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December 21, 2019

Understanding the American Medical Association (AMA)

by Anne Paddock

The American Medical Association is a non-profit 501 (c) (6) – a professional association – based in Chicago, Illinois with about 215,000 members who pay about $400 annually (although medical students and residents are exempt from annual fees).

The AMA raises about $300 million annually and spends half its revenue on staff compensation for the nearly 1,100 employees.  With a $560 million net fund balance (or what some people refer to as an endowment), the AMA is in a strong financial position.

Although the AMA publishes the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA), the primary income stream is from royalties the organization receives for establishing, maintaining, and allowing doctors, practices, groups, hospitals, and payers (i.e. insurance companies, Medicare, Medicaid, etc) to use it’s CPT (Current Procedural Terminology) Codes system.  Membership dues only provide about 12% of revenue annually.

The AMA is involved with several organizations, some of which it owns 100% (or close to it) and is the controlling entity and some which were established by the AMA but operate “independently” although many of these organizations operate out of the same address as the AMA in Chicago. Below is a list of what appears to be most “related” organizations, but quite possibly not all because the most recent information available is from the Form 990 submitted by the AMA to the IRS.

PCPI Foundation: The PCPI Foundation was convened by the AMA as the Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement “as a physician led program to develop performance measures” that either didn’t exist or needed improvement in the medical field. PCPI previously shared office space with the AMA but appears to have moved to another location in Chicago (353 North Clark Street) along with becoming an independent non-profit 501 (c) (3) organization (and recipient of grant funds from the AMA).

Health2047, Inc.:  An Illinois corporation operating out of the same office as the AMA, Health2047, Inc. is an organization that uses a lot of words on its website (i.e. “developing and commercializing healthcare solutions” and “catalyze fundamental transformation in US healthcare”) without really telling the reader what exactly the organization does. Directly controlled by the AMA.

AKIRI Inc FKA Health2047, Inc. Switchco Inc.:  A California corporation engaged in software development, AKIRI appears to be partnering with Health2047, Inc. (listed above) to “provide a secure network that enables frictionless movement of data across the complex US healthcare ecosystem.”

American Medical Assurance Company (AMAC):  An Illinois corporation that operates out of the same office as the AMA, AMAC i a reinsurance company controlled by the AMA.

AMA Health Information Solutions, Inc. (AMAHIS):  An Illinois corporation that operates out of the same office as the AMA, AMAHIS is the direct licensor of physician master files. Historically the AMA has kept complete physician files from the start of education through their respective careers, and used this information for financial gain (i.e. selling the information to pharmaceutical companies who want to target doctors in certain practices).

AMA Services, Inc.:  AMA Services, Inc. is an Illinois corporation described as a holding company for business and personal services, and controlled by the AMA. It is unclear what type of business and personal services this corporation provides but the AMA did receive $18 million in income and has a 100% interest in the $49 million in assets in 2017 (from the most recent Form 990 for the AMA).

AMA Insurance Agency, Inc.:  An Illinois corporation that operates out of the same office as the AMA, AMA Insurance Agency, Inc. is an insurance (i.e. life, health, and disability) brokerage firm.

Adams Street 1847 Fund LP:  A private equity fund in which the AMA has a 99.98% interest, Adams street 1847 Fund LP is based in the Cayman Islands.

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