KHN Morning Briefing

Summaries of health policy coverage from major news organizations

Physicians Fret Medicare Cuts; Cancer Patients Face Higher Costs

Modern Healthcare: "If the pending 21.2% Medicare physician payment cut goes in effect, only 42% of 1,021 osteopaths surveyed said they would continue to see their current roster of Medicare patients and only 30% of those currently accepting new Medicare patients would continue to do so. The Benenson Strategy Group, on behalf of the American Osteopathic Association, conducted the online survey between April 28 and May 1, and the biggest concerns cited by participants were that Medicare payment rates do not increase at the same rate as medical costs" (Tobrznieks, 5/12).

American Medical News: "The use and cost of diagnostic imaging for Medicare patients who have cancer increased dramatically over a recent seven-year period, according to a study by researchers from Duke University in Durham, N.C. Imaging costs for Medicare beneficiaries outpaced the rate of increase in total health care costs among Medicare beneficiaries with cancer, the report concluded. It appeared in the April 28 Journal of the American Medical Association." Here is the study (Silva, 5/12).

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