(Posted March 24, 2015)
In recent days, Congress has introduced bi-partisan bills to eliminate the Medicare sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula. Now only a few days remain before the current physician payment patch expires on March 31.
The bills, H.R. 1470 and S. 810, include the following:
• The SGR would be repealed immediately.
• Positive annual payment updates of 0.5 percent would be provided for four-and-a-half-years, beginning July 1.
• The current Medicare quality reporting programs would be replaced with a simplified and consolidated merit-based incentive payment system, or MIPS.
• A 5 percent incentive payment for physicians is provided for those who participate in alternative payment models and meet certain thresholds.
Learn more about the bipartisan SGR repeat package here.
The clock is ticking – both the House and the Senate must vote on the proposal within the next week, before the March 31 expiration of the current patch, or physicians will be facing a 21 percent Medicare payment cut.
Visit Fix Medicare Now for updates and tools on how you can help repeal the SGR formula. The toolkit includes calling your lawmakers using the toll-free Physician Grassroots Hotline at 1-800-833-6354 and sample emails to Congress reinforcing the need for SGR repeal now.
Please act now – the current patch expires in one week – to improve Medicare for our nation’s seniors.