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Dec
19

Medicare physician reimbursement

For Medicare physician reimbursement, it is indeed the eleventh hour. House and Senate conferees are considering a compromise bill that would raise physician reimbursement by 1% in 2006, against the scheduled 4.4% decrease that is slated to go into effect if no action is taken. This decrease was part of previous Medicare and budget bills, and allowed Congress and the Administration to claim lower costs for Medicare programs when these bills were originally passed. Now, Congress, faced with a vocal and engaged physician community, is forced to either increase reimbursement or deal with the fallout from physicians dropping out of Medicare.
The AMA is quite active in this, lobbying everyone with a pulse on Capitol Hill in an effort to get the increase passed and kill a proposed pay-for-performance initiative.
According to the Washington Post, “Congress is considering a pay-for-performance proposal that in 2007 would cut 2% of Medicare reimbursements if a physician did not report quality data to the federal government


Joe Paduda is the principal of Health Strategy Associates

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