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Fair and Equal Pay? - January 2016 - Outpatient Surgery Magazine

Outpatient Surgery Magazine, providing current information on Surgical Services, Surgical Facility Administration, Outpatient Surgery News and Trends, OR Excellence and more.

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Cuts to 2016 Colonoscopy Rates Run Deep The physician work values for the colonoscopy family are cut up to 17%. Y ou know that the physician cuts in Medicare reimburse- ment for colonoscopy and other lower GI endoscopy proce- dures are severe when you hear reports that gas- troenterologists may reduce colonoscopy cases or even retire early because of them. But that's what we're fac- ing this year. In the finalized CY 2016 Physician Fee Schedule rule, CMS cut reimbursement for several colonoscopy codes. Mitigating the cuts The colonoscopy code family — the highest volume code family — was hit hardest. Critics say the colonoscopy cuts are inappropriately deep and, at their highest, slash 2016 physician payment for some pro- cedures by more than 17%. Though CMS's ASC cuts pale in compari- son to the decreases we're seeing in physician payments, the dramatic reductions may also have a long-term impact on your colonoscopy screening volume. On the facility side, the colonoscopy family is facing a 2.7% cut from last year, which averages out to be about $12 less per procedure. This 2 6 • O U T PA T I E N T S U R G E R Y M A G A Z I N E • J A N U A R Y 2 0 1 6 Coding & Billing Stephanie Ellis, RN, CPC • COST CUTTING Some of your most common procedures, including colonoscopies, will be reim- bursed at a lower rate in 2016.

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