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Lawmaker blasts GOP's permanent 'doc fix' bill

The Hill, June 5, 2013

Democratic Rep. Allyson Schwartz (Pa.) slammed House Republicans' plan to reform the Medicare physician payment system as too weak to ensure the program rewards quality instead of volume. Schwartz is behind an alternative, bipartisan package for repealing the flawed sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula, which necessitates an annual "doc fix" to protect doctors from an automatic pay cut of nearly 30 percent. Both Schwartz and Republican leaders have said their plans push Medicare away from its current "fee-for-service" system. But, contrasting the GOP plan with hers, Schwartz noted that the Republican bill maintains "fee-for-service" up front while incentivizing doctors to transition to new payment models.