SFMS, together with the Hospital Council of Northern and Central California, sent the following letter to Representative Nancy Pelosi to urge her to support the repeal of Medicare SGR formula. The same letter was also sent to Representative Jackie Speier.
Click here to view a pdf copy of the letter.
Dear Leader Pelosi,
Physicians and hospitals in San Francisco are joined in our concern about the proposed 27 percent cuts in Medicare payments to physicians. The impact on your constituents would be profound—increasing numbers of the elderly will lose access to primary care, and instead seek such care in the emergency room—care that costs more and is inappropriate to their needs.
We understand that unspent military funds could be used to repeal the Medicare SGR formula. The cuts have been delayed until March 1 in the hopes that some kind of compromise can be found. One possibility is a plan recently suggested to use unspent military funding from early troop withdrawals in Iraq and Afghanistan to repeal the Medicare Sustained Growth Rate (SGR) payment formula.
That idea and others will be considered by a House-Senate conference committee that includes Rep. Henry Waxman (D-Los Angeles) and Rep. Xavier Becerra (D-Los Angeles).
The California Medical Association, the California Hospital Association, the American Medical Association and American Hospital Association as well as many other medical associations have united to push for the House Democrats’ plan, which could cover the $300 billion cost of eliminating the SGR formula. The AARP has joined as well, launching a campaign with the message, “Medicare patients could lose access to the doctors they know and trust in just a few weeks.”
We urge your support for this compromise measure to be debated soon. Your constituents will certainly benefit.