December 17, 2021

ACR Leads Effort to Mitigate Medicare Cuts

Member Actions Get Results

President Biden recently signed into law legislation that included provisions backed by the American College of Radiology® (ACR®) to halt a significant portion of Medicare-related payment cuts scheduled to begin Jan. 1.

The law also delayed implementation of the Radiation Oncology (RO) Model, to require site-neutral payments for many RO services, by one year – to Jan. 1, 2023. The ACR will continue to work with the American Society for Radiation Oncology to address RO model concerns prior to the January 2023 start date.

These achievements were not possible without the leadership and participation of ACR members who provided a unified voice and amplified our message to lawmakers, including:

  • More than 300 ACR member advocates who participated in 260 congressional meetings during the ACR 2021 Virtual Day on the Hill.
  • ACR members who responded to four ACR Calls to Action to #StopTheCuts by sending nearly 10,000 letters to lawmakers.

The ACR also continued to lead a coalition of more than 100 physician and non-physician medical associations, representing more than a million providers, to urge Congress to avert the cuts. This coalition secured commitments from more than 250 bipartisan U.S. House members to sign a letter drafted by Reps. Ami Bera, MD (D-CA), and Larry Bucshon, MD (R-IN), calling on House leaders to take action to stop these cuts.

Specifically, the new law:

  • Increases the Medicare conversion factor rate for physicians by 3% for calendar year 2022.
  • Pushes into 2023 the statutory pay-as-you-go-requirement balances that would have triggered funding cuts next year.
  • Suspends a 2% Medicare payment cut required under the 2011 Budget Control Act for three months — through March 31, reduces that cut from 2% to 1%, and then suspends that (1%) cut for three months — through June 30.

Mitigating these cuts is a significant victory, but it is only a temporary fix. The ACR will continue to advocate for permanent Medicare reimbursement reform. Please continue to monitor ACR advocacy efforts and be prepared to bring new energy to this issue in 2022.