AMA medicare reform

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vm26

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The AMA tries something like this every year. It has minimal power and influence, and is unlikely to get anything done.

Most of the proposals in here seem to suggest spending more money. Unless we're talking about cutting reimbursement for some fields to boost pay elsewhere. If you're going to spend more money, then where is it coming from? Last I checked, the Medicare trust fund was slated to be empty sometime in the next decade or two.
 
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The AMA tries something like this every year. It has minimal power and influence, and is unlikely to get anything done.

Most of the proposals in here seem to suggest spending more money. Unless we're talking about cutting reimbursement for some fields to boost pay elsewhere. If you're going to spend more money, then where is it coming from? Last I checked, the Medicare trust fund was slated to be empty sometime in the next decade or two.


I am typically unaware of AMA activity. Only 15% of physicians are members. Most of us depend on our individual specialty organizationals and lobby groups for lobbying/minimizing cuts etc. I may be wrong but I always viewed AMA indifferent to reimbursement issues for physicians...I watched the webinar a few weeks ago from the AMA on this topic. It was presented as a new proposition as a result of collaboration of many different professional societies (including mine-ACR). Ultimately the AMA and most of medicine has come to the conclusion that endless cuts/stagnant reimbursement won't cut it long-term. Physicians are suffering from burn-out and part of this is having to work more for the same/less each year. This is coming to a breaking point particularly as boomer physicians are done and stepping away, and simultaneously boomers are increasing utilization...If you look at the diagrams, you can see that CMS reimbursement is not sustainable. Many fields such as mine are again facing cuts (this time in the ballpark of 10%). Throw in inflation and the math stops working particularly when free-standing practices have to give raises to all employees/support staff to keep up with inflation, all medical equipment and just about everything else is more expensive-malpractice costs, cost of medical education etc...CMS runs on budget neutrality/zero-sums game-not sustainable. No adjustment for inflation (though govt employees receive raises to account for inflation). The government/politicians find money when they need to (and clearly we all know they spend tons of money on ridiculous things). Interestingly CMS payments to hospitals have done much better than to physicians. Govt typically acts when things are on the verge of crisis mode (or things are just kicked down the road by congress at the end of Dec)...I def get your point though, CMS cuts have become then norm and just one of the things we deal with, and I'm skeptical as well. With this said, something will have to be done. Otherwise whole system collapses and we become single-payor from CMS (though they apparently don't have the money or sophistication to actually run this), and fee-for-services dies (hard to invasion given how well commercial insurance companies do and hence their strong political lobby).
 
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Most years Congress legislates the Medicare cuts away.

I don't disagree with any of your points or concerns.

My point is that increasing pay rates of physicians is likewise unsustainable. If you're going to propose to spend more, then in my crazy world you also need to find a way to pay for it. But I'm old fashioned.
 
Most years Congress legislates the Medicare cuts away.

I don't disagree with any of your points or concerns.

My point is that increasing pay rates of physicians is likewise unsustainable. If you're going to propose to spend more, then in my crazy world you also need to find a way to pay for it. But I'm old fashioned.


I 100% understand. I am jaded and skeptical. We have a this quasi-government run/capitalistic HC system. HC systems/hospital/Pharm reimbursement from CMS has kept up with inflation and then some (majority of HC costs). Commercial insurance companies are thriving. Physicians on the other hand are getting killed with cuts. Below are some resources from the AMA. Given US demographics (increasing age of our population and increased HC utilization, with increasing physician burn-out, in a background of everything else becoming more expensive, stagnant/decreased CMS reimbursement is not sustainable...Our Govt regularly finds money when they need to:

The United States has committed approximately $5.3 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since the beginning of the Biden Administration, including approximately $4.6 billion since the beginning of Russia's unprovoked invasion on February 24.





Take action now: Contact Congress during the August recess

Use these materials and contact your members of Congress during the August recess to let them know the Medicare physician payment system needs reformto become a more sustainable, value-based system that better meets the needs of patients and physicians.
 
I 100% understand. I am jaded and skeptical. We have a this quasi-government run/capitalistic HC system. HC systems/hospital/Pharm reimbursement from CMS has kept up with inflation and then some (majority of HC costs). Commercial insurance companies are thriving. Physicians on the other hand are getting killed with cuts. Below are some resources from the AMA. Given US demographics (increasing age of our population and increased HC utilization, with increasing physician burn-out, in a background of everything else becoming more expensive, stagnant/decreased CMS reimbursement is not sustainable...Our Govt regularly finds money when they need to:

The United States has committed approximately $5.3 billion in security assistance to Ukraine since the beginning of the Biden Administration, including approximately $4.6 billion since the beginning of Russia's unprovoked invasion on February 24.





Take action now: Contact Congress during the August recess

Use these materials and contact your members of Congress during the August recess to let them know the Medicare physician payment system needs reformto become a more sustainable, value-based system that better meets the needs of patients and physicians.


It’s very true. They’ll never fix this problem because they are comitted to making physicians lives absolutely miserable by extracting value. There is no rational way to fix the system because at the end of the day the people dividing the services will be screwed.
 
What you can do now
Contact your members of Congress and ask them to stop the Medicare physician payment cuts before the end of the year. The AMA is urging Congressto do the same—and to reform the system overall so we aren’t facing yearly cuts. Congress is taking notice: Reps. Bera, MD (D-CA) and Bucshon, MD (R-IN) recently introduced bipartisan legislation, the “Supporting Medicare Providers Act of 2022,” to stop the cuts; and 46 senators on Nov. 2 cosigned a bipartisan letter spearheaded by Senators Stabenow (D-MI) and Barrasso (R-WY) to Senate leadership urging them to address cuts—and supporting bipartisan long-term Medicare payment reform.
 
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