Wednesday, Sept. 19, 2012
This Week's News
This Week's News
Ad about job losses targets lawmakers on 2 percent Medicare sequester cut
As a new White House report outlines required cuts under the Budget Control Act of 2011, the AMA is warning Congress about the costs of implementing a 2 percent Medicare sequester cut.
An ad running in the nation's capital this week forces lawmakers to face the economic impact of the cut: the loss of 766,000 jobs. In the ad, the AMA, the American Hospital Association and the American Nurses Association call on Congress to pass legislation that would nullify the sequester cuts for Medicare. The sequester would reduce physician payments by $11.1 billion in 2013 and increase each year throughout the decade-long sequester.
According to a study the three groups released last week, more than 496,000 jobs will be lost next year alone. As the fall elections draw close and members of Congress continue to look for ways to create jobs, the study and related ads are driving home a message Congress cannot afford to ignore.
The AMA and more than 100 other medical associations also submitted letters to leaders of the U.S. Senate and House of Representatives last week, urging them to act against the cuts. When added to the uncertainty surrounding the 27 percent cut scheduled for Jan. 1 under the sustainable growth rate formula, access to care for Medicare patients also is a weighty concern. In addition, the cuts threaten the ability of physicians to invest in much-needed health care innovations.
Read more in a recent guest column by AMA President Jeremy A. Lazarus, MD, on physician blog KevinMD.com.