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Senate Delays SGR Cuts One Month

Cheryl Clark, for HealthLeaders Media, November 19, 2010

The American Medical Association and other physician groups, which have predicting disastrous impact for millions of patients because thousands of doctors will stop taking Medicare and TRICARE patients if the cuts go through, were cautiously optimistic.

"The Senate's action today to stop the Medicare cut for one month will help avert a healthcare access crisis for seniors that would have begun in jut two weeks," said a statement from AMA president Cecil Wilson, MD.

"This is a short-term reprieve and the AMA is urging Congress to pass a one-year fix as soon as they return from the Thanksgiving holiday. Delaying the 25% cut to the end of 2011 will inject some stability into the Medicare program for patients and physicians and provide lawmakers with time to develop a long-term solution to the broken physician payment system."

Wilson credited its "White Coat Wednesday" campaign, under which patients and physicians "flooded congressional phone lines urging action to stop the cut."


Cheryl Clark is senior quality editor and California correspondent for HealthLeaders Media. She is a member of the Association of Health Care Journalists.
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1 comments on "Senate Delays SGR Cuts One Month"


American Medical Association (11/19/2010 at 2:35 PM)
The Senate's bipartisan action to stop the Medicare cut for one month will help avert an immediate health care access crisis for seniors this December 1. This, however, is a short-term reprieve, and more work must be done to prevent a Medicare meltdown. A new AMA poll found that four out of five people want Congress to act immediately to stop the Medicare physician payment cut. The AMA urges Congress to pass legislation to stabilize payments for 2011 as soon as they return from the Thanksgiving holiday to add security to the program for patients and physicians, and allow time to develop a long-term solution to the broken physician payment system.