FEDERAL | ASPS Members Urge Congress to Oppose Burdensome Proposed Changes to Global Surgical Code Reporting
Medicare has long expressed an interest in eliminating global surgical payment bundles with the goal of reducing fees for surgical care. Late in 2014, the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Service (CMS) proposed to transition all 10- and 90-day global surgical codes into 0-day global codes. ASPS joined with its partners in the surgical community in a successful effort to lobby Congress to stop this change. In April of 2015, the Medicare Access and CHIP Reauthorization Act (MACRA) was signed into law with a provision that prohibited CMS from eliminating 10- and 90-day codes and instead required that it gather "from a representative sample of physicians... information needed to value surgical services." When it released its proposed 2017 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule, CMS ignored the law and moved to collect this data from all physicians utilizing 10- and 90-day global codes. This change, if implemented as CMS intends, will dramatically increase the reporting burden for surgeons participating in Medicare.
In response, two physician members of Congress - Larry Buschon, MD (R-IN) and Ami Berra, MD (D-CA) - drafted comments to the Secretary of Health and Human Services and the Administrator of CMS calling on them to abandon the change. ASPS initiated a grassroots campaign directing its members to write their member of Congress and requested that they sign-on to Buschon and Bera's letter. When Congress resumes session after Labor Day, ASPS will continue to work to ensure that CMS adheres to congressional intent in its treatment of global surgical codes.