Fall 2014


68th Annual Mtg

VOS 68th Annual Meeting
April 24-26, 2015
The Homestead
Hot Springs, VA



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Legislative News

Orthopaedics at Center
of Many Policy Battles

By Cal Whitehead
Virginia Orthopaedic Society
(804) 389-2825 voice

The Virginia Orthopaedic Society (VOS) is involved in an ever-increasing number of public policy issues. There seems to be a constant attack on orthopaedic surgeons and their practices from entities wanting to get between orthopaedists and their patients or practices and their revenues. Here’s a summary of current issues:

Please share this update with your physicians and staff. Please support VOS through membership and being engaged in advocacy. We are pleased to help you connect with the Delegates and Senators in your community. Contact me with questions or for more information.


Entire Practice Embraces Advocacy Role

By Gautham Gondi MD
Orthopaedic Center of Central Virginia

White Coats on Call
The staff of the Orthopaedic Center of Central Virginia presents
Delegate Kathy Byron with the VOS Legislator of the Year Award.

The Orthopaedic Center of Central Virginia's team takes patient and legislative advocacy seriously. We are actively involved in a number of musculoskeletal groups, medical societies and business organizations that protect access and quality for patients. We engage our Congressional representatives and General Assembly members to discuss the issues impacting healthcare. We have organized, run and attended many political events including fundraisers to gain access to the people who create the environment in which we take care of patients. We know that our representatives value and need our input to fully understand the issues impacting their constituents. Our financial and philosophical commitment to this engagement is part of our group culture.

This year, we participated in our first National Orthopaedic Leadership Conference (NOLC) thanks to VOS. We joined over 300 musculoskeletal physicians, administrators, nurses and Congressmen to discuss the value of orthopaedic services, the inability for physicians to engage in meaningful discourse with insurance companies, providing state-to-state protection for traveling physicians and fixing the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula.

This was followed by the VOS Annual Meeting where we planned to recognize Kathy Byron as the VOS Legislator of the Year. Unfortunately, she was ill during the event.  She came to our office a few weeks ago to receive the award and talk about healthcare issues in the Commonwealth. We are paying close attention to several issues at the state level including advocating focused Workers' Compensation reforms as alternatives to a statutory Medicare-based fee schedule and protecting physician owned physical therapy and other integrated practice models. We continue an active dialogue about insurers' refusal to honor patient assignment of benefits (AOB) and the impact it has on independent medical practice. Our administrator, Karen Simonton, is active in efforts to engage other orthopaedic executives in advocacy – to distribute information and to advise VOS and elected officials on business matters.

This level of fellowship and conversation with your representatives is irreplaceable in understanding how your patients and practice will be impacted by issues churning at the state and federal level. We enjoy a collaborative relationship with our local Delegate Kathy Byron and other legislators that has immeasurable value for both parties. I would strongly encourage every physician to develop a legislative advocacy plan as part of your patient care strategy. We enjoy access to a great resource in VOS and Cal Whitehead, the Society's lobbyist. Any orthopaedic practice wishing to engage in politics and policy can get VOS' assistance creating this type of plan.


Please Support ORTHO-PAC!
YOUR Political Voice

Please make your annual investment in professional advocacy with a contribution to ORTHO-PAC.  Donations to our political action committee allow us to support candidates and incumbents who share our ideas for fostering a better environment for orthopaedic medical care delivery.  Make a contribution here today:  https://secure.societyhq.com/vos/OrthoPAC.iphtml