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The College of American Pathologists Continues Push for Repeal of the Sustainable Growth Rate

Opposes Patch Legislation, Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (HR 4302)

WASHINGTON, March 27, 2014 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The College of American Pathologists (CAP) opposes a temporary fix to Medicare's flawed sustainable growth rate (SGR) formula, as provided in House passage of the Protecting Access to Medicare Act of 2014 (HR 4302).

"The CAP opposes HR 4302 as it fails to repeal the SGR permanently and neglects critical Medicare reforms such as closing the self-referral loophole. HR 4302's patch legislation does not provide stability for physician payments, does not address pathologists' specific concerns with participation in the current pay-for-performance program, and would drastically alter the payment system for clinical laboratories," said CAP President Gene N. Herbek, MD, FCAP.

The CAP supports the SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act (HR 4015), which eliminates the SGR and contains the bipartisan provision addressing pathologist participation in Medicare quality programs. The bill includes a provision backed by the College that provides more flexibility for pathologists to meet requirements under Medicare's Physician Quality Reporting System (PQRS), Electronic Health Record (EHR) Incentive Program, and the Value-Based Modifier (VBM). Further, the bill addresses the CAP's long-held concerns that quality initiatives were designed for office-based physicians and do not capture the many contributions pathologists add to patient care and the health system.

"For all these reasons the CAP believes it's essential that a permanent fix be implemented and that the legislation includes explicit language to address these issues," added Dr. Herbek.

About the College of American Pathologists
As the leading organization for board-certified pathologists, the College of American Pathologists (CAP) serves patients, pathologists, and the public by fostering and advocating excellence in the practice of pathology and laboratory medicine worldwide. With more than 18,000 physician members, the CAP has led laboratory accreditation for more than 50 years with more than 7,600 CAP-accredited laboratories in 50 countries. Find more information about the CAP at cap.org. Follow CAP on Twitter at @pathologists.

SOURCE College of American Pathologists

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