On April 16, 2015, the U.S. Senate passed H.R. 2, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA). This legislation permanently repeals the antiquated Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula, which would have imposed a 21% cut in Medicare reimbursement in 2015.

In addition to avoiding this steep payment cut and repealing the SGR, H.R. 2 extends the Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) for another two years, institutes a 0.5% increase in Medicare reimbursement over the next four and a half years, establishes the Merit-Based Incentive Payment System (MIPS), as well as encourages physicians to transition to alternative payment models (APMs).

Beginning this fall, CMS will work to develop and implement the multi-year transition to value-based reimbursement incentive payments.