This Week – March 12, 2016

This Week in Washington, DC

  • March is National Colorectal Cancer Awareness Month: ACG Urges Congress to Support CRC Screening Legislation
  • ACG Members & DDNC Advocate on Behalf of Patients
  • ACG, AGA, and ASGE Release 2016 CPT Coding Guidance

National Affairs - Knapple .jpg From National Affairs Committee Chair, Whitfield L. Knapple, MD, FACG

ACG Urges Congress to Support CRC Screening Legislation

Each year, hundreds of public and private health organizations come together with one common goal of educating the nation about the importance of colorectal cancer screening.  ACG urged Congress to join this shared commitment.

ACG urges Congress to support legislation to improve colorectal cancer screening rates among Medicare beneficiaries, including:

  1. The Removing Barriers to Colorectal Cancer Screening Act (S. 624/HR 1220)
  2. The SCREEN Act (S.1079/HR 2035)

The SCREEN Act removes financial barriers throughout the “screening continuum,” so that cost-sharing would not apply, whether the colonoscopy was a preventive test, or as the result of a positive finding on another screening modality.  The SCREEN Act also reverses recent cuts to colonoscopy in Medicare.  Please click here to convey your support for the SCREEN Act.

How Can ACG Help Educate Your Patients?

Check out the ACG’s Colorectal Cancer Awareness resource site.  You can find key statistics and data points on colorectal cancer screening to better educate patients.  ACG also offers patient-friendly educational links for other GI diseases.


From the ACG Board of Governors Vice-Chair, Costas H. Kefalas, MD, MMM, FACG

ACG Members Join Patient Advocates on Capitol Hill

On March 7, 2016, members of ACG joined the Digestive Disease National Coalition (DDNC) in Washington D.C. to advocate on behalf of GI patients.  The DDNC is an umbrella organization composed of 52 constituent professional society and patient advocacy member organizations, including the ACG.  The DDNC’s advocacy efforts included promoting the ACG legislative priorities, such as the SCREEN Act, as well as other GI public policy issues important to our patients.

Ashley L. Faulx, MD, FACG, ACG Governor for Northern Ohio (2nd from left); Costas H. Kefalas, MD, MMM, FACG, DDNC President and ACG Representative to the DDNC (3rd from left); and Samir A. Shah, MD, FACG, ACG Representative to the DDNC (5th from left).

Ashley L. Faulx, MD, FACG, ACG Governor for Northern Ohio (2nd from left); Costas H. Kefalas, MD, MMM, FACG, DDNC President and ACG Representative to the DDNC (3rd from left); and Samir A. Shah, MD, FACG, ACG Representative to the DDNC (5th from left).

(from left to right): Costas H. Kefalas, MD, MMM, FACG; Caroll Koscheski, MD FACG, ACG Board Member; and Samir A. Shah, MD, FACG

(from left to right): Costas H. Kefalas, MD, MMM, FACG; Caroll Koscheski, MD FACG, ACG Board Member; and Samir A. Shah, MD, FACG


CPT.jpg ACG, AGA, and ASGE Release 2016 CPT Coding Guidance

ACG and the GI societies work closely together to ensure that members are made aware of, and prepared for, coding and reimbursement related changes occurring each year. For 2016, there were several changes to Current Procedural Terminology® (CPT) codes for gastroenterology services.  The society advisors continuously work through the coding process to revise and add new codes as appropriate.

Please review the 2016 CPT Coding Manual Update developed by the societies.