Friday, January 14, 2011

How to Fix Medicare’s Doc Fix Problem – Health Affairs Blog

Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services - M...Image via Wikipedia
by Jeff Goldsmith in Health Affairs blog

Of all the ghosts that haunt the Medicare program, none has been noisier, scarier or rattled more chains than the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) problem. SGR has required Congress to reset physician payment policy almost every year for the last decade to avoid gutting Medicare physician compensation, a recurring reminder of how difficult Medicare cost containment really is. Uwe Reinhardt’s recent Economix post in the New York Times is an excellent primer on this problem.

What follows is a proposed permanent solution: writing off the SGR “debt” to the federal budget as “uncollectable” and demanding both sacrifice and reform from the physician community in exchange.
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