Physician Organization – Joining Forces to Address Health Care Challenges

Physicians are the backbone of the health care system. They are trusted by patients and their colleagues and bring a unique perspective to the health care industry. Yet, they face many challenges. Many doctors are suffering from burnout. Many are frustrated with insurance company restrictions on telehealth care. And administrative tasks consume so much of a doctor’s time that, on average, only thirteen per cent of the eleven-hour workday is spent in direct patient contact.

Physician organization is the way that physicians join forces to address these and other problems. Doctors have a voice through local medical societies and state and national specialty groups. They can leverage their collective buying power to negotiate with managed care companies and other payers. They can collaborate to improve the quality of patient care through medical education and research. And they can create business ventures to expand their patient reach and financial opportunities.

Doctors’ collective organization and market leverage are essential for a vibrant health care system. But, if these efforts are isolated and fragmented, they won’t succeed. Physicians need a unified front to stand up to insurers and to promote policies that support them and their patients. The AMA is fighting to remove barriers that prevent the delivery of effective health care and to provide real-world solutions for the many issues facing physicians today.

Whether it’s to fight for a more sustainable Medicare payment model, to combat the opioid crisis, or to promote physician well-being and patient safety, our member leaders are taking action to address the issues that matter most. Learn more about their stories and their successes in the video above.

The AMA is the world’s largest physician association with an international membership of more than 60 member associations. It was founded in 1947 and is committed to serving humanity through striving for high international standards of Medical Education, Medical Science, Medical Art and Medical Ethics.

It is a non-profit, nonpartisan organization and does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, religion, sex, gender identity or sexual orientation, nor does it endorse any political candidates or causes. It has contributed between $1.6 million and $3.4 million to date in federal elections.

There are many different opinions on whether doctors should regulate themselves or be regulated by the public. There is also disagreement over how that regulation should be carried out, particularly whether it should be centralized or decentralized.

In this study, we examined the organization of physician organizations in EU-15 countries, Japan and the United States, in terms of their legal status (public law corporations or independent professional associations), type of registration (centralized, indirect or delegated) and centralization/decentralization of the doctor’s registry. We found that the decentralized registration systems were more able to adapt to the idiosyncrasies of a given region, which led to better organisation of the full medical system. This was a major finding of the study.