Good morning, ProviderNation.
Reports of the doc fix’s birth appear to have been greatly exaggerated. American Health Care Association wunderkind Drew Thies breaks things down in yesterday’s Long Term Care Leader and finds that things are, um, stuck in the middle.
“Despite optimism from some on the Hill,” Thies says, “many think that the chances of repealing and replacing the Medicare physician payment schedule this year are uncertain.”
The Senate Finance Committee has already reported its version of the bill out. But things appear to have been gummed up on the House side, as Republicans try to condense three separate versions (one each from the Senate Finance, House Ways & Means, and House Energy & Commerce committees) into one glorious law.
U.S. Rep. Charles Boustany (R-La.) came out publicly last week and said it: Progress “seemingly has stalled.”
“We’re running out of time,” he said.
As you know, Congress has until March 31, either to extend the current system, or repeal and replace it.
“One of the major points of contention,” Thies says, “is where the repeal effort would receive its funding. The Congressional Budget Office found that the Ways & Means version would cost $121 billion over 10 years while the Energy & Commerce and Senate Finance versions are in the $150 billion range.”