Sometimes I Feel Like a Piece of Bologna

Sunday, July 01, 2007

AMA calls for Medicare Reform

At the AMA annual meeting in Chicago last week, physicians called
on Congress to stop Medicare physician payment cuts and instead update payments in line with practice cost increases. Next year, Congress plans to cut Medicare physician payments by 10 percent, placing seniors' access to health care at risk.

According to an AMA press release, AMA Board Member William Hazel, M.D. said,
"We are also calling on Congress to enact legislation that lays the groundwork for complete repeal of the fatally flawed Medicare physician payment system. The current Medicare physician payment system is broken beyond repair. It relies on a formula tied to the ups and downs of the economy, not the health care needs of America's seniors."

"A full sixty percent of America's physicians say next year's 10 percent payment cut will force them to limit the number of new Medicare patients they can care for. The government projects nine years of Medicare cuts totaling about 40 percent, while at the same time practice costs increase 20 percent. As the baby boomers begin to age into Medicare during the life of the cuts, we are concerned there won't be enough physicians able to care for all the new Medicare patients."

As we deal with our parents on one hand and grow closer to Medicare age on the other, we need to pay attention to the political shenanigans concerning Medicare. I only have a few years to go, but wonder if my Medicare will go the way of my Social Security.


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