SGR Repeal Bill Gains Traction in Congressional Committees

H.R. 4015/S. 2000, which would permanently repeal the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) and put in place meaningful Medicare payment reforms, has been unanimously approved by the members of the House Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce Committees, in conjunction with the Senate Finance Committee. Despite this truly remarkable bipartisan progress, the identification of budget cuts to pay for the legislation, roughly $138 billion, is the most difficult aspect of the process and threatens to derail the entire agreement. House and Senate leaders have made little headway in identifying agreeable offsets. The situation continues to develop rapidly, with House and Senate leadership moving to pass the legislation with payment mechanisms that are unacceptable to the other party. A House vote is expected tomorrow, while it appears a Senate vote will come later this month. The ACC, in conjunction with many other medical professional societies, has expressed support for H.R. 4015/S. 2000, with the caveat that paying for this legislation must not negatively impact access to lifesaving cardiology services. In unity with almost all of medicine, ACC is urging House and Senate leaders to continue to work in a bipartisan fashion to pass this landmark legislation and send it to the president’s desk. With a 24 percent physician payment cut set to kick-in on April 1, the clock is ticking for Congress to act. Urge your members of Congress to repeal the SGR once and for all.

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