House holds SGR fix hostage to jobs bill

By staff writers

June 22, 2010 -- House Democratic leaders said yesterday they will not vote on the Senate's six-month fix to the sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula until the Senate passes jobs legislation, according to the Congressional Quarterly.

The Senate passed its latest version of an SGR fix, S 3962, on June 18. The bill would postpone for six months a 21.2% cut in reimbursement under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. The U.S. Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has already started paying claims at the lower rate.

The Senate hoped the House would approve the measure quickly. But political wrangling is getting in the way, and the legislation may be held hostage to the House's efforts to pass a jobs bill, according to the Congressional Quarterly.

Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) called the Senate's bill "inadequate," saying that the House has repeatedly sent job-creating bills to the Senate since December, but Senate Republicans continue to block approval of the legislation.

"I see no reason to pass this inadequate bill until we see jobs legislation coming out of the Senate," Pelosi said in a statement. "House Democrats are saying to Republicans in the Senate: Show us the jobs!"

CMS begins paying claims at lower SGR rate, June 21, 2010

Senate delays Medicare cuts until December, June 18, 2010

Senate committee takes SGR action, June 18, 2010

CMS extends Medicare claim hold, June 14, 2010

Another SGR deadline expected to expire, May 28, 2010

Copyright © 2010


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