House passes SGR repeal bill, now it’s the Senate’s turn

Thursday, March 26, 2015 07:46 AM
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The U.S. House of Representatives on Thursday, March 26, overwhelmingly passed bipartisan legislation that would permanently repeal the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula before the March 31 deadline. If passed by the Senate, the “Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act” (MACRA), would:

  • Remove the threat of a 21 percent physician payment cut;
  • Guarantee a five-year period of stable updates of 0.5 percent for all physicians with only positive incentives to transition to alternative payment models;
  • Preserve a value-based fee-for-service system for physicians who are unable to move to an alternative model; and
  • Provide penalty relief from Medicare quality improvement programs starting in 2019.

Now it’s the U.S. Senate’s turn to act, and time is running out. That’s why organized medicine is calling on all physicians to contact your senators to remind them that they must act. The president has stated publicly that he would sign this bipartisan legislation if it got to his desk, leaving the Senate as the last hurdle to passing Medicare reform and repealing the SGR once and for all.

Take action today:

  1. Call your senators using the AMA’s toll-free Grassroots Hotline: (800) 833-6354.
  2. Send an urgent email to your senators reinforcing the need for SGR repeal now.
  3. Contact key senators still undecided on this most critical issue directly through their own social media channels and share with your own Facebook friends and Twitter followers as well.

This is urgent. There is still time for the Senate to pass meaningful SGR reform before the deadline, but it has to act now! For more information on the legislation, click here to download the bill summary. Also, click here to read a letter sent by the AMA, the Colorado Medical Society and 49 other state medical associations to Speaker John Boehner, Majority Leader Mitch McConnell, and democratic leaders Nancy Pelosi and Harry Reid.

Posted in: Initiatives | Advocacy | AMA


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