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Video Web Cast From IAFP Reveals the Consequences of Medicare Physician Payment Cuts
Date:11/28/2007

LISLE, Ill., Nov. 28 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The Illinois Academy of Family Physicians has unveiled a video release to illustrate the devastating impact that upcoming Medicare physician fee cuts will have on family physicians and the patients they care for.

View the IAFP Video News Release at http://www.iafp.com/legislative/index.htm

There you can

-- WATCH the Academy in Action video telling Illinois family medicine's story.

-- READ the American Academy of Family Physicians' Medicare Physician Reimbursement policy, issued in Summer 2007

In November, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued their final report, calling for a 10.1 percent decrease in payments to physicians beginning January 1, 2008. The current system, which relies on a Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, calculates physician fees based on the Medicare budget, without regard to the costs physicians incur providing that care. This formula means reduced payments to physicians that will total a 15 percent cut over the next two years, and could add up to 40 percent by 2016. Physicians are demanding that the SGR be abandoned and replaced by a system that ensures physicians can afford to keep the Medicare patients they have now and add future patients as the number of Medicare eligible patients continues to rise.

"Unfortunately, family medicine is a business and has to be run like a business," said IAFP president Steven D. Knight, M.D. of Harrisburg, Ill. "If you don't run it like a business, you'll have to close the doors and no one gets care, which is not what we want."

For small practices, a reliable and fair system for physicians' services is critical for primary care physicians, because of the high number of Medicare patients they care for and the fact that most family doctors do not have the capital to absorb cuts in the payment for service
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SOURCE Illinois Academy of Family Physicians
Copyright©2007 PR Newswire.
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