President's Page: Fighting for Equity and Access

On January 11th, the ACCMA kicked off 2024 with a joint orientation meeting for the ACCMA Council (which is the ACCMA’s board of directors) and the ACCMA (District IX) Delegation to the CMA House of Delegates. Several new leaders are joining the Council and Delegation this year, and we used this opportunity to welcome them and discuss our priorities for the coming year.

We also had the privilege of welcoming the CMA President, Dr. Tanya W. Spirtos, as our guest speakers, who shared that CMA’s overarching priority for the coming year is achieving health equity and greater access to care. Central to that effort is a ballot initiative CMA, ACCMA and other healthcare organizations are putting on the 2024 ballot.

Thanks to CMA and ACCMA advocacy, a new law was enacted this year that utilizes a Managed Care Organization (MCO) Tax to leverage $19.4 billion in Federal funds between April 2023 and December 2026 to substantial increase Medi-Cal reimbursement rates. In 2024, rates have increased for primary care, obstetrics, and non-specialty behavioral health. The 2024 ballot initiative will keep this momentum going to make this investment in Medi-Cal provider rates permanent. The fight for increased Medi-Cal funding will ensure that patients most in need receive access to the quality care they deserve.

Other priorities for 2024 include stopping Medicare cuts, implementing long-term Medicare payment reforms, strengthening the physician workforce, protecting against the corporatization of medicine, addressing healthcare affordability, reducing administrative burdens on physicians, and responding to egregious scope expansion efforts. These thorny issues require a sustained effort and remain at the forefront of our focus.

The most important step you can take in support of these efforts is to continue your ACCMA and CMA membership. Your membership dues ensure that we have the resources necessary to wage these battles on behalf of you and your patients. For those who want to get more directly involved, there are many ways you can help. Please keep a close eye on your inbox for advocacy alerts throughout the year that require urgent action. Taking the time to send an email or make a phone call to your elected representatives goes a long way. Your voice and personal anecdotes provide valuable insight to legislators as they make decisions that impact your patients and the practice of medicine. We will also be hosting local meetings with elected officials, attending CMA Legislative Day in Sacramento, interviewing candidates who are running for office, and more. To get more involved, visit