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Larson on Passage of SGR Fix

March 26, 2015
Press Release

Washington “The issue of health for our seniors, children, and families is neither Democrat nor Republican: it’s American," said Rep. John B. Larson (CT-01). "I commend Speaker Boehner, Leader Pelosi, and the leaders of the Ways and Means and Energy and Commerce Committees for joining together in a bipartisan spirit to forge an agreement that will benefit millions of Americans. This is what the American people expect and what they deserve from their elected representatives. 

"I am proud of the work we've done to repeal and replace the Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula: the formula currently used to reimburse providers who treat Medicare beneficiaries. For years Congress has enacted short-term patches to the formula to avoid devastating cuts.  I have long advocated for a permanent fix. In this legislation, we replaced the broken SGR formula with a payment model that values quality over quantity. We put patients’ care first, ensuring stability for providers and funding several key programs that assist low-income Medicare beneficiaries.

"Additionally, the bill extends the vital Children’s Health Insurance Program (CHIP) and Maternal, Infant, and Early Childhood Home Visiting (MIECHV) program.  CHIP alone provides healthcare for thousands of Connecticut children.  We also made important investments in our community health centers, a key component to healthcare access in both Connecticut and the rest of the country.

"There are certainly areas of this bill that I would have liked to see improved, including a four-year CHIP reauthorization, a permanent repeal of the therapy caps, the removal of unnecessary Hyde amendment language that was inserted, and offsets that don’t impact Medicare beneficiaries. No bill is perfect, but I take comfort in knowing that despite its flaws, this agreement ensures access to top-notch healthcare for millions of Americans. It is my hope that this is just the first in a number of bipartisan achievements to come.”