Senate pressed to pass Medicare bill, but physicians wary of 'another Band-Aid fix'


Physicians are urging the Senate to pass a bill to avert billions of dollars in Medicare cuts from taking place Jan. 1.

The Supporting Health Care Providers During the COVID-19 Pandemic Act, passed by the House on Dec. 7, would delay the 2 percent CMS sequester payment reductions to March 31, 2022, and provide a 3 percent increase to the Medicare physician fee schedule through Dec. 31, 2022, among other provisions.

"Averting pay cuts in 2021 and now again in 2022 is a start, and we encourage the Senate to swiftly pass this bill — but we cannot overstate the dire need for developing a long-term solution beyond another Band-Aid fix during the worldwide pandemic," said Daniel Guy, MD, president of the American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons.

The Senate is expected to hold a procedural vote at 11:30 a.m. CST on whether to advance the measure.

Editor's note: This story will be updated as more information becomes available.

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