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Sequestration Cuts are Here; 2 Percent Cut to Medicare's Physician Payments Kicks in April 1
Posted on: 3/1/2013

Congress has not acted to stop the automatic sequestration cuts by today's March 1 deadline. The result: a 2 percent cut to Medicare physician payments, effective April 1, 2013.

"Sequestration cuts" are part of an across-the-board budget trim as required under the Budget Control Act of 2011, which directs the feds to reduce spending over the next nine years starting this year.

ISMS joined numerous other medical organizations representing the vast majority of practicing physicians and medical students nationwide urging Congress to develop and pass an agreement to stop the sequestration cuts.

While physicians nationwide have temporarily dodged the Medicare physician payment slash based on the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula, they now have another monkey on their backs - payment cuts based on an arbitrary and formulaic sequestration approach to reduce the United States' budget deficit.

The funding cuts will also significantly impact federal support for graduate medical education. With the growing demand for health care services, financial cuts to physician residency programs will only contribute to expected physician shortages.

With one month to go before the April 1 cuts, it's not too late to let members of Congress know your views via the AMA Physicians' Grassroots Network.

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