HomeWashington Letter2015 ▶ Bipartisan SGR Legislation Introduced, Votes Expected Soon
Bipartisan SGR Legislation Introduced, Votes Expected Soon

March 2015

This week, the House and Senate introduced bipartisan legislation that permanently repeals, replaces and pays for an SGR fix.  While Congress has long recognized the need to fix the SGR, and even reached a policy compromise during the  last Congress on what to replace it with, Congress has never agreed on how to pay for the $180+  billion needed to fix SGR.  The bipartisan bill released this week, in addition to paying for SGR. also extends the Children's Health Insurance Program, better known as CHIP.

The cost for repealing SGR and extending CHIP is estimated at $213 billion over 10 years.   The bill in paid for in 3 ways:

$75 billion over 10 years in revenue to Medicare provider cuts

$75 billion over 10 years in Medicare beneficiary cost increases (means testing Medicare premiums/changes to Medigap coverage)
$140 billion over 10 years is added to the federal deficit

The House is expected to vote on the package early next week and the Senate will vote soon after.  Unless Congress acts by March 31, 2015, physicians and other Medicare Part B providers are looking at a 20% cut in Medicare reimbursement beginning on  April 1, 2015.

Last Reviewed: October 2017