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Internists recognize today's 'rotten anniversary'

(Washington) "Physicians throughout America today are recognizing a truly 'Rotten Anniversary,'" Molly Cooke, MD, FACP, president of the American College of Physicians (ACP), declared today. "On February 20, 2003, the first of 16 Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) Formula 'patches' was passed by Congress."

For more than a decade, Congress has continually stepped in with a patch to prevent scheduled physician cuts under the flawed SGR formula. Eleven years later, and after 16 patches, ACP told its members today that $154 billion in taxpayer money has done nothing to lead to a better physician payment system.

Dr. Cooke reminded members today about an historic bipartisan agreement in both the House and Senate that contains policies to replace the SGR. The bill, H.R. 4015, the SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014 (S. 2000 in the Senate), is strongly supported by physician membership organizations across the specialties and across the country.

Dr. Cooke told ACP members that Congress must now move the bill to the floor for a vote and get it to the presidentbefore the current (16th) patch expires on March 31. She told ACP members that it was critical that they "remind Congress of this 'Rotten Anniversary' and get messages to them via every social media platform."

Contact: David Kinsman
American College of Physicians

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