AMA to CMS: Changes Needed to Avoid Large Cuts in Physician Payments in 2021 Medicare Fee Schedule

Without changes to next year's Medicare fee schedule, physician payment would be reduced by almost 11%. says the AMA.

The American Medical Association (AMA) announced its objections to the proposed 2021 Medicare fee schedule today, saying that budget neutrality rules would lead to a 5.5% cut in physician payment and that additional proposals would have the effect of ramping up the reduction to almost 11%. The AMA called on CMS to waive budget neutrality and avert the payment cuts.

The press release — which distilled 93 pages of technical comments that the association filed with CMS — also urged CMS to “treat all physicians fairly” by incorporating office visit increases into surgical global payment; to make permanent several telehealth services; and to implement and pay for the new CPT code 99072 that covers safety protocols related to COVID-19.

The AMA urged the agency to continue with policies that introduced “much-needed flexibility” to the Medicare Quality Payment Program and expressed strong support for a CMS new office visit policy that the AMA says will “significantly reduce administrative burdens and better describe and recognize the resources involved in office visits.”