The following statement was released today by American Physical Therapy Association President Roger Herr, PT, MPA.
Congress has delivered the 2023 omnibus spending bill, and while it contains some positive aspects it does not nearly go far enough.
APTA and other health care organizations representing over 1 million providers across the country made a compelling case for a full restoration of the unsustainable payment cuts included in the 2023 Medicare Physician Fee Schedule. While lawmakers did provide a 2.5% funding increase in the recently released bill to mitigate the impending 2023 cuts, they unfortunately failed to deliver on the full 4.5% increase needed to ensure patient access to care and the financial viability providers’ practices.
These cuts to the conversion factor used in calculating payment will affect 27 specialties, including physical therapy. Our patients are now at risk of losing access to our services.
APTA agrees with the American Medical Association in our mutual dismay over Congress’ failure to fully commit to protecting patients’ access to needed care. This spending bill underscores our belief that the entire fee schedule system needs an overhaul. Providers should not be made to carry an outdated system’s dysfunction on their backs, and we cannot expect Congress to come to the rescue year after year.
The path ahead is clear: We will continue to lead the charge and advocate before Congress in 2023 to overhaul and reform Medicare payment. And we will continue to fight for patients' access to essential health services and reduced administrative burden. We are committed to finding long-term solutions, not temporary fixes, when the 118th Congress convenes in January.
The voices of our members are critical to these efforts. APTA has published a summary of relevant elements of the omnibus package, including other APTA-supported bills that were included. And please continue to monitor the APTA Advocacy Center for up-to-date information on our 2023 legislative priorities and what you can do to fuel real change.