CHESTCHEST NewsStrengthening Medicare for patients and providers

Strengthening Medicare for patients and providers

In a formal letter, the American College of Chest Physicians (CHEST) joined the American Medical Association in commending the US House of Representatives for introducing H.R. 2474, the Strengthening Medicare for Patients and Providers Act.

While the associations expressed gratitude for the short-term relief for physician cuts, it also noted that there is a need for Congress to place its focus on a long-term payment solution that centers on annual inflationary updates for physicians and their practices.

Read the full letter below.

April 19, 2023

The Honorable Raul Ruiz
United States House of Representatives 
2342 Rayburn House Office Building 
Washington, DC 20515 

The Honorable Larry Bucshon
United States House of Representatives
2313 Rayburn House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

The Honorable Ami Bera
United States House of Representatives 
172 Cannon House Office Building 
Washington, DC 20515 

The Honorable Mariannette Miller-Meeks
United States House of Representatives
1034 Longworth House Office Building
Washington, DC 20515

Dear Representatives Ruiz, Bucshon, Bera, and Miller-Meeks:

The undersigned national physician specialty societies and state medical associations commend you for introducing H.R. 2474, the Strengthening Medicare for Patients and Providers Act. This bipartisan legislation advances the ongoing need to provide financial stability to physician practices in order to preserve access to care for Medicare beneficiaries.

Providing an annual inflation update equal to the Medicare Economic Index (MEI) for Medicare physician payments is essential to enabling physician practices to better absorb payment distributions triggered by budget neutrality rules, performance adjustments, and periods of high inflation. It will also help physicians invest in their practices and implement new strategies to provide high-value care.

The annual “stop the Medicare payment cut” exercises are due, in no small part, to the fact that physician services do not receive the annual inflationary update that virtually all other Medicare providers can rely on to better weather periods of fiscal uncertainty. The COVID-19 pandemic further illustrated the challenges physicians endure due to the current broken Medicare payment system. While the temporary and partial patches that Congress has provided through 2024 were necessary under the current payment system, they are a distraction, exacerbate budgeting challenges for practices, and divert resources that both medicine and Congress could be spending on other meaningful health care policies and innovations. Therefore, organized medicine is united in support of a long-term payment solution that centers on annual inflationary updates.

Once again, we sincerely appreciate your leadership in introducing H.R. 2474, as this legislation promotes this key element of any comprehensive, meaningful Medicare physician payment reform plan. We look forward to working with you on this legislation to advance it through the House and Senate during the 118th Congress.


American Medical Association
AMDA-The Society for Post-Acute and Long-Term Care Medicine
American Academy of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
American Academy of Dermatology Association
American Academy of Family Physicians
American Academy of Hospice and Palliative Medicine
American Academy of Neurology
American Academy of Ophthalmology
American Academy of Orthopaedic Surgeons
American Academy of Otolaryngic Allergy
American Academy of Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation
American Academy of Sleep Medicine
American Association for Hand Surgery
American Association of Clinical Endocrinology
American Association of Clinical Urologists, Inc.
American Association of Neurological Surgeons
American Association of Neuromuscular & Electrodiagnostic Medicine
American College of Allergy, Asthma & Immunology
American College of Cardiology
American College of Chest Physicians
American College of Emergency Physicians
American College of Gastroenterology
American College of Lifestyle Medicine
American College of Medical Genetics & Genomics
American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists
American College of Osteopathic Internists
American College of Physicians
American College of Radiation Oncology
American College of Radiology
American College of Surgeons
American Epilepsy Society
American Gastroenterological Association
American Medical Group Association
American Medical Women's Association
American Psychiatric Association
American Society for Clinical Pathology
American Society for Dermatologic Surgery Association
American Society for Gastrointestinal Endoscopy
American Society for Radiation Oncology
American Society of Anesthesiologists
American Society of Cataract and Refractive Surgery
American Society of Hematology
American Society of Nuclear Cardiology
American Society of Retina Specialists
American Society of Transplant Surgeons
American Urogynecologic Society
American Urological Association
Association for Clinical Oncology
Association of American Medical Colleges
College of American Pathologists
Congress of Neurological Surgeons
Endocrine Society
Heart Rhythm Society
International Society for the Advancement of Spine Surgery
Medical Group Management Association
National Association of Medical Examiners
National Association of Spine Specialists
North American Neuromodulation Society
Renal Physicians Association
Society for Cardiovascular Angiography and Interventions
Society for Pediatric Dermatology
Society for Vascular Surgery
Society of American Gastrointestinal and Endoscopic Surgeons
Society of Cardiovascular Computed Tomography
Society of Hospital Medicine
Society of Interventional Radiology
Society of Nuclear Medicine and Molecular Imaging
Spine Intervention Society
The Society of Thoracic Surgeons
Medical Association of the State of Alabama
Alaska State Medical Association
Arizona Medical Association
Arkansas Medical Society
California Medical Association
Colorado Medical Society
Connecticut State Medical Society
Medical Society of Delaware
Medical Society of the District of Columbia
Florida Medical Association
Medical Association of Georgia
Hawaii Medical Association
Idaho Medical Association
Illinois State Medical Society
Indiana State Medical Association
Iowa Medical Society
Kansas Medical Society
Kentucky Medical Association
Louisiana State Medical Society
Maine Medical Association
MedChi, The Maryland State Medical Society
Massachusetts Medical Society
Michigan State Medical Society
Minnesota Medical Association
Mississippi State Medical Association
Missouri State Medical Association
Montana Medical Association
Nebraska Medical Association
Nevada State Medical Association
New Hampshire Medical Society
Medical Society of New Jersey
New Mexico Medical Society
Medical Society of the State of New York
North Carolina Medical Society
North Dakota Medical Association
Ohio State Medical Association
Oklahoma State Medical Association
Oregon Medical Association
Pennsylvania Medical Society
Rhode Island Medical Society
South Carolina Medical Association
South Dakota State Medical Association
Tennessee Medical Association
Texas Medical Association
Utah Medical Association
Vermont Medical Society
Medical Society of Virginia
Washington State Medical Association
West Virginia State Medical Association
Wisconsin Medical Society
Wyoming Medical Society