Preliminary reports indicate that a bipartisan – bicameral deal was reached on the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR), or “doc fix,” and other issues contained in H.R. 3630, the Temporary Payroll Tax Cut Continuation Act of 2011. This deal would avert the 27.4 percent SGR cuts scheduled to go into effect on February 28, 2012 by extending current Medicare payment rates through January 1, 2013. This 10 month fix effectively leaves the issue of a pending 32 percent cut in January in the hands of the lame duck Congress—the period of time between the 2012 elections and swearing-in of the new 113th Session of Congress.
This “doc fix” is paid for by an offset that principally consists of savings from payments to hospitals and through changes to the health care reform law, the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act (PPACA).
ASA will continue to closely monitor this situation and keep members informed.