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Federal Advocacy

The AOA is the profession's foremost advocate in Washington, D.C., fighting—and winning—for doctors of optometry and the essential, primary eye health and vision care services they provide Americans. Learn more about the AOA's federal advocacy below.

U.S. Capitol Building

How does AOA's federal advocacy benefit optometry?

Innovative Education

Maintaining optometry's seat at the table 

Lawmakers and administration officials play a key role in determining what care is within optometry's scope of practice, how patients access that care and how doctors are reimbursed. Defending the rights of doctors of optometry to practice full-scope optometry is one of the most important roles of the AOA, committed to fighting and winning in Washington, D.C.

Impactful Networking

Advocating for optometry in federal government

The AOA is the profession's foremost advocate in Washington, D.C., consistently recognized as one of the most effective and respected advocacy organizations in the nation's capital. Each year, hundreds of optometry's advocates fly in to deliver optometry's priorities directly to members of Congress as part of the AOA's single-largest annual advocacy event, AOA on Capitol Hill.

Advancing Optometry

Supporting candidates who support optometry

AOA-PAC is one of the most effective, hassle-free ways to support the advancement of optometry. Depending on the consistent support of AOA members nationwide, AOA-PAC is 24/7/365 and being able to count on these resources helps optometry stay at the table in Washington, D.C. AOA-PAC dollars are not limitless and so select criteria is established to determine which candidates will be supported by AOA-PAC.

Federal Updates

No Surprises Act: Good Faith Estimates

The AOA is pressing the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) to immediately fix its misguided approach to the implementation of key portions of legislation to outlaw surprise billing by health care facilities enacted by Congress with bi-partisan support in 2021. The AOA is already leading a direct dialog with agency officials to insist on immediate changes to eliminate unnecessary new regulatory burdens on small practices detailed in late and confusing directives issued by HHS on Dec. 21, 2021, detailing broadly applied “Good Faith Estimate” requirements. To amplify its advocacy efforts in Washington, D.C., AOA leaders are coordinating with other physician groups whose members have also been mistakenly targeted, including the ADA, the APsychA and the AMA, as well as a coalition of like-minded patient access organizations.

As the AOA fights for regulatory fairness at the federal level, it is also advising doctors of immediate steps they can take to help persuade HHS to rethink its approach while also ensuring that their practices are prepared for any action the agency will take. Concerned doctors can submit letters to HHS Secretary Becerra outlining your view of the new regulations and email them to the AOA president at president@aoa.org. You may use the customizable template.  We will ensure these concerns are heard at HHS.

Additional resources

Customizable GFE Template
Good Faith Estimate FAQs
#AskAOA GFE Webinar Recording

AOA Action Center

Use the AOA Action Center to write a letter, make a phone call or post to social media telling your federal lawmakers and agency officials to support AOA's top advocacy priorities.
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