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Docs offer payment reform ideas to Congressional committee

Docs offer payment reform ideas to Congressional committee

May 6, 2011 — 12:32am ET | By Ron Shinkman

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American Academy of Family Physicians
American College Of Surgeons
SGR
AAFP
Sustainable growth rate
American Medical Association
AMA
ACS
Major trade groups representing physicians nationwide made presentations to a House subcommittee on Thursday with their suggestions for fixing the current Sustainable Growth System rate for Medicare payments, reports the Wall Street Journal’s Health Blog.

All of the participants–the American Medical Association, the American Academy of Family Physicians and the American College of Surgeons–agreed that the current SGR formula needs to be repealed. Introduced in the mid-1990s, the formula has mostly been abandoned in recent years for a series of last-minute fixes authorized by Congress.

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AMA suggested implementing “a five-year period of stable Medicare physician payments that keep pace with the growth in medical practice costs,” according to its prepared remarks.

AAFP, meanwhile, suggested that primary-care physicians receive higher payments for care than other specialties, and an increase in the primary care incentives included in the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act.

ACS suggested a five-year transition period where reimbursement growth would vary by service line, then set a “realistic budget baseline” for future payment increases.

For more:
– read the Wall Street Journal Health Blog post
– check out this MedPage Today article

Related Articles:
AMA chides Congress on SGR
HBMA chimes in on SGR
Proposed three-year doc fix helps primary care, puts off SGR

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