Preserving Patients' Access to Care in Budget Reduction Debate
AAFP Letter to the Joint Select Committee on Budget Reduction(2 page PDF)
The American Academy of Family Physicians has called on the Joint Select Committee on Deficit Reduction to reform the Medicare payment system as part of efforts to cut federal spending. This media kit explains why -- in an era where "deficit reduction" are the buzz words -- Congress must invest in primary medical care by repealing the sustainable growth rate formula that dictates Medicare physician payment and developing a system that rewards outcomes of care, not the number of procedures done to a patient.
The role primary care physicians play in quality of care and helping control costs:
Quantifying the Health Benefits of Primary Care Physician Supply in the United States(16 page PDF)
Research shows the supply of primary care physicians was associated with improved health outcomes, including cancer, heart disease, stroke, and infant mortality; low birth weight; life expectance; and self-rated health. The results suggests that an increase of one primary care physician per 10,000 population was associated with an average mortality reduction of 5.3 percent.
Visits to Physician Specialties for Health Care Conditions(1 page PDF)
This graph shows family physicians are the source of care for most complex health conditions, including respiratory ailments, circulatory problems and endocrine conditions.
Primary Care Physician Workforce and Medicare Beneficiaries’ Health Outcomes (10 page PDF)
Research that shows a stronger primary care physician workforce is associated with favorable patient outcomes.
The Effects of Specialist Supply on Populations’ Health: Assessing the Evidence(9 page PDF)
Research confirms earlier studies showing an increase of medical subspecialists won’t improve the U.S. position in population health, can lead to more disparities in health among Americans and may be related to adverse effects from inappropriate or unnecessary use of subspecialists.
- Ambulatory Specialist Use by Nonhospitalized Patients in U.S. Health Plans: Correlates and Consequences(10 page PDF)
The impact of 25 percent or greater cut in Medicare physician payment:
Impact of Potential Medicare Physician Pay Cuts in Family Medicine Practice: September 2010(1 page PDF)
This graph shows 13 percent of respondents to an AAFP survey would be forced to close their practices and 62 percent would be forced to stop accepting new Medicare patients.
What FPs Say
Direct quotes from family physicians describe the impact that instability in Medicare payment has had on their practice stability and the effects that a 25 percent or greater Medicare cut would have on their ability to provide care to patients.