Legislative Advocacy

ACCMA and CMA are fighting every day for your practice and your patients. From ensuring that you receive fair payment from government and private insurance to professional liability protections under MICRA. From scope of practice issues to Medi-Cal/Medicare reimbursement rates. ACCMA is working hard on your behalf to make sure the voice of Bay Area physicians is clearly heard.


Current Legislation

House of Representatives Bills

H.R. 2474 – Support
H.R. 2474 would reform this flawed system and provide annual inflationary updates, based on the Medicare Economic Index (MEI), for Medicare physician services, similar to updates received by other health care providers. While there are many other concerns with the Medicare physician payment system that still need to be addressed, H.R. 2474 is a great first step toward fixing payment inequities and injecting financial stability into physician practices, allowing them to invest in new ways of providing care and ultimately assuring that Medicare beneficiaries maintain their access to high-quality care.

California Senate & State Assembly Bills

SB 524 (Caballero) – Oppose
SB 524 would allow pharmacists to perform tests that are Clinical Laboratory Improvement Amendments (CLIA) waived and Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approved. Pharmacists will be authorized to furnish and prescribe treatments for any positive test outlined in this bill, including antibiotics for various illnesses, conditions, and diseases. This bill poses a risk to patient safety by removing physicians from the care team and undermines the importance of person-centered care, treating symptoms instead of the patient.   

SB 598 (Skinner) – Support
SB 598 reforms the prior authorization process to ensure timely access to treatments, improve patient health outcomes and improve the efficiency and effectiveness of physician practices to increase patient access to care. The bill allows physicians practicing within a health plan’s utilization criteria 90% of the time to get a one-year exemption from prior authorizations. SB 598 is a balanced approach that ensures physicians practice within a plan’s criteria without undue burdens from the plan.  

AB 765 (Wood) – Support
AB 765 would limit non-physicians from using terms that would make patients believe they are physicians when they are allied health professionals or other providers. An example of this would be preventing nurse anesthetists from calling themselves “nurse anesthesiologists.” The bill protects physician titles from being improperly represented and protects patients from making misinformed decisions.  

AB 1570 (Low) – Oppose
AB 1570 would expand the scope of practice for optometrists to perform advanced surgical and laser procedures with minimal training. These procedures include corneal crosslinking and laser trabeculoplasty, among others. Under this bill, optometrists would then qualify to perform these advanced procedures after completing only 43 various eye surgical procedures. This bill would put patients at harm by allowing the underqualified optometrist to perform advanced eye surgeries. This same bill, AB 2236 (Low) was vetoed by the Governor last year. No changes were made to it before it was re-introduced this year.  

Medi-Cal Rates – Support
The California Legislature has done a tremendous job expanding health care coverage in the state and fundamentally revamping Medi-Cal through CalAIM. Now we need to work on creating more access for Medi-Cal recipients to physicians. Medi-Cal’s base reimbursement rates paid to health care providers have not been raised since the 2000-2001 budget. In fact, due to budget deficits, California cut rates in 2008 and 2011, including reductions that continue to this day.  To truly provide Health Care for All, we need to address the issues of rates, which often fail to cover even a fraction of the cost of providing care and make it difficult for providers to see Medi-Cal patients.  

CMA/ACCMA Top Issues

The California Medical Association (CMA) is distinguished by its legislative, legal and regulatory advocacy on behalf of the physicians and patients of California. Click here to explore CMA's top priorities and initiatives.


Understanding the Legislative Process

Important Documents About the CA State Legislature

2023 Legislative Calendar and Deadlines

Standing Committees 

Glossary of Key Terms 

Understanding the Legislative Process & Relationship Building

Take a deeper dive into the legislative process, how a bill really becomes a law, how you can affect the outcome, and understand how to develop relationships with individual legislators. To access ACCMA's free program, please click here.


How to Interact with Your Legislator

Conducting the Meetings: Dos & Don'ts

Learn how to conduct a meeting with legislators: how to prepare, what to bring with you, how to navigate last-minute changes, and following up. To listen to ACCMA's podcast, please click here.


Meet Your Legislators

Elected Officials

Throughout the year, ACCMA will send members alerts about bills that are considered in the State Legislature, U.S. Congress, and County Board of Supervisors. Making a quick call, sending a short email, or tweeting your elected officials helps show our strength and get our message across. Click here to find contact information and to learn more about your local, state, and federal representatives. 


How to Get Involved

Key Legislative Contacts Program

  • Advocate on behalf of the physician community and your patients by offering your expertise and experience. Work with us and CMA’s grassroots advocacy team to build personal relationships with your legislators. We would like to identify a few physicians who are willing to build relationships with their legislator, be first point of contact when we need to reach out to their legislator, be invited to attend potential fundraising events, and potentially host a fundraiser. If you are interested in participating in the Key Legislative Contacts Program, please contact us

  • The ACCMA offers an annual one-day advocacy training course for physicians to learn more about the legislative process and how to effectively influence the process. It includes opportunities to practice your advocacy skills through mock legislative meetings. For more information about the next training, please contact us.  

Contact Your Legislator

U.S. Senate 

U.S. House of Representatives

California State Senate

California State Assembly 

Donate to ACCPAC

The most effective way to achieve favorable policy outcomes is to elect candidates who share our perspective on health care issues. By donating to CALPAC (at the state level) and ACCPAC (at the local level), you can help provide financial support to physician-friendly candidates whose views are aligned with ACCMA and CMA policy positions. These PACs are nonpartisan. Click here to contribute.  

Join the Legislative Committee

The Legislative Committee conducts political action on behalf of the ACCMA; meets with elected officials to advocate for legislation and policy changes; evaluates candidates for local, state and federal offices representing this community and makes recommendations to the ACCMA's and CMA's political action committees. To apply, click here. Committee nominations are accepted year-round. Contact the ACCMA with any questions at (510) 654-5383 or accma@accma.org.  

Attend Legislative Advocacy Day

Once a year (usually in April), dozens of ACCMA members join more than 400 physicians from around California for a trip to the State Capitol in Sacramento. The event includes keynote speakers – frequently the Governor – and we hold meetings with each of our East Bay legislators inside the Capitol. Check the ACCMA online event calendar for more information. 

Serve as an Appointed Commissioner

For those with the time and interest to get more deeply involved in policymaking, consider applying to serve as an appointed commissioner at the local or state level. There are scores of health-care related commissions that would benefit tremendously from your knowledge and experience. If there is a commission you are interested in joining, the ACCMA can help support your nomination. Contact us if you would like to serve. To view a list of potential County boards, committees, commissions, please click here.