The Senate left for recess before voting on the SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014, leaving in limbo physician payment cuts of 21 percent that are scheduled to take effect April 1 by the Centers for Medicare and Medicare Services (CMS). Proponents of the bill have proposed a two-week option to temporarily protect doctors from the cutbacks.
“You could hold it off for three months if you wanted to,” said Tom Scully, senior counsel in Alston & Bird’s Legislative & Public Policy Group and former head of CMS under President George W. Bush. He added that providers will only comply with the delays if it’s nearly certain that Congress will repay them later.
“But after two weeks, it gets pretty awkward,” he said.