Congress Must Find a Solution to the Flawed SGR Formula, ACC President Comments on Proposed Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

Contact: Stephanie Abraham,, 202-375-6296

Washington, DC – The American College of Cardiology’s (ACC) President William Zoghbi, MD, FACC, today made the following statement regarding the release of the Proposed 2013 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule:

“The proposed Medicare physician fee schedule rule released today undeniably has negative consequences for physicians and their patients. In addition to the mandated 27 percent SGR cut, CMS proposes an additional 3 percent reduction for cardiovascular services.”

“Part of these cuts result from a misguided policy that will reduce payment if more than one diagnostic cardiovascular service is provided on the same day. This policy disadvantages physicians who aim for efficiency, and reduces payments based on a misguided understanding of how different services, such as echocardiography and SPECT imaging, are from one another.  Furthermore, it would lead to a major inconvenience to patients. We aim to demonstrate to CMS why this proposal would not be beneficial.”   

“Congress has until the end of 2012 to come up with a solution to the flawed SGR payment formula and to prevent next year’s SGR-based cut, currently estimated at 27 percent, from taking effect. The need to fix SGR continues to be a top priority in the United States.”

“With the ACA ruling behind us, it's time to continue down the path to health care reform. The American College of Cardiology’s goal is a sustainable system that rewards quality and focuses on patient-centered care.  While this rule takes steps in that direction, it is undermined by old ways of cutting payments without improving quality.”


About the American College of Cardiology
The mission of the American College of Cardiology is to transform cardiovascular care and improve heart health. The College is a 40,000-member nonprofit medical society comprised of physicians, surgeons, nurses, physician assistants, pharmacists and practice managers, and bestows credentials upon cardiovascular specialists who meet its stringent qualifications. The College is a leader in the formulation of health policy, standards and guidelines, and is a staunch supporter of cardiovascular research. The ACC provides professional education and operates national registries for the measurement and improvement of quality care. More information about the association is available online at

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