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April 2009
Vol. 19 No. 4
Policy and Advocacy
IDSA Advises Congress on H1N1 Influenza

IDSA is providing input to staff of key members of congressional committees responding to H1N1 influenza. The Society supports President Obama’s request for $1.5 billion in supplemental funding and is advising members of Congress on how the disease highlights the importance of addressing issues of antiviral and antibiotic resistance.

Other advocacy items include:

  • IDSA and other physician groups urged Congress to support the Obama Administration’s proposal to include $329.6 billion in the FY 2010 budget to improve physician payments over the next 10 years.  The proposal would provide more realistic payments for physicians than Medicare’s current “sustainable growth rate” (SGR) formula. Congress has passed temporary legislation six times since 2003 to override cuts that would have taken place under the SGR.
  • IDSA cautioned members of the Senate Finance Committee and the Senate Health, Education, Labor, and Pensions (HELP) Committee in a letter urging prudence in bundling providers’ payments when enacting widespread reform of the health care delivery system. The letter urged Congress to first allow the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) to fully test this payment method to determine any possible pitfalls.

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