Wednesday, Sept. 25, 2013
This Week's News
This Week's News
Doctors make Capitol Hill house calls, give prescription to fix Medicare now
Teams of physicians were on Capitol Hill Thursday and Friday, prescribing a cure for the ailing Medicare system. Coming from 24 key states, these doctors met with more than 100 lawmakers from their states to deliver a single message: Fix Medicare now.
The Hill visits were a targeted effort of the AMA's Fix Medicare Now campaign, which launched earlier this month when Congress returned from its summer recess. The grassroots campaign aims to put concerted pressure on members of Congress to reform the Medicare physician payment system by year's end.
"There's never been a better time to reform the Medicare physician payment system—or to urge Congress to take action," AMA President Ardis Dee Hoven, MD, wrote in a recent blog post.
"Each day 10,000 new Medicare patients enter the system," Dr. Hoven wrote. "These patients—and the millions more who already rely on Medicare—deserve a sustainable system that is focused on high-quality, cost-effective care. That can't happen without reform."
In August the U.S. House Energy and Commerce Committee unanimously approved a bill to repeal Medicare's failed SGR formula, enhance health care quality and make available new models of care delivery and payment. The U.S. House Ways and Means Committee and the U.S. Senate Finance Committee also are expected to issue their own versions of the legislation this fall.
The Fix Medicare Now campaign's new website lets both physicians and patients lend their voices to the growing chorus calling for an end to Medicare's failed funding formula and the establishment of a new system that fosters high-quality care. Physicians also can download a patient flier to remind them to contact Congress to protect Medicare and access to care.
Email your members of Congress today to tell them that now is the time to transform Medicare into an effective, 21st-century model of care.