IBJNews

Doctors balk at Senate attempt to cut out wasteful health care spending

Back to TopCommentsE-mailPrintBookmark and Share
On The Beat Industry News In Brief

The big goal of health care reform is to cut wasteful spending to pay for expanded health insurance coverage.

But the way the Senate Finance Committee bill tries to do that would be, according to some doctors, “disastrous.”

The bill would require all physicians to participate in Medicare’s Physician Quality Reporting Initiative by 2012 and then, in 2014, use those reports to cut Medicare reimbursement 5 percent for any doctor whose level of testing and procedures is in the top 10 percent of all doctors in his or her field.

Sallay

The concept of the bill is good, said Dr. Peter Sallay, managing partner of Methodist Sports Medicine in Indianapolis, but the execution is bad.

Sallay and other physicians worry that the government will not be able to collect the data needed to draw a distinction between doctors who order excessive tests and procedures and those who do lots of tests and procedures because they see the sickest and poorest patients.

The Senate Finance bill calls for the Medicare program to collect health status and demographic data to account for those differences. But in the past, the government has acknowledged it has been unable to do so adequately.

Health insurers have tried and failed to do the same, noted Stacy Cook, a physician attorney at Barnes & Thornburg LLP in Indianapolis.

“It’s just something that’s extremely difficult,” she said. “It’s something that I don’t think has successfully been done.”

 

ADVERTISEMENT

Post a comment to this story

COMMENTS POLICY
We reserve the right to remove any post that we feel is obscene, profane, vulgar, racist, sexually explicit, abusive, or hateful.
 
You are legally responsible for what you post and your anonymity is not guaranteed.
 
Posts that insult, defame, threaten, harass or abuse other readers or people mentioned in IBJ editorial content are also subject to removal. Please respect the privacy of individuals and refrain from posting personal information.
 
No solicitations, spamming or advertisements are allowed. Readers may post links to other informational websites that are relevant to the topic at hand, but please do not link to objectionable material.
 
We may remove messages that are unrelated to the topic, encourage illegal activity, use all capital letters or are unreadable.
 

Messages that are flagged by readers as objectionable will be reviewed and may or may not be removed. Please do not flag a post simply because you disagree with it.

Sponsored by
ADVERTISEMENT

facebook - twitter on Facebook & Twitter

Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ on Facebook:
Follow on TwitterFollow IBJ's Tweets on these topics:
 
Subscribe to IBJ
  1. The deductible is entirely paid by the POWER account. No one ever has to contribute more than $25/month into the POWER account and it is often less. The only cost not paid out of the POWER account is the ER copay ($8-25) for non-emergent use of the ER. And under HIP 2.0, if a member calls the toll-free, 24 hour nurse line, and the nurse tells them to go to the ER, the copay is waived. It's also waived if the member is admitted to the hospital. Honestly, although it is certainly not "free" - I think Indiana has created a decent plan for the currently uninsured. Also consider that if a member obtains preventive care, she can lower her monthly contribution for the next year. Non-profits may pay up to 75% of the contribution on behalf of the member, and the member's employer may pay up to 50% of the contribution.

  2. I wonder if the governor could multi-task and talk to CMS about helping Indiana get our state based exchange going so Hoosiers don't lose subsidy if the court decision holds. One option I've seen is for states to contract with healthcare.gov. Or maybe Indiana isn't really interested in healthcare insurance coverage for Hoosiers.

  3. So, how much did either of YOU contribute? HGH Thank you Mr. Ozdemir for your investments in this city and your contribution to the arts.

  4. So heres brilliant planning for you...build a $30 M sports complex with tax dollars, yet send all the hotel tax revenue to Carmel and Fishers. Westfield will unlikely never see a payback but the hotel "centers" of Carmel and Fishers will get rich. Lousy strategy Andy Cook!

  5. AlanB, this is how it works...A corporate welfare queen makes a tiny contribution to the arts and gets tons of positive media from outlets like the IBJ. In turn, they are more easily to get their 10s of millions of dollars of corporate welfare (ironically from the same people who are against welfare for humans).

ADVERTISEMENT