Optimism for resolution of the Perennial “doc fix” problem blossoms in Congress…

Leaders increasingly optimistic they’ll strike Medicare deal

Congress will pass a long-term fix to the perennial problem surrounding Medicare payments to doctors. “I’m not going to say we’ve got it all resolved yet, but I’m optimistic that we will,” House Speaker John Boehner (R-Ohio) said Thursday. Committee leaders in both the House and Senate introduced legislation Thursday to end automatic cuts to doctors under Medicare, though the proposal does not include provisions offsetting the substantial costs. Those much more controversial details are still being worked out by top leaders. The broader package, which is expected to include a two-year extension of the Children’s Health Insurance Program, could be released in the coming days. The overall package is expected to cost $210 billion with only $70 billion offset — a hole that would pose the highest hurdle to passing the legislation.

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