:
    • Emergency Physicians are in the best possible position to facilitate efficiencies and identify measures to advance quality patient care outcomes.
  • Increased Demand for Services Resulting From Expanded Coverage Under Federal Health Care Reform Implementation. Efforts to increase our ability to recruit and retain physicians in order to ensure an adequate workforce include:
    • Continued efforts to ensure fair reimbursement from all payers. This will aid in physician recruitment and retention.
    • Funding State Loan Assistance Repayment Program. This will encourage high quality physicians to locate and stay in Maryland.
    • Ensure Adequate Funding and Accountability in Medicaid. Preservation of patient access to benefits and reasonable reimbursement rates is essential to assuring adequate access to care.
  • Other major factors that influence access, quality, cost-effectiveness and health outcomes:
    • Psychiatric and substance abuse care in the emergency department. Advocating for programs and funding to ensure optimal care and placement of patients.
    • Prescription drug monitoring program implementation
    • Coordination with community health resources – Improved linkage between the emergency department and community resources can improve follow up care and have a positive impact on readmissions
    • Medical liability reform. Improving the liability climate will result in increased cost efficiencies and patient throughput as emphasis is shifted from practicing ‘’defensively”.
    • Emergency Department Boarding and Overcrowding. Long waits and patient stays in the ED disrupt patient flow and care.
    • Support increased penalties for violence against emergency department personnel.