Toying with us until the end. on Saturday the 109th Congress paased legislation to reverse the pending 5.1% cut in Medicare fees for 2007. Of course, this is the – what, third? – year that there will be no increase in fees, so we’ve lost at least 10 percent or more in income over the past three or so years just from Medicare cuts.
This final action was a 79-9 Senate vote on Saturday morning. We presume that President Bush will sign the legislation. The AMA press release noted that the legislation also sets aside funds to avert cuts in 2008 and stops additional Medicare cuts to rural physicians. Finally, the legislation initiates a physician quality reporting program to begin in July 2008.
With regard ot quality and performance reporting, you might take a look at the AMA convened Physician Consortium for Performance Improvement The Consortium is comprised of over 100 national medical specialty and state medical societies; the Council of Medical Specialty Societies; American Board of Medical Specialties and its member-boards; experts in methodology and data collection; the Agency for Healthcare Research and Quality; and Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS). I’m working on a monograph for you for early 2007.
OK – time to redo your 2007 budget and projections for 2008. I’d assume flat fees again for 2008 for this round. Work on your inventory levels for office and medical supplies. Take advantage of sales, and check your inventory weekly or even semi-weekly to keep levels low, but so you don’t run out either.