• Physician Payment and Therapy Relief Act of 2010 Extends 2.2 Percent Medicare Physician Fee Schedule Update Through December 31, 2010
  • December 8, 2010 | Author: J. Austin A. Broussard
  • Law Firm: King & Spalding LLP - Atlanta Office
  • President Obama signed into law the Physician Payment and Therapy Relief Act of 2010 last Tuesday, November 30th, which extended the 2.2 percent update to the Medicare Physician Fee Schedule (MPFS) until December 31st of this year. The 2.2 percent update has been in effect for MPFS claims with dates of service from June 1, 2010 to November 30, 2010.

    H.R. 5712, which became Public Law 111-286 after the President’s signature, delays a 23 percent reduction in Medicare physician payments until December 31. In order to maintain the current MPFS payment rate until December 31, 2010 and to remain budget neutral, the law reduces Medicare payments for certain outpatient therapy services by $1 billion by imposing a 20 percent multiple payment procedure reduction (MPPR) to the “practice expense” component for the second and any subsequent outpatient therapy services paid under the fee schedule that are furnished in an office setting.

    To remain budget neutral, the law modified the multiple payment procedure reduction (MPPR) finalized by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) on November 18, 2010 by applying a 20 percent reduction rather than a 25 percent reduction to the “practice expense” component for the second and any subsequent outpatient therapy services paid under the fee schedule that are furnished in an office setting.