Burgess, who practiced medicine as an OB/GYN before he was elected to Congress in 2002, noted that during the last round of SGR discussions earlier this year he and other members of the House had supported a two-year extension but settled for the one-year extension.
He said his proposed delay would "give us the time we originally wanted" to allow House Energy and Commerce Committee members time to "fully vet and evaluate" SGR replacement proposals and present them to physicians across the country for feedback.
Reaction among the committee members and witnesses scheduled to speak before the committee was mixed. Rep. Henry Waxman (D-CA) stressed that he wants to see something permanent happen to the SGR this year. "This problem needs to be resolved and not just kicked down the road. We need to get on with the job of doing what is responsible."
Rep. Frank Pallone (D-NJ) appeared receptive to an SGR delay. "We all agree that the SGR needs to be replaced. Is there political will to do that? Can it be done effectively by the end of the year with all these other problems that need to be addressed?"