WASHINGTON (AP) -- Doctors who treat Medicare patients would get a last-minute reprieve from a scheduled 24 percent cut in their reimbursements from the government under a bill that's on track to pass the House.
It would be the 17th time Congress has stepped in with a temporary fix to a poorly designed Medicare fee formula that dates to a 1997 budget law. House action comes after efforts to permanently fix the formula appear to have fizzled.
The heavily lobbied legislation also contains numerous other health care provisions of interest to doctors, hospitals and drug companies.
Timing in the Senate is less certain, although there's a lot of pressure to act by a Monday midnight deadline. Otherwise Medicare would stop processing payments to doctors until the payment fix is enacted.
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