September 03, 2020

Take Action to Prevent E/M Reimbursement Reduction

The American College of Radiology® (ACR®) and more than 50 other physician and non-physician provider organizations are urging Congress to waive the budget neutrality requirement for evaluation and management (E/M) CPT® code increases mandated by the 2021 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule rule.

The application of budget neutrality, and resulting cuts to pay for the E/M increases, will reduce overall radiology payments by 11% — starting as early as Jan. 1, 2021.

A recent Modern Healthcare article highlighted that the American Medical Association (AMA) updated codes for various office and outpatient visits, and that the AMA suggested the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services adopt the code changes on Jan. 1.

However, the ACR noted in the article that it is unacceptable that the codes penalize thousands of physicians who do not frequently bill E/M services. Given the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic and its impact on all physician practices, this proposal is particularly ill-timed and harmful.

The ACR remains committed to keeping our members apprised of updates and will continue to work to provide members relief from the reimbursement reduction.

Want to get involved? Contact your member of Congress! Ask them to support a waiver of budget neutrality regarding these Medicare changes in any upcoming legislation.