Wednesday, January 13, 2010

Stop Reduction in TRICARE Physician’s Fees

ROA has also been tracking a possible 21.2 percent cut in fees paid to Medicare physicians. TRICARE physicians’ fees are based on the same Medicare fee schedule. This will affect Active Duty families, Serving Reservists, retirees and their families.

Most of Medicare’s payment rates are simply adjusted each year for inflation—but not those for physicians’ services. Those rates are governed by a complex formula—the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) mechanism—that, unless overridden by legislation, will reduce fees by about 4 percent or 5 percent annually for at least the next several years. This accumulates each year if Congress postpones the reduction and this has added up to the current 21.2 percent.

The House passed H.R.3961 to prevent this reduction. The bill was sent to the Senate on November 20th, but wasn’t considered because of the debate on National Health Care Reform.

Good News: Attached to the Defense Appropriations Bill was a rider that delayed the reduction from January 1 until February 28, 2010. This will give ROA members time to contact their Senators to consider H.R.3961. To send an electronic letter to your Senators, click the Alert #3 link below or call through the U.S. Capitol switchboard at (888) 762-8760.

Alert #2: To ask the Senate to stop the 21.2 percent cut in TRICARE physician fees.

1 comment:

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