How should a surgeon’s time in the operating room be compensated? Based on the complexity of the procedure? The risk? The length of the operation? What if the procedure is extremely complex or high risk but is of short duration? Should such a case have a higher relative value than a long but low-risk procedure? These are but a few of the controversies related to relative value units (RVUs), the current basis for payment for surgeons’ services by Medicare and other third-party payers.
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Moazzez A, Ozao-Choy J, de Virgilio C. Need for More Objective Data to Determine Relative Value Units for Surgical Effort. JAMA Surg. Published online July 17, 2019. doi:10.1001/jamasurg.2019.2319
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