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January 23, 2023

AACOM in Action

What You Need to Know

CMS Awards 200 New Medicare GME Slots; Seeks Applications for Next 200 Slots by March 31

 

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) recently 200 new Medicare-funded graduate medical education (GME) slots to begin training on July 1, 2023. Of interest to the osteopathic community, 125 of the new slots are for primary care residencies. This award of marks the first year of phasing in 1,000 new Medicare-funded physician residency slots over five years to qualifying hospitals serving underserved communities.

 

The application process for the next 200 slots have opened. Qualifying hospitals are encouraged to apply for these slots by March 31, 2023. View and review the on the new slots and implementation.

The New AACOM

 

AACOM is celebrating its 125th anniversary this year, and to honor this momentous occasion we’ve reimagined our logo and developed a visual identity that embodies the energy and innovation of the association and the osteopathic medical education community. In just a few weeks, you’ll get to see what “The New AACOM” has to offer, including a new identity for the Washington Insider. The same great content will soon be delivered under a new name, the OME Advocate!

AACOM Advocates

Advocacy Year in Review — Celebrating Your Support

2022 was a year of record-breaking advocacy for AACOM! With more than 1,600 new advocates this past year, almost twice as many as the previous year, and thousands of messages sent to Members of Congress in support of the Fair Access in Residency (FAIR) Act alone, our advocacy efforts continue to grow at an inspiring rate. As we prepare for new opportunities in the 118th Congress, we thank you for your commitment to advocating in support of osteopathic priorities. AACOM and the Government Relations team look forward to another year of strong advocacy. Visit AACOM’s to learn more about our 2022 advocacy wins, and find resources and information to help you continue advancing osteopathic priorities in 2023.

Policy Update

COM Representatives to Chair Appropriations Committees

 

  • On January 16, 2023, the House of Representatives the chairs of the Appropriations Committee and its subcommittees, including several COM Representatives.
  • Rep. Kay Granger (R-TX), who is the Representative for the University of North Texas Health Science Center at Fort Worth - Texas College of Osteopathic Medicine, will chair the full Appropriations Committee. She previously served as Ranking Member of the Appropriations Committee during the 117th Congress.
  • Rep. Hal Rogers (R-KY), Representative for University of Pikeville - Kentucky College of Osteopathic Medicine, will chair the Commerce, Justice and Science subcommittee while Rep. Steve Womack (R-AR), Representative for the Arkansas College of Osteopathic Medicine, will chair the Financial Services and General Government subcommittee.

ED Seeks to Identify Low-Value Higher Education Institutions

 

  • On January 11, 2023, the U.S. Department of Education (ED) a request for information (RFI) on identifying low-value institutions of higher education.
  • ED is seeking information on measures and metrics to determine the value of higher education programs to generate a public list of low-financial-value postsecondary programs. ED states that this will increase transparency and improve the accountability of institutions of higher education.
  • ED also indicated that there are forthcoming proposed regulations regarding gainful employment, which aim to eliminate federal aid for higher education programs that leave students with unaffordable debts or poor job prospects.
  • Comments on the RFI are due by February 10, 2023. See ED’s for additional information.

ED Announces Proposed Changes to Income-Driven Repayment

 

  • On January 10, 2023, ED proposed updates to Income-Driven Repayment (IDR) plans for undergraduate student loans.
  • Under the proposed regulations, required payments for borrowers using a Revised Pay As You Earn plan for their undergraduate loans would be reduced to five percent, from the current 10 percent, of discretionary income.
  • Graduate school loans would be unaffected by these changes, and IDR plans for graduate loans will remain at 10 percent of discretionary income. For borrowers with both undergraduate and graduate school loans, the required IDR payments will be a weighted average of their undergraduate and graduate loans.
  • Comments on the proposed regulation are due by February 10, 2023. For more information, see ED’s .

COVID-19 Public Health Emergency Extended for 12th Time

 

  • On January 11, 2023, Health and Human Services Secretary Xavier Becerra the COVID-19 public health emergency (PHE) for 90 days.
  • First issued on January 31, 2020, the PHE has been renewed 12 times.
  • The PHE has provided healthcare and administrative flexibilities, but the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, P.L 117-328, decoupled some flexibilities from the PHE, including extending through 2024 telehealth and Hospital at Home provisions and prohibiting continuous Medicaid coverage requirements after April 1, 2023.

DATA 2000 Waiver No Longer Required to Prescribe Buprenorphine

 

  • Recently, the Substance Abuse and Mental Health Services Administration (SAMHSA) announced it will no longer require a DATA 2000 Waiver (Waiver) to prescribe buprenorphine for the treatment of opioid use disorder (OUD).
  • This SAMHSA notice follows language in Section 1262 of the Consolidated Appropriations Act, 2023, P.L. 117-328, which removed the requirement for clinicians to submit a waiver to prescribe medications for OUD.
  • While the Waiver is no longer needed, eligible Rural Health Clinics for funding through the DATA 2000 Waiver Training Payment Program to defray prior training costs.

Engagement and Resources

Reminder: Submit Recommendations on NIH Peer Review Process and Attend Free Virtual Conference: The National Institutes of Health (NIH) has issued an on its proposal to revise its peer review framework for research grant applications. AACOM is concerned with the disparity in NIH funding for COMs and worked with Congress to twice pass legislation acknowledging the benefits of osteopathic research and directing the NIH to report back on COM funding. AACOM sees this RFI as an opportunity to continue the push for osteopathic research funding and encourages COMs to submit comments by the March 10, 2023 deadline. Please share your comments or suggestions with AACOM at . To learn more about NIH’s current grant policies, and to engage with NIH experts, attend their free, on February 1-2, 2023.

Osteopathic Medical Students: Reminder to Apply for the 2023-24 Osteopathic Health Policy Internship: AACOM is currently accepting applications for the 2023-2024 , a unique eight-week virtual internship for osteopathic medical students. Each OHPI will gain first-hand experience working virtually at the national level where they will be immersed in health and higher education policy development, analysis and implementation. Interns will actively participate in building support for AACOM’s policy priorities, including the FAIR Act, increasing NIH funding for osteopathic researchers and more. Applications are due Friday, February 17, 2023 at 11:59 PM ET. .

HRSA Seeks Public Input on Healthy Start Initiative Program Development: The Health Resources and Services Administration (HRSA) recently issued an on the design, implementation and evaluation of the Healthy Start program. Healthy Start is a community-based program dedicated to reducing disparities in maternal and infant health. HRSA funds 101 Healthy Start grantees toward that goal. Comments are being accepted through February 3, 2023. Please let us know at if you or your organization plan to comment.

Funding Opportunity: Targeted Technical Assistance for Rural Hospitals Program: HRSA is awarding up to $800,000 for the Targeted Technical Assistance for Rural Hospitals Program to improve healthcare in rural areas by providing targeted, in-depth technical assistance to rural hospitals within communities struggling to maintain healthcare services. The recipient will work with individual hospitals to address challenges to sustaining access to essential healthcare services, understand community health needs and resources and find ways to ensure communities can keep needed care locally, whether it is with a more limited set of services provided by the hospital, or by exploring other mechanisms for meeting community healthcare needs. by March 7, 2023.

Applications Now Open for the Learning Health System Embedded Scientist Training and Research Centers Grant: The Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality and the Patient-Centered Outcomes Research Institute invite applications from qualified institutions to create Learning Health System Embedded Scientist Training and Research Centers to support the professional development of scientists to conduct research that accelerates progress towards an integrated learning health system. Letters of intent are due by February 10, 2023, and applications are due by March 24, 2023. .

Visit AACOM's for federal grants of interest to osteopathic medical education.

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American Association of Colleges of Osteopathic Medicine

Government Relations

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