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WASHINGTON (December 20, 2012) — American College of Cardiology President William Zoghbi, MD, MACC, made the following statement today regarding the pending Medicare cuts due to the Sustainable Growth Rate formula and Sequestration process:
"Postponing a long-term solution to the sustainable growth rate year after year creates uncertainty for physicians and their practices and threatens access to health care by patients. The American College of Cardiology urges Congress to take action immediately to avert the nearly 30 percent reduction in Medicare payments scheduled for January first and repeal the SGR. The combination of a sequestration and SGR payment cut would impede improvements to our health care system and lead to serious access to care issues for Medicare patients as well as employment reductions in medical practices."
"The ACC supports moving the current Medicare physician payment system away from a volume-based system and toward a value-driven system that aligns financial incentives with performance of evidence-based medicine and improvements in care delivery systems," Dr. Zoghbi added. "The College urges Congress to incentivize a greater expansion and use of quality improvement tools, such as clinical data registries and appropriate use criteria. The ACC believes broader use of this approach will improve health care quality, produce better patient outcomes, and lower costs."
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The mission of the American College of Cardiology is to transform cardiovascular care and improve heart health. The College is a 40,000-member medical society comprised of physicians, surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists and practice managers. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines. The ACC provides professional education, operates national registries to measure and improve quality of care, disseminates cardiovascular research, and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet stringent qualifications. For more information, visit www.cardiosource.org/ACC.