Unbiased Analysis of Today's Healthcare Issues

Fixing the “doc fix”

The sustainable growth rate (SGR) was implemented by Congress in1998.  The SGR’s aim was to slowly bring down or at least decellerate Medicare compensation for physicians compensation.  However, each year, it gets reversed by Congress. Now, instead of a gradual decline, the implementation of SGR would  result in about at 25%pay cut for Medicare docs. […]

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What’s wrong with the SGR?

Why are doctor’s always complaining about the sustainable growth rate (SGR) issue? What is the SGR? The Brookings blog has a nice primer on the SGR. What is the SGR Put in place through the Balanced Budget Act of 1997, the SGR is a system designed to control the costs of Medicare payments for physicians. […]

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AMA wants more money for docs

File under “least shocking development of the day”: The American Medical Association opposes cuts to physician salaries. In a letter on Monday, the AMA stated that it expreses: …strong support for the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014” (H.R. 4015/S. 2000)…Previous Congresses have spent more than $150 billion over the past […]

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Doc Fix: 2014 Edition

It’s that time of year.  The time of year where Medicare threatens to cut physician salaries by double digits (in this case 24.4%).  This is no idle threat.  Under current law, CMS is mandated to cut physician salaries under the sustainable growth rate formula.   Its the time of year that physician lobbyists (rightly) complain that […]

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Doc Fix Fixed…for Two Months

Kaiser Health News reports: The House GOP leadership’s agreement to a Senate proposal averts a 27 percent paycut to doctors scheduled to take effect in January. The deal delays the cut until March 1, and lawmakers hope to hammer out an agreement on a longer-term fix to the payment formula before then. As I previously noted, […]

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Will the Doc Fix happen this year?

The Healthcare Economist is going on vacation for the next week. In the meantime, I pose to you, my reader, a bet.  Do you think the ‘doc fix’ gets passed?  Before you read on, make your predictions in the comments section below. Healthcare Economist’s Prediction

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A Dishonest Budget?

The most recent Federal Budget leaves much to be desired.  There are spending cuts.  The Economist reports that although Mr Obama’s team projects that his budget will cause the deficit will fall “…from a post-war record 11% of GDP in the current fiscal year to 3.1% by 2021. That would stabilise the debt, albeit at […]

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Medicare Doc Paycut Reversed

In 1998, Medicare enacted the sustainable growth rate (SGR) which would slowly bring down Medicare physician compensation.  However, each year, it gets reversed by Congress. Now, instead of a gradual decline, the implementation of SGR would  result in a 21.2% pay cut for Medicare docs. Before the Thanksgiving holiday, however, Congress once again reversed the […]

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