TMA Statement: Medicare “Doc Fix” Fixes Nothing

 For Immediate Release
Feb. 17, 2012

Contact: Pam Udall 
phone: (512) 370-1382
cell: (512) 413-6807

Brent Annear
phone: (512) 370-1381
cell: (512) 656-7320

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The following can be attributed to C. Bruce Malone, MD, president of the Texas Medical Association. Dr. Malone’s statement pertains to Congress’ latest patch to stave off the current 27.4-percent Medicare cut until the end of the year. Doctors who care for Medicare and TRICARE patients are paid under the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula.  

“Congress had probably the best opportunity to solve the broken formula used to pay doctors to care for Medicare patients once and for all … but they blew it. 

“This was Congress’ best chance to pay off the mounting Medicare SGR debt and get rid of that flawed formula. Instead, Congress showed their cards: They really don’t care about Medicare patients – our senior citizens and people with disabilities. They don’t care about TRICARE patients – our military families. And they don’t care about the doctors who care for all of these patients. It’s irresponsible to these people, and irresponsible not to have seized this chance to pay off this debt.  

“Now we are back in the cycle of one short-term delay after another with no solution in sight. As a result, we all will suffer – Medicare patients, physicians, our practices, and our employees. Congress keeps calling this a ‘Doc fix,’ but they haven’t fixed anything.” 

TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation, representing more than 45,500 physician and medical student members. It is located in Austin and has 120 component county medical societies around the state. TMA’s key objective since 1853 is to improve the health of all Texans.

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