Las Vegas Sun

August 22, 2014

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Medicare doctors won’t face pay cuts for at least a year

Members of the House this afternoon approved a measure to hold reimbursement rates steady for doctors who treat Medicare patients.

The legislation is a one-year reprieve for doctors who faced an almost 30 percent pay cut starting Jan. 1.

“This one-year fix will help preserve access to the doctor of their choice for Nevadans covered under Medicare,” said Rep. Shelley Berkley, one of the 409 representatives who voted in favor of the bill.

"I am pleased that we are taking the steps needed to avoid another potential crisis by blocking this pending cut," Berkley said. "But this latest action does not replace the need for permanent reform that will provide certainty to caregivers and peace of mind to patients who will know they have the ability to see their own physician or trusted family doctor.”

The Sun recently reported that 12 percent of Nevada physicians have dropped out of the Medicare program rather than face uncertainty over payments.

About 300,000 people in Nevada receive Medicare benefits. Two-thirds are low-income.

The Senate passed the doctors patch Wednesday. Now it goes to the president to be signed.

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