Congress Delays Medicare Cut Until End of 2021
Congress finalized the bipartisan legislation that extended the moratorium on a 2 percent cut to physician Medicare payments until the end of 2021. The Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) will now release all claims held since the start of April. Following congressional action, President Joe Biden signed the bill into law on April 15.
The move comes after advocacy work by the College of American Pathologists, with support from the American Medical Association (AMA) and other medical professional groups,
On April 13, the House voted on the legislation to delay the 2 percent cut from April 1, 2021, to December 31, 2021. The legislation previously passed the Senate by a strong bipartisan margin. The CAP had asked its members to contact their elected officials to support the legislation. About 425 pathologists sent 1,408 messages to 319 members of Congress in support of this legislation through the CAP Action Center. The moratorium on Medicare sequestration was originally slated to expire on April 1, 2021 per previous legislation.
In a March 15 letter, the CAP strongly called for bipartisan action to stop the Medicare budget sequester cuts and provide critical relief for pathologists who have been on the front lines to fight the pandemic. Additionally, the AMA, the CAP, and 127 medical and state organizations lobbied Congress to relieve the financial burdens of the COVID-19 pandemic on physicians during the current national emergency. In a February 12 letter to congressional leaders in the House and the Senate, the CAP joined the groups to support legislation that would suspend a 2 percent across-the-board cut.
The CMS held off on processing Medicare claims in April while Congress debated the legislation to avoid making reduced payments to providers. The CMS directed Medicare contractors to release any claims held in April because of the policy.
Digital Pathology Association's Annual Conference
Registration is open for Pathology Visions 2021, the Digital Pathology Association's annual conference.
This event will be held in-person on October 17-19, 2021 in Las Vegas, Nev. Attendees at Pathology Visions will have access to over 30 expert presenters, as well as the wealth of knowledge from thought leaders and pioneers in digital pathology. The conference is designed to help attendees understand the basics of artificial intelligence and digital imaging, understand digital pathology applications, and examine the barriers, risks, and challenges to implementing digital pathology.
The conference also features cutting-edge workshops with distinguished trade visionaries, focused on the latest product solutions.
The deadline for early bird registration is June 30, 2021.
Life for Laboratories After COVID-19
The College of American Pathologists is planning a briefing where experts discuss the challenges of managing the impact of COVID-19 on laboratories and patient access.
With the first 100 days of the Biden administration coming to a close, CAP leading pathologists will review the impact of the latest COVID-19 testing support programs on patients and laboratories from the Administration and Congress.
Additionally, the CAP leaders will discuss the implications for patients who postponed their care because of the pandemic and the issues laboratories face when patients come back for care.
The event is scheduled for April 28, 2021 from 11:00 a.m. to 12 Noon (EST). It features moderator Kathryn T. Knight, MD, FCAP, and panelists Patrick Godbey, MD, FCAP and Jonathan Myles, MD, FCAP.
Register online and a link will be shared with registered attendees closer to the event day. Registrants will also receive a link to a video recording of the event after its conclusion.
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