The Real Problem With the 'Doc Fix'

The "doc fix" legislation passed last week in the House is flawed. The Senate should insist on a different solution, one that is not only permanent but also includes stronger quality measures.
How much will doctors get paid for this procedure? Does it matter how well they do it? Photographer: Christian Burke/UCSF via Bloomberg

As policy-making disgraces go, last week's House of Representatives vote for a temporary "doc fix" to avoid a cut in Medicare payments to doctors is hard to beat: It's financed in part through accounting gimmicks, and the vote was so rushed that most members of Congress didn't even realize it had been held. A permanent fix is offered as an alternative, and it would indeed be better, but this option, too, could be much stronger.

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