An amendment to the long-delayed 2003 omnibus spending bill reverses
a 4.4% cut in Medicare funding, which observers say should help stem the flux
of physicians leaving the program.
Physicians took a 5.4% cut last year, and the additional 4.4% cut was
scheduled to take effect March 1. The provision in the spending bill halts
the March cut, gives physicians a 1.6% increase for 2003, and provides the
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid the authority to fix the payment formula.
Currently, only Congress has that authority.
Vastag B. Universal Coverage Redux?. JAMA. 2003;289(9):1093. doi:10.1001/jama.289.9.1093-a