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ACC Urges Lawmakers to Support Bill to Avoid Medicare Cuts Threatening Patient Access to Care

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The American College of Cardiology is urging members of Congress to co-sponsor and pass the Preserving Seniors’ Access to Physicians Act of 2023 (H.R. 6683), which would eliminate the impending 3.37% cut to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedules set to take effect on Jan. 1, 2024.

“We have once again arrived at American clinicians’ annual holiday tradition: urging Congress to not allow cuts to Medicare services that exacerbate financial uncertainty for practices, further threaten patient access to care, and disproportionately impact America’s rural and senior populations,” said American College of Cardiology President B. Hadley Wilson, MD, FACC. “For decades we have spent December looking for a quick fix to a problem that requires significant reforms. We must seek and establish sustainable payment practices that allow clinicians to continue providing access to high-quality care. While addressing this upcoming cut is critical, it is a short-term adjustment that will not create a long-term solution. It is necessary to protect patients now while we work together on lasting reform.”

A full fix to the 3.37% cut is necessary to combat the lack of inflationary update despite clinicians and practices facing significant inflationary cost pressure. Physicians are the only providers that do not receive an automatic inflationary update within Medicare. Medicare physician payments have dropped by 26% in the last 20 years, while practice expenses have risen by 47% over the same period. Congress must act now to avert this crisis to maintain stable, consistent access to care for some of America’s most vulnerable patients.

The ACC is leading the charge to transform cardiovascular care delivery. Tasked with advocating for cardiovascular patients and providing a professional home for the entire cardiovascular team, the ACC is committed to developing and advancing solutions that will optimize the delivery of cardiovascular care, increase access to care and improve patient outcomes and health. However, significant reforms are required within the current Medicare system to achieve the ACC’s vision. Learn more about the ACC’s Vision for Optimal Cardiovascular Care at ACC.org/OptimizeCVCare.

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