The Primary Care Collaborative Applauds Legislation to Repeal SGR

Statement from PCPCC Chief Executive Officer Marci Nielsen

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
March 23, 2015

CONTACT:
Caroline DeLaney
[email protected] | (352) 258-0090

WASHINGTON - The Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC) applauds the SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2015 (HR 1470). After 17 patches in 12 years, it is time to stabilize the Medicare physician payment system and provide health security to some of our most vulnerable members of the population who depend on consistent care from their health care providers.

In addition to protecting the elderly and the disabled, the legislation supports two important programs. First, it extends the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP), currently set to expire in September, to ensure the continued health care coverage of low-income children. Second, it extends the Teaching Health Center Graduate Medical Education Program that provides care to patients in underserved areas by training primary care physicians in community-based settings.

If passed, the legislation would prevent the disruptive last minute “fixes” that threaten deep cuts to physician reimbursement year after year. Instead, clinicians would receive an annual 0.5 percent payment increase through 2019, creating long-term stability for the health care community. 

Replacing the SGR with a stable payment system would move the U.S. health care delivery system away from the current volume-based reimbursement payment system to one that rewards quality, efficiency, and innovation. We were pleased to see the patient-centered medical home (PCMH) recognized as a way to improve access to continuous, coordinated, and patient-centered primary care for all patients, and for its ability to improve care and lower costs for patients with complex chronic diseases. We were also happy to see that the bill provides support to practices as they redesign their care delivery model, especially in primary care, to support valued-based services and meaningful partnerships with patients and families to help them achieve their health goals.

We urge Congress to act quickly and pass HR 1470. With bipartisan, bicameral support, Congress has an incredible opportunity to remove a flawed and inefficient system, promote the shift to value-based reimbursement, and most importantly, improve health care for some of the most vulnerable members of the population.

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About the Patient-Centered Primary Care Collaborative (PCPCC): Founded in 2006, the PCPCC is dedicated to advancing an effective and efficient health care system built on a strong foundation of primary care and the patient-centered medical home (PCMH). The PCPCC achieves its mission through the work focused on key issues of delivery reform, payment reform, patient engagement, and employer benefit redesign to drive health system transformation. PCPCC’s membership represents more than 1,200 medical home stakeholder organizations and supporters throughout the country. For more information, visit www.pcpcc.org.

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