Senate Letter to HHS Secretary Urges Review of Anesthesia Medicare Payments

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Sixteen U.S. Senators have signed a letter to HHS Secretary Kathleen Sebelius calling for a review of Medicare payments for anesthesia services as possibly misvalued, according to the American Society of Anesthesiologists and a copy of the letter.


The ASA reports that a 2007 analysis by the Government Accountability Office shows Medicare rates for anesthesia services are 33 percent of what commercial payors reimburse for the same service, while many other physician specialties receive at least 80 percent of commercial rates from Medicare.


The letter, dated Aug. 23, follows a similar letter sent May 28 to Ms. Sebelius and signed by 75 members of the U.S. House of Representatives.


Read the ASA's comments on the Senate letter about anesthesia Medicare payments.


View the Senate letter (pdf) and the House letter (pdf).

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