American College Of Surgeons - Inspiring Quality: Highest Standards, Better Outcomes

ACS Calls for Congress to Fix Current Unsustainable Medicare Payment System


CHICAGO (December 21, 2011): Today the American College of Surgeons (ACS) expressed its deep disappointment in Congress’ inability to enact comprehensive and politically viable legislation to fix the Medicare physician payment system. ACS points out that despite having an entire year to address the 27.4 percent cut in Medicare reimbursement rates to physicians, Congress waited until the final two weeks of the year to engage in any type of significant discussion on the issue. Even then, Congress resorted to bitter partisan politics, talking past each other and leaving town without resolving the problem.

America’s seniors deserve better; our physicians and their staff deserve better. Access to the nation’s health care system and the ability of physicians to provide care should not be viewed as political fodder.

There is wide consensus that the Medicare program is unsustainable for patients, physicians, and our health care system as a whole. The time for politics has ended; the Medicare program and its millions of beneficiaries deserve our best efforts to maintain their ability to get the necessary care. The ACS takes its responsibility seriously and stands ready to work with Congress to find a meaningful and sustainable solution to Medicare’s payment system that improves the quality and value of the care our physicians provide.

Members of Congress from all sides have publicly stated that the Medicare physician payment system must be repealed; it is time for them to live up to those words and find the political will to get the job done.

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About the American College of Surgeons
The American College of Surgeons is a scientific and educational organization of surgeons that was founded in 1913 to raise the standards of surgical practice and improve the quality of care for all surgical patients. The College is dedicated to the ethical and competent practice of surgery. Its achievements have significantly influenced the course of scientific surgery in America and have established it as an important advocate for all surgical patients. The College has more than 79,000 members and is the largest organization of surgeons in the world. For more information, visit


Sally Garneski