Tonight, on a bipartisan vote of 92 to 8, the Senate passed H.R. 2, the “Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act,” or MACRA.
Although six amendments were considered on the floor, none reached the threshold required for passage. As a result, the Senate passed bill was identical to the version that passed the House of Representatives by an overwhelming 392-37 margin on March 26.
We expect the bill to be sent to the White House tonight, where President Obama has said he would sign it into law.
Medicare should begin processing claims tomorrow for services provided in April at the rates that were effective before the 21 percent cut was scheduled to take effect. Under the provisions of H.R. 2, the fee schedule conversion factor will be increased by 0.5 percent on July 1, 2015, and by another 0.5 percent on January 1, 2016.
Many thanks to all of you who participated in an overwhelming and ultimately successful grassroots advocacy campaign to eliminate the SGR once and for all. Medicine’s united voice was instrumental to our success. We encourage all of you, in turn, to express your appreciation to Senators and Representatives who voted for H.R. 2. It is a complex bill that reflects bipartisan compromise, so for many of them the vote was not an easy one. Your recognition of their effort will be appreciated.