Medicare Cuts to Physician Payments; Gravely Disappointing, says the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA)

Today, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) expressed its grave disappointment with Congressional leaders’ decision to cut Medicare payments for physicians as part of a large final end-of-year legislative package. The cuts will be effective January 1, 2023. Additional cuts will be implemented in January of 2024.

New therapies have raised Medicare treatment costs for metastatic prostate cancer

Medicare costs for treatment of metastatic prostate cancer have risen sharply within the last 15 years – reflecting increased use of new medications under Medicare Part D, reports a study in Urology Practice®, an Official Journal of the American Urological Association (AUA). The journal is published in the Lippincott portfolio by Wolters Kluwer.

American College of Rheumatology: Proposed Rule Will Bring Great Transparency to Medicare Advantage Prior Authorization

The American College of Rheumatology said the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ Advancing Interoperability and Improving Prior Authorization Proposed Rule will bring greater transparency, reduce administrative burden, & make turnaround on prior authorization more predictable for payers.

Critical Care Medicine Organizations Urge House Leadership to Stop Medicare Payment Cuts

Today, the American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA), Society of Critical Care Anesthesiologists (SOCCA), and Society of Critical Care Medicine (SCCM) sent a formal communication to Speaker of the House of Representatives Nancy Pelosi, House Majority Leader Charles Schumer, and House Minority leaders Kevin McCarthy and Mitch McConnell, strongly urging them to take immediate action to stop pending Medicare physician payment cuts.

New Data Shows 85% Reduction in One-Year Mortality for Medicare Heart Failure Patients With BVA-Guided Care

New data validate the benefits of the BVA-100 blood volume measurement test for Medicare heart failure patients. Data were presented at the Heart Failure Society of America (HFSA) Annual Scientific Meeting (ASM) 2022 – which brought together the world’s leading experts in heart failure.

AAOS Comments on Proposed Medicare Payment Policy Changes for 2023

The American Association of Orthopaedic Surgeons (AAOS) issued formal comments to the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) on the agency’s proposed payment policy changes for Calendar Year (CY) 2023. In both letters, AAOS urged the agency to address growing health care costs, expand access to care and ease physician burden as they continue to navigate patient care, amidst financial and practice management challenges exacerbated by the pandemic.

Ochsner Accountable Care Network announces sixth straight year of exceptional quality outcomes and multi-million-dollar healthcare savings

OACN’s 2021 clinical successes, highlighted by a 100% quality score, can be attributed to increasing primary care physician visits, focusing on high-risk patient care coordination and support, reducing unnecessary hospitalizations through ambulatory care coordination, and improving patient satisfaction.

New Study Shows Growth in Billing of Radiology Services by Non-Physician Providers in Radiology Practices

A study by the Harvey L. Neiman Health Policy Institute conducted a detailed review of clinical services billed to Medicare by non-physician providers (NPPs) employed by radiology practices. The study, published in the Journal of the American College of Radiology, was based on Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services databases of doctors and clinicians who participated in Medicare.

Fixed vial sizes for controversial Alzheimer’s drug could waste $605 million in Medicare spending each year

Medicare could waste up to $605 million per year on the controversial Alzheimer’s drug aducanumab if it is eventually approved for widespread use because it is supplied in vials containing fixed doses that may not be appropriate for all patients–resulting in the trashing of large volumes of unused drug

What drives racial and ethnic gaps in Medicare’s quality program?

The improvements in care for older adults from the Accountable Care Organization movement haven’t reached all older Americans equally. ACOs that include a higher percentage of patients who are Black, Hispanic, Native American or Asian have lagged behind those with higher percentage of white patients in providing preventive care and keeping patients out of the hospital. Now, a new study shows that some of this inequity stems from how an ACO’s patients get their primary care.

CMS 2022 final rules: ASTRO deeply concerned and disappointed, emphasizes need for legislative solution

The American Society for Radiation Oncology (ASTRO) issued the following statement today in response to the 2022 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) and Hospital Outpatient Prospective Payment System (HOPPS) final rules announced by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS).

Turning 65 means a lot for Americans’ wallets, health spending study finds

Lowering the age when older adults can enroll in Medicare might save them a lot of money, even if the age drops only a year or two from the current age of 65, a new study suggests. Such a change could especially affect the small percentage of people in their early 60s who spend a major chunk of their disposable income on health costs.

Aging U.S. Immigrant Population Poses Challenges to State Health Care Systems

A team led by Dr. Arturo Vargas Bustamante, UCLA Fielding School of Public Health professor of health policy and management and director of faculty research at the UCLA Latino Policy and Politics Initiative (LPPI), has found the United States faces a potential crisis in terms of health care for documented, and undocumented immigrants.

Providing more low-value care doesn’t lead to higher patient experience ratings

Many healthcare providers and policy makers fear that increased pressure to please patients — and ensure high satisfaction ratings as a result — could lead to overuse of low-value care that doesn’t provide any clinical benefit while unnecessarily ratcheting up medical bills. But new research from the University of Chicago and Harvard Medical School may alleviate some of those concerns.

Nearly $500 million a year in Medicare costs goes to 7 services with no net health benefits

A UCLA-led study shows that physicians frequently order preventive medical services for adult Medicare beneficiaries that are considered unnecessary and of “low value” by the U.S. Preventive Services Task Force — at a cost of $478 million per year.

House Reintroduces Bill to Modernize Medicare’s Chiropractic Coverage

The Chiropractic Coverage Modernization Act (H.R. 2654), introduced April 19 in the U.S. House of Representatives, would increase Medicare coverage of services provided by doctors of chiropractic within the full extent of their state licensure, enabling chiropractic patients to conveniently and safely access needed care.

Geriatric Emergency Departments Associated with Lower Medicare Expenditures

As the U.S. population ages, more hospitals are implementing geriatric emergency department (GED) programs with specialized staff focused on transitional care for older adults. A new study finds that providing specialized geriatric emergency care results in lower Medicare expenditures up to $3,200 per beneficiary.

American Society of Anesthesiologists Urges Medicare to Keep Physician-led Anesthesia Care to Protect Older Patients and Patients with Disabilities

The U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) recently issued a request for information regarding waivers declared during the COVID-19 pandemic, including one that removed physician anesthesiologists from anesthesia care and replaced them with nurses. The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) urges Americans to protect older patients and those with disabilities by posting a comment to the Federal Register asking the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to rescind the temporary policy that lowers the standard of care and risks patients’ lives.

Congress Must Act To Fortify Health Care System And Protect Access To Care

The final 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule fails to avert the potential impact on seniors of payment cuts to more than a million health care providers already reeling from COVID-19’s financial impact. If Congress does not act now to address these changes, the results may be devastating for patients, communities and providers.

61 Healthcare Groups Urge Congress to Support Implementation of the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule

Today, more than 60 healthcare stakeholders, representing Medicare providers, signed a letter urging congressional leaders to support bipartisan legislation that would implement the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service’s (CMS) Calendar Year 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) final rule as written.

What’s at stake in the Supreme Court’s ACA case? A quick explainer

Though the election and pandemic have eclipsed it in the news, there’s another event unfolding that could affect nearly all Americans: a Supreme Court case that will decide the future of the Affordable Care Act. A health policy researcher explains what would happen if it’s overturned.

Generic Cholesterol Drugs Save Medicare Billions of Dollars, Study Finds

DALLAS – Sept. 9, 2020 – The switch from brand name to generic cholesterol medications that occurred between 2014 and 2018 has saved Medicare billions of dollars, even as the number of people on cholesterol-lowering drugs has increased, UT Southwestern scientists have calculated. Their data, published in the journal JAMA Cardiology, suggest that policymakers and clinicians could help cut Medicare costs even further by switching more patients to generic drugs.

Proposed Medicare Cuts Threaten Anesthesiology Practices Already Struggling Amid Pandemic

Medicare has proposed drastic cuts to its payment rates for important health care services, threatening the practices of physician anesthesiologists who have been on the front lines of the battle against the COVID-19 pandemic. The American Society of Anesthesiologists (ASA) opposes these detrimental payment reductions, and urges Congress to take action to override the budget neutrality requirements that are the cause for these cuts and thereby ensure physician anesthesiologists can continue to care for their patients while being more fairly compensated for their work.

ACADEMY OF NUTRITION AND DIETETICS SUPPORTS SENATE INTRODUCTION OF MEDICAL NUTRITION THERAPY ACT

The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics thanks U.S. Sens. Susan Collins (Maine) and Gary Peters (Mich.) for their commitment to America’s health and their introduction of the Medical Nutrition Therapy Act. This bicameral, bipartisan legislation would provide coverage for Medicare beneficiaries to obtain treatment from registered dietitian nutritionists and other qualified nutrition experts for many common and costly chronic diseases.