LEGISLATIVE PROCESS

ideaspiccrop

PURPOSE

Your membership in The Suffolk County Medical Society (SCMS) creates an accessible path to voice your options regarding state and federal legislation. The resolutions process gives physicians an opportunity to present topics for consideration by organized medicine. Participating in the policy making process can be incredibly rewarding - if you feel strongly about an issue in the medical community, promote a resolution for change!

MSSNY HOUSE OF DELEGATES

The House of Delegates is the final authority on all activities of the Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) and is held annually. This meeting represents sixty county medical societies, New York State medical specialty societies, medical and osteopathic schools, district branches and the special sections of the Medical Society membership (i.e. young physicians, resident physicians, medical students).

Policy and organizational direction for the Society are determined by 330 voting delegates. It is through this process that the membership governs the policy and administration of the Medical Society. The MSSNY House of Delegates provides direction for leadership and staff and determines official positions of the organization and sets its policies.

The 2020 MSSNY House of Delegates met virtually on Sunday, September 13th. To read more about this year's meeting, CLICK HERE.

To read about MSSNY's Official Position Statements, CLICK HERE.

A RESOLUTION'S PATH

A Resolution's Path Infographic (5)

STEPS ON DEVELOPING A RESOLUTION

A resolution is a proposal that asks the Suffolk County Medical Society (SCMS)/The Medical Society of the State of New York (MSSNY) to take a position and/or an action on a specific issue identifying a problem or opportunity. Resolutions can address any medical or health-related topic, as well as policies governing the activities of organized medicine. They are largely about targeting a problem and suggesting a solution.

A resolution can be introduced by a specialty or state delegation, a section, a county society, etc., or by an member of SCMS in good standing. It is understood that a resolution introduced by an organization (rather than an individual) has the support and approval of the organization's entire delegation.

A resolution must be received by SCMS/MSSNY no later than 45 days prior to the first session of the MSSNY House of Delegates. The 2021 MSSNY House of Delegates date has not yet been set, but check back here for further updates.

Anything submitted after the deadline goes to the MSSNY Rules and Credentials Committee.

Please e-mail resolution submissions to mberlin@scms-sam.org.

Before writing a resolution, consider what you want to accomplish. Do you have a potential solution for a problem occurring in the medical community? Is there a specific action you want SCMS/MSSNY to take regarding an issue? Do you want to create a brand new resolution, or modify an existing policy? Is the proposed action feasible?

In your resolution you should identify why the issue is important and clearly state what action you want SCMS/MSSNY to take. It is essential to ensure your resolution is thoroughly researched and well-crafted in order to present your case the most effectively.

Make sure to review MSSNY's Official Position Statements as well - you can do so HERE. It is important to know whether the topic you are looking to highlight has been addressed previously. If so, then you can check the existing position to see if you would like to revise it, or suggest it for removal.

In your resolution you should include the following:

  • The selected topic which is important, relevant and deserving of official SCMS policy. The resolution must be about a single issue - if you would like to address multiple issues you must write multiple resolutions. Please make the title reflect the content and/or goal of the resolution.
  • Identify yourself as the author of the resolution. If you are submitting the resolution on behalf of a delegation or organization, you should still use the name of the individual submitting the resolution.
  • WHEREAS clauses
  • RESOLVED clauses
  • All resolutions should cite references and identify existing relevant SCMS/MSSNY position statements and policy, if applicable. To research the MSSNY Position Statements, CLICK HERE.
  • A fiscal note may be added to the bottom of the resolution if considerable expense is anticipated in order to achieve the goals and objectives or a resolution. (ex. Fiscal Note: $1,000)

The entire resolution should be no more than one page in length, and must be constructed using Arial 11 point font. CLICK HERE for an example of our resolution format.

WHEREAS clauses are factual clauses to support your resolution and should identify a problem or need for action. Please address its timeliness or urgency, and note any effects on the organization being asked to adopt the resolution or the public at large. You may include relevant statistics and cite statements with references - this information can be helpful to defend the resolution during debate. Note that WHEREAS clauses only offer a rationale for the resolution and are not voted on.

RESOLVED clauses state your proposed policy change and are the essential part of a resolution. They should call on SCMS to take a specific action or position on the issue. It some cases, a resolution may request policy that requires contact with the government, public, media or other external organizations - in this case, the author should indicate the internal (i.e. SCMS/MSSNY) and external positions in separate, free-standing RESOLVED clauses. RESOLVED clauses should be only one sentence in length and must be able to stand alone in order to be properly debated by MSSNY's House of Delegates. They also should be stated in the affirmative, as the negative form is often confusing and complicates the voting process. The language used in RESOLVED clauses is what will be adopted by MSSNY's House of Delegates and inserted into the Position Statements of MSSNY - therefore it is imperative it must be understood independently of WHEREAS clauses.

A Directive resolution calls for SCMS/MSSNY to take some type of action.  Adoption of a directive requires specific action but does not directly affect SCMS/MSSNY’s policy base. Directive resolutions should start with the words “RESOLVED, That the Medical Society of the State of New York undertake this action” (such as communication, advocacy, study an issue, seek legislation or regulation).

When a directive calls for SCMS/MSSNY to study an issue and develop appropriate policy, the author should:

  • Explicitly identify the issue and the fact that there is no existing relevant policy concerning this issue in the first “whereas” clause(s);
  • Discuss the rationale for the proposed directive in a subsequent “whereas” clause(s);
  • Identify the requested action in the “Resolve” clause(s).

In reviewing SCMS/MSSNY policy, you may discover that no discernable action has been taken on a particular position statement. In a situation in which a directive calls upon SCMS/MSSNY to take some action relative to an existing position, the author of the resolution should:

  • In the first “whereas” clause(s), identify relevant SCMS/MSSNY policy by policy number and verbatim text of the existing policy if the material is of a reasonable length, or with a brief description of the policy if it is lengthy;
  • Outline the rationale for the proposed directive in the next “whereas” clause;
  • Identify the requested action in the “Resolve” clause(s).

Policy resolutions call for changes in SCMS/MSSNY policy either by addition of a new policy, deletion, modification or rescission of current policy. Where no policy currently exists, resolutions should clearly indicate that new policy is being requested.

A resolution that proposes a change in the SCMS/MSSNY policy statements should cite the pertinent, existing policy and then clearly indicate whether the intent is to:

  • Modify the existing policy
  • Substitute new language for the existing policy
  • Rescind the existing policy altogether

All resolutions must cite pertinent references and identify existing relevant MSSNY Position Statements and policy on the issue. CLICK HERE to review MSSNY's Official Position Statements.

Once received, resolutions are reviewed by SCMS staff for comparison to existing SCMS and MSSNY policy and legal considerations. Resolutions are then moved on to our policy making body, MSSNY's House of Delegates. A vote is taken at the MSSNY House of Delegates to determine the outcome of the resolution.

To read more about the MSSNY House of Delegates, CLICK HERE.

Please e-mail resolution submissions to mberlin@scms-sam.org.

After the MSSNY House of Delegates has voted on the resolution, it may be adopted, not adopted, amended, or referred to a committee for further examination. If passed, the resolution becomes part of the external policy of MSSNY and a binding call to action by which the organization will abide. This call to action can lead to legislative proposals and lobbying efforts, national or statewide medical recommendations, or numerous other activities through which MSSNY affects health policy.

MSSNY'S POLITICAL ACTION COMMITTEE (MSSNYPAC)

MSSNY's Political Action Committee (MSSNYPAC) supports medicine-friendly candidates for public office at the state-level who are sensitive to the concerns of physicians and their patients. The committee encourages face-to-face relationship building between candidates and physicians. The candidates MSSNYPAC elects form policy which effect how we practice medicine and whether patients can see their physician. When healthcare policy decisions are on the discussion table, the physician voice needs to be strong and well-represented.

To learn more about MSSNYPAC CLICK HERE.

MSSNY'S PHYSICIAN ADVOCACY LIAISON (PAL) NETWORK

MSSNY is building an even more powerful grassroots infrastructure to increase physician contact with local legislators. We must mobilize physicians to better ensure the enactment of favorable legislation and the defeat of proposals that will adversely impact the care that you provide to your patients.  We must make certain that our elected officials remain committed to championing the issues that matter most to MSSNY members and their patients. MSSNY is aware that many already have close relationships with various legislators, and/or are aware of other physician activists who do. Therefore, MSSNY is looking for physicians to help update their list of key contacts to expand the physician community's involvement in the legislative process.

To join and learn more about MSSNY's Physician Advocacy Liaison Network CLICK HERE.

MSSNYPAL Advocacy Overview

PHYSICIAN ADVOCACY DAY

Every year MSSNY members join together to lobby their elected leaders. By participating, you can encourage your Senators and Assembly members to support legislation that is crucial to your practice and oppose the bills that place restrictions and add unreasonable burdens.

As MSSNY is accredited by the Accreditation Council for Continuing Medical Education (ACCME), participants can receive credits for this live activity. To find sign up forms and more information about Physician Advocacy Day, CLICK HERE.

For more information about MSSNY's 2020 Legislative Program, CLICK HERE.

CURRENT SUFFOLK COUNTY LEGISLATORS

For more information about Suffolk County Legislature and your local legislators, CLICK HERE.

District 1 Al Krupski Al.Krupski@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 852-3200
District 2 Bridget Fleming Bridget.Fleming@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 852-8400
District 3 Rudy A. Sunderman Rudy.Sunderman@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 852-1300
District 4 Pending Election Pending Election (631) 854-9292
District 5 Kara Hahn Kara.Hahn@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-1650
District 6 Sarah S. Anker Sarah.Anker@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-1600
District 7 Robert Calarco Robert.Calarco@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-1400
District 8 Anthony A. Piccirillo Anthony.Piccirillo@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-9611
District 9 Samuel Gonzalez Samuel.Gonzalez@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 853-3700
District 10 Tom Cilmi Tom.Cilmi@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-0940
District 11 Steven J. Flotteron Steven.Flotteron@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-4100
District 12 Leslie Kennedy Leslie.Kennedy@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-3735
District 13 Robert Trotta Robert.Trotta@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-3900
District 14 Kevin J. McCaffrey Kevin.McCaffrey@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-1100
District 15 Jason Richberg Jason.Richberg@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-1111
District 16 Susan A. Berland, Esq. Susan.Berland@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-5100
District 17 Tom Donnelly Tom.Donnelly@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-4433
District 18 William Spencer, MD William.Spencer@suffolkcountyny.gov (631) 854-4500