Posted November 18, 2019
By Samana Sheikh
Imagine waking up from the best dream, and finding out it’s actually a reality. That’s exactly what Dr. Bobby Mukkamala experienced recently. The otolaryngologist has been an advocate for the revitalization of his hometown, Flint, for years. With his recent professional accomplishment, he’ll be able to broaden his reach to help even more patients in the state of Michigan as the new President-Elect of the Michigan State Medical Society.
“From being a member to sharing the board the last three years, I finally have an opportunity to be the face of an organization that helps doctors help their patients,” said Dr. Mukkamala.
The Michigan State Medical Society is a nonprofit organization representing over 15,000 physicians. Its goal is to improve the lives of physicians so they can help others, and serve the needs of their local community.
Dr. Mukkamala started practicing 19 years ago, and at one point wanted to get a law degree to fight insurance companies. He wanted to help his patients receive the best healthcare. He knew his patients dealt with problems from insurance companies, and wanted to take an extra step to help. However, during that time, he heard about the Michigan State Medical Society, and was instantly attracted to the core reasoning for its existence. Now with his new role, he’s promising everyone he won’t take it for granted.
“The policies of the Medical Society are set by the physicians of the state,” Dr. Mukkamala stated. “It’s my job to take those policies and take on those issues, then come up with a solution for those problems in whatever way possible.”
This organization operates through regular meetings in Lansing. They review existing policy, and look at tasks provided by physicians representing the medical society. Currently, one of the many issues Dr. Mukkamala is addressing with the Michigan State Medical Society is prior authorization.
Prior authorization can potentially deny proper healthcare to patients. It’s a requirement in healthcare, where your physician obtains approval from health insurance plans to prescribe certain medication. Then, insurance companies decide to provide coverage.
The medical society is also working on maintenance of licensure and certification. However, this is still being properly discussed.
The point is to make sure medical doctors maintain their education standards at a level that allows for them to continue to provide good patient care, Dr. Mukkamala explained.
One of Dr. Mukkamala’s responsibilities is delivering messages to the mainstream media.
“Without that voice, things can get really messed up in healthcare as they have, and that’s why I think it’s so critical to be in this position, and I’m proud to be that voice for this upcoming year,” he said.
Dr. Mukkamala completed three years as the chair of the Michigan State Medical Society Board of Directors. He did this before receiving his recent title. He hopes to make a lasting impact and be a good example for The Michigan State Medical Society.
“We’re in the exam room. We’re in the operating room. We’re in the clinics taking care of our patients,” Dr. Mukkamala said, “and we are advocating with one singular purpose, and that is to improve the health of our patients.”