Oncology Society Urges Congress to Fix Medicare SGR, End Sequestration

The American Society of Clinical Oncology has released a report asking Congress to "head off emerging threats" to cancer care and community practices by ending sequestration cuts and fixing Medicare's sustainable growth rate.

The report states the SGR "has become a source of tremendous instability within health care and a perennial threat to care for millions of seniors." The ASCO has expressed support for a bipartisan bill House and Senate leaders introduced earlier this year that would repeal the SGR and replace it with a payment system that incentivizes physicians to provide high-quality, low-cost care. The legislation combines proposals approved last year by the House Ways and Means Committee, House Energy and Commerce Committee and Senate Finance Committee.

Every year since 2003, Congress has passed short-term legislative patches to stave off double-digit Medicare pay cuts for physicians under the sustainable growth rate. With the latest temporary patch set to expire at the end of March, Congress will need to act soon to shield physicians from a 24 percent pay cut.

More Articles on Medicare's SGR:
4 Key Statistics on Medicare's SGR  
CIOs, the SGR and a New Direction for Health IT
Paying for a Permanent Solution: How Cost Still Stands in the Way of SGR Repeal 

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