Congress Fails to Pass Legislation to Prevent Medicare Payment Cuts

CMS to hold claims until April to avert reimbursement cuts

Earlier today the U.S. Senate announced that it will take up legislation to replace the current Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula when the chamber returns from a two-week recess. The Senate's announcement follows the day after the House of Representatives passed a long-awaited "permanent fix" to the flawed formula used to determine provider reimbursement levels under the federal Medicare program.

The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services has indicated it can delay claims processing for a few weeks to avoid cutting reimbursement rates, which would allow the Senate to return in April to take up the reform package. Legislators expect that if Congress acts soon enough the government would be able to make payments without imposing the pay cuts. 

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