Family Physicians Unite to Urge Congress to Pass the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014”

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE   
Monday, Feb. 26, 2014

Contact:
Janelle Davis
Public Relations Strategist
American Academy of Family Physicians
(800) 274-2237 Ext. 5222
jdavis@aafp.org

LEAWOOD, Kan. — Members of the American Academy of Family Physicians maintain a full-court press urging Congress to pass the “SGR Repeal and Medicare Provider Payment Modernization Act of 2014” (H.R. 4015 / S. 2000). In a letter sent today, the AAFP and 49 of its constituent chapters call for immediate passage of the legislation as a means to stabilize Medicare payment and bolster health care security for millions of elderly and disabled Americans.

The AAFP’s actions to repeal the flawed SGR formula and replace it with a system that focuses on improving health care quality have been ongoing for more than 11 years, but recently picked up momentum with a Feb. 17 letter to Congress in support of the bipartisan, bicameral legislation. The letter was preceded by a Feb. 6 statement welcoming the SGR proposal. A second statement dated Feb. 20 noted that Congress had failed 16 times in the past 11 years to “fix” the SGR at the cost of $154 billion to taxpayers.

“The AAFP and its member physicians commend the Energy and Commerce, Ways and Means and Senate Finance committee members who have worked diligently and cooperatively to move this legislation forward,” said Reid Blackwelder, MD, president of the AAFP. “Congress cannot let this opportunity pass them by. The proverbial can is now at the end of road. It’s time to stop kicking. Approve this measure before March 31 when the current SGR extension expires. It’s the right thing to do for America’s health.”

Individual family physicians are also taking an active stance by participating in a letter writing blitz to legislators through the AAFP’s grassroots Speak Out program, as well as on social media using the hashtag #RepealSGR.

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Founded in 1947, the American Academy of Family Physicians represents 131,400 physicians and medical students nationwide, and it is the only medical society devoted solely to primary care.

Family physicians conduct approximately one in five of the total medical office visits in the United States per year – more than any other specialty. Family physicians provide comprehensive, evidence-based, and cost-effective care dedicated to improving the health of patients, families and communities. Family medicine’s cornerstone is an ongoing and personal patient-physician relationship where the family physician serves as the hub of each patient’s integrated care team. More Americans depend on family physicians than on any other medical specialty.

To learn more about the AAFP and family medicine, visit www.aafp.org/media. Follow us on Twitter,(twitter.com) and like us on Facebook. For information about health care, health conditions and wellness, visit the AAFP’s award-winning consumer website, www.familydoctor.org(familydoctor.org).