Once more, with feeling… (Whew!)

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On Friday evening, President Obama signed into law the act to reinstate CMS physician payments to their previous level (without the 21.3% pay cuts which had been scheduled to begin in April). The new law will hold physician payments at their present level till May 31st, 2010, presumably to give the legislature time to pass a more permanent bill. CMS had issued instructions to hold April payments in anticipation of an extension, and from now on April payments will go out uncut. Any payments that went out last week (there were relatively few) will automatically be reprocessed.

According to HIMSS publication Government HealthIT the extension bill (H.R. 4851) also extends eligibility for HITECH incentives to physicians who treat patients in hospital-based outpatient clinics.

We believe a longer-term solution is overdue.  Do you agree? What will it take to convince the legislature to pass a more permanent fix to this situation? Your ideas are welcome.


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