The American College of Surgeons
is dedicated to improving the
care of the surgical patient
and to safeguarding standards
of care in an optimal and
ethical practice environment.
—ACS Mission Statement
Editor’s note: The American College of Surgeons (ACS) Health Policy
and Advocacy Group updated the 2009 ACS Statement on Health Care
Reform and has developed the following 2017 Statement on Health
Care Reform. The ACS Board of Regents reviewed and approved the
statement at its February meeting in Chicago, IL.
The ACS is the largest surgical organization in the U.S., rep- resenting more than 80,000 members from all states and surgical specialties. The ACS was founded in 1913 and is
dedicated to high-quality, safe surgical care delivered in a compassionate, ethical manner. Surgeons perform approximately
30 million operations annually in the U.S. Although the ACS
appreciates the challenges facing the U.S. health care system,
the organization also emphasizes that many aspects of surgical
health care in the U.S., including surgical education and training, are the best in the world.
The ACS strongly supports efforts to ensure that individuals
have universal access to patient-centered, timely, affordable, and
appropriate health care, while maintaining that surgeons are
an integral and irreplaceable component of quality health care.
To this end, in any health care reform bill, the ACS strongly
supports four core principles:
•Quality and safety
•Patient access to surgical care
•Reduction of health care costs
•Medical liability reform
Achieving these goals and building a better health care deliv-
ery system will require all stakeholders to work together.
STATEMENT ON HEALTH CARE REFORM
American College of Surgeons
2017 statement on
health care reform