News from ACOI

Senate Finance Committee Kick Starts Physician Payment Reform Discussion

As a member of the Primary Care Collaborative, the ACOI joined a statement in response to an April 11 hearing held by the Senate Finance Committee, “Bolstering Chronic Care through Medicare Physician Payment.”  

MedPAC Issues Payment Recommendations

In March, the Medicare Payment Advisory Commission (MedPAC) released its annual report to Congress on Medicare payment, in which it reissued a recommendation that Congress should provide physicians next year with an inflationary update that reflects half of the Medicare Economic Index.

FTC Bans Non-compete Arrangements

The Federal Trade Commission (FTC) has adopted a comprehensive ban on non-compete clauses in employment contracts with no exceptions for the health care industry.

ACOI Joins Organizations in Asking for Farm Policies that Support Climate and Health

The ACOI has joined 80 organizations in support of farm policy that prioritizes affordable and nutritious food and clean air and water. In a letter to Congress, the organizations emphasized the intersection of important nutrition and conservation programs.

Physicians Have Until April 15 to Apply for 2023 MIPS Exception

Physicians have until April 15 to request a 2023 Merit-based Incentive Payment System (MIPS) Extreme and Uncontrollable Circumstances exception due to the Change Healthcare cyberattack.

New Bill Supports Training Opportunities for Osteopathic Medicine

The ACOI is backing new legislation in Congress that would improve medical training opportunities for osteopathic and allopathic medical students in rural and medically underserved areas.  

Change Healthcare Cyberattack Information

On February 21, Change Healthcare, which is owned by UnitedHealth Group (UHG), experienced a cyberattack that has taken its systems offline. Change’s IT platform connects health care providers and pharmacies with payers. The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) has announced physician practices impacted by the Change Healthcare cyberattack can request advanced Medicare payments to help with cash flow disruptions.

Congress Trims Medicare Physician Payment Cut

Since early 2023, ACOI, alongside the entire physician community, has been calling on Congress to stop the entire cut. Over the past six months, ACOI members sent more than 750 messages to Congress asking for payment cut relief.

CMS Finalizes Rule to Curb Prior Authorization Abuse

On January 17, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) released a long-awaited final rule that makes improvements to prior authorization practices used by health insurers. Under the rule, Medicare Advantage (MA) organizations, state Medicaid and Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) Fee-for-Service (FFS) programs, Medicaid managed care plans, CHIP managed care entities, and Qualified Health Plan (QHP) issuers on the Federally Facilitated Exchanges (FFEs) will be required to streamline prior authorization processes.

Senate Lawmakers Want to Tackle Physician Payment Reform

A bipartisan group of senators have joined together to tackle Medicare physician payment reform. The senators have committed to investigating shortcomings of the physician fee schedule (PFS) and the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) to propose long-term reforms. The announcement of the working group comes as physicians are suffering a 3.37% Medicare payment reduction that took effect on January 1, 2024. Congress still has the opportunity to reverse or mitigate the cut. ACOI encourages our members ask lawmakers to intervene.

Still No Action from Congress on Medicare Payment Cut

ACOI is renewing its Call to Action and encouraging every ACOI member to ask their members of Congress to make physician payment relief a priority. With the payment cut already in place, if lawmakers do not hear from physicians, they may construe the silence as a signal the 3.37 percent cut is not being felt by physicians and will not harm beneficiary access to care.

ACOI Congratulates Jennie H. Kwon, DO, MSCI on PACCARB Appointment

ACOI was honored to help support Dr. Kwon’s nomination to PACCARB. “Dr. Kwon has an impressive track record of antimicrobial resistance research (AMR),” said ACOI President Robert T. Hasty, DO, FACOI, FACP. “PACCARB is fortunate to have the value of her expertise, including her work on strategies to prevent transmission of AMR.”

Stay True to Why You Pursued Medicine.