Last updated on April 16, 2014 at 17:21 EDT

Nation’s Leading Patient Advocacy Organization Releases 2013 Policy Priorities

February 7, 2013

National Patient Advocate Foundation and Its Policy Board, Other Leading Experts Identify Areas of Concern for Patient Access to Care

WASHINGTON, Feb. 7, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ — The National Patient Advocate Foundation (NPAF), a national, non-profit organization dedicated to the mission of creating avenues of improved patient access to health care through public policy reform at the state and federal levels, recently released their Policy Priorities for 2013. Since its inception in 1996, NPAF has focused its policy priorities on those policies determined to have the greatest impact on patients with chronic, debilitating, and life-threatening diseases who are served by NPAF’s companion service organization, the Patient Advocate Foundation (PAF), who have serviced nearly 1 million patient cases to date.

NPAF selected 18 key policy priorities for 2013 {www.npaf.org}, which hope to achieve five main goals: eliminate barriers to healthcare coverage, ensure access to essential medications and therapies, ease economic constraints on health providers, raise awareness of patient needs, and improve patient outcomes. While most of the patient priorities identified are at the federal legislative and regulatory level, some identified are in the state legislative and regulatory space. The selection included an in-depth review and approval by the foundation’s Policy Board representing providers, payers, industry, communication, and administrative experts in healthcare.

“Our in-depth research and experiences over the past year – along with the expert counsel of leading medical and policy analysts from across the nation -have shown the biggest threats Americans face are inadequate access to simple and living-saving healthcare procedures, medications, and preventative measures,” said NPAF CEO and Co-Founder, Nancy Davenport-Ennis. “We have heard this from frontline case managers, providers across the country and from patients themselves. Thus, it is our goal, over the next 12 months, to work constructively with policymakers to clearly illustrate these access issues and work toward quick and reasonable resolution.”

Collectively, NPAF’s priorities represent a spectrum of access needs for patients from initial diagnosis to survivorship and long term disease management. They also reflect the growing population of patients served by PAF who experience difficulties accessing care for one reason, but who consequently experience a myriad of complications and secondary side efforts in the process. Considerable emphasis has been placed on developing policies that are transparent and patient-centric.

Ranging from Medicare reform at the federal level, Medicaid expansion in states, and a myriad of other inter-related issues, the 18 policy priorities provide an essential framework NPAF’s advocates will utilize to work on behalf of patients on both the state and national level.

An outline of the 2013 NPAF Policy Priorities is listed below. Please visit www.npaf.org for the full detailed report.

2013 Policy Priorities by Policy Team

                                                Federal Regulatory
    Issues                               Includes
    ------                               --------
    Medicare Reform                      Program Modifications"Dual Eligibles"
    ---------------                      -------------------------------------
    Medicaid Expansion*
    Essential Health Benefits*
    Patient Engagement
     in Decision-Making
     Processes                           New OpportunitiesPCORI
    -------------------                  ----------------------
    340B of the Public Health Service Act
    Pre-Existing Condition Insurance Plans
    Funding Federal and                   Understanding Cost Saving Opportunities that Benefit PatientsHealth
     State "Safety Net                    Information Technology
    -------------------                   -------------------------------------------------------------------
    Patient Navigators
     Medicine                            Genomic TestingBiosimilar Pathway
    ------------                         ---------------------------------
    Measuring Treatment Effectiveness and Patient Value of Service
                                               Federal Legislative
    Deficit Reduction and the "fiscal cliff"
    Patient Access to                     Specialty TiersDrug ShortagesDrug Supply SafetyFederal
     Essential                            Appropriations
     Medications and
    -----------------                                 -------------------------------------------------------
    Ensuring Access to
     Provider Care                       Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR)Medicare Part B Reimbursement
    ------------------                   ----------------------------------------------------------
    Chronic Disease and Wellness Initiatives
                                           State Government Relations
    State Health Exchanges
    Essential Health Benefits*
    Transparency in Policy Development
    Medicaid Expansion*
    Medicaid Budget Challenges
    Patient Access to                     Anti-Cancer Medications (Oral/IV parity)Specialty
     Essential                            TiersEliminating Barriers (e.g., Utilization Review/Management)
     Medications and
    -----------------                        ----------------------------------------------------------------
    Accountable Care Organizations

*Shared by more than one policy team.

For a complete copy of the entire 2013 Policy Priorities document, please visit www.npaf.org

SOURCE National Patient Advocate Foundation

Source: PR Newswire