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  • Sustainable Growth Rate

    Conservatives Vent on House Vote for Medicare ‘Doc Fix’ [VIDEO]

    House conservatives were put off by leadership’s hastily scrambled voice vote to prevent deep cuts in reimbursement to physicians who treat Medicare patients, several lawmakers said today. Speaking at the monthly Conversations with Conservatives panel,  Republican members of the House of Representatives argued that their leadership had promised them a … More

    Medicare: An Irresponsible "Doc Fix" Could Cost $2.3 Trillion—or More

    Flawed solutions to complex health policy problems can be very costly. Scrutinize, therefore, the congressional compromise legislation (H.R. 4015 and S. 2000) to repeal the unworkable Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, which updates Medicare payments to physicians. The initial 10-year cost of the SGR repeal legislation would be $138 billion, … More

    Funding the Medicare SGR Fix: Forget the “Funny Money”

    House and Senate leaders have forged a bill (H.R. 4015/S. 2000) to repeal Medicare’s unworkable physician payment update formula, known as the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). While the flawed SGR should be repealed, it should be done right. The legislation, however, falls far short of what should be done. Moreover, … More

    Not One Dime of Deficit Spending to Fund Medicare’s SGR Replacement

    Members of Congress have come to an agreement to replace the flawed Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula with a new system that would reward quality over mere quantity in the delivery of medical services. But the proposed replacement of SGR would entail an estimated $150 billion of additional Medicare spending … More

    The New Medicare SGR Bill: Time for Close Scrutiny and Fiscal Responsibility

    House and Senate negotiators have just come to an agreement on a policy framework to repeal the unworkable Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, which annually updates Medicare payment for doctors, and replace it with a new payment program. According to a joint press release issued today by the Senate … More

    Replacing the Medicare SGR: Why Congress Should Expand Options for Doctors and Patients

    Currently three major congressional committees are working feverishly to finalize language to repeal and replace the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). Whether they will succeed in protecting the practice of medicine from intrusive government interference remains to be seen. The Balanced Budget Act (BBA) of 1997 created the SGR physician … More

    Obamacare: AMA’s Curious Support

    In an interview with Bloomberg’s Bureau of National Affairs, Dr. Ardis Dee Hoven, incoming president of the American Medical Association (AMA), said the AMA will push for full implementation of Obamacare, including its Medicaid expansion: She said AMA continues to work on implementation issues with the states, and she called … More

    Medicare Advantage Survives—for Now

    There seems to be much confusion surrounding the recent drama of Medicare Advantage’s (MA) 2014 payment rate. Here’s what happened: In February, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released its advance notice of estimates of the national per capita Medicare Advantage (MA) growth percentage, which is a key … More

    How to Fix the Medicare Physician Payment Problem

    The congressional formula that determines the annual Medicare payment update for physicians, the sustainable growth rate (SGR), was supposed to cut Medicare doctors’ pay each year starting in 2002. But that congressional formula is so flawed and unworkable that every year since 2003, Congress has stepped in to stop it … More

    Doctors Avoid Medicare Pay Cut for Another Year—but Then What?

    Senate leaders reached an agreement Monday to delay cuts to physician reimbursement rates under Medicare for one year. The details of the negotiations have yet to be ironed out, but if the deal makes it through Congress, doctors will avert a 23 percent pay cut scheduled for January 1. Heritage … More