Dueling Legislative Approaches to Fixing the Doc Pay Emerge
Dueling legislative approaches to overhaul the Medicare physician payment formula emerged this week. The new movement on the stubborn problem comes as the Congressional Budget Office revised the 10-year cost of fixing it down by more than 40%, to $138 billion from $245 billion, based on lower spending on physician services in recent years. 

There are some general similarities in the proposals, but there are also critical differences between an approach contained in bipartisan legislation introduced Wednesday by Rep. Allyson Schwartz (D-Pa.) and a Republican bill expected from Ways and Means Health subcommittee Chairman Kevin Brady (R-Texas) in the coming months.

Both the bills would replace the sustainable growth-rate formula with temporary increases while replacement methodologies were devised, but the bills differ on important points, including whether federal officials or physician groups would take the lead in developing new payment systems and the degree to which fee-for-service payments would be eliminated.

Read the article in Modern Affairs here (account may be needed), or link to the proposals from Rep. Schwartz or Rep. Brady.

The Rural Voice ~ Advocating on behalf of the healthcare needs of rural Colorado, my blog posts feature rural health policy news.


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