Re­form­ing the physi­cian fee sched­ule

Modern Healthcare - - Late News -

would help close the in­come gap that has led to a short­age of pri­ma­rycare physi­cians, ac­cord­ing to a new white pa­per from the USC-Brook­ings Scha­ef­fer Ini­tia­tive for Health Pol­icy. When Congress shifted pay mod­els from in­di­vid­ual physi­cians’ his­tor­i­cal charges to the “rel­a­tive val­ues” of ser­vices, that trans­lated to higher re­im­burse­ment for new ser­vices and a sig­nif­i­cant in­crease in the vol­ume of ex­pen­sive pro­ce­dures. Re­searchers noted MedPAC’s rec­om­men­da­tion to raise the fees for eval­u­a­tion and man­age­ment ser­vices pro­vided in the out­pa­tient set­ting, which rep­re­sent the bulk of Medi­care in­come to pri­mary-care doc­tors. Loan sub­si­dies should be paid di­rectly to doc­tors in train­ing rather than to teach­ing hospi­tals, re­searchers rec­om­mended.

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