Capitol Hill Report: SGR Victory in the House!
March 26, 2015
By Mike Amery, Senior Legislative Counsel, Federal Affairs
Bipartisan House Votes
to Repeal SGR
Today, the US House voted 392 to 37 in favor of a bill supported by the AAN that would permanently repeal the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR). The Senate is expected to vote on the bill soon. President Obama has said he looks forward to receiving it, according to the Los Angeles Times. "I've got my pen ready to sign a good, bipartisan bill, which would be really exciting. I love when Congress passes bipartisan bills that I can sign."
The AAN has been working with the entire medical specialty community since 2002 to repeal the flawed SGR formula, which year after year called for drastic cuts in physician reimbursement for Medicare services.
For several weeks, leaders in the House have worked on a compromise that will end the SGR and replace it with a system that provides physicians with modest payment increases and moves Medicare to a more patient-centered system based on quality.
Nearly 1,200 AAN members responded to our Action Alerts and sent messages to their members of Congress this week asking for a permanent repeal of the SGR. Academy members also made hundreds of calls over the last two days in congressional districts where members of Congress were undecided. The AAN thanks all of its members for the years of advocacy work and for helping to finally repeal the SGR.
Senate Action Imminent
The ball is now in the Senate’s court. It must pass the legislation prior to March 31 or physicians will see a 21-percent cut in Medicare reimbursement. The AAN will be working with organizations across medicine to push the Senate to act. Please watch for an Action Alert asking you to email your senators and ask them to pass a SGR repeal once and for all.