FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Oct 17, 2023
Contact: Grant Herring
This Thursday: Legislative Hearing on the Providing Relief and Stability for Medicare Patients Act (H.R.3674)
H.R. 3674 will mitigate cuts to office-based specialists and avoid significant disruptions in patient access to care
WASHINGTON, DC — On Thursday, October 19 at 10AM ET the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee will hold a subcommittee hearing tol discuss H.R. 3674, the “Providing Relief and Stability for Medicare Patients Act of 2023.” The hearing will be live streamed online here.
Chairwoman Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA) of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, along with Chairman Brett Guthrie (R-KY) of the Subcommittee on Health, declared the scheduling of a legislative subcommittee hearing titled: “What’s the Prognosis?: Examining Medicare Proposals to Improve Patient Access to Care & Minimize Red Tape for Doctors.” The hearing will feature multiple pieces of legislation, including the Providing Relief and Stability for Medicare Patients Act of 2023.
H.R. 3674 is bipartisan legislation that aims to stop ongoing cuts to office-based specialists for the next two years. By doing so, it helps prevent major disruptions in patient access to care while addressing concerns about the future of Medicare physician payments.
USPA joined a large coalition of national medical societies, representing a broad range of physicians and health professionals in signing on to a letter of support for the new legislation to the primary co-sponsors.
The letter states, in part, “On behalf of the undersigned organizations, a coalition of national medical societies, representing a broad range of physicians, health professionals and practice managers who care for Medicare beneficiaries in a community-based, office setting, we respectfully urge the Committee to begin discussions regarding the inclusion of policies to mitigate forthcoming Medicare reimbursement cuts. Absent action by Congress, physicians again face substantial payment reductions as of January 1, 2024.”
“For more than twenty years, Medicare payments to physicians have been under pressure due to budget neutrality methodology and lack of anti-inflation payment policies contained in their fee schedule. While physician services represent a very modest portion of the overall growth in healthcare and the subsection attributed to Medicare spending, they are perennial targets for payment cuts when policymakers seek to control overall and healthcare spending.”
Dr. Mark Garcia, USPA board member and CMO for American Vascular Associates, said: “USPA supports this legislation because it will mean creating some stability for office-based providers who have suffered significant reimbursement cuts over the past several years. This bipartisan legislation will help curtail the current health care consolidation trend and protect outpatient access to quality care across the United States. Congress must act swiftly to help community based providers keep their doors open and eliminate the uncertainty facing patients and their doctors.”
The United Specialists for Patient Access (USPA) partnered with The Moran Company to produce a whitepaper regarding the value of office-based specialty care.