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General Surgery Coding Alert

News Brief:

Get Ready for Medicare Pay Cuts -- Yet Again -- in 2013

Watch for final rule and Congressional changes.There may be some winners and losers this year under the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (PFS) proposed rule, but it won't general surgeons.Here's the low-down on what you can expect if CMS makes no changes in the final rule, and if Congress fails to avert the sustainable growth rate (SGR) update for 2013.Surgeons Lose to Primary Care PhysiciansTo offset a pay increase to some physicians under the primary care initiative, CMS proposes to hold steady or decrease pay for all non-primary care physicians, including general surgeons. Although some specialties face extreme fee reductions (up to 14 percent), general surgeons can expect to hold steady with a 0 percent pay change, according to CMS. Here's why: CMS is proposing a 7 percent pay increase for family practitioners, and between 3 and 5 percent increases for other primary care practitioners. "Helping primary care doctors will help [...]

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