MAG’s new president to focus on tort reform, surprise bills & scope of practice

Andrew Reisman, M.D., was sworn into office as the president of the Medical Association of Georgia (MAG) during a ceremony that took place during the organization’s 165th House of Delegates meeting in Stone Mountain on October 19.

“The opportunity to serve my fellow physicians and our patients is a tremendous honor,” says Dr. Reisman, a board-certified family physician with the Longstreet Clinic in Oakwood. “I embrace this challenge knowing that I’m standing arm-in-arm with 8,000 fellow MAG members who represent every specialty and practice setting.”

During his one-year term as MAG’s president, Dr. Reisman says that he will focus on an array of key issues – including tort reform, surprise medical bills, the “data entry” crisis, and scope of practice.

He points out that, “Georgia’s tort climate is declining at a rapid rate, as some disconcerting court decisions have led to some outlandish judgments. If this goes unchecked, the cost associated with defensive medicine is going to lead to a physician shortage in the state, which ultimately means that Georgians are going to struggle getting the care they need.”

Dr. Reisman notes that, “Another big problem is surprise medical bills, which can subject patients to huge bills for out-of-network care. We need to eliminate surprise bills with legislation that requires insurers to offer adequate networks, establishes fair payment models, and creates better ways resolve billing and payment and claims disputes.”

Dr. Reisman also wants to address the “data entry crisis” that is tied to Medicare and other third-party payers. He explains that, “Physicians now spend an inordinate amount of time completing EHR (electronic health records) forms that are designed to save the government or health insurance companies money rather than enhance patient care.”

And he says that Georgians must not forget the important differences between physicians and allied health care providers, emphasizing that, “Physician assistants and nurse practitioners play a vital role in our health care system, but we always have to remember that physicians attend medical school for four years, which is followed by a multi-year residency – far more than optometrists, physical therapists, etc. We all want the peace of mind knowing we have access to a physician in our hour of need.”

Dr. Reisman concludes that, “We are far more qualified to fix the health care system that government bureaucrats or insurance companies, so physicians need to continue to offer solutions, we need to develop and maintain relationships with our legislators, we need to run for public office, and we need to support organizations like MAG.”

Dr. Reisman formerly served as MAG’s secretary. In addition to MAG, he is a member of the Georgia Composite Medical Board, the Hall County Medical Society, the American Medical Association, and the Georgia Academy of Family Physicians.

Dr. Reisman has a medical degree from the University of Miami, and he completed his residency at the University of Maryland.

Dr. Reisman lives in Gainesville with his wife, Hall County Magistrate Judge Elizabeth Reisman, and their children Robert, Charlie and Caroline.