Omnibus Budget Bill Includes Physician Payment Cut Relief
On December 29, 2022, President Biden signed the 2023 Omnibus Budget Bill into law. The Bill had been approved by the House and Senate on December 23. The bill includes several health care–related allocations, including, most critically, relief from the scheduled Medicare physician payment cuts that would have gone into effect in January 2023.
These payment adjustments are a direct a result of medical associations’, including ISASS’s, advocacy and outreach to Congress and strong emphasis on the need for improved Medicare reimbursement for physician services.
Below are a few of the highlights from the Budget bill.
- Continuation of the increase program for Medicare payments: (2.5% for 2023 and 1.25% for 2024, applied in a manner identical to the 3.5% and 3.0% increases for 2021 and 2022 that were included in the CARES Act)
- As previously mentioned, pushing PAYGO sequestration reductions for Medicare (which was scheduled to be about 4%) until 2025
- Extension of incentive payments for Advanced Alternative Payment Model participation
- Extension of the Medicare Dependent Hospital program, low-volume hospital payment adjustments, and ambulance service add-ons
- Extension of telehealth flexibilities through December 31, 2024
- Revision to the phase-in of the Medicare clinical laboratory test payment changes
- Public health and pandemic preparation changes, including increases to the public health workforce
- Medical supply chain improvements
Once CMS releases updated fee schedules and impact statements, ISASS will share this information with members. Physicians should expect the impact on Medicare reimbursement to be more than a 5% increase compared to what payment rates would have looked like prior to the legislation passing.