SGR GOING UP 1%?
With the annual talks of major rate cuts to the SGR, set against the backdrop of the recent failure of the “deficit supercommittee,” it might come as a surprise to some that there is talk of a 1% increase coming to the SGR next week.
Congress has until Dec. 16th to pass a budget for 2012, at which point the current Continuing Resolution will expire.
Today, the American Medical Group Association sent out an email alerting members of potential action.
AMGA has learned The House of Representatives leadership will split year-end legislation into two separate bills, one of which will include provisions addressing the SGR, a number of Medicare “extenders” as well as continuation of the unemployment insurance, payroll tax credit continuance and other provisions. The other will be an omnibus bill with the final eight appropriations measures which need to pass to fund government operations, currently under a continuing resolution which is set to expire December 16, 2011. Procedurally, steps are being taken to set up a House vote on Tuesday for the first bill and Thursday for the appropriations measure.
The preliminary information we have obtained suggests that the SGR fix will be of two years duration and will include a one percent increase in physicians’ payments. It must be noted that all of this is subject to change given that the Senate has yet to pass its own bills and the White House will react. Any final legislation will have to bring together House and Senate language, and will require agreement by the President.
This suggests that both Chambers will be working well into next week and perhaps beyond to reach a final agreement. Thus, the anticipated Congressional recess date of December 16, 2011, seems likely to slip. More to follow as this fluid situation develops.