Medicare payment cut stopped

Dec. 9, 2010 at 5:17 PM

WASHINGTON, Dec. 9 (UPI) -- The U.S. House Thursday gave final approval to a measure that prevents a cut in Medicare payments to doctors through next year.

The House voted 409-2 to approve the Medicare and Medicaid Extenders Act of 2010 adopted by the Senate Wednesday, sending it to President Obama for signature, Modern Healthcare reported.

The American Medical Association hailed passage of the measure, which prevents payments to doctors from being cut 25 percent as of Jan. 1. Thirteen percent of doctors told an American Academy of Family Physicians survey they would have to close their practices if the cut took effect.

"Many physicians made it clear that this year's roller coaster ride, caused by five delays of this year's cut, forced them to make difficult practice changes like limiting the number of Medicare patients they could treat," the AMA said in a statement.

The bill is to be paid for by a change in policy on overpayments of the healthcare affordability tax credit.

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