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Expect comp fluctuations if proposed 2007 Medicare fee schedule passes

Physicians will see a 5% cut in many of their Medicare reimbursements for next year, according to the proposed 2007 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) released in August by CMS. An unexpected increase in spending for physicians' and other Part B services, coupled with legislative actions to stop payment cuts in previous years, caused the high cuts for 2007, according to CMS. "We need to get out of the vicious cycle of rapid growth in utilization and spending, and falling real payment rates," CMS Administrator Mark McClellan, MD, PhD, said in a press release. "Physician groups have been working hard to identify better ways to pay-ways that help them provide higher-quality care without increasing overall healthcare costs."