WASHINGTON, Nov. 19 House Speaker Nancy Pelosi issued the following statement today on legislation that would permanently reform the broken Medicare physician payment system. The Medicare Physician Payment Reform Act, which passed by a vote of 243 to 183, repeals a 21 percent fee reduction scheduled for January 2010, and replaces the physician payment formula with a more stable system. The bill also includes statutory PAYGO legislation:
"Strengthening Medicare for generations to come is essential to our efforts to reforming health care for all Americans. This legislation will permanently improve the way Medicare pays physicians and in doing so, guarantee that America's seniors will continue to have access to excellent care through Medicare.
"This legislation is a top priority for seniors and was endorsed by the AARP and the American Medical Association because it protects seniors' access to their doctor, promotes primary care, and offers incentives for doctors to provide patients with higher quality and more efficient care. Today's vote by the House keeps our promise to strengthen Medicare, never weaken it.
"As this legislation heads to the Senate, the statutory 'pay as you go' budget bill will be added to ensure that we put our nation back on a path of fiscal responsibility and begin to bring down the deep deficits that face our nation."
SOURCE Office of the Speaker of the House