Victory! Congress Finally Repeals Flawed Medicare SGR Formula

April 14, 2015

Statement of TMA President Austin I. King, MD, on the U.S. Senate vote to approve HR 2, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act, which finally repealed the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula.

“An immense weight has been lifted from the shoulders of American medicine. On behalf of the 48,000 physician and medical student members of the Texas Medical Association, I extend my sincere thanks to the United States Senate — and our own Sen. John Cornyn — for taking this momentous step.

“Eliminating the constant threat of Medicare payment cuts means that we can focus our energies on improving this new law. We can focus our energies on removing the bureaucratic impediments that get in the way of good patient care. We can focus our energies on enacting substantive and fundamental Medicare reforms that will help us provide life-saving, life-sustaining, and life-enhancing care to our senior citizens, military families, and Texans with disabilities.

“Passage of this bill was 13 very long and arduous years in the making. I want to thank my predecessor TMA presidents who have kept the movement alive, the thousands of Texas physicians and patients who have visited and written and called their representatives and senators to demand repeal of the SGR formula, and the lawmakers who heeded our call. And the entire TMA family sends, in particular, a warm and most heartfelt appreciation to U.S. Reps. Michael Burgess, MD, and Kevin Brady and to Senator Cornyn. Their determination and grit over the past two years, obtaining bipartisan agreement on the policy, have made this day possible.”  

Editor’s note — Background and useful resources for this story:

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 TMA is the largest state medical society in the nation, representing more than 48,000 physician and medical student members. It is located in Austin and has 110 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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