10 principles to fix Medicare‚Äôs unsustainable physician pay system

The AMA and 120 state medical and national specialty societies have endorsed a set of 10 principles that should guide Congress as lawmakers ponder a much-needed overhaul to remedy the financial instabilities that are affecting physician practices due to the pandemic, statutory payment cuts, lack of inflationary updates and significant administrative burdens.

Under the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) of 2015, physicians are in the middle of a six-year payment freeze. Adjusted for inflation in practice costs, Medicare physician payment fell 20% from 2001 to 2021, and without an inflation-based update, the gap between frozen physician payment rates and rising inflation in medical practice costs will widen. The Medicare payment system is on an unsustainable path threatening patient access to physicians.

My latest for the AMA. The whole shebang.