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Monday, March 30, 2015

SGR Repeal Flies Through House, Stalls in Senate

Behind the strong leadership of Rep. Michael Burgess, MD (R-Lewisville), and the bipartisan support of our Texas congressional delegation, the bill to repeal Medicare’s hated Sustainable Growth Rate (SGR) formula won overwhelming approval in the U.S. House of Representatives. Leaders in the upper chamber promise the Senate will take up the bill quickly when Congress returns April 13 from its Easter recess. See Wednesday’s edition of TMA’s Action newsletter for details on how Medicare will handle claims for services provided after April 1.

Reps. Kevin Brady (R-The Woodlands) and Gene Green (D-Houston) also cosponsored the bill, and Rep. Henry Cuellar (D-Laredo) pushed hard to ensure it included language protecting Texas’ medical liability reforms. In addition to Reps. Burgess, Brady, Green, and Cuellar, each of the following Texas members of Congress deserve thank-you letters or calls for their “yes” votes on HR 2, the Medicare and CHIP Reauthorization Act (see the TMA Grassroots Action Center for addresses and phone numbers for your representative): Reps. Ted Poe, Jeb Hensarling, Joe Barton, John Culberson, Al Green, Michael McCaul, Mike Conaway, Kay Granger, Mac Thornberry, Randy Weber, Beto O’Rourke, Bill Flores, Sheila Jackson Lee, Randy Neugebauer, Joaquin Castro, Lamar Smith, Pete Olson, Will Hurd, Roger Williams, Blake Farenthold, Eddie Bernice Johnson, John Carter, Pete Sessions, Marc Veasey, Filemon Vela, Lloyd Doggett, and Brian Babin.

TMA also appreciates the support of Senate Majority Whip John Cornyn of Texas, and will work with him during the two-week recess to ensure the Senate passes the bill and quickly puts a stake into the SGR. I also urge you to send calls and letters of support into Sen. Ted Cruz’s office.

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