The "Doc Fix" Set To Expire
A Decrease In Medicare and Tricare Reimbursement Scheduled For Doctors
On December 31, doctors will experience a 30% decrease in reimbursements through Medicare and Tricare, the federal programs that provide care for people over 65 years of age and active and retired members of the military, unless Congress acts to stop it.
In 1997, Congress created a formula that tied increases in physician payments from Medicare and Tricare to ecoomic growth, a formula that leaves a shortfall in payments to doctors when health care costs rise faster than the nation's economic growth.
As a result, Congress appropriates additional money to doctors every year to close the gap, a short-term fix known as the "doc fix."
Connecticut's more than 563,000 Medicare beneficiaries and more than 50,000 active and retired members of the military and their families will likely feel the impact if Congress fails to solve the problem through another short-term fix, or as many advocate, finding a long-term solution to the problem.