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Medicare giveback legislation

This article was originally published in The Gray Sheet

Executive Summary

Senate Finance Committee Chairman Max Baucus (D-Mont.) is attempting to bring the bill to the floor, but faces resistance from Sen. Don Nickles (R-Okla.) and others who want it to be marked up in committee first. The price tag on the Senate package - roughly $43 bil. over 10 years - is one likely reason for opposition. The House version (HR 4954), by contrast, would cost approximately $30 bil. Under the Senate bill, CMS has a 12-month window to implement a Medicare beneficiary appeals system following promulgation of a final rule. Separately, Sens. Mary Landrieu (D-La.), Tim Johnson (D-S. Dak.), George Voinovich (R-Ohio) and Robert Bennett (R-Utah) sent a letter to Baucus Oct. 15 urging that the competitive bidding provision be changed to authorize funds implementing the final three of five demonstration projects rather than nationwide competitive bidding...

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