ACR urges senators to override threatened presidential veto of Medicare bill

American College of Radiology

Despite the fact that the Senate on July 9 passed the Medicare Improvements for Patients and Providers Act of 2008 (H.R. 6331) by a veto proof margin of 69-30, President Bush has indicated he intends to veto the legislation. Unless the bill is signed into law, Medicare will start to process claims with the 10.6 per cent cut starting July 15.

The Administration is currently trying to convince at least three of the eighteen Republicans who voted for the legislation to reverse their votes and sustain the upcoming veto.

Nine Senators who voted against identical legislation July 26 opted to vote in favor of H.R. 6331 on July 9 following an intense lobbying campaign by the ACR and other physician organizations.

In response to the President’s efforts, the ACR sent a letter to the 18 Republican senators who supported the measure, thanking them for their vote and encouraging them to override the veto should it be issued.

The bill repeals the physician payment cut called for by the Medicare Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula that went into effect on July 1 and includes an accreditation requirement for providers of advanced diagnostic imaging services and an Appropriateness Criteria demonstration program.

Click here to view the ACR letter.

Click here to view how your Senators voted on July 9.

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