Physician Practice Roundup—Trump releases 2020 budget proposal: 6 things to know

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President Donald Trump's proposed federal budget has implications for doctors and hospitals. (Getty/LightFieldStudios)

Trump releases 2020 budget proposal: 6 things to know

The White House is calling for a significant cut in funding to the Department of Health and Human Services in 2020, even as it plans to ramp up investments in HIV research, the opioid epidemic, and other policy priorities. 

President Donald Trump released (PDF) his “Budget for a Better America” on Monday morning which, among other things, proposes $87.1 billion in funding for HHS, a 12% decrease from 2019.

The budget has been submitted to Congress, which will ultimately decide funding levels for 2020 and is free to craft a budget that differs from the president’s suggestions. The White House budget, however, does offer an opportunity for the administration to lay out key priorities for the year ahead. (FierceHealthcare)

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Medical practice ordered to pay back $8M to federal government

A Texas medical practice must pay the federal government $8 million after a pilot program it participated in ended up increasing costs for Medicare patients, according to Bloomberg Law.

Texas Tech Physicians Associates challenged the methods used by the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services that showed the increase in costs, but the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit ruled (PDF) March 7 against the medical practice.

The judge ruled that the medical practice must return the $8 million received from the federal government, as costs for patients under the pilot program increased by 7%. The medical practice challenged the control group used by the government to calculate those costs. CMS sought projects to test whether “intensive management” of patients might improve care and reduce costs for Medicare patients with substantial medical needs. (Bloomberg Law article, Court ruling—PDF)

ACGME names first chief diversity and inclusion officer

The Accreditation Council for Graduate Medical Education (ACGME) has hired its first chief diversity and inclusion officer.

William A. McDade, M.D., Ph.D., will lead the ACGME’s internal and external diversity and inclusion activities, the organization announced. He will focus on national initiatives to diversify and include underrepresented groups throughout the medical education continuum. (ACGME announcement)

6 medical organizations announce partnership to support women physicians

To tackle issues faced by women physicians in the workforce, six leading medical organizations have launched the Women’s Wellness Through Equity and Leadership project.

The group plans to tackle issues including burnout, pay inequities, discrimination and imbalance between work-home responsibilities by bringing together early- to midcareer women physicians for networking, mentorship, and leadership training, according to an announcement.

The project is being led by the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Academy of Family Physicians, the American College of Physicians, the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists, the American Psychiatric Association and the American Hospital Association. (AAP announcement)

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