Reps. Bucshon and Bera Lead Over 245 Members in Urging Action on Looming Medicare Physician Payment Cuts that will Strain Patient Access to Care
Washington, October 15, 2021
Tags: Government Regulations , Healthcare
WASHINGTON – Representatives Larry Bucshon, M.D. (R-IN) and Ami Bera, M.D. (D-CA) led over 245 Members of Congress in a letter urging House Leadership to address looming Medicare payment cuts to health care providers that will further strain patient access to care. Click here to view the full letter.
“As a practicing surgeon for nearly 15 years, I believe that no doctor should have to worry about the uncertainty of looming reimbursement cuts while battling COVID-19 on the front lines,” said Dr. Bucshon. “Physicians are among the everyday heroes keeping our families healthy, our communities out of harm’s way, and our livelihoods protected during this pandemic. Now is not the time to ask them to take a reimbursement cut.”
“As an internal medicine doctor by training, I know that cutting payments for physicians during this global pandemic will further strain our health care system and the ability for health care professionals to provide the best care for their patients,” said Rep. Ami Bera, M.D. “I also want Congress to reform Medicare provider payments to ensure we have policies that are stable in the long term and move our system towards one based on value, not volume. That’s why I’m proud to work with my good friend and fellow doctor Representative Bucshon in leading over 245 Members from both sides of the aisle to stabilize payments to providers next year and begin work on reforms for future years.”
Last year, significant Medicare payment cuts to most health care providers in 2021 were finalized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) as a result of increasing payments to some providers. To mitigate these cuts as health care providers grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic, Congress included a 3.75 percent payment increase in 2021 and extended a pause on Medicare sequestration cuts. This relief ends this year unless Congress acts. It’s critical that Congress works to stabilize payments in the short term and reform these payments in the long term. In addition, payment provisions for 2022 have not yet been finalized by CMS, leading to more uncertainty.
Reps. Bucshon and Bera led the successful effort last year to mitigate proposed cuts in health care payments, including introducing the bipartisan Holding Providers Harmless from Medicare Cuts During COVID-19 Act of 2020 and leading the coalition of Members and stakeholders advocating for the final relief passed by Congress.