EDPMA Action Alert:
Urge Your Representative to Cosponsor HR 8800 to Prevent Deep Medicare Cuts
Emergency Medicine is facing a nearly 8.5% cut in Medicare reimbursement in 2023. U.S. Representatives Ami Bera, MD (D-Calif.) and Larry Bucshon, MD (R-Ind.) have introduced a bipartisan bill, the Supporting Medicare Providers Act of 2022 (HR 8800), which would prevent the imminent 4.42% payment cut resulting from budget neutrality adjustments to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule required by statute. We need your help to ensure our legislators know why this is important to our healthcare system.
Contact Your Representative by December 1:
Call or email your Member of Congress in the U.S. House of Representatives and ask them to cosponsor HR 8800 this week. This issue needs to be addressed before the end of the year. You can identify your Member of Congress and find their contact information by visiting www.house.gov and entering your zip code in the upper right corner of the page.
If you send an email, please copy email@example.com so we can keep track of which offices have been contacted.
Dear Representative XXX,
My name is (first and last) and I am a (physician/advocate/etc.) who resides in your district. I am writing you to (co-sponsor or thank you for your support for) HR 8800, the Supporting Medicare Providers Act of 2022.
HR 8800 is a bipartisan bill that addresses the impending Medicare cuts to physicians in 2023. For the past two years Congress has acted to avoid similar cuts that result from the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule formula. The 8.5% cuts would be devastating to emergency medicine physicians who cover two-thirds of uninsured care and over half of Medicaid/CHIP care every year. Reoccurring physician payment cuts demonstrate the need to examine and address the systemic problems in the Medicare physician payment system, as the cuts create instability and are unrelated to the cost of providing patient care. Preventing the cuts will help stabilize practices still recovering from the Covid-19 pandemic and in turn shore up patient access.
(Insert additional why you support HR 8800, include a personal story if possible)
The following talking points can be personalized for your outreach:
(1) Connect as a Constituent: Ask to speak to the staffer handling healthcare and let them know that you are a constituent, share your city or address with them, and share the number of patients in the district or state that your group or company serves.
(2) Request Cosponsorship: Please cosponsor HR 8800, the Supporting Medicare Providers Act of 2022, a bipartisan bill introduced by Representatives Bera and Bucshon. The bill would address an impending Medicare cut to physicians in 2023. Check and see if your Representative is a cosponsor here. If they are a cosponsor, thank them for their support. If they are not, ask them to cosponsor.
(3) Underlying Problem Needs to be Addressed: Congress has acted the past two years to avoid similar cuts that result from the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule formula. If this is not addressed by the end of the year, emergency physicians – who have been serving on the frontlines of the pandemic – face a nearly 8.5% cut in Medicare reimbursement in January. Medicare reimbursement has not kept up with inflation.
(4) Emergency Medicine Cares for All Regardless of Ability to Pay: The Emergency Medical Treatment and Labor Act (EMTALA) mandates that everyone who visits an emergency department receives emergency stabilization care, no matter their ability to pay. The impending Medicare cuts, unreimbursed or under-reimbursed care, and lack of keeping up with the costs of delivering care jeopardize the viability of this important component of our nation’s health care safety net. Emergency physicians are only 4% of physicians, yet they provide over two-thirds of uninsured care and over half of Medicaid/CHIP care. The proposed nearly 8.5% Medicare cut is devastating.