Issue Background

Medicare Payment Reform

The Sustainable Growth Rate formula and process Medicare has used to reimburse physicians for nearly the past 20 years created uncertainty and instability for seniors, health care providers and the federal budget.

Nearly each year, there was a looming crisis facing seniors and doctors with a scheduled reduction in Medicare payments that had grown to more than 30 percent.

In April, the US Congress finally put together a bi-partisan agreement that allowed for the passage of H.R. 2 - The Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act of 2015.

With the passage of H.R. 2 and the end of the SGR era, the law now paves the way for a 0.5% increase in physician reimbursement over the next five years followed by additional transitioning to incentive-based payment systems driven by quality measures and reporting.