House GOP chairman seeks permanent solution to Medicare doc pay problem

Rep. Fred Upton, R-Mich., chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told physicians this week that he hopes to send "doc fix" legislation to the House floor this summer. Meanwhile, Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus, D-Mont., plans hearings for President Barack Obama's pick to head the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services.

Reuters: House Republican Aims To Repeal Medicare Doctor Pay Cuts
Republicans in the House of Representatives will seek a permanent solution to scheduled steep cuts in physician payments from the federal Medicare health insurance plan for retirees and disabled people, a House committee chairman said on Wednesday. Rep. Fred Upton, chairman of the House Energy and Commerce Committee, told doctors he hopes to send so-called "Doc Fix" legislation to the House floor this summer that would repeal payment reductions enacted in 1997 as part of a law to balance the federal budget (Morgan, 2/13).

The Hill: Upton: Obama Stalled On Permanent 'Doc Fix'
The Republican leader of a powerful House committee slammed President Obama on Wednesday because the healthcare law did not include a permanent "doc fix." Obama "deliberately failed to address what has been the greatest threat in the medical profession since the last decade," said Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), referring to Medicare's sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula (Viebeck, 2/13).

The Hill: Rep. Upton Unsure Of Another Repeal Vote On Medicare Cost Board
A top Republican committee chairman said he's not sure the House will vote again to repeal President Obama's controversial Medicare cost-cutting board. Rep. Fred Upton (R-Mich.), who leads the Energy and Commerce panel, said Wednesday that plans for the current legislative term are still in the works (Viebeck, 2/13).

The Wall Street Journal's Washington Wire: Baucus Plans Hearing For Medicare-Medicaid Nominee
Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus said Wednesday that he plans to hold a confirmation hearing for President Barack Obama's pick to head the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, raising the prospect of another nomination fight that will revive health-care and entitlement program debates (Radnofsky, 2/13).

http://www.kaiserhealthnews.orgThis article was reprinted from with permission from the Henry J. Kaiser Family Foundation. Kaiser Health News, an editorially independent news service, is a program of the Kaiser Family Foundation, a nonpartisan health care policy research organization unaffiliated with Kaiser Permanente.


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